Eminem’s Jewish manager is the breakout rap star of 2018.
Eminem and the Divine Miss M, together yet again.
With groping allegations swirling around Donald Trump, rapper Eminem’s out with the cutting single, “Campaign Speech,” which takes aim at the Republican nominee. And white supremacist David Duke is not happy about it.
At the New York release party for Eprhyme’s first CD a few years ago, the audience was an unusual blend of angel-headed Jewish hipsters bopping along to neo-Hasidic hip-hop, along with a smaller African-American crowd which was there to check out the new record drop. Eprhyme straddled two communities — the New-Jew one, and the urban hip-hop one — and while we shared space that night, I noticed there was little interaction between the two sub-groups.
Last week on an adorable TMZ segment, former Degrassi child actor and current ubiquitous pop radio presence Drake called himself “one of the best Jews to ever do it,” where “it” presumably meant spitting lines. Conveniently timed to coincide with the release of his new album, “Live at Stubb’s Vol. II,” peyot-sporting rap-reggae-pop singer Matisyahu fought back: “He happens to be Jewish just like Bob Dylan happened to be Jewish, but what I’m doing is really tapping into my roots and culture, and trying to blend that with the mainstream… Drake’s being Jewish is just a by-product.” Jay-Z vs. Nas Pt. II this is not (it’s not even Eminem vs. Insane Clown Posse quality), but it does raise a question that anyone writing and reading about Jewish music has to confront eventually: What is Jewish music?
It’s a fairly mind-blowing prospect, but, yes, it appears that Eminem is preparing to play Orthodox Ukrainian-born Jewish boxer, Dmitriy Salita, in an upcoming Disney film produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. The working title: “Knockout.”
Sacha Baron Cohen’s ostentatious characters are beloved for satirizing American phobias and closed-minded discomforts relating to social issues. In 2006, Borat’s cross-country journey mocked antisemitism and xenophobia. And now Bruno — Cohen’s gay Austrian fashion worker character whose self-titled film premieres this summer — pokes at the empty quest for excess, and its unfettered fear of gays.