Hiphop van Yogyakarta

Hip Hop van Yogyakarta
Felix Dass | Sun, 01/02/2011 10:29 AM | Music

Marzuki Mohammad a.k.a. Kill the DJ probably started the Yogya Hip-Hop Foundation simply to get recognition in Yogyakarta’s artsy environment. But, years later, he has found himself on the front lines, part of the arsenal in his own cultural revolution.

Hiphop Diningrat, a documentary he made with co-director Chandra Hutagaol, shows one side of Yogyakarta’s current cultural revolution: rap music – a genre not often associated with Indonesia – combined with Javanese lyrics.

The hip-hop scene in Yogyakarta is a perfect model for how a community can grow and have a proper breadth of activities. They do everything with their own hands, just like the punks of days gone by. They book their own gigs, make their own recordings and do their own distribution and advertising just so their music will be heard by a wider audience.

“It’s all about honesty. That’s the best thing to be said, right?” Kill the DJ said.

They are proud of being Javanese and living in Yogyakarta, a city which is undoubtedly known for its cultural heritage. But, they also love rap music, something that at some point was imported from the western world. They mix these interests by rapping – but in the Javanese language.

“It’s not traditional, but it is an effort to understand our own culture,” he said.

The documentary shows how members of hip-hop groups survive, pursuing their passion for hip-hop music at all costs. Members of Jahanam, a Yogyakarta-based hip-hop group, tell of hunting for hip-hop outfits in awul-awul, Yogyakarta’s term for a flea market, while members of Rotra discuss their drive to create hip-hop in Javanese.

Rotra’s main reference was G-Tribe, a rap collective from the 1990s that shook the industry with a Javanese language rap album. “G-Tribe was one of my inspirations,” Kill the DJ said.

Hiphop Diningrat also features commentary from Indonesia’s first major label rapper from the early 90s Iwa K, professor of culture Sindhunata, Yogyakarta’s greatest world music artist Djaduk Ferianto, monologue maestro Butet Kertaredjasa and Batak-born poet and Yogyakarta resident Landung Simatupang.

They all speak respectfully about the amalgamation of west and east created by the Yogya Hip-Hop Foundation.

Upon the movie’s conclusion, one realizes a marvelous picture of this group of people was just unveiled. Hiphop Diningrat is scheduled for public screening sometime in 2011. The film will also be shown on a United States tour, when the friends will visit San Francisco and New York in January.

However, Kill the DJ was entirely correct when he said, “These are all simple processes. The movie is an effort to shoot a document of what we have done. We let the movie speak, not ourselves.”

Kill the DJ can also be followed on Twitter at

*) At a Glimpse is all about the local music scene. Give us a shout at Or friend us at and follow us on Twitter at

1 comment
  1. budi said:

    Bravo jhf, trz berkreatifitas !!!!
    Ada tantangan ni pak, bisa ndak kumpulin anak2 G Tribe, n buat album lagi,,, thx

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 253 other followers

%d bloggers like this: