OK now this is a blog post I am writing (mainly) for Chuck D of rap legends Public Enemy. You’ve probably heard of them. For literally generations now Chuck has been giving us his thoughts on anything and everything via music, TV and video. He now likes to tweet and follows me on the social media platform Twitter. When the paralympic games were on in 2012 I asked Chuck a question via Twitter and we got into a little spat. This has kind of returned this morning. Mainly because Chuck (imo) wouldn’t answer my question.. he seemingly still doesn’t understand it so I said I would break it down for him via the blog. I needed more characters. So here goes.. Oh and may I add that during all the prep for the 2012 games I lived in Hackney Wick under the nose of the stadium. I could see money being squandered away ALL the time during the year leading up to the games. It made me somewhat sick in itself, hence why this following situation was so frustrating to me.
When the paralympics were being advertised on UK TV channel 4 in 2012 they ran this ad..
There was also another ad very similar to this which had the sponsor logos on the end of it. Alongside Chucks voice. But I can’t find it. Well done Ch 4.
As you will obviously be able to hear the music used is by childhood heroes of mine Public Enemy. Now..
When the paralympics were on and this ad was continuously battered about the UK media (the song also charted in the uk too I believe and notably is still used as the unofficial paralympic tune including during this years Sochi event ads) I noticed that the sponsors for the paralympics were somewhat dubious. The main olympics games had some shady sponsors too but the paralympics had extra seedy ones. So who are we talking about here anyway I hear you ask…
Atos.. Dow.. GE.. BP.. pretty seedy bunch huh. I’m surprised Monsanto isn’t in there.
So upon noticing this, and being somewhat sick of PE’s tune being played everywhere, every 2 minutes.. I tweeted Chuck. I asked him 2 things, neither of which he ever really answered. Firstly I asked Chuck if he knew who the sponsors were. And secondly I asked him if Public Enemy themselves had agreed to let the tune be used or if a label who had put it out had licensed it or something. The second q he did semi answer and told me that their (PE) own licensing/label had let the track be used. He never answered the first question about knowing who the sponsors were. At all.
So I told him that it was DOW etc.. and explained that as a lifelong fan of the group I didn’t quite understand why Chuck and PE wanted to be associated with such brands and if so.. did he take their money? Well of course, in effect if they got paid (which they obviously did) then he had taken the dirty money. And I just thought that was a shame. I believed in what PE stood for, what Chuck said was gold to me growing up. But I guess I was wrong.
What made matters worse here was that instead of answering the questions put to him Chuck just attacked me about whether I drank alcohol or not. Claiming that if I did, none of my opinions were valid and that I was brainwashed by evil booze companies. This was both irrelevant and just Chuck trying to force me away from the real issue.. Which is still outstanding, so Chuck I ask you politely, again (please reply by way of a comment here)
a – did you know who the paralympic sponsors were in 2012 before you licensed the track?
b – did you get paid for the track to be used to advertise the paalympics? and if so.. did you care about the sponsors attached and how this might be perceived by fans like me?
And Chuck, stop taking this as a personal attack or a troll attempt. I am genuinely interested, as a lifelong fan why you didn’t do your research and/or why you are so defensive about this. It’s like you are trying to hide this, but the truth is.. when I hear that track, I think paralympics.. dodgy sposnors and I am not alone in thinking this (as you tried to suggest on Twitter)
So there you go, it’s on you.
Ex Public Enemy fan.
Oh and just for the record in case anyone cares, the Olympic village in East London has sat virtually dormant since the games. No deal is currently in place for it to be used for anything. Some regeneration huh. You got blagged people. Including you Chuck.
Chuck responds on Twitter and admits he didn’t know who the sponsors were before they licensed the track.
Poor form Chuck, poor form.
@Seeds_ONE 1. Answer to first question NO. Second question is anything heard on TV is licensed,paid by production company.3. The theme was..
— Chuck D (@MrChuckD) March 3, 2014
@Seeds_ONE 3. The theme of the athletes was my focus. I'm not into the micro-politics of its attachment.That obviously is your target, cool
— Chuck D (@MrChuckD) March 3, 2014
*Throws away PE albums as they mean nothing anymore.