Chap-hop: The Musical Genre?

Chap-hop: the musical genre that's straight outta Kensington... 

It's an ironic and anachronistically British take on rap – and if that's not enough to put you off, it turns out that Michael Gove is not only a big fan, but a gentleman rhymer himself.

What is: Chap-hop...

Appearance: Michael Gove in a backwards-facing baseball cap, arrhythmically nodding his head with an exaggerated overbite, in hell, for-ever.

Whoa. That's the single worst mental image anyone has ever put inside my head. Well get used to it. Because chap-hop is Michael Gove's favourite genre of music.

Hideous. What is it? It's rap, but performed by the sort of person who reads The Chap magazine.

Waxed moustaches? Bowler hats? Exactly. Chap‑hop artists rap politely about anachronistic British stereotypes in received pronunciation, often while smoking pipes and playing the banjolele.

It sounds like music for people who hate music. Spot on. And, just to reiterate, this is the education secretary's favourite type of music. He probably dances to it. Alone. In his underwear.

Right, forget what I said earlier. That's the single worst mental image anyone has put inside my head. Sorry. Gove told The Mail on Sunday: "I have a soft spot for contemporary English 'eccentric' music. [I] am strangely addicted to chap-hop rappers Professor Elemental, Mr B the Gentleman Rhymer and Mr Bruce and the Correspondents."

I've never heard of any of these people. Well, allow me to fill you in. Mr B The Gentleman Rhymer is thought to be the inventor of chap-hop. His albums include OG Original Gentleman, The Tweed Album and, somewhat regrettably, I Say.

Isn't this just Gordon Brown claiming to like Arctic Monkeys all over again. Well, I don't really know quite how to break this to you, but …

He isn't … He is.

Michael Gove is also a gentleman rhymer? Oh God, say it isn't so. Unfortunately Kirstie Allsopp witnessed Gove take the mic, so to speak, at a dinner party. "I was rapping," admitted Gove, "in praise of Toby Young, whose West London Free School has just been ranked by Ofsted as having outstanding features."

Of course, why not? According to Allsop, he was "very entertaining".

Michael Gove doing ironic posh rap at a dinner party while Kirsty Allsopp laughs and claps. Why must you plague me with so many hideous thoughts? I apologise. I'll stop now.

Do say: "Fight the power."

Don't say: "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Vote Us In."


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