COPENHAGEN –Spokespersons for the international climate talks here have announced that, as has long been suspected, Iranian Prime Minister Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe plan to address negotiators at international climate talks in Copenhagen next week.
What has not been announced officially, but was released exclusively to yours truly, is that the three will speak jointly, using the universal language of gangsta rap. Fans of global-political gansta rap will recall that the three have not shared a microphone since their breakup in 2006, when Ahmadinejad (Mo-jad) stormed off stage during a live performance of their breakout piece, “White Man Infidel Ruined Da World.”
Since that time, each has put out a number of albums, but as solo acts, none of them achieved the acclaim they had enjoyed working together as Kronic Mo-Go. Hugo Chavez (Go-vez) came closest with “Hegemony.” (“You will remember me ‘cause I will dismember thee, as I expand my hegemony, over your periphery.”) Mugabe (Kronic) enjoyed a brief comeback with “Mugabenomics,” after U.S. Congresswoman Maxine Waters (Democrat, California) admitted to plagiarizing his lyrics for a speech she made in favor of the Obama economic recovery plan, but Mo-jad’s “I like my biatches in burkhas” was a complete non-starter.
I was privileged to receive an invitation (after proving that I am not Jewish) to attend last night’s rehearsal of the trio’s latest song, which will be made public for the first time in Copenhagen. While I can reveal only those few lines of lyrics that were cleared for early release (“…wi global warmin dey be fryin us, ‘cause dey be Zionusts…”) I can say without equivocation that Kronic Mo-Go is back, and conference attendees are in for a treat.
Previously, Mo-jad’s obvious difficulties with English, and his penchant for going off-script during songs were the group’s Achilles’ heel. He has clearly been working with a coach, however, and now his riffing is disciplined, and his delivery is crisp. He seems also to have improved his sense of rhythm, famously maligned after the breakup by Kronic, who said that, “Underneath dat tan, da mother be seriously white.” Dressed in his trademark nondescript, slightly-too-small suit, wearing a nuclear-symbol medallion hanging from a heavy gold chain, Mo-jad was a force to be reckoned with.
And he was in good company. Go-vez, sporting his familiar Che Guevara T-shirt beneath his Mao jacket, was spot-on, delivering his message with the AK-47 staccato delivery that made him famous all those years ago, and stepping back when he was through, to lay down a onomatopoeia beatbox that sent a thrill down the leg of everyone at the venue.
Of the three though, nobody came close to Kronic (“They call me Kronic, say I’m demonic, ‘cause I do you harm, destroy your farm, I’ll kill your kid, tha’s wha I did, take your economy, your goods upona me, cause you frustration, inflict inflation, destroy the nation, take a vacation, when I come back, renew my attack, ya think I done, I just begun…”) who began the show dressed in much the same fashion as Mo-jad, but by the end, through four rapid costume changes, finished in an outfit that resembled a Zulu warrior auditioning for the Blue Man Group. His performance featured his familiar frenzied delivery, (Being in his 90’s hasn’t slowed him down a bit. Is it true that he’ll live forever?) for which crunking is no longer an apt description. He positively vibrated on the stage, until at one point, when he paused for a quick breather, his manager rushed to his side with a long cape, resplendent with the feathers of gorgeous endangered species of birds, which he threw over Kronic’s shoulder in a master showman’s reference to the Godfather of Soul himself, James Brown.
Lest you think I have lost the keen critic’s senses that got me where I am today, lest you think I am awestruck, and just babbling, let me tell you that I was not the only person in that small and privileged audience who was moved by the power, the savagery, represented by these three artists. None other than the President of the United States was in attendance, and so moved was he by the spectacle, that at its conclusion, he bowed repeatedly to the figures on the stage.
Yes, of all the entertainment scheduled for the conference in Copenhagen, (and I mean ALL of it – comedians, clowns, illusionists - ) I predict that none will capture the attention and imagination of Ahmadinejad, Chavez, and Mugabe. Kronic Mo-Go is more than back, more than a band, more than a movement. They are the symbol of the future.