Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Like Your Hip-Hop Weird?

Well, alright then. I got a weird one for ya. Here's a 7" single by one Sabado Gigante featuring El Charro Negro called "Vote for Gigante." This came out on a label called Punk Rock Stripper Girl Records (I won't post their logo) in 2000, and we know from the phone number on the label that this one hails from Texas. It's pressed on marble blue vinyl, and I guess we're supposed to identify that cartoon character as our lead MC.

Actually, that's less surprising given the content of the song. It's got a cool, low-key but head-nodding beat with a little funk guitar and a strong bassline. Production is credited to Muther Neff, and the notes also mention contributions by Baby Heart and Matt Sonzalia, but doesn't specify what roles they played. Gigante is, obviously, rapping as a presidential candidate, and his campaign is built entirely on appealing to children. He starts out with a little speech, promising things like returning Dungeons and Dragons to its original Saturday morning time-slot, and starts to kick some very weird raps:

"I got legions
Yellow Fever through diseases,
Ghetto flippers, nipple rings in flu seasons,
For the contagions
That continue ragin'.
(Who's Gigante?)
Half monkey, half amazin'!
Scottish striped kilt
With family colors from the mainland,
South Lamar Boulevard
Underarm fragrance;
Always wear the same pants.
I don't need to clean my truck; I like stained glass.
(Who you got for your cabinet?)
Got the Tijuana Brass wearing Mexican tuxedos
With the silver-starred boots, monster bulge torpedo.
Five toenails and four toes
(Let's keep that between ourselves)
Nobody knows.
Take off all my clothes
When I'm on the commode.
Jim Jay and Tammy Faye?
Got every single episode!"

Then the hook consists of him shouting out insane, one-word campaign promises followed by excited crowd responses: "Vote for Gigante... Hot toys and storytime at three-thirty each day... Once I'm elected you'll get see-saws. (Yeah!) Ice-cream. (Yeah!) Kitties. (Yeah!) Dry cleaned. (Yeah!) Fish sticks. (Yeah!) Mittens. (Yeah!) Beans. (Yeah!) Chicken. (Yeah!) Game shows. (Yeah!) Goggles. (Yeah!) Chainsaws. (Yeah!) Bottles. (Yeah!) Nipples. (Yeah!) Fire..." The last verse is saved for his guest, El Charro Negro who does a spoken word kinda thing... I don't know what he's saying, 'cause it's all in Spanish. But he starts shouting the phrase "Mello Yello!" several times towards the end.

The B-side provides the Instrumental version.

It's almost a joke song, but the groove is surprisingly compelling and he's got a serious flow. I got this for free when I ordered a bunch of stuff from P-Minus back in the day, which is frankly the only way I would have ever heard this, but actually I'm glad I have this in my collection. The catalog number in the run-out groove (PRSG-2001) suggests this is the first - and presumably only - release from the label.

A quick googling of the phrase tells us that Sabado Gigante is in fact the name of the longest running television program in the world: a Spanish-language variety show. I'm sure there's no connection, though, aside from being his namesake. But a review in The Austin Chronicle suggests Sabado might be the alias of Jack Fiend, member of a local Texan crew called Sociopath Left. But then again, they also suggest Sabado had two albums, including one called Hip Hop con las Polkas which was released "pre-1980." So I'm pretty sure they were the butt of a tongue-in-cheek press release there. But what the heck. All I know is that if you scoop this one up, you'll be pleasantly surprised.

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