Dance With The Devil

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“Dance With The Devil” by Immortal Technique is one of the most powerful and shocking rap songs I’ve ever heard.  Immortal Technique describes the story of a young man named Billy Jacobs who attempts to join a gang and in order to prove himself, he steals, gets into fights, sells crack, and finally, rapes a woman. An intoxicated Jacobs completes this task after covering the woman’s face with her shirt, and is unaware of the identity of the woman until he takes the cover from her face. He is repulsed to find that the woman in question is actually his mother, which leads him to commit suicide. “I made myself more of a part of it when I wrote the song, and it eventually became an urban legend and what’s sick is that people thought it was about rape [when] it was really about how we are killing ourselves and destroying the most valuable resource that the Latino/Black community has: our women.” 

Felipe Andres Coronel, better known as rapper Immortal Technique was born on February 19, 1978 in Lima, Peru.  His family emigrated in 1980 to Harlem.  During his teenage years he was arrested multiple times due in part to what he has said was “selfish and childish” behavior.  Shortly after enrolling in Penn State University he was arrested and charged with assault-related offenses that ended with a year of incarceration. After being paroled, he took political science classes at Baruch College in NYC for two semesters at the behest of his father, who allowed Technique to live with him on the condition that he go to school.  Honing his rapping skills in jail, and unable to find decent wage-paying employment after his release, Technique began selling his music on the streets of New York while battle rapping whenever the opportunity arose.  This, coupled with his victories in numerous freestyle competitions of the New York underground hip hop scene such as Rocksteady Anniversary, Braggin Rites and others, led to his reputation as a ferocious Battle MCMost of his lyrics focus on controversial issues in global politics. The views expressed in his lyrics are largely commentary on issues such as class struggle, Marxism, poverty, religion, racism, government, and imperialism.  His politically charged lyrics are backed up by his philanthropy.    He has been heavily involved in visiting prisons to speak to youth and working with immigrant rights activists and raising tens of thousands of dollars for children’s hospitals overseas. He created a writing grant program for high school students as well.  In June 2008, Immortal Technique partnered with Omeid International, a Non–Profit Human Rights Organization, to lend his support. He dubbed the work as “The Green Light Project”. With the profits of The 3rd World album, Immortal Technique traveled to Kabul, Afghanistan to help Omeid build an orphanage without any corporate or external funding. The orphanage, having been successfully established, currently houses over 20 orphaned children from Kabul.  

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