Yin: Subaqueous Boom Bap from Yunnanese Producer StrawberryPapa


Yin (音, “music”) is a weekly RADII column that looks at Chinese songs spanning hip hop to folk to modern experimental, and everything in between. Drop us a line if you have a suggestion.

Speaking of Kunming hip hop: here’s a chilllllll way to end the work week, a suite of in-the-zone hip hop instrumentals from Kunming-born, Beijing-based producer StrawberryPapa (草莓爸爸):


This lo-fi beat tape is the ninth release from Eating Music, who’ve been on a roll this year and are gearing up to host their second annual summer camp soon, which will undoubtedly yield even more SP 404-filtered realness in the months to come.

In the mean time, StrawberryPapa’s debut album Underwater/Fantasy delivers the goods for fans of lovingly textured, old-school beatwork. Liberal use of vinyl crackle (and the cassette format in itself) give the LP an appropriately submerged feeling throughout, and Papa’s monk-like dedication to the genre shines through on every track. Dude knows his way around the old jazz standards. This is the kind of album I can see soundtracking a lot of long summer nights.

From the liner notes:

The purpose is pure: this is one of the ultimate escapes from the hustle and bustle of city life for the urbanite. Let’s just wait a while, chill and find yourself a paradise in the concrete jungle where there may be a quiet forest, a flowing river, a perfect vibe with good energy grooves, and a moment of peace in you.

Sounds lovely. Stream/download/physically purchase this album-length “mixture of Yunnan’s chillaxed swing and Beijing’s urban coolness” over at Eating Music’s Bandcamp.

You might also like:

Peace, Love, and Hip Hop at Kunming’s CLUB ICON

Artist, Entrepreneur, and Vinyl Visionary Cookie Zhang Wants to Change China’s Taste in Music

Yin: Skr-less Avant Rap from Beijing’s DVC

Yin: New Year Tunes from Howie Lee and Eating Music

Josh Feola
Josh Feola is a US-based writer and musician, and RADII's former Culture Editor. His coverage of Chinese music and art has appeared in The Wire, Dazed, MIT Technology Review, Artsy, Bandcamp Daily and more. He's been active in China's underground music scene since 2010 via his booking platform pangbianr.com, and is a former member of Beijing bands Chui Wan, SUBS, and Vagus Nerve.

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