It’s almost unfathomable that someone would turn down $50,000, as well as a collaboration with it-girl Azaelia Banks and notorious tastemaker Diplo simply on principle, but that’s exactly what dance music producer Munchi did recently, and damn good on him for doing it. Diplo and Banks had been working with the Dominican-Dutch producer, who was born and raised in Rotterdam, on some tracks and had repeatedly leaked tracks without his permission, as well as publicizing his name and work on the tracks against his will. After Munchi publicly took issue with Banks releasing cover art and setting a date for the single and video for the track “Esta Noche” without his consent, Interscope eventually offered him $50,000 to use the track, which was double what they had originally offered. He turned it down flat, taking the dispute public and calling Diplo and Banks out on their behavior.

Munchi went at Azaelia on Twitter, and it wasn’t long before Azaelia responded (both unapologetically and conveniently dodging the issue)

Banks’ response:

Munchi wasn’t done though, going after Banks’ credibility as an artist, but also challenging Diplo and Interscope for their part in the whole mess:

But while Twitter beef is all good and fun, Munchi’s official statement on the issue went a lot deeper into his gripes with Banks, Diplo, and Interscope:

“What is childish is the fact that I got disrespected 11 times in total and still they thought it was ok to just give me a sum of money for my integrity. You get buyed off for their disrespect and call it a day. Each time they told me something and put out something that was not discussed. In the end trying to blame me for something she put up in error by stating that this release could not be out today since I think she is in the Illuminati. I had to do this after the great amount of patience I’ve shown. The Interscope problem solver dude was actually pretty cool, I never talked to Azealia or her management, every time they would get me in contact with someone higher in Interscope. This is Interscope we are talking about. What’s up with this bitchshit. I am supposed to say “Oh, I’ll have to accept Azealia’s behaviour since she is an artist and can do whatever she wants.” Not happening. The reason why I did not reply to any of the Tweets is simple: I cannot blame the crowd for their ignorance in this situation. 1 thing that you do have to know is that I will always try to be straight up and be real with it. I tried, but got disrespected every single time.”

For a lot of people, both on Twitter and on the hiphopdx  article’s comments section, the argument becomes one of fame, money, and influence, for both sides of the debate; people on Banks and Diplo’s side have taken on the tone of “Munchi is a nobody, he’s stupid to turn that money down, he’ll never be famous now” – and judging by Banks’ response, she’s taken the tone of “I’m more famous than you, you’re just hating, I can do what I want”, as well; the classic bully pulpit “I don’t even know who you are, hater” response. Which is bullshit – it’s bullshit when any rapper does it, it’s bullshit when Chris Brown does it, it’s bullshit when a Kardashian or Lindsay Lohan does it, it’s bullshit when any artist or fashion designer won’t hear an argument against themselves, retreating straight to the ego defense. But it’s especially disappointing with Banks, who’s a pretty dope artist, and someone we’d hoped for a little more from. Co-opting, appropriating, and arguably, white-washing someone else’s shit, be it a producer’s style, a new artist, genre or a cultural thing, has always been Diplo’s game, so that’s nothing new; he’s nearly as good at it as Shepard Fairey, and it’s how he got his rep as a cool-chaser in the first place. Hell, it’s not always bad, even. But it is what it is. If you couldn’t tell by the Blackberry commercials, Diplo values being DIPLO, and, like Shepard Fairey, feels that means he’s above, or even owns, the underground his whole aesthetic comes from. I’d love to hear more to the story; but I fear there really isn’t much to this, as it’s something I’ve seen before, over and over.

On the other side of the debate is the acknowledgement that yes, Banks, Diplo, and Interscope are on a level faaaaaaar above where Munchi is (and, to be honest, I hadn’t even heard of Munchi before this whole thing went down) and he may never reach that level, but that shouldn’t be the point. It shouldn’t simply be “whoever has more fans/twitter followers/money is right, regardless of the content of their argument” – that game has to end, and the easiest way for it to end is by supporting an artist like Munchi (who gives most of his music away for free, by the way) and not buying anything that comes off Interscope so that shit like this isn’t accepted anymore, and it’s not so surprising when someone turns down money for their artistry, and, more importantly, for the sake of their own self-respect as a human being.

So with that, here’s Munchi’s soundcloud: soundcloud.com/munchi_productions

And you can find more Munchi here: munchiproductions.blogspot.com

(It’s okay though, Diplo. We’ll gladly take the money if you wanna get rid of it, allmsayin.)

About Tricky McYouth-Rodman

View all posts by Tricky McYouth-Rodman
If there was a 25th hour in the day, I'd probably use it to get more wasted.

GOOSEBUMPS “SCARED TO SEE A DOCTOR” RECORD RELEASE SHOW AT 538 JOHNSON (FULL SETS FROM GOOSEBUMPS, AJAX, MERCENARY, LIBYANS, AND LA MISMA)

Like an episode of Jerry Springer, but with more fireworks.

FIGHT CLUB: THE BEST OF FRIDAY NIGHT THROWDOWN

Following the news of Throwdown’s return at SXSW this year with a Texas vs. NYC event, it seems only appropriate to take a look back at the history of Friday Night Throwdown, and the coverage we’ve had of it here on Superchief over the years. For the uninitiated; Friday Night Throwdown wasn’t just NYC’s best underground boxing event, it was NYC’s best underground party.

TEXAS VS. NYC: THROWDOWN RETURNS AT SXSW THIS YEAR

The organization that brought Ford models, Marines and Bloods together for New York’s best underground party is bringing their business to Austin, and bringing with them a Texas vs. NYC event…and Superchief will be covering the whole thing, from start to finish.

THIS APRIL: SUPERCHIEF GALLERY NYC PRESENTS JOHN FELIX ARNOLD III’S “EXCORRIGIA | THE SCOURGE”

From the world of UNSTOPPABLE TOMORROW, Superchief Gallery NYC returns this spring with John Felix Arnold III’s EXCORRIGIA | THE SCOURGE, an exhibition of new works in painting, drawing, mixed media, installation, and sound. The exhibition will run from April 3 through April 13, and there will be an opening reception on Thursday, April 3 from 6-10pm at CultureFix on 9 Clinton Street.

HIGH ON HUNGER: JANE CHARDIET

“High on Hunger” is Jane Chardiet’s new zine, featuring personal essay, photography and interviews with 12 artists, including some of our favorites, about their 2013 and their artistic goals in the new year, along with photographs of each licking fire. It’s good stuff, so I asked Jane about her 2013, because turnabout’s fair play and that’s how the game works.

12 O’ CLOCK BOYS (BALTIMORE STREETBIKE REALNESS)

Whatever your city is doing, what the homies out in B-More are doing is 10x as crazy. 12 O’ Clock Boys is one of the hardest movies we’ve seen in a long time, hands down, exploring a city and a culture that just doesn’t give a fuck (and featuring Baltimore himies like Schwarz on the soundtrack) the film gets more done in it’s 75 minutes than most documentaries do in twice that.

TAPE BAG #1: I HAVEN’T GOTTEN OFF MY COUCH IN DAYS.

Talking shit on random tapes cuz I wanna. Round one: Mongrel, Skinny Puppy, Madonna, Gowanus Mutant Kommandos, Temple of the Dog and MORE.

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Ricky Luanda of the experimental NYC punk band Chain Gang, one of the coolest bands ever, passed away earlier this week from esophogeal cancer. Watch 10 minutes of the bands’ rare, legendary, batshit crazy 1980′s film “MONDO MANHATTAN” right here.

ALWAYS KEEP THE CAMERA RUNNING: MAKS SUSKI’S VIDEOS OF THE NYC MUSIC SCENE

Maks Suski has been hard at work documenting live music in NYC on video for the last 4 years; we asked him to compile a list of some of his favorite videos that he’s shot, a list that includes Japanther, Action Bronson, Death Grips, Culo, Crystal Castles, Limp Wrist, Black Pus and more.

THERE IS A TINY LEG A QUARTER OF AN INCH BELOW YOUR TENTH RIB.

“Although Tiny Leg’s sound owes much of it’s inspiration to the Oakland glucose and thumbtrack scenes of the mid-nineties, and has been called by HotFridge magazine ‘a thumbcore homage to the sound of Velvet Curtis and Taco’ and ‘a slick-stale, neo-juicy, post-hipster alchemy, somewhere in between gluke-wave and puke-base’ by PeckerwoodsToday, those sentences are too journalistic and not souague enough, if one may permit my french.”

DAWN OF HUMANS, HANK WOOD & THE HAMMERHEADS, AND PHARMAKON PLAYED PS1 SATURDAY NIGHT (FULL SETS)

PUNK NOT ART NOISE NOT MUSIC ACK ACK ACK ACK

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Tod Seelie’s book release and photo show at Superchief Gallery at CultureFix was a celebration of the last 15 years of New York’s underground, for sure; but it also kept an eye on the future.

FUCKED UP CLOSED OUT 285 KENT’S LAST SHOW (FULL SET)

285 Kent finished it’s run last Sunday night; check out full video of Fucked Up’s headlining set right here.

SUPERCHIEF GALLERY AT MIAMI ART BASEL 2013: WILL SMITH CAN SUCK IT.

Superchief Gallery’s showing at Select Fair 2013 is even bigger, better and more batshit crazy than our 2012 showing was – check out photos here, and for homies in Miami, we’ll be at the Catalina Hotel all this week!

STACY KRANITZ’S SKATOPIA (50+ Photos From a Burnout’s Paradise)

Photographer Stacy Kranitz recently journeyed to Skatopia, a famed 88 acre skate park/commune in Ohio which was founded in 1995, documented in the 2010 film of the same name, and once described by writer Kevin Duffel as “a demented mess that meets halfway between an anarchistic Mad Maxian Thunderdome and a utopian skateboard society.” Goddamn if it isn’t one of the best things we’ve ever seen.