Booba: explosions and celebrations (Asphalt with a feather)

Lire Booba text on the table, it is now possible. The rapper’s collection of punchlines, originally released in 2018 in a limited edition of 200 copies, is being reissued in the very chic Hoëbeke collection from Gallimard editions.

One or two quotations per page along an imposing volume force the observation that the words hold – one reads quickly, one bounces in the salient angles of the words of the Duke of Boulogne. Where is Booba talking about? From a place of war where one is constantly awake and rhythmically revived. At home, we sleep more, at home the sandman snorts coke. (Tallac) Clichés of hip-hop? Very supported, enlarged characters as in the work itself, but singularly crossed. Sure Here, it’s barrel, resin and fishnet stockings (New school) but Booba, it is as rare as certain, has a destiny of Licensed lyricist, that’s why God created me. (pit bull) – of Corsair from another sphere, I find the light when everything is dark. (Ground)

In his brilliant preface, the writer Thomas A. Ravier recalls that “Booba’s real name is Elie Yaffa. Everyone knows or should know that Elijah is a major prophet of the three religions, Judaism, Christianity, Islam. It’s not nothing. » Booba even knows himself to be A king. Why ? I have never seen a bean cut in half. (5G) Ravier says, twenty years after convincing the NRF to publish Booba or the demon of imagesa major essay on the style of the author, that the question of the relevance of these lightning lyrics is always worth asking in a sclerotic society and much more apt to celebrate the softness of a painful rap-variety ( just turn on the radio, major channels included): How to demonstrate that in the middle of what appears to the ear distracted by ill will as vocal hieroglyphs are in reality singular formulas to be deciphered? The writer believes that we are nevertheless in this salutary time when rap is reaching its age of unreason. That of pure pleasure… Of gratuitous challenge… Of instinctive clash… Even if it means neglecting external reality for the internal pleasure of strict dazzling. And to judiciously bring the art of the modern punchline closer to that of the epigram of the court and the salons of the 18th century.

Miracle, Booba pleases, he filled a Stade de France, denounces with great blows of clashes the digital contemporary commercial stupidity, regularly stands at the top of the charts (the competition paying Chinese click farms to try to dethrone him), and ( that’s basically what bothers everyone) writes all the time.

His Twitter account even clearly announces “Writer. Writer, we told you. Author of a dark and special rap. A poem without poetry. (Crime pays). His niche? Madness, blood, melancholy, rap, red thread, risks and sound: my definition. (my definition).

Refractory and alone, the figure of the writer effectively follows: You have always survived in the shadows. Solitude in you has sold out. (Wonderful) With Booba laughing about it – the book confirms it – it’s every day on Friday, at the start of the evening, when anything can happen. Pass the gos, pass the euros, pass the years. The clashes, wars pass, my career is cellophane. (Friday) Music !

Booba, Bitumen with a feather. A puzzle of words and thoughtsPreface by Thomas A. Ravier, Gallimard editions Hoëbeke collection, November 2022, 384 p., €22

Booba: explosions and celebrations (Asphalt with a feather)