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The Man Who Wears Jogja Signed Hip-hop Hat

If we usually see hip-hop hat with international brand such as DC, you won’t find the brand in Juki’s hat. He often wears hip-hop hat that there are symbol of Kesultanan Jogjakarta. Who is Juki? Juki is nickname of Javanese hip-hop musician. He is the founder of Jogja Hip-hop Foundation. Jogja Hip-hop Foundation is a community that consist of hip-hop musician from Jogjakarta who use Javanese language as a lyrics.

Muhammad Marzuki is his full name. He built Jogja Hip-hop Foundation since 2003. His purpose by built this community is to keep Javanese traditionalism alive in a world of modernization. Serat centhini, Gurindam Dua Belas, poems, even Soekarno, Ki Hajar Dewantara and Sri Sultan Hamengku Buwono’s quotation is transformed into hip-hop music lyrics. He was also created a spectacular song called Jogja Istimewa that also keep Jogja’s people strong in keeping Jogja as a special region of this country. In order to record a big journey of Jogja Hip-hop Foundation, he also made a documentary movie called Hip-hopdiningrat.


Hip-hopdiningrat is a documnetary movie tells about what is Jogja Hip-hop Foundation, how do they move, who are they and what’s their big dream. The movie started with explanation from Elizabeth Inandiak, Serat Centhini’s scientist from Australia. Firstly she told viewer how hip-hop or rap has born in New York USA. The rebellion spirit of hip-hop music flows until reach a small region of one roch country in south-east asia, Indonesia. Hip-hop has a new place to grow in a new form. The place is Jogjakarta.

Youngsters in Jogjakarta is influenced by hip-hop musician such as Eminem and Public Enemy. In that 60 minuted long movie, they said that at first time they don’t know how to enjoy the spell-like lyrics of hip-hop music, but then they fall in love with hip-hop. If in it’s original place hip-hop sang with english lyrics, in Jogjakarta, the lyrics written in Javanese language. After producing some javanese hip-hop songs, they are routinely make a musical event. One of their event that’s outstanding called Poetry Battle. Hip-hop music usualy contains lyrics about anger, protest and mortification. Yet this is Poetry Battle, so the lyrics is taken from poems. Some artist feel surprised when realize that they find a new form of art. Butet Kertarajasa said that in a common way we find that hip-hop is so western, but now he find that hip-hop become so Java. As time goes by, Jogja Hip-hop Foundation grows bigger, on and on.

Iwa K., the Indonesian senior hip-hop singer said that if a seed of one plant taken from another side of the world, and we grow it in a different place, so there must be a new unique taste from the soil that is used to grow the seed. That is what happened to Jogja Hip-hop Foundation. They have an unique taste that is no other place has the same thing. By it’s uniqueness, they have gone abroad to another country. They have invited to show their music in Singapore. They also have been played in USA, place where hip-hop was born. Hip-hopdiningrat is also tells about hip-hop musician’s parent who hope their sons can finish their last assignment so they can graduate from college. Their parents afraid that hip-hop can distract their most important task as young generation, education.

This movie have the special thing that make it different from another. Other documentary movie usually boring because there are no storyline that guide viewer to enjoy the movement of idea. Juki that was being a main narrator of this movie is interviewed from the backseat of a car that he drove. In the end of story, Juki cross the red lamp, so there come policeman. While Juki got a conversation with officer, camera shots a conclusive sentence below the red traffic lamp. HIP-HOP JALAN TERUS! GO HIP-HOP! Yes, another things should be stop, but hip-hop have to move still.

The Interview

Right after watched the movie at Teater Salihara South Jakarta last month, I have a chance to have a conversation with Juki, who is also known as Chebolang or Kill The DJ. Here is our dialogue.

Rheza : Who inspired you to make such music?

Juki : I have so many people who inspire me a lot. I cannot mention them specifically, but I will describe you a bit. I am a huge fan of Eminem and Ki Narto Sabdo.

Rheza : How your audience enjoy the lyrics if they don’t understand Javanese language?

Juki : It must be so hard to be. But they will feel the spirit of a song, because some lyrics are taken from ancient spells.

Rheza : Do you have a basic skill in movie making?

Juki : No I don’t. I even didn’t graduate from high school.

Rheza : Why you did so?

Juki : Because I don’t know what to do with my formal knowledge. I am so lucky live in here because Jogjakarta is a good place to increase artistic skills. By choosing this way, I’ve ever go to France, develop my artistic skills. I think my decision to get out of school is the right choice.

Rheza : What is your message for Indonesian youngsters about traditional culture?

Juki : Do what you like and don’t forget to our local tradition. (rz-ard)

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