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November 29, 1987

How in the world did Kristine McKenna get assigned the job of reviewing Whodini's "Open Sesame" album (Record Rack, Nov. 22)?

Does The Times assign reviews to writers at random? Doesn't it seem logical that a reviewer of rap music should have a certain amount of knowledge about rap music.

McKenna displays her ignorance by failing to realize that rap is an art form that has developed from the streets of black neighborhoods. Most people who like rap like it because they can identify with it.

We like the " . . . brontosaurus beat . . . " and the "slang." McKenna rejects both of these elements in rap. Those of us who really appreciate rap realize that these elements are the basis of it.

Further displaying her ignorance, McKenna sees Whodini as "copycat rappers." In reality, they are, indeed, innovative rappers ("Fugitive," "One Love," and "Escape" come to mind, among other innovative raps by Whodini). They have been around as long as more established rappers like Run-D.M.C.

In the future, please give the assignment of reviewing rap music to someone who can identify with it, and not, in the case of McKenna, to someone who knows absolutely nothing about it. (I'll bet she actually thinks the Beastie Boys are rappers.)



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