What makes California ripe for Filipino hip-hop?

California has a vibrant Filipino hip-hop scene, especially as 1.2 million Filipino Americans reside in the state, including more than 600,000 in Los Angeles.

Bambu is a rapper and president of Beatrock Music, an LA-based record label focused on underground hip-hop artists of color. Beatrock Music is throwing a big concert this Sunday to celebrate their 10-year anniversary. 

"I’ve been rapping since hip-hop first came around," Bambu tells Press Play. "I’m 42 now, so hip-hop is maybe 10 years older than me. I discovered it just rapping with my friends. The craft of MC’ing is so unapologetic. It really attracted me as a young person of color in a community where I felt super marginalized.



  • Bambu - Filipino-American emcee and community organizer