YoungLee takes the crown on Taiwan MTV’s The Rappers
From donut selling at the local night market to winning NT$1 million
Hip Hop has been popular on the streets and in nightclubs in Taiwan for a long time, but it hasn’t been respected in the music industry until recently. With MTV’s The Rappers, Hip Hop got its moment to shine on prime time [-ish] and showcased 66 contestants with varying degrees of MC skills. After the pandemic forced the show to take a break in the middle of filming, the final show was Saturday night and the winner was YoungLee.
For a lot of people in Taiwan, 2021 has been a struggle since COVID-19 only really locked down the country during the summer months. For YoungLee, though, 2021 has been the best year ever. He’s gone from donut seller at a Taiwanese night market to the stand-out in Red Bull Taiwan’s ‘I Got Bars’ online Hip Hop event to NT$1 million winner for MTV’s The Rappers in a very short amount of time.
YoungLee beat out a lot of veterans of the Hip Hop game like SOWUT, BG8LOCC, and Professor H, who put out amazing songs and perform at underground shows each week. He also got a lot of respect from mentors on the show J. Sheon, Dwagie, Leo Wang, PoeTek, and Razor Chiang. The final show had surprise guests Taiwan Golden Melody winner Soft Lipa and 9m88, who only had good words for the champion.
It’s hard to gauge what long-term effects the show will have on Taiwan’s Hip Hop industry right now, but for YoungLee and Hip Hop in Taiwan in general, MTV’s The Rappers is a big win.