GZA Spawns Rap Battle Between Borough Presidents

By Jill Colvin on April 17, 2012 7:05am 

CITY HALL — The rap battle is on.

Borough presidents Marty Markowitz and Scott Stringer put their boroughs' rivalry to rhyme Monday, dueling it out in arguably the worst rap battle of the century.

The showdown began when Markowitz, representing Brooklyn, slapped down his "take" of a verse from GZA's "Liquid Swords" at a press conference with the Wu-Tang Clan member announcing the lineup of the 2012 Northside music festival.

"Through cyclones or typhoons, I represent Brooklyn from midnight to high noon. I don't waste ink, I think, I drop 'fuggedaboutits' faster than you blink,” declared the pol, according to video of the showdown.

The performance prompted one reporter to ask whether GZA would ever consider adopting Markowitz into the Wu Tang Clan.

He'd be named “Marty Wu,” GZA reportedly panned.

"What do you think, should a rap career be my next endeavor?" Markowitz later tweeted, linking to the video of his valiant efforts.

Never one to be outdone by a Brooklynite, Stringer stepped up to the plate and took to Twitter to recapture Manhattan's cool.

"They call me Big Beep, Scott Stringer, Report Flinger, Retort Zinger," he mused, prompting one Queens reporter to cringe, "oooh noooo."

Audrey Gelman, a spokesman for the borough president, said it was Stringer's idea to flex his lyrical muscles after he heard about Markowitz's ditty from amused staffers earlier in the day.

Markowitz is no stranger to rhymes. Two years ago, he serenaded City Council members with a parodied version of a Christmas carol that sang the evils of bike lanes. The lyrics also appeared on his annual holiday greeting card.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. had not offered a rap to rep his borough as of Monday night. Neither had Queens Borough President Helen Marshall nor Staten Island Borough President James Molinaro.

The Northside Festival, which will kick off June 14th, will feature over 350 bands at 25 venues in and around Williamsburg and Greenpoint, including Ceremony, Tinariwen, Screaming Females and GZA, who will be performing Liquid Swords with Grammy Award-winning Latin funk orchestra Grupo Fantasm.

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer offered his own rap to counter rival Marty's.
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer offered his own rap to counter rival Marty's.
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