Dumbfoundead & DJ Zo - "Zonin" x "No Strings Attached"

Soak it up, and dance all night til you sweat out all the toxins /
so soak it up, this is that music for your body to get lost in

Dumbfoundead hails from Koreatown, LA. He's brash, cocky, and nothing you'd expect from an immigrant Korean kid brought up in Los Angeles. Or maybe he is, depending on your perception of Asian stereotypes. No matter what stereotypes prevail, Dumbfoundead breaks them all.

Recently, Dumbfoundead was featured on NPR's Code Switch series. He also recently released a new mixtape, Old Boy Jon (download it, it's free). These are all great ways to get acquainted with the rapper who's done more for Asians in hip hop in his career than anyone else, and may have undone everything that Jin did*.

These songs are the first two that appear on the Cut + Paste mixtape, and also the first two songs I listened to by Dumbfoundead. The tape's concept has DJ Zo sampling popular indie songs and mixes them into beats for Dumbfoundead to express himself on. The combination of Dumb's laid-back flow and the variety of artists DJ Zo samples, the concept the works quite well, sounding distinct enough to fall well outside of the overwrought 'mash-up' genre.

"Zonin'" is a weed song that isn't a weed song. The title betrays it, because what Dumbfoundead is really rapping about is living his life to the fullest and not listening to what anyone says. It's about fun, and not letting anyone else mess up your zone ("co-sign" -Yeezus). Dumbfoundead raps:

"Yeah, I know the saying play now pay later / 
when they try to tell me that, I tell 'em go away hater

These are words to live by.

DJ Zo flips a soulful Mayer Hawthorne joint for the next track on the record, creating a backdrop for Dumbfoundead to showcase his lyrical versatility. Beyond creating memorable punchlines, he is a clever storyteller. "No Strings Attached" follows a tale of picking up a girl from an art show, while also weaving in Dumbfoundead's love for hipster girls**.

These two tracks do a great job on introducing Dumbfoundead, and you can be sure this isn't the last time you'll see him featured here.


"No Strings Attached"
*In all seriousness, I repped that song harder than any rap song I had ever heard when it came out. Then Jin came to my high school and performed during lunch. I lost a lot of face that day, but not as much as Jin.
**A love I very much share. What's up, Williamsburg ladies?


  1. Geo's Filipino and Wu-Tang got drafted by Asia, but I agree...always good to see more diversity in hip hop.