Oakland rapper MC Zumbi, a.k.a. Steven Gaines and part of hip hop group Zion I, cut a track earlier this year in which he raps about being a victim of gentrification in the city he calls home. Now, he's released a video, shot while he and his wife and children pack up their Oakland home and prepare to move.
As Zumbi told KQED, the trouble started when the owner of the home he's been renting for years decided to sell, citing the hotness of the East Bay market which is always a direct reflection of the lack of supply and hotness of the SF market.
Zumbi wraps "I seen it in the 90s with dot-coms," saying that "drunk frat boys" turned "Mission Street into a lounge act," and rapping, "All I want to do is make sense/Love my city/But the gentries got it real tense."
He refers to both San Francisco and Oakland in the video, and he tells CBS 5 that he's been doubly screwed by the ups and downs of the local real estate market he actually owned a home in West Oakland in the last decade, purchased at the height of the market, which ended up with an upside-down mortgage and had to be sold as a short sale in 2007 for 35 percent of what he'd paid.
Now he says his family is having to rent in San Leandro ("farther out than I ever been," he says on the track).
As for the heated nature of the track, blaming everything on tech money, he tells CBS 5, "My intent was to stimulate conversation. And I think I’m doing that.”