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Last Updated: Thursday, 19 October 2006, 14:25 GMT 15:25 UK
Cameron takes tea with US rapper
Rhymefest
Rhymefest invited Mr Cameron to join him out clubbing
Conservative leader David Cameron has met a top-selling hip-hop artist to discuss his comments linking the musical genre with gun crime.

US rapper Rhymefest joined him for a cup of tea at the Commons.

In June, Mr Cameron said some music played on BBC Radio 1 "encourages people to carry guns and knives".

The meeting was held after Rhymefest wrote to the Tory leader. Afterwards the rapper said: "I like Dave for taking a step in the right direction."

'Going down Yo-Yo's, Dave?'

He added that he had found Mr Cameron "very Bill Clinton-y".

Rhymefest, whose real name is Che Smith, said: "I asked him to come out to a club with me tonight and he said he would come - I think we're going to Yo-Yo's.

"You know politicians - they'd say anything to get you out of the office."

Stephen Pound
Labour's Stephen Pound was criticised by Rhymefest

Mr Cameron called the meeting "very positive", but his office said he was too busy to go clubbing on a Thursday.

Rhymefest, 29, is best known for his collaborations with fellow rapper Kanye West, and his songs include Brand New, Dynomite and All Girls Cheat.

He has criticised some artists' focus on violence.

Rhymefest, from Chicago, said: "I like Mr Cameron and I agree with some of his comments and disagree with others.

"Discussion is revolution. Discussion is what will solve the problems of poverty and violence."

A Conservative spokeswoman said: "I don't think they are coming from particularly different angles.

"We realise there are responsible rappers out there who understand what David said."

Home-grown opinion

Labour MP Stephen Pound has called Mr Cameron's meeting with Rhymefest a "step too far" in attempting to gain the youth vote.

But the rapper said: "I don't see him doing nothing. Yo, Pound! Where you at? You ain't meeting with nobody.

"You get somebody who wants to talk and discuss and you're going to criticise them? And you wonder why the people don't vote? Y'all cowards, man."

British rapper Braintax told the BBC: "Rhymefest is from Chicago. Surely David Cameron should be talking to people from this country."

Mr Cameron has said his favourite bands include The Killers, The Smiths, Radiohead, Pulp, Blur and the Ramones.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
A performance by US rapper Rhymefest



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