Yo_JBC_Raps revealed, sort of

The Colorado Statesman

Mystery, intrigue, suspense, excitement!

Hey! None of that, now.

So who is @Yo_JBC_Raps?

One of the few bright lights in this legislative session has been @Yo_JBC_Raps, a Twitter account that has been tweeting clever rhymes about the Joint Budget Committee and the budget. And figuring out the identity of the person(s) behind the account has been a favorite game of reporters, legislators and lobbyists. The popularity of the account, which launched on Jan. 6, is indicated by the rapid growth of its following — 370 as of last count.

Representatives from several progressive groups, the brain trust behind @Yo_JBC_Raps, show off their rapping style at an April Fool’s Day press conference. From left, Carol Hedges of the Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute, Danny Katz of CoPIRG, Katie Groke Ellis of the White House Project, Jenny Flanagan of Colorado Common Cause and behind her, Rob DuRay of New Era Colorado. Back, Patrick Massaro of the Colorado Environmental Coalition.
Photo by Marianne Goodland/The Colorado Statesman
The brain trust behind @Yo_JBC_Raps sends a message at its April Fool’s Day press conference.
Photo by Marianne Goodland/The Colorado Statesman

But last week, Yo said his/her identity would be revealed — on Friday — which just happened to be April Fool’s Day.

Wary reporters showed up on the west steps of the Capitol in the chilly air Friday, half expecting the big reveal to be a big joke.

And in some ways, it was.

Yo_JBC_Raps appears to be the brainchild of a half-dozen progressive organizations, including the Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute, Colorado Common Cause, New Era Colorado, CoPIRG and the Colorado Environmental Coalition. And the big reveal? A press conference that did its job: getting the attention of reporters and the curious at the Capitol at 8:30 on a Friday morning.

“Business in this building happens at a break-neck rate,” said Rob DuRay of New Era Colorado. “It is tough to dissect everything that happens in an hour, much less a day or a week. Thankfully, a couple of forms of communication have proven to be extremely successful at assimilating this frenetic pace: Twitter and hip-hop. Both rely on short phrases to rely large amounts of meaningful information” and connect with a population with an increasingly short attention span, and “both are better when done in rhyme.”

The tension and excitement in the air grew, as DuRay promised to reveal the one and only Yo. “As it is such a monumental event, ranking up there with the revealing of Deep Throat, Batman, or when my grandfather told me he was Santa Claus,” supporters have gathered to reveal the true identity of Yo, DuRay said.

“Would the real @Yo_JBC_Raps please step forward…..”

And then six people stepped forward, each wearing “I’m Yo_JBC_Raps”
T-shirts, rapping on the issue of their choice, such as health care, taxes, and the environment, and most lacking any sense of rhythm whatsoever.

So who is @Yo_JBC_Raps? Well – as it is with the age-old mystery of how long it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop — the world may never know.

A sample of some of Yo’s rhymes:

Feb 8: Sorry poor kids, thems the brakes. JBC may slash #budget for free corn flakes. (referring to the JBC vote to defund the school breakfast program)
Feb. 15: CO economy still in the pooper. Tough #budget cuts from homie Hickenlooper
March 1: When signing #budget bills the pen don’t lie. But does Hick want reform? And will he wear a tie?
March 10: #cobudget is full of hitches, needs more fixing than Guv Hick’s stitches
March 29: Yo @CO_Schoolhouse more funds for ur schools to enrich. GuvHick’s peeps found a $75.5 million #CObudget glitch!
March 31: Yo @CO_JBC don’t you wanna play? I hope you’re not introducing #cobudget Long Bill on #openingday #coloradorockies
April 1: And letting us know the real ID was not going to be forthcoming…
Yo #Cobudget babes I’m feeling under the weather. I sent some rappers in my place, I hope u think they are clever #shouldagotaflushot