Olive Branch High School cuts ties with controversial rap song - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Olive Branch High School cuts ties with controversial rap song

A t-shirt is sparking controversy in Olive Branch. A t-shirt is sparking controversy in Olive Branch.
The shirt's creator claims it shows support for Olive Branch High School. The shirt's creator claims it shows support for Olive Branch High School.
The song written by Olive Branch rapper Winston Hardy (aka ‘Krucial') has become popular among students at Olive Branch High School. The song written by Olive Branch rapper Winston Hardy (aka ‘Krucial') has become popular among students at Olive Branch High School.

(WMC-TV) - A t-shirt is sparking controversy in Olive Branch.

The shirt's creator claims it shows support for Olive Branch High School, but school leaders have told students not to wear the clothing on campus anymore.

A song written by Olive Branch rapper Winston Hardy, also known as ‘Krucial', has become popular among students at the high school.

The song contains lyrics that say, "I bang OB, I bang OB." Those are the words that ended up on a t-shirt worn at last week's football game and pep rally.

Hardy says the phrase "I bang OB" means you support your school.

"Who came up with that? I guess in the community, in the African-American community, people they use bang. It's not all about guns or gangs or sex or anything like that, but when I say, ‘Bang OB', it means I support OB," said Hardy.

Hardy graduated from the high school in 2007 and has recorded a new song for the football team as they come onto the field every year.

The school played the song over the loudspeaker before the start last week's game.

After a wild pep rally where Hardy performed and reaction from some parents who saw teenagers wearing the controversial shirts, the school is cutting ties with the shirt and the song.

"Some of our long time supporters and just people in general may not understand the meaning, I certainly don't think Winston had any ill intentions about this," said Olive Branch Principal Kyle Brigance.

But Hardy says the students love his song and the shirts. He showed Action News 5 photos of students wearing the clothing that he says, supports the team.

"If I took this shirt and asked parents their opinion of ‘I bang OB,' what do you think they'd say?" said Hardy. "I think some of them would have a genuine concern about their child wearing this. Others are a lot younger and say, ‘Okay, it could mean support my school.'"

So, how do area parents feel about the t-shirts?

"It just sounds offensive the bang, that's offensive, the bang of a gun or whatever," said Gerald Manuel.

"I would let my kids wear it to the football games," said Loretta Helms. "To each mind its own."

Hardy said he wanted students to have a say in the matter, but Brigance said he had to make the decision as an administrator.

Brigance said the school would consider playing a new song if the wording was changed.

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