munnay hoez bitchez $w@g
by, 13th June 2013 at 10:54 PM (250 Views)
I haven't had an excuse to blog in a while, so I might as well make one up.
I don't exactly make it a secret, and I'm not ashamed to say that I like hip-hop. The amount of poeticism it requires to craft even a half-way decent rap is more than you might think. I speak in such terms because I'm part of the demographic that mainly inhabits this forum, and usually shuns this new-fangled "rap music" (a term which I hate, by the by), that being nerdy white and/or Asian people who wear glasses and play video games. (It's a joke, buddy. I know some people here wear contacts.)
Now, I can understand this. Culture undeniably does play a large part in a person's musical taste. Lots of us, including me, probably have/had parents who instilled into us the idea that hip-hop is "brainless" "*air-quotes*music*air-quotes*" made by "gangstas" with "no talent". I grew up believing this based on the scores of mediocre pop-rap tripe I heard being played way too loud by people with ugly cars. Then I actually listened to it.
The way a rap can twist and turn like a good jazz trumpet while still nailing the beat is extremely entertaining to me, and as I said before, a good rap, by virtue of being energetic, complex, and fast-paced (my definition of a "good" rap), has to be filled to the brim with lyrical content, allowing for an entire mood to be set and a story to be told in as little as a few minutes. And let's not forget the aforementioned beat. A good beat is solid, enough so to be repeated over and over again without getting old, but not afraid to syncopate when it feels like adding some flavor, and its dual function as a foundation to the whole song's rhythm as well as being a framework for the rap to be wrapped around (I'm a poet and I don't know it, I can make a rhyme any time NIGGA) makes percussion part of both the rhythm and the lead sections of a hip-hop song. And don't even get me started on the perks of a good DJ! Turn-tables are legitimately one of my favorite musical instruments. I'll be here all night if I begin to explain why.
Now, I do like me some hip-hop (if I must name names to give an idea of what I'm giving praise to here; MF DOOM, Gang Starr, Nas, A Tribe Called Quest, The Roots, Jurassic 5, The Sound Providers, etc.), but I still generally detest this so-called "pop-rap" or "gangsta rap" that you hear blasting out of a subwoofer in the trunk of some ass-hole's car; obnoxious drum machines, annoyingly spastic hi-hats, the use of a turn-table for providing idiotic faux-classical backing instrumentation but not scratching it the way hip-hop does best, that sort of thing. Well, one thing I like to do is listen to this blemish on the face of music (contributors including such names as Lil Wayne, Lil Jon, and Lil B) and then listening to hip-hop I like. It makes me feel superior to my teen-aged brethren. (Never thought you'd see a hip-hop hipster, did you? Hip-hopster, perhaps? Psh, I ain't even tryin' and the rhymes are still comin'.) But lately, I've noticed something. Read the next paragraph to find out the resolution to this nail-biter!
So lately, I've noticed that... I don't hate "gangsta rap" as much as I used to. Actually, scratch that; I still do, but I'm also looking on the positive side of it, if that makes sense. Like, those annoying hi-hats I mentioned? I usually like glitchy-sounding stuff like that. Those obnoxious drum machines? I don't like their usual sound in the genre of gangsta rap, but I try not to think too much of it, because electronic drums can have their up-sides, maybe not in gangsta rap, but elsewhere. The standard quality of rapping in this variety of hip-hop is, however, in my opinion, not as high as other kinds of hip-hop. Okay, that was really sugar-coating it, to be honest. If I may be so blunt; the vast majority of gangsta rappers suck donkey balls. Lil Wayne's voice sounds like a chipmunk with his nut-sack stuck in a wood chipper, Busta Rhymes is a show-off akin to heavy metal guitarists who fire out an onslaught of notes without caring whether or not anybody actually comprehends what they're doing, Chris Brown has absolutely zero talent whatsoever and I am 100% confident in saying so, and I refuse to call Rick Ross a "rapper" and will instead refer to him as a "really bad spoken-word poet". However (and this is a big however), through all of this, I concede that surprisingly often, I find myself hearing how one phrase is paired with another and I think "you know, that wasn't half-bad". Like I've said three times now, even a mediocre rap requires a considerable amount of lyrical craftsmanship, and it's starting to show, through all the mindless bass and stupid delay effects. Still, all of this potential is completely undone by the fact that the lyrics in your average Wiz Khalifa song are some of the most disgusting, shallow, and repulsive ass refuse ever put to music. So I've got that going for me, right? You aren't going to burn me at the stake for sometimes nodding my head at an Ace Hood song?
I don't really know what you as the commenter could say to all of this, but... discuss, I guess?
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