« | Home | »

Understanding Rap Music

Topics: Music | 1 CommentBy admin | August 22, 2010

You can learn about a lot of things by researching them on the web. Rap music isn’t one of them. But GoogleRaps is here to help.

Google Rap Maps. Is there
Google can’t do?

When someone asks me, “do you like rap music?”, I’m never quite sure what to say. Do I try to clarify their question by saying “You mean those audio recordings of rhyming rhythmic monologues about killing, misogyny, drug deals, narcissism, sexual organs, racism, and egoistic persecution complexes?” To which the answer would be “Um…no.” Unfortunately, that’s what a lot of people think of when they think of rap, so if you say “Sure, I like rap” then you risk being pigeonholed as someone who hates women and thinks shooting people is a noble way to resolve a dispute. And if you’re white, you’ll be subject to the additional assumption that not only do you approve of these behaviors, but you do so by co-opting the values of an oppressed subculture. My actual answer to the original question is probably something like “Yeah, I like rap music. GOOD rap music”, going on to explain what a useless term “rap” is. Using information from the internet does nothing to clarify the issues at hand. Wikipedia has a dry description of rapping that suggests that “rap” may be etymologically derived from “repartee” and then goes on to talk about things like the early influence of The Memphis Jug Band, but the term “rap” redirects to “hip hop”. Which in my opinion muddles the definition beyond belief, since the page itself defines rap as being merely one of the four “key stylistic elements” of hip hop. Yeah. Whatever. There are also a lot of sites that attempt (and mostly fail) at meta-ironic humor based on “whitefying” the meaning of rap lyrics, like SnacksAndShit.com or Underground Hip Hop For Dummies . One example: Lyrics from Krizz Kaliko’s Get Cha Life Right – ” I ain’t trying to be Bill Gates, I’m trying to be the nigga Bill Gates hates.” Translation – “Here’s one goal which is impossible and another goal which is not that hard and wildly unambitious”. There’s a much more elaborate form of this in a special Intellectualize Rap forum on SomethingAwful.com, but the problem here is that if you had a deep enough knowledge of the songs being referenced, you probably wouldn’t find any of the Demotivator-style images funny. For the best laugh, you could try linkbait-tripe-posing-as-actual-content like EzineArticles.com’s Understanding Rap Music, which informs you straightaway – in self-unaware deadpan hilarity – that “Many rap songs are fast-paced. It can be tough to tell exactly what is being said“. Thank you, underpaid content-farm hack Val McQueen, for the insight. And then there’s the “Yahoo Answers” of rap lyrics, UnderstandRap.com, which takes easily-decipherable lyric snippets and deciphers them for you. Probably the only resource we found that was both informative and funny was Rapgenius’ ne feature The Rap Map, which offers extensively annotated Google Maps of rap. With a little tongue in cheek. Know of any good resources for useful or amusing rap facts?

I found the video below on this conservative Christian site, which explains how “This video goes to show you how dangerous the black‚Äôs music can be to white youth and how it brain washes them to use horrible curse words and run thoughts of drug use and murder into their properly raised minds”. Enjoy some a Capella Bitches Ain’t Shit, done up all nice an’ white girl:

For the record, that’s a satire site which has fooled numerous “real” news sources, including Huffington Post and NBC

This Rap Expert Demonstrates That ANYONE Can Freestyle

Google Maps Raps at Rap Genius

Read Comments

  1. Posted by Pat on 09.01.10 12:45 am

    true dat!