Thursday, March 1, 2012

Hip Hop: Beat and Melody Over Lyricism?

As I am growing up, I have noticed that lyricism has taken a greater impact on how I judge music to be good or bad. When I was younger, I simply judged music based off of its melody and beat, not even paying to the lyrics (despite it being language sometimes frowned upon by family). The majority of music I listened to was of the Hip-Hop genre. For example, I am even subject to such simple judgement now, when I listen to the song "Up" by LoveRance and 50 Cent (
The whole concept of the song is how much sexual intercourse the rapper supposedly gets and the rapper bragging about it. This concept is most explicitly shown in the refrain of the track: "I beat the pussy up up up up up up up" One who has never listened to this single could question how another can listen to such lyricism without being disgusted, themselves finding the urge to just turn off the song as soon as the refrain is repeated again and again in the first 30 seconds of the song.

However, I would say right off the top of my min, "I was caught in the melody in the background of the music and the bass of the rap track." Yet, one may not see my explanation as good proof. I do not consciously disregard the controversial lyrics of these rap tracks; in fact, sometimes I inform others to disregard the lyrics when I introduce the song to them, myself originally just paying attention to the melody and bass.

So my question is: Are the rappers getting away with this controversial lyricism through their use of bass in the song and unique melodies? Disregarding your answer to that question, also contemplate: Should we allow such lyricism to fly by as popularity of the track arises the masses it reaches out to?

1 comment:

  1. Rappers are not getting away with this controversial lyricism through melodies. Instead, they have created a different environment for themselves than most other musical genres. When comparing rap music to other forms of music such as pop, rock, classical, etc, it seems that no other form of music consist of so many references to sex in such visual ways, or violence in such a gory manner.

    Rap was able to use such controversial lyricism for a number of reasons. First, it has been linked to MTV which has always pushed more toward the limits of what is allowed, and second, rap was born with many of these references rooted within, although not as clear at that point. Because, no one stopped the advancement of the controversial lyricism when it began, it grew, and developed into what is seen today.

    Personally, I believe that these rappers should be allowed to sing about whatever they desire. The First Amendment gave them that right. Although some of the topics they cover are controversial, and the words that they use are even more debatable, like Nate Dogg who says:

    "These hookers lookin so hard they straight hit the curb
    Won'tcha think of better things than some horny tricks,"

    it is still their right to use them. Regulating the lyrics spoken by the rappers would not be American.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.