Premium Essay

Hip Hop: Song Analysis

In: English and Literature

Submitted By kpag926
Words 1557
Pages 7
Hip Hop: A Way of Thinking?

Since the development of hip hop nearly three decades, it has become a ubiquitous form of music in the nation, influencing the youth with its edgy music and empathetic lyrics. First pioneered in the streets of New York as a response to the oppression of blacks during the civil rights movement, hip hop and its successful influence on its listeners, especially the black youth, was able to thrive due to its uncanny ability to adapt and respond to the problems that that era presents. From the socially and politically conscious hip hop (SPC hip hop) during the civil rights movements to the mainstream music we hear on the radio today, the difference in message projected by today’s modern, hyper-masculine hip hop onto society compared with that of SPC hip hop has become a controversial subject criticized by American media such as Byron Hurt’s movie “Hip Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes” and Tricia Rose’s article “There Are Bitches and Hoes.” With regards to the negatives that hip-hop music could have on society, the songs “Let Nas Down” by J. Cole, “Come Get Me” by Jay-Z and “Bitches Ain’t Shit” by YG each respectively complicate, exemplify and extend Hurt’s claims that hip hop artists solely produce generic, hyper masculine mainstream music for the production of records; glorify violence and negatively portray women as sexual objects in order to prove their man hood.
When the song “Let Nas Down” by J. Cole is analyzed through a historical context and compared to Hurt’s claim that hip hop artists solely produce mainstream music for their own benefit to the claim that is projected in the J. Cole’s lyrics, a complication between the two claims is illuminated. In the song “Let Nas Down”, Cole—who is a lesser known but reputable rap artist trying to produce SPC hip hop , expresses his shame on the negative response of his idol, Nas— a successful…...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...WHAT IS HIP HOP? By: Mohammed Al-Salem Hip Hop is a cultural movement that developed in New York in the 1970’s, primarily for the African-American and Latino population. Hip Hop consists of four elements; MCing, deejaying, graffiti art and breaking (b-boy/b-girl). The cultural pillars that Hip Hop is founded on are comedy, rivalry, nursery rhymes, storytelling, poetry, and rhyming tendencies in humans. Hip Hop was born in the South Bronx at a summer block party. The father of Hip Hop, DJ Clive “Kool Herc” Campbell is a Jamaican that built upon the Jamaican tradition of toasting. Toasting is rapping the impromptu poetry over music, with this tradition in mind DJ Kool Herc created the blueprint for Hip Hop music as he began to isolate the instrumental portion of the record, creating the break beat; an isolation of one particular section of a musical composition to have a vamp for an MC or b-boy/b-girl. He then added another turntable and bought two copies of the same record to elongate the break beat – this technique is the foundation of Hip Hop and eventually led to the deejaying styles of a pair of legendary deejays, Afrika Bambaataa and Grand Master Flash. Since the first rap record in 1979, “Rapper’s Delight” by Sugar Hill Gang, Hip Hop as a culture has grown immensely and is continuously spreading around the world influencing so many lives. However, before Hip Hop music even existed there were music genres like jazz, rhythm and blues, soul and funk that......

Words: 1621 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...Hip Hop plays a big role in the young generation today as it did back in the day. Hip Hop started in The Bronx, New York a war torn country at the time. It kept children from hanging out in the streets and getting into trouble. The first documented hip-hop party was on August 11, 1973 and was hosted by Dj Kool Herc. There are four elements in hip-hop, they are dancing, rap, Dj and graffiti. Dance is a series of movements that match the speed and the rhythm of a certain piece of music. Rap is a form of music which a person swiftly rhymes poetry over a beat. A DJ is a disc jockey or the person who plays recorded music for the audience and sometimes talks over the track as it plays; they speak to the audience to keep the party hyped. The last element of hip hop is graffiti, and that is the writings or drawings scribbled, scratched, or sprayed on a wall or any surface in a public place. This was the element of hip-hop that was misinterpreted by the mainstream media and most hated by the whites. In 1989 the Berlin Wall fell, some thought that would bring everyone closer, like unite the people, but it didn’t. The 90’s were the birth of gangster rap, which the main focus was on the West Coast. After viewing this video I now know that hip hop is all colors and races, and was the voice of the young generation in the early 70’s just as it is today 40 years later, the rap game has evolved a lot since then, but its still the same concept....

Words: 284 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Hip-Hop

...My first experience of Hip-Hop music was “White America” by Eminem. At that time, I was 15, and my school senior who came back from Australia recommended to me. As soon as I listened to the song, I fell in love to the song. Before that time, my image of Hip-Hop was a music performed by African American people, so I remembered that I was very surprised to the fact that Eminem was not. In my knowledge the difference between Hip-Hop music and Pop music was that each words were linked with fast tempo in Hip-Hop musics. I felt like I listened to “the language game of black language games”(Henry Louis, pxxlll). Also, I felt Hip-Hop music had more clear message in a lyric than Pop music. As I learned about what Hip-Hop is all about from the course, I realized that the Hip-Hop music I am listening to now is not really a Hip-Hop music. From the course I found out that Hip-Hop is an art of self-assertiveness or the soul yearns for freedom from restrictions by African American people. Before Hip-Hop music appeared, everything was dominated by white people. Public had treated African American as symbol of evil for a long time even in media. For example, the movie “ Planet of the Apes”(1968) is the one well portrayed the relationship between white and African American people. In the movie, apes hated humans without reasons and lynched humans to death. In the text “THE HIP HOP WARS”, the author quoted “ I ain’t never shot nobody, I ain’t never stabbed nobody, I’m forty-five years old......

Words: 584 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Hip Hop+

...name rap is often used back and forth with hip hop. The name hip-hop comes from one of the earliest phrases used in rap on the song “Rapper’s Delight” by Sugarhill Gang. “I said a hip hop, hippie to the hippie, the hip, hip a hop, and you don't stop, a rock it to the bang bang boogie, say, up jump the boogie, to the rhythm of the boogie, the beat.”. In addition to rap music, the hip-hop subculture also formed other methods of expression like break dancing, graffiti art, a unique slang vocabulary, and fashion sense. Rap started in the mid-1970s in the South Bronx area of New York City. The birth of rap is, in many ways, like the birth of rock and roll. Both originated in the African American community and both were first recorded by small, independent record labels and marketed towards, mostly to a black audience. And in both cases, the new style soon attracted white musicians that began performing it. For rock and roll it was a white American from Mississippi, Elvis Presley. For rap it was a young white group from New York, the Beastie Boys. Their release “(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (To Party!)” (1986) was one of the first two rap records to reach the Billboard top-ten. Another early rap song to reach the top ten, “Walk This Way” (1986), was a collaboration of Run-DMC and Aerosmith. Soon after 1986, the use of samples was influenced in the music of both black and white performers, changing past thoughts of what make up a “valid” song. Rap music was first a......

Words: 1338 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...11/08/13 Hip Hop Made Me Do It! From the vulgar and raw lyrics of NWA to the simply educating lyrics of Jay-Z hip hop has been the blame for many issues that occur in our society. These issues do not only range within the field of crimes, but hip hop has also been the blame for cultural and gender relations. Hip hop is probably the youngest genre of music and has yet been so impactful in its short amount of time. But is it reasonable to place the blame on this popular form of expression? Is the excuse ‘hip hop made me do it’ firm, respected, and truthful? Why hip hop? It is not only the black community where hip hop is the blame for such things as drugs and violence but cross culturally people find hip hop as the excuse. Hip hop seems to be seen as the most impactful and widely endorsed. While the other forms of media seem to be overlooked or not as important. There are “action movies” that always seem to include some amazingly cool shootout where a hero emerges from the smokes. There are the constant military commercials encouraging youth to “fight” for their country. The also popular blame is video games. A couple of the most popular video games include Grand Theft Auto (GTA) and Call of Duty (COD). In order to beat GTA you must successfully commit crimes and get away with them while COD wants you to get the most kills (especially when playing live). During a hip hop debate that aired on BET in 2012 Michael Eric Dyson opens up with a statement on hip hop......

Words: 1161 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Hip Hop

...ip hop (stylized as Hip-Hop) is a broad conglomerate of artistic forms that originated within a marginalized subculture in the South Bronx and quickly spread through other parts of New York City such as Harlem among African American and Latino American youth during the late 1970s.[2][3][4][5] It is characterized by four distinct elements, all of which represent the different manifestations of the culture: rap music (oral), turntablism or "DJing" (aural), breaking (physical) and graffiti art (visual). Even while it continues in contemporary history to develop globally in a flourishing myriad of diverse styles, these foundational elements provide stability and coherence to the culture.[2] The term is frequently used mistakenly to refer in a confining fashion to the mere practice of rap music.[citation needed] The origin of the hip hop subculture stems from the block parties of the Ghetto Brothers, when they plugged the amps for their instruments and speakers into the lampposts on 163rd Street and Prospect Avenue and used music to breakdown racial barriers, and from DJ Kool Herc at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue, where Herc mixed samples of existing records with his own shouts to the crowd and dancers. Kool Herc is credited as the "father" of hip hop. DJ Afrika Bambaataa of the hip hop collective Zulu Nation outlined the pillars of hip hop culture, to which he coined the terms: MCing or "Emceein", DJing or "Deejayin", B-boying and graffiti writing or "Aerosol......

Words: 469 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...In hip hop women are constantly being judged based off their looks, and what kind of body they have. They are often exploited in hip hop artists (mostly male) music videos just to shake their big butts in a tiny bikini fully exposed. Sometimes it seems that males treat these woman like objects instead of human beings. Nowadays it’s considered the norm for these girls to dance around basically naked which is unfortunate, but what’s even worse is that some of these women are completely okay with doing this just to get their names out there for possible jobs in the future. It’s not only music videos that exploit these women, it even started back in the day when hip hop was started to get into the gangsta rap phase. The movie “Boyz In The Hood” is a perfect example of women’s bodies were exploited in hip hop culture. Also Rivera’s article Butta Pecan Mamis is another great article explaining the exploitation of women’s body through hip hop. In the movie “Boyz in the Hood” women and their bodies were exploited during a lot of parts in the movie. Doughboy who was played by Ice Cube was one of the main people to exploit women and their bodies. When he just got out of jail his mother threw him a welcome back party and everyone in the neighborhood was there. All of the guys would be on one side and the girls on the other, but the men would talk about them saying what they would do to them if they had the chance. Or who gets more “bitches” than the other as if they are not people...

Words: 887 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Is Hip Hop Dead?

...IS HIP HOP DEAD? Table of Contents INTRODUCTION ……………………………………………………………………………..2 1.FOOTSTEPS/ BRIEF HISTORY ……………………………………………………….3 2.THE HIP HOP GAME/ INDUSTRY ………………………………………………….7 3. UNDERGROUND ………………………………………………………………………..10 5. SAMPLING …………………………………………………………………………………11 6. CREATIVITY IN THE TWO WORLDS ……………………………………………..13 7.SALVATION …………………………………………………………………………………16 CONCLUSION …………………………………………………………………………………17 BIBLIOGRAPHY INTRODUCTION The phrase “Hip-Hop Is Dead” can be found everywhere around hip hop community discussions during the last years. Rapper “Nas” titled his eighth album in 2006 with this statement, and has caused a controversy among rap artists and listeners all over the world. But comparing today`s hip hop music with the roots of hip hop can we really claim that hip-hop is really dead? If so, what are the facts that lead in the death of hip hop? What does its demise mean for the average fan? How to bring it back? Does it mean the genre will go down in irrelevance like what happened in disco music? All these questions will be investigated during this paper, and to understand this complicate statement itself, we should figure out what the statement really means. Maybe it is the fact that most of the genre’s songs and music videos look exactly the same. Maybe it’s the mainstream hip-hop game’s emphasis in ridiculously shinning jewelry, the sexism and the focus on money and women. Better yet, according to Mickey Hess,......

Words: 8410 - Pages: 34

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...Essay Question 2 Gender has shaped Hip-hop since the very beginning by influencing Hip-hop narratives and redefining gender roles; it comes to no surprise that gender has also influenced MCs and their work. In fact gender identifications have been so impactful they help determine an artist’s success in the music industry. MCing is known to be a male dominated art form and it is very difficult for females to become successful without having to conform to the preconceived notions about women in the music industry. In the Hip-hop world many male artists have created stereotypes for both men and women and their place in the Hip-hop music (NHP 06-11-2012). For some male artists these stereotypes have made success more achievable while, on the other hand, these stereotypes have made it harder for female MCs to rise to success. There’s no denying that Hip-hop stereotypes are an important component of Hip-hop performance (NHP 06-13-2012) in fact many artists today feel the need to utilize these stereotypes in order to get ahead in the game. For example, Big Sean is one talented MC in mainstream Hip-hop that doesn’t refrain from having half naked women dancing around in his music videos. His videos emphasize the most popular stereotypes which refer to women as “hoes”, “bitches” and “gold-diggers” (NHP 06-13-2012). Although these names are degrading and disrespectful to women, it is quite unfortunate that they have become acceptable in the music industry. It is also unfortunate......

Words: 826 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Hip Hop and Black Leadership

...often reflects a collection and pattern of personal experiences. Hip-hop or rap, an art form and culture nearly thirty years old originating from The Bronx, New York, has provided a forum for Black and Latino youth to express their respective cultures and speak on a number of issues. Today, Hip-hop is a global phenomenon that appeals to almost all ethnicities and is synthesizing a new culture that goes beyond race, education, and income. Hip-hop has been under continual metamorphosis since its 1970’s inner-city inception. Some of the original artists like Kurtis Blow chose to lament everyday life in the ghettos. Others, Sugar Hill Gang among them, took a more dance inspired approach to the music. But for both these and other artists from the early years of rap through the late 1980’s including KRS-One, Public Enemy, Queen Latifah and LL Cool J, fast beats and socially relevant lyrics were among the primary components of the music. By the 1990’s a new face of rap music emerged. It began with Ice T and later gained popularity with artists such as NWA (Niggaz Wit Attitude) whose first album shocked and titillated the rap world with their obscene lyrical content and unabashed “gangsta” style, since then dubbed by the media as “gangsta rap.” Despite the growing acceptance of Hip-hop within white America and the middle class, Hip-hop is, at times understandable, also under siege. Comments made on rap or Hip-hop by Bill O'Reilly, popular talk show host on the Fox News......

Words: 7928 - Pages: 32

Free Essay

Hip Hop

...his career Kanye worked with big names in the hip hop business such as Jay Z. Though he had faced some hard-hitting situations, with help from family and friends as well as his faith, Kanye pulled through as a stronger more influential person. Given the name Kanye Omari West, Kanye was born on June 8, 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia. His father, Ray West, was a former Black Panther as well as one of the first black photojournalists at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. His mother, Donna West was a Professor of English at Clark Atlanta University, and the Chair of the English Department at Chicago State University. Eventually, Donna West retired to become Kaye’s full-time manager. When Kanye was only three years old his parents got a divorce which is when he moved to the south side of Chicago where he was raised in a middle class environment. He attended Polaris High School in Oak Lawn, a suburb of Chicago before attending the American Academy of Art in Chicago. He was also enrolled at Chicago State University for a period of time but due to his poor grades, he dropped out. His grades were not the only reason for dropping out, he had a passion for music and had a primary interest in working on his music career. During the time Kanye attended school, he produced for hometown artists. However, his first notable collaboration was "Turn It Up" with Jermaine Dupri and Nas, featured on Jermaine Dupri's Life In 1472 movie soundtrack. The song relied on a sample-free, simple, prim sonic......

Words: 879 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...What exactly is hip hop? When reading an article about hip hop written by James McBride, he informs us how hip hop has the purpose of sending us a message. He expresses his feelings towards hip hop, and explains the influence it has worldwide, Agreeing with James’ claim, hip hop sends a message through the generations, outbreak, and history. Throughout the generations hip hop keeps sending a message to teens. Hip hop started in people’s teen years and teens were most influenced by this outrage. Their style, and actions are all influenced by hip hop. Even though people nowadays have a different mindset of what hip hop actually is, it still has and stays having a huge affect on teens now. Hip hop sends a message through its outrage it had back in the day. The way it caused people to be out in the streets, making beats. Also it had an influence on DJ’s , as said in the article a DJ at a club used turntable and mixed two beats together causing the crowd to go mad wild. During the 1980’s it started to become a more of an impact and had a huge outbreak. The influence of hip hop has some history to its beginning. It started in the Bronx and people like Biggie Smalls became a huge inspiration to the people. It was an “overwhelming force” said McBride in his article. There had not been such a huge outbreak since swing jazz in 1930’s. The history was whta started this huge influence. Through the generations, outbreak, and history hip hop has had it does have an influence on...

Words: 299 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Hip Hop and Women

...Phan 10/23/2015 Arts 152 Final Research Paper Capitalism and Women’s Role in Modern Hip Hop Music has always had a huge impact on society; it serves as a means of expression and as a way of communicating and connecting with others. While there are positive aspects to music as it uplifts society during times of hardship it also serves as a means of reinforcing gender norms as well as upholding capitalist ideals. Since its inception, hip hop has remained one of the most popular genres with today’s youth, but it is clear that women play a different role in the genre than men. Through a study of several hip hop and rap songs it becomes apparent that hip hop glamorizes brand names, “fast money”, and women. When women are objectified they are no longer encouraged to amass wealth, instead they are encouraged to simply be with men who have money. By reviewing popular song lyrics of famous hip hop such as Iggy Azalea’s, “I’m so Fancy” and Kanye’s “Mercy”, it is clear that there is a common theme of the obsession of wealth and beautiful women. Hip hop often dehumanizes women as they are perceived as plentiful and a luxury “item”. The modern woman, and women of the working class have no representation in hip hop. Women are further oppressed through hip hop as the average life style of those who cannot afford to spend lavishly are often left out and depicted as envious. Understanding how hip hop and capitalism is related is important to understanding why modern women are......

Words: 2844 - Pages: 12

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...Anaya Ragland April 30, 2012 English Composition II Dr. Janardanan Research Analysis Essay The Influence of Hip Hop on Today’s Youth “After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.” This profound statement from English writer, Aldous Huxley, demonstrates the importance that music obtains in today’s society. Simply, music is a form of expression, not limited to any specific genre. Although this expression is not limited to one genre, there is one that seemingly obtains the title of most controversial. The Rap/Hip-Hop genre has been harshly criticized for the topics of discussion in which many songs entail, and the various projected images. Everything has its pros and cons; many people have lost sight of its purpose. Student of Dartmouth College, Rebecca Heller states, "Many people don't realize that hip-hop began by bringing communities and neighborhoods together on the streets of the South Bronx." Hip-Hop is not only a tool of personal expression, but it is also a tool of communal empowerment. Tricia Rose, author of Black Noise, writes that “it is a black cultural expression that prioritizes black voices from the margins of urban America” (2). Hip-Hop is a social movement. It is a way for the African-American community to identify, as the search for identification is a struggle. “Hip hop emerges from a complex cultural exchanges and larger social and political conditions of disillusionment and alienation” (59). In today’s......

Words: 676 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Hip Hop

...Abdul Bagrahiay English 1A Professor Ferns July, 7th 2016 Concept Essay Drafting Assignment 3 I have chosen a topic instead of doing conducting field research I will do Hip hop, where it was originated and where it was from? And how it has evolved over the years? How it is nowadays? The term hip hop is a big thing nowadays and it was found in New York, among black and latino ghetto. The main components of Hip Hop are Rap, Break Dancing, Graffiti, In south Bronx 1967 came Clive Campbell. He is a well known hip hop founder and his name was a big thing in those years. The hip hop originated in 60th and 20th century and it still exists today. http://prezi.com/m/uwz8x4klgu2w/where-did-hip-hop-originate-and-who-were-its-founders/ The hip-hop culture began in the streets of New York City over twenty-five years ago and it has gone through very big changes through the years of the past. Hip-Hop consists of four element, rap, graffiti, break-dancing, and the disc jockey. In this paper, I intend to fully explain the evolution of rap music, from its fame to the giant industry it is today. I will complete a big paper of how hip hop has evolved and is eve loving in the modern day. http://employees.oneonta.edu/bealt/alexander.htm "Hip hop and rap have many important influences—R&B, funk, soul, jazz, rock and roll performers; poets, and writers like Iceberg Slim; and stylistic forebears like Muhammad Ali and Richard Pryor. Few of these can match the importance of the spoken-word......

Words: 457 - Pages: 2