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Evolution Of Rap Music Essay

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Members of Public Enemy grew up in suburban Long Island towns with successful middle-class professional parents. One can not deny that whites were starting to have an effect on the rap music that had originally begun in the black neighborhood. But this is to be expected any time an art form starts to gain popularity with mainstream white America. The same thing can happen with an art form that is popular with mainstream white America that all of a sudden becomes popular in a minority community. Students need to be aware of this fact and come to grips with this. Samuel David seems to be implying that with the influence of whites on the rap music scene that it is only a matter of time before rap starts to lose its popularity in the black community and that rap is on its way out. I strongly disagree with Mr.

David on this point. I believe that rap music can withstand the influence of other (ethnic/social) groups and still remain popular and flourish. My following discussion of the role women are playing in the rap industry seems to substantiate my point of view.

Before concluding my unit, the role women are playing in the rap industry must be discussed. As rap music evolved and became popular, women tended to be the targets of male rap lyrics and generally were not portrayed in a favorable light. Rap music producers also seemed to be hesitant to produce female rap artists. David Thigpin in his article, "Not for Men Only; Women Rappers are Breaking the Mold with a Message of their Own", offers two reasons for this reluctance.

One being, rap producers were apprehensive about signing female rappers because they feared tampering with their proven formula of success of producing macho male rappers. The other being, rap producers did not feel that female voices could supply the requisite loudness and abrasiveness that they felt was a major feature of rap music. Nothing can bring about change quicker than a financial success, especially in the music industry whose main motivating factor seems to be profit. A New York City female rap trio by the name of Salt ‘N' Pepa would provide the rap music industry with the incentive to produce more female rappers with the success of its debut album, Hot, Cool, & Vicious, which sold over a million copies. Besides the fact that people like what they heard, Russell Simmons who was quoted in Thigpen's article offers another explanation. Simmons stated, "There are more women buying rap records who would like to relate to women artists and there are more guys who want to hear a women's point of view." With advent of female rappers also came new rap messages which transcended the boasting that was so common with male rappers.

For example, Salt ‘N' Pepper rapped over soul-tinged R&B melodies with teasing, street-savvy raps about maturity, independence from men, and sexual responsibility. Another female rapper, Monie Love, tried not to be too serious with her rap messages. While Queen Latifah raps were about women being optimistic and having pride in themselves and tended to counter male rappers' lyrics which tended to express a poor opinion of women. However, there are some female rappers like BWP (Bytches with Problems) who voice a vengeful brand of radical black feminism.

BWP's raps dealt with such issues as date rape, male egos, and police brutality. BWP showed that they could be just as boastful as male rappers with their lyrics on the record ‘In We Want Money' when they stated, "Marry you? Don't make me laugh!

Don't you know, all I want is half!" Another female rapper who deserves mentioning because of her forceful attack on misogyny is Yo-Yo with her record ‘You Can't Play with My Yo-Yo". David Thigpen concluded his article on female rappers by stating that female rappers beside offering a different attitude, have shown that rap can be far more significant and flexible than its critics have admitted. This also illustrates, contrary to what David Samuels holds to be true, that rap music can endure the influence of groups other than its creators and still survive and flourish. As already stated, rap music began in poor black neighborhood in New York City, the Bronx. It quickly spread from one major urban center to another where there was a large population of black people. Music on early rap records sounded like the black music of the day, which was heavy funk or more than often disco music.

The basic function of rap music was to serve as dance music as did the Jamaican ‘toasting' music from which it originated. One major criticism that the older generation has had about rap music centers on how it is very difficult to understand what the rapper is saying. David Samuels quotes Bill Stephney's (Stepheny who is considered by many to be the smartest man in the rap business) reaction to first hearing rap music to address this point on how difficult it is to understand young rappers. Stephney said, "the point wasn't rapping, it was rhythm, DJs cutting records left and right.

It was the rappers role to match the intensity of the music rhythmically. No one knew what he was saying. He was just rocking the mike." This serves to illustrate that one of the major attractions of rap music is the rhythm or the beat. I asked a middle school student while I was researching my unit if he always understood all the words in a rap record. He responded no. The student said that the beat of the record determines whether he likes the record or not.

Maybe this can help explain why some rap records whose lyrics are racist or so violent in nature can be so popular. I intend on testing this theory in my class at this point in my unit by discussing some controversial rap artists and their records with my students. Two groups which come to mind are Public Enemy and N.

W. A. I have several recommendations concerning the teaching techniques which can be used to present the material found in my unit. Based on my teaching experience in the middle and high schools, I have learned that if you lecture to students for an entire period you will loose the attention of a majority of your students by the end of the period.

Thus, lecturing should be limited to no more than 15 minutes and should be used to introduce some of the major aspects or objectives of my unit. (i. e. Jamaican music, ‘Hip Hop' culture, graffiti, etc.

) Afterwhich, a discussion can occur on one of these particular aspects. Another alternative is to present students with excerpts from some of the material listed in the resource section of my unit. These excerpts can either be accompanied with a set of teacher-developed questions or related activities which will help emphasize some of the more important aspects of a particular objective, or students can be asked to develop their own questions from these excerpts. Also, rap records can be used as focal points for classroom discussions. In addition, I intend on having my students do reports on individuals outlined in my unit who played influential roles in Jamaican and American rap music. Students will also be asked to do reports on the major aspects of the ‘Hip Hop' culture.

Finally, I would suggest that the films in the resource section of my unit be shown in order to highlight and discuss certain aspects of the ‘Hip Hop' culture. I have come to the conclusion that there can be no conclusion to my unit on the evolution of rap music in the United States because rap music is still in a state of evolution. There are areas that I have not even attempted to explore that rap music has begun to influence.

For example, gospel music is one musical area in which they are beginning to produce their own rappers. Which leaves me to wonder how long it will be before other types of music in the United States such as country music embraces rap. In addition, I do not think that rap music can affect these other types of American music without somehow being itself affected by these different types of American music. There are two points I would like to make before I conclude my unit. One, I find it very ironic that even though rap music is a billion dollar a year business that both black and white local radio stations are still reluctant to play it for fear of loosing advertisers.

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The evolution of rap

The evolution of rap

THE EVOLUTION OF RAP

the spacing is a little messed up here, I couldn't get it to copy and paste in its correct format, but other than this paper took me an awfully long time to write, with the help of some other papers found on this site for research.

Rap music, spawned by hip hop culture, has become one of the most popular music genres since the 70s. Also one of the most controversial, rap began as a medium of communication and expression for people oppressed by poverty, violence and prejudice. Rap has given our culture insight into the living conditions of the working class people of the inner city. Many people realize that rap is not only music to dance to, it is also one of the most poetic forms of lyrics in mainstream music. Rappers like Run DMC, Grandmaster Flash, Queen Latifah, Tupac Shakur, Outkast, Common, The Fugees, Salt N' Pepa and many others have painted the picture of this century's urban lower class.

Just as jazz, rhythm & blues and various other music forms that originated in black culture have become huge parts of mainstream culture, the distinctive sounds of rap have made their way across the globe during the past few decades.

Hip hop first burst onto the New York scene in the 1970s. In-your-face lyrics, beats, break dancing and graffiti art were the prelude to rap music as we know it. These days, the components of dance, visual art, fashion and (of course) the music has made hip hop into the style and, more importantly, the sound of the times. If rap is the voice of hip hop, then graffiti is the art and break dancing is the movement. Hip hop has even spawned its own expression of fashion. Many people overlook the.

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The sadness. anger. disappointment and bitterness of the past. the ugly shame of sexual exploitation. is falling by the wayside as women are increasingly secure in being truthful about their desire to better love themselves and the men in their lives. When women are able to sing from the heart about issues in their lives which speak directly to their spirits. their love. their sexuality. their professional lives. their relationships. their family members and children. then they are able to vocalize what is truly important about being a woman. Womanhood is then

simply a beautiful. with all of its complexity and all of its depth. It is refreshing to note that the measure of success for women in the hip hop industry today is a much higher standard than what it was and has been in the past

Although there is still much more evolving to be experienced by women in the world of hip hop. the progressive foundation of true feminism has been lovingly laid. Girls and women of future generations can only be blessed by the shift which has occurred for women in the hip hop industry. It has taken quite a few powerful women to find their way along the rough path of the music marketing industry. and this has occurred hand in hand with cultural ideological shifts. There is presently more significance placed on loving relationships. family life monogamous sexuality. and gently discourse. and these progressions are definitely related to the emergence of true womanhood in the hip hop scene. There is an increasing tendency for women to be confident in speaking about their true needs and desires. without shame. without fear. and she sings about herself. about her life. about her man. with the passionate and intense love of a woman who will not.

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Evolution Of Rap Music Essay

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Evolution Of Rap Music Essay Research Paper

Evolution Of Rap Music Essay Research Paper

Evolution Of Rap Music Essay, Research Paper

THE EVOLUTION OF RAP MUSIC

Rap is a form of urban music, which emerged from the ?hip-hop? movement of the South Bronx, New York, in the early 1970?s. The hip-hop culture was comprised of the popular street activities of African-American youth during the 1970?s such as: styles of language. street-slang? colloquialisms, graffiti, break dancing, music and their colourful attitude and fashion. Rap music is therefor a subculture to the hip-hop movement, or what many describe as ?the soundtrack to accompany the other facets of the hip-hop culture. This means that any changes that take place within the hip-hop culture itself will be reflected in the subculture of rap music. Since the 1970?s styles of dancing, talking and graffiting have changed, not to mention the dramatically noticeable change in urban fashion. So subsequent to all aspects of the hip-hop culture having changed since its advent in the 1970?s, it seems only logical that rap music to change also, and evolve alongside the hip-hop culture. In fact, almost every aspect of popular rap music has undergone a huge transformation. From the style of music and the intent of the lyrics, to the culture, gender and race associated with rap artists and their listeners, rap has evolved quite dramatically.

The origins of rap music may be traced as far back as some African tribes, in which members used a style of ?trading tall tales, handing out verbal abuse in rhymes, providing [their] own rhythmical, chest-whacking, thigh slapping accompaniment. This was known as ?toasting? and ?signifying. Where tribe members would display their power and dominance. More immediately however, modern rap was a bi-product of the another activity; ?disk jockeying. In the early 1970?s disc jockey?s or DJ?s were a common appearance at backyard parties and social events. They played music on two vinyl record players, mixing songs together and combining old songs into new, danceable collages. Using different techniques such as quickly changing play speeds and equaliser settings, scratching records back and forth, and mixing in different types of music, made the art of disk jockeying extremely popular. So popular in fact that by the late 1970?s artful mixing had become such a spectacle that crowds would cease dancing in order to watch DJ?s perform. To keep people moving a DJ would recruite either one or a few people to act as a ?master of ceremonies? or MC. An MC would speak into a microphone, over the music and ?fire up? the crowd, with shouts such as ?get up? and ?jam to the beat? in a similar fashion to that used by James Brown. As MC?s popularity grew, so too did their task. To stay popular with the public and attractive to their recruiting DJ?s, MC?s were continually forced to come up with new techniques of encouraging their crowds to dance. Many MC?s followed the examples given to them by radio DJ?s by devising simple rhymes comprised of only two or four short lines. Most of these rhymes were very basic, short verses related to the crowd, which were thought up by the MC ?on the spot. It was not until a DJ named ?Grandmaster Flash? and his group of MC?s ?The Furious Five? that the rap genesis was completed. They began speaking longer, pre-rehearsed rhymes to the beat of the music, trading rhymes in sync with each other and the DJ. Slowly but surely other MC?s began to follow suit, reciting their own rehearsed lyrics in time with the beat. And so became the popular style of music known as rap.

It is thought that rap lyrics descended directly from a few specific African-American cultural figures. Radio DJ?s such as Holmes ?Daddy-O? Daylie, Al Benson and DJ Hollywood, spoke witty, jive-based talk between playing songs, and heavyweight champion boxer Muhammad Ali was renowned for his clever rhymes and cocky toasts, but one of the greatest influences on the style rap lyrics was the urban street jive, a form of coded speech that developed in the black community back in the 1920?s. Jive speakers disregarded standard usage of the English language and replaced common words with their own substitutions. Popular Jive alternatives include ?cat? for man. crib? for home. axe? for instrument. scrub? for loser and ?player? for successor. David Toop suggests that such substitutions ?have enabled many blacks to share messages that only the initiated can understand. This form of linguistic encoding was a universal survival tool for African Americans during times of slavery, and many traces of these techniques of communication can be seen in the language used by African Americans today. Evidence of this is made obvious through popular American ?talk shows? such as ?Jerry Springer? and ?Ricky Lake. which regularly have guests of lower social stature. It is common place for these talk show guests? speech to contain a high amount of ?urban street slang? colloquialisms, which make some viewers, (especially international viewers who may be perfectly fluent with the English language, but unfamiliar with jive) unable to understand the language being used.

This dilemma can also be witnessed when people unfamiliar with these ?street slang? colloquialisms listen to rap music. Rap lyrics have always contained a high amount of ?street slang. In fact the majority of the modern ?jive alternatives? used in this ?urban language? where ?invented? by rappers. Rappers would be writing their songs, trying to put their message across and at the same time make their lyrics rhyme. Instead of spending hours trying to think of rhyming lyrics, rappers would simply make up a word, or substitute an already existing word and change its meaning. This technique has been used since the very early days of rap music, and has been the main contributor the modern ?street slang. The only subtle problem with this was that there is no official ?jive dictionary. So one persons interpretation of someone?s lyrics may be different to anothers, depending on what they believed the ?slang words? meant. For example, many rap song lyrics would contradict other rap lyrics when two different rappers would use the same common word to replace different words. For example, early in the 1980?s the word ?cat? was used as a replacement for the word ?female. Nowadays, more popular rappers refer to a male as a ?cat. Another example is the jive word ?shorty. When some rappers use the word ?shorty? they are referring to a female, while other rappers consider a ?shorty? to be a young child. There are countless other examples illustrating the complexity of ?urban street slang? and expertise required to completely understand all rap lyrics. This is one of the important reasons for the success of rap music, especially through lower class youth. They are able to understand the lyrics and feel a connection to the language as it relates to them and their lifestyle, unlike that of higher-class citizens. The majority of whom find it difficult to understand the language used in rap lyrics.

Another connection between rap music and youth is the content of the lyrics. The topics that an artist ?raps? about is one of the highest contributing factors to that particular artists popularity. In the late 1970?s rap music was mainly, only played at parties and public gatherings. Despite the depressed economic conditions all of the early rappers and their audiences were forced to live in, most rap songs contained light-hearted, cheerful lyrics addressing people with a jubilant, festive attitude. They were songs about ?having a good time? and ?enjoying yourself. It was not until the early 1980?s, when rap began to attract larger audiences, that rappers began writing socially conscious lyrics, addressing ghetto conditions and economic inequalities. The Message? (1981) by rap group ?Public Enemy? marked the advent of political rap, which grew into a very popular way in which African Americans could express themselves, and their political voice. In a talk-show discussion, rap activist Harry Allen argued that ?[b]lack people are attempting to compensate for their lack of power under white supremacy, and it comes out in our art, it comes out in our music. They?re trying to make up for what?s missing. Whats missing is order. What?s missing is power.

Rap music seemed to be a form of entertainment only performed by African American?s and strictly only for African Americans. However all that began to change when ?black owned? record company ?Def Jam? signed a major distribution agreement with the ?white owned? label Columbia Records. Slowly Run-DMC (a rap group who belonged to the ?Def Jam? record label) began to be successful towards ?white? audiences. This prompted many people to speculate about the underlying issues of race, with regard to both the rap music audience and rappers themselves. Writer David Samuels suggests that ?the ways in which rap music has been consumed and popularised speak not of cross-cultural understanding, musical or otherwise, but of a voyeurism and tolerance of racism in which blacks and whites are both complicit. However, throughout the 1990?s many white rappers like; Vinilla Ice, the Beastie Boys, Third Bass, and House of Pain demonstrated by their huge popularity that more than race was at play. Rap?s popularity had grown to encapsulate a hugely diverse range of cultures.

Rap had always been reserved for predominantly male performers until a few female artists attempted to pioneer a new direction for the music. Throughout the 1990?s women rapping became more and more popular. Female rappers such as Queen Latifah and Salt-n-Pepper began addressing issues such as drug abuse, black-on-black violence and national politics, while other female artists such as Missy ?Misdemeanour? Elliott and Foxy Brown rapped about female self-empowerment.

Meanwhile another style of rap was emerging out of New York and Los Angeles. A more brutal brand of music which described drugs, sex and violence in detail. It is known as ?Gangsta? rap and its tremendous appeal to lower class people, both black and white, made the grim, lurid and angry lyrics profitable. In 1990 a Florida district court declared the gangsta rap album ?Nasty as They Wanna Be? recorded by rap group 2 Live Crew, to be legally obscene, and outlawed the sale of the record. When Los Angeles rapper Ice-T released the song ?Cop Killer? (1991), the LAPD organised a boycott against Time Warner (the company that distributed the record). In addition, police started blaming crimes on rap songs, as criminals cited the influence of gangsta rap as part of their defence. Many rap critics such as Rev. Calvin O. Butts III and Rev. Jessie Jackson strongly protested against gangsta rap, stating that the anger and violence it depicts only hurt African Americans in their stuggle against racism. Despite their best efforts gangsta rap?s popularity flourished, as rappers belonging to rival street gangs began rapping deadly threats towards each other and started bragging about their own strength and the death of rival gang members in their songs. Many gangsta rap songs did in fact provoke violent attacks on gangs in which certain rappers belonged to, and many deaths were blamed on these songs. The violence peaked at the murders of two of the most famous and most popular rappers of all time. East Coast. West Coast rivals Chris Wallace a.k.a ?The Notorious B.I.G? and Tupac Shakur a.k.a ?2Pac.

In the late 1990?s many gangsta rap artists and rap groups began to realise that ?enough was enough? as they initiated the ?Stop The Violence? movement and the ?Human Education Against Lies? (H.E.A.L) program, both of which pitted raps influence against social ills. Rappers began to concentrate on musical innovations, developing the art, rather than the politics of rap.

Rap music, which began as a simple. homemade? form of entertainment, from the streets of New York, has now become the most popular style of music in the world (highest selling genre). Rap has always managed to appeal to youth throughout its history, and adapt to the current social and cultural situations of the time. Whether it be back in the late 1970?s when rap music was in its early amateurish stages, where MC?s would make up lyrics, on the spot, as the song progressed, or today where millions of dollars and months of planning are spent creating a single song suitable for the huge mainstream industry. Rap music has truly demonstrated that it is capable of withstanding the forever-changing cultural situation of popularity. Every aspect of rap music has undergone a huge transformation since its advent in the early 1970?s.

The style of music has changed from only being a bright, clean, light-hearted music suitable for playing at dances, street parties and public occasions, to being a more serious, thoughtful source of political voice, to a dark and grim excuse for violence and anger. Nowadays rap music enraptures all of the styles. Many rappers are returning to the old ideals of a party atmosphere, while some are continuing to voice their opinions on political issues and a minority are still pursuing the violent path of gangsta rap. Whichever path taken, the styles of todays rap music and the intent of the lyrics have been completely moulded through the changes rap culture has undergone in its past, and will undoubtably undergo more changes in the future.

The gender, race and social status of rappers and rap music audiences has undoubtably been influenced by cultural change also. In its early beginning rap music was performed by black males, for black males and females. Growing in popularity, both black and white males began performing and then finally females began rapping. Audiences changed also, from both male and females, to chiefly males, who listened to gangsta rap. Nowadays the female audience of rap music is become larger and larger, however the majority of rappers today are still black African Americans and the majority of listeners are male. In the early days of rap music, rappers would perform for free, out of enjoyment and a love of the art. Today, rap is a multi-million dollar industry. The highest grossing genre of music, with rap artist getting paid ridiculous amounts just to appear in public. Rap music has gone from being a sub-culture of the minority ?hip-hop culture. to being a major playing factor in huge ?pop culture? of today. It has evolved into a huge industry that has demonstrated its ability to withstand the cultural changes of the last 30 years.

Hagar, Steven. Hip Hop; The Illustrated History of Break Dancing, Rap Music and Graffiti? New York: St Martin?s Press. 1984.

Hebdige, Dick. Cut ?N? Mix; Culture, Identity and Caribbean Music? New York: Methuen & Co. 1987.

Toop, David. The Rap Attack; African Jive to New York Hip Hop? Boston: South End Press, 1984.

Magazine Articles / Newspaper Articles

Cooks, Jay and Koepp, Stephen. Time. Chilling out on Rap Flash; New city music brings out the last word in wild style. March 21, 1983.

Hager, Steven. Village Voice. Afrika Bambaataa?s Hip Hop. September 21, 1982.

Samuels, David. The New Republic. The Rap on Rap: the Black Music that isn?t Either. November 11, 1991.

Simpson, Janice C. Time. Yo! Rap gets on the Map; Led by groups like Public Enemy. February 5 1990.

Thigpen, David. Time. Not for Men; Women Rappers are Breaking the Mold with a Message of their Own. May 27, 1996.

12249 CULTURAL CHANGE

& COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGIES

ASSIGNMENT COVER SHEET

Student ID number:

Tutorial day & time:

Date of submission:

I declare the following to be my own work, unless otherwise referenced, as defined by the University?s policy on plagiarism.

THE EVOLUTION OF RAP MUSIC

Rap is a form of urban music, which emerged from the ?hip-hop? movement of the South Bronx, New York, in the early 1970?s. The hip-hop culture was comprised of the popular street activities of African-American youth during the 1970?s such as: styles of language. street-slang? colloquialisms, graffiti, break dancing, music and their colourful attitude and fashion. Rap music is therefor a subculture to the hip-hop movement, or what many describe as ?the soundtrack to accompany the other facets of the hip-hop culture. This means that any changes that take place within the hip-hop culture itself will be reflected in the subculture of rap music. Since the 1970?s styles of dancing, talking and graffiting have changed, not to mention the dramatically noticeable change in urban fashion. So subsequent to all aspects of the hip-hop culture having changed since its advent in the 1970?s, it seems only logical that rap music to change also, and evolve alongside the hip-hop culture. In fact, almost every aspect of popular rap music has undergone a huge transformation. From the style of music and the intent of the lyrics, to the culture, gender and race associated with rap artists and their listeners, rap has evolved quite dramatically.

The origins of rap music may be traced as far back as some African tribes, in which members used a style of ?trading tall tales, handing out verbal abuse in rhymes, providing [their] own rhythmical, chest-whacking, thigh slapping accompaniment. This was known as ?toasting? and ?signifying. Where tribe members would display their power and dominance. More immediately however, modern rap was a bi-product of the another activity; ?disk jockeying. In the early 1970?s disc jockey?s or DJ?s were a common appearance at backyard parties and social events. They played music on two vinyl record players, mixing songs together and combining old songs into new, danceable collages. Using different techniques such as quickly changing play speeds and equaliser settings, scratching records back and forth, and mixing in different types of music, made the art of disk jockeying extremely popular. So popular in fact that by the late 1970?s artful mixing had become such a spectacle that crowds would cease dancing in order to watch DJ?s perform. To keep people moving a DJ would recruite either one or a few people to act as a ?master of ceremonies? or MC. An MC would speak into a microphone, over the music and ?fire up? the crowd, with shouts such as ?get up? and ?jam to the beat? in a similar fashion to that used by James Brown. As MC?s popularity grew, so too did their task. To stay popular with the public and attractive to their recruiting DJ?s, MC?s were continually forced to come up with new techniques of encouraging their crowds to dance. Many MC?s followed the examples given to them by radio DJ?s by devising simple rhymes comprised of only two or four short lines. Most of these rhymes were very basic, short verses related to the crowd, which were thought up by the MC ?on the spot. It was not until a DJ named ?Grandmaster Flash? and his group of MC?s ?The Furious Five? that the rap genesis was completed. They began speaking longer, pre-rehearsed rhymes to the beat of the music, trading rhymes in sync with each other and the DJ. Slowly but surely other MC?s began to follow suit, reciting their own rehearsed lyrics in time with the beat. And so became the popular style of music known as rap.

It is thought that rap lyrics descended directly from a few specific African-American cultural figures. Radio DJ?s such as Holmes ?Daddy-O? Daylie, Al Benson and DJ Hollywood, spoke witty, jive-based talk between playing songs, and heavyweight champion boxer Muhammad Ali was renowned for his clever rhymes and cocky toasts, but one of the greatest influences on the style rap lyrics was the urban street jive, a form of coded speech that developed in the black community back in the 1920?s. Jive speakers disregarded standard usage of the English language and replaced common words with their own substitutions. Popular Jive alternatives include ?cat? for man. crib? for home. axe? for instrument. scrub? for loser and ?player? for successor. David Toop suggests that such substitutions ?have enabled many blacks to share messages that only the initiated can understand. This form of linguistic encoding was a universal survival tool for African Americans during times of slavery, and many traces of these techniques of communication can be seen in the language used by African Americans today. Evidence of this is made obvious through popular American ?talk shows? such as ?Jerry Springer? and ?Ricky Lake. which regularly have guests of lower social stature. It is common place for these talk show guests? speech to contain a high amount of ?urban street slang? colloquialisms, which make some viewers, (especially international viewers who may be perfectly fluent with the English language, but unfamiliar with jive) unable to understand the language being used.

This dilemma can also be witnessed when people unfamiliar with these ?street slang? colloquialisms listen to rap music. Rap lyrics have always contained a high amount of ?street slang. In fact the majority of the modern ?jive alternatives? used in this ?urban language? where ?invented? by rappers. Rappers would be writing their songs, trying to put their message across and at the same time make their lyrics rhyme. Instead of spending hours trying to think of rhyming lyrics, rappers would simply make up a word, or substitute an already existing word and change its meaning. This technique has been used since the very early days of rap music, and has been the main contributor the modern ?street slang. The only subtle problem with this was that there is no official ?jive dictionary. So one persons interpretation of someone?s lyrics may be different to anothers, depending on what they believed the ?slang words? meant. For example, many rap song lyrics would contradict other rap lyrics when two different rappers would use the same common word to replace different words. For example, early in the 1980?s the word ?cat? was used as a replacement for the word ?female. Nowadays, more popular rappers refer to a male as a ?cat. Another example is the jive word ?shorty. When some rappers use the word ?shorty? they are referring to a female, while other rappers consider a ?shorty? to be a young child. There are countless other examples illustrating the complexity of ?urban street slang? and expertise required to completely understand all rap lyrics. This is one of the important reasons for the success of rap music, especially through lower class youth. They are able to understand the lyrics and feel a connection to the language as it relates to them and their lifestyle, unlike that of higher-class citizens. The majority of whom find it difficult to understand the language used in rap lyrics.

Another connection between rap music and youth is the content of the lyrics. The topics that an artist ?raps? about is one of the highest contributing factors to that particular artists popularity. In the late 1970?s rap music was mainly, only played at parties and public gatherings. Despite the depressed economic conditions all of the early rappers and their audiences were forced to live in, most rap songs contained light-hearted, cheerful lyrics addressing people with a jubilant, festive attitude. They were songs about ?having a good time? and ?enjoying yourself. It was not until the early 1980?s, when rap began to attract larger audiences, that rappers began writing socially conscious lyrics, addressing ghetto conditions and economic inequalities. The Message? (1981) by rap group ?Public Enemy? marked the advent of political rap, which grew into a very popular way in which African Americans could express themselves, and their political voice. In a talk-show discussion, rap activist Harry Allen argued that ?[b]lack people are attempting to compensate for their lack of power under white supremacy, and it comes out in our art, it comes out in our music. They?re trying to make up for what?s missing. Whats missing is order. What?s missing is power.

Rap music seemed to be a form of entertainment only performed by African American?s and strictly only for African Americans. However all that began to change when ?black owned? record company ?Def Jam? signed a major distribution agreement with the ?white owned? label Columbia Records. Slowly Run-DMC (a rap group who belonged to the ?Def Jam? record label) began to be successful towards ?white? audiences. This prompted many people to speculate about the underlying issues of race, with regard to both the rap music audience and rappers themselves. Writer David Samuels suggests that ?the ways in which rap music has been consumed and popularised speak not of cross-cultural understanding, musical or otherwise, but of a voyeurism and tolerance of racism in which blacks and whites are both complicit. However, throughout the 1990?s many white rappers like; Vinilla Ice, the Beastie Boys, Third Bass, and House of Pain demonstrated by their huge popularity that more than race was at play. Rap?s popularity had grown to encapsulate a hugely diverse range of cultures.

Rap had always been reserved for predominantly male performers until a few female artists attempted to pioneer a new direction for the music. Throughout the 1990?s women rapping became more and more popular. Female rappers such as Queen Latifah and Salt-n-Pepper began addressing issues such as drug abuse, black-on-black violence and national politics, while other female artists such as Missy ?Misdemeanour? Elliott and Foxy Brown rapped about female self-empowerment.

Meanwhile another style of rap was emerging out of New York and Los Angeles. A more brutal brand of music which described drugs, sex and violence in detail. It is known as ?Gangsta? rap and its tremendous appeal to lower class people, both black and white, made the grim, lurid and angry lyrics profitable. In 1990 a Florida district court declared the gangsta rap album ?Nasty as They Wanna Be? recorded by rap group 2 Live Crew, to be legally obscene, and outlawed the sale of the record. When Los Angeles rapper Ice-T released the song ?Cop Killer? (1991), the LAPD organised a boycott against Time Warner (the company that distributed the record). In addition, police started blaming crimes on rap songs, as criminals cited the influence of gangsta rap as part of their defence. Many rap critics such as Rev. Calvin O. Butts III and Rev. Jessie Jackson strongly protested against gangsta rap, stating that the anger and violence it depicts only hurt African Americans in their stuggle against racism. Despite their best efforts gangsta rap?s popularity flourished, as rappers belonging to rival street gangs began rapping deadly threats towards each other and started bragging about their own strength and the death of rival gang members in their songs. Many gangsta rap songs did in fact provoke violent attacks on gangs in which certain rappers belonged to, and many deaths were blamed on these songs. The violence peaked at the murders of two of the most famous and most popular rappers of all time. East Coast. West Coast rivals Chris Wallace a.k.a ?The Notorious B.I.G? and Tupac Shakur a.k.a ?2Pac.

In the late 1990?s many gangsta rap artists and rap groups began to realise that ?enough was enough? as they initiated the ?Stop The Violence? movement and the ?Human Education Against Lies? (H.E.A.L) program, both of which pitted raps influence against social ills. Rappers began to concentrate on musical innovations, developing the art, rather than the politics of rap.

Rap music, which began as a simple. homemade? form of entertainment, from the streets of New York, has now become the most popular style of music in the world (highest selling genre). Rap has always managed to appeal to youth throughout its history, and adapt to the current social and cultural situations of the time. Whether it be back in the late 1970?s when rap music was in its early amateurish stages, where MC?s would make up lyrics, on the spot, as the song progressed, or today where millions of dollars and months of planning are spent creating a single song suitable for the huge mainstream industry. Rap music has truly demonstrated that it is capable of withstanding the forever-changing cultural situation of popularity. Every aspect of rap music has undergone a huge transformation since its advent in the early 1970?s.

The style of music has changed from only being a bright, clean, light-hearted music suitable for playing at dances, street parties and public occasions, to being a more serious, thoughtful source of political voice, to a dark and grim excuse for violence and anger. Nowadays rap music enraptures all of the styles. Many rappers are returning to the old ideals of a party atmosphere, while some are continuing to voice their opinions on political issues and a minority are still pursuing the violent path of gangsta rap. Whichever path taken, the styles of todays rap music and the intent of the lyrics have been completely moulded through the changes rap culture has undergone in its past, and will undoubtably undergo more changes in the future.

The gender, race and social status of rappers and rap music audiences has undoubtably been influenced by cultural change also. In its early beginning rap music was performed by black males, for black males and females. Growing in popularity, both black and white males began performing and then finally females began rapping. Audiences changed also, from both male and females, to chiefly males, who listened to gangsta rap. Nowadays the female audience of rap music is become larger and larger, however the majority of rappers today are still black African Americans and the majority of listeners are male. In the early days of rap music, rappers would perform for free, out of enjoyment and a love of the art. Today, rap is a multi-million dollar industry. The highest grossing genre of music, with rap artist getting paid ridiculous amounts just to appear in public. Rap music has gone from being a sub-culture of the minority ?hip-hop culture. to being a major playing factor in huge ?pop culture? of today. It has evolved into a huge industry that has demonstrated its ability to withstand the cultural changes of the last 30 years.

Hagar, Steven. Hip Hop; The Illustrated History of Break Dancing, Rap Music and Graffiti? New York: St Martin?s Press. 1984.

Hebdige, Dick. Cut ?N? Mix; Culture, Identity and Caribbean Music? New York: Methuen & Co. 1987.

Toop, David. The Rap Attack; African Jive to New York Hip Hop? Boston: South End Press, 1984.

Magazine Articles / Newspaper Articles

Cooks, Jay and Koepp, Stephen. Time. Chilling out on Rap Flash; New city music brings out the last word in wild style. March 21, 1983.

Hager, Steven. Village Voice. Afrika Bambaataa?s Hip Hop. September 21, 1982.

Samuels, David. The New Republic. The Rap on Rap: the Black Music that isn?t Either. November 11, 1991.

Simpson, Janice C. Time. Yo! Rap gets on the Map; Led by groups like Public Enemy. February 5 1990.

Thigpen, David. Time. Not for Men; Women Rappers are Breaking the Mold with a Message of their Own. May 27, 1996.

Evolution. From Big Bang to Nanorobots

The present volume is the fourth issue of the Yearbook series entitled 'Evolution'. The title of the present volume is 'From Big Bang to Nanorobots'. In this way we demonstrate that all phases of evolution and Big History are covered in the articles of the present Yearbook. Several articles also present the forecasts about future development. The main objective of our Yearbook as well as of the previous issues is the creation of a unified interdisciplinary field of research in which the scientists specializing in different disciplines could work within the framework of unified or similar paradigms, using the common terminology and searching for common rules, tendencies and regularities. At the same time for the formation of such an integrated field one should use all available opportunities: theories, laws and methods. In the present volume, a number of such approaches are used. The volume consists of four sections: Universal Evolutionary Principles; Biosocial Evolution, Ecological Aspects, and Consciousness; Projects for the Future; In Memoriam. This Yearbook will be useful both for those who study interdisciplinary macroproblems and for specialists working in focused directions, as well as for those who are interested in evolutionary issues of Cosmology, Biology, History, Anthropology, Economics and other areas of study. More than that, this edition will challenge and excite your vision of your own life and the new discoveries going on around us!

Academic Writing Skills. Teacher's Manual 3

Comprising three course books, this series is aimed at university students in all disciplines who require instruction in completing academic writing tasks. Through extensive use of examples, model texts, and practical activities, the course develops the essential skills needed to compose texts which meet the expectations of an academic reader. Academic Writing Skills 3 addresses higher-level academic features, such as understanding essay prompts, research, paragraph cohesion, logical connections, and effective sentence building. It is appropriate for students wishing to focus on specific essay types that require the use and integration of sources to complete academic writing tasks. Academic Writing Skills 3 Teacher's Manual has two parts: Part 1: Lesson plans for each part of each unit Part 2: The answer key to the exercises

My Favourite Christmas Carols

A beautiful activity book, bursting with festive activities and music. Decorate the Christmas stockings, play spot the difference with the angels, colour in the robins and much more! Includes Lyrics and piano music-for Christmas favourites such as Silent Night, Ding Dong Merrily on High and We Wish You a Merry Christmas.

Viewpoint is a two-level series for adults and young adults, taking learners from a high intermediate to advanced level of proficiency (CEFR: B2 - C1). The course is based on research into the Cambridge English Corpus, so it teaches English as it is really used. - Extensive corpus research ensures natural language is presented and practiced in authentic contexts. - Engaging writing tasks with explicit goals prepare learners to succeed in professional and academic writing. - Vocabulary-learning strategies encourage learner independence. - Tips to avoid common errors teach learners to use English accurately. The course is written by the same author team that produced the ground-breaking Touchstone series, a four-level series that takes students from beginner to intermediate levels (CEFR: A1 - B2).