RAPPING ABOUT RAP Essay

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     Rap music is on its way to becoming one of the most popular forms of music on the market today. Although rap has only been popular for the last 15 years, it can be traced back to the days of slavery and even further to the tribes of Africa. Rap is used now as it was used for the past few centuries, as a form of communication. This music has been a way for the young African-American's to speak out about their lives and the struggles they go through. Like rock-n-roll and other forms of music that achieve national attention, rap is being blamed for corrupting our youth. There is a new type of rap music out called "Gangster Rap". This form of rap music is not the same and should not be compared with rap…show more content…
Another link from African music to Rap is in the sounds that are used. It is said that "Grand Wizard" invented "scratching" while practicing at home (Greenberg 15), however Andrei Strobert, a Brooklyn-based scholar, musician and artist was quoted in an article by Harry Allen about the roots of rap music, "The scratch that you hear in hip-hop is similar to the African sekere". She goes on to explain, "A sekere is a big gourd with beads around it". She also noted that many of the sounds rappers use in her studio are from the Imo tribe of Nigeria (80).            There are many comparisons between rap and African music but one comparison you don't hear about too often is the influence by Puerto Ricans living in New York at the time rap started popping up. Juan Flores brings up this comparison in his article, "Recital of decimals and aguinaldos in the Puerto Rican folk tradition involved methods of improvisation and alternation much like those typical of rap performances, while the tongue-twisting (trabalengua) style of some plena singing is an even more direct antecedent. More important, perhaps, just as with doo-wop and rhumba, there is a fascinating "fit" between Puerto Rican "clave" and characteristic rap rhythms"(583). Puerto Rican's also played a big part in the influence of break dancing, a big part of
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