How does one determine why rap music is bad in the first place? One could argue about Jay-Z’s longevity in the industry, about rap artists being able to make a living off of music in today’s age.
There are many reasons for this; the first rap artists after the 1980s had extremely high production values. Artists like Run-DMC (who are usually thought of as the archetypal rap group of the ’80s) had impressive instrumentals and lyrics, and in many cases, the music was completely original.
Artists of the ’90s had similar production values, but the beats were more sleazy than their predecessors in many cases. At the same time, both groups of artists still had amazing lyricism. So what happened in the 2000s and the 2010s?
I listened to Skindred the other day and noticed that they had had some amazing success with “2101”. Why?
The production is the same as the 80’s group “Silver Convention.” The lyrics are the same as their “Rhythm is” or their “Never Say Die.”
When one listens to the music, the structure and the music’s flow do not differ much from a contemporary pop song. How can one tell that the lyrics and structure of the song are quality?
I would say that by listening to the song and trying to find the “message” in the lyrics. There is a reason that the “message” in rap music is usually supposed to be “Fuck What You Think” or “Fuck You All.”
The purpose of rap music is to be openly disrespectful to both the authorities and the listeners. While rap music can be clever and challenging, the lyrics are generally poor.
Thus, when rappers rap, there is little meaning to their music. This brings me to another reason why rappers sound bad: they aren’t as original as they were in the ’80s.
Today there are thousands of rappers writing on their computers. Sometimes this is more helpful because their lyrics are the same, but often it is more detrimental.
There is no individualism in rap music. We have all seen the imitation of the greatest rappers on YouTube.
The hip-hop scene is really less a culture and more a studio. And as it often does, this leads to mediocre music and lyrics.
But I don’t think this is a rant about rap music. I really want to focus on how bad rap lyrics are.
To be a successful rapper, you need to be able to write catchy lyrics and memorable lines. Not every lyricist can do this, but they need to find the ability.
Every rapper who has had a big hit song has taken the “street lingo” widely used in their city. For example, the “that’s” in “sick like that.”
This is universal. There is no language barrier.
So when rappers sing “that’s the shit,” that’s what they mean. These lines tend to have the same structure as the first sentence of this article.
“That’s what you said?” (“That’s what you said?”) “Oh.” This gives rappers the liberty to include other lyricists who can not be rappers. The rest is all gibberish.
In some cases, the lyrics will be cleverly constructed. For example, Jay-Z’s “Empire State of Mind” has an amazing opening line “This is the era of the rapper. A rapper’s only job is to make people feel away”.
The last line is repeated to emphasize how rappers can achieve power and prestige. However, the majority of the lines will be the same as other popular songs.
Eminem’s lines in “Not Afraid” sound exactly like the opening lines of many rap songs. Jay-Z’s lines in “Izzo (H.O.V.A.)” will be used to make a rap track on Hot 97 every day.
The lyrics are bad for two reasons. First, rappers who cannot write original lyrics just copy what other rappers say, which leaves nothing unique.
Not every rapper is a Jay Z or Eminem, and every rapper should write original lyrics. The second reason is that rappers are not talking about themselves.
The reason that rappers make popular songs is that they are telling a story. The “music” and the “lyrics” should be able to complement each other.
We don’t need music to tell us who the rapper is. When Jay Z raps, “She wants my money, she wants my life, baby, she wants my house, and if I get bored of it, I can always get another,” we hear that Jay Z has plenty of money.
But we also hear that Jay Z is more than money and has the ability to do something with his life.
The reason I am a big hip-hop fan is because of the songwriting. Most rap songs have catchy lines.
So why do the lyrics suck? The answer is simple: The lyricists who write these lyrics have nothing else to talk about.
Most people would agree that rappers should be able to speak without using slang and metaphors, but the problem is that these rappers have little else to say.