Lyrically, I enjoy the individuals/groups that pour their soul into discussing issues both personal and social. While by definition, I am not a connoisseur of the genre, I am quite sensitive to the occurrence of this outpouring in hip hop songs. When combined with awesome music, these songs are taken to a new height and can never be forgotten. This isn't to say I shy away from songs with an awesome beat but lacking in substance lyrically (it makes me want to dance, I can't help it).
So is this if you ignore the words (not that I know them all)!
What makes these songs great on a musical level, and what made hip hop so cool in the beginning was the use of samples. When done well, sampling is an art form for which deejays are usually responsible. Listening to the source material of some notables says as much.
Songs produced in this manner reminds me of alchemy. When considering alchemy as the deconstructing and reconstructing of something in order to understand it, it makes sense to think of the art of sampling in this way--which further elevates the individuals that are able to do this. It is likely they know and understand the music being used in some way or another--usually in a deep way (this goes for music from other corners of the world regardless of language). The de and reconstruction that results in the tracks that envelop the songs they create is therefore usually incredible and very artistic. Though the resulting song is one in its own right because it is so different from its source material(s), the feel of the song is not that much different from its source material(s). Take for instance:
and it's de/reconstruction into this:
The theme connecting the two is that of love for another/others(?)--at least in my mind.
Because this art form is usually associated with hip hop, I have begun to theorize that the people--creators and consumers--associated have qualities that allow for this awesomeness to occur in ways that vary from music creation to the collection of music one has.
So far, I've come up with this list:
- they exist (musically at least) in a perpetual state of great understanding. This means they are open to a variety of forms of music--even forms they generally dislike. Individuals are open to moments in a song that catch their attention in profound ways (this is the stuff that gets sampled).
- they are usually non-conformists when it comes to musical tastes--another reason why the samples themselves end up being so awesome!
- they see musical styles and genres as diverse, yet interconnected--which may be where the non-conformity comes into play
- their music (created and/or collected) is a conduit through which they express themselves and communicate to others
Any thoughts on this topic are welcome. I realize there are shortcomings to this pondering, especially when it comes to universalizing people and not knowing enough about hip hop and sampling and the people who do it. Still this is something I've noticed and pondered for a while now and had to establish some initial thoughts.
Until next time...