Friday, April 22, 2011
Friday, November 19, 2010
So I just answered the question "Are rappers musicians?" on Facebook Questions, and I'd like to share my answer on here!
Music is defined as (paraphrasing http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/music), combining tones and sounds for artistic value.
That being said, rappers are very much musicians, as their contribution to a song is integral to not only a song's effect but also its meaning. Rappers rely less on tones and more on rhythms, and as many people have already pointed out, so do drummers - musicians. Rappers use their voices to produce their music, just as every other singer or vocalist does. Although the don't focus on pitch (but they do use it), their tones, timbres, and inflections are used and even celebrated. This is why B.o.B sounds different from Eminem sounds different from Lil' Wayne.
An interesting point on drummers - tabla players in Indian Classical music have onomatopoeic syllables to describe different kinds of strikes or hits. They are expected to be able to pronounce them as fast as they can play them, and sometimes even perform this way.
One point of argument may be in the repetitive nature of most rap songs. Cyclic music, although definitely found in Western music, is even more common in other musical traditions. In these styles, the musical piece is appreciated as more of a repeating melody with subtle or not-so-subtle variations thrown in; much like rap. I'm thinking particularly of Shona, Hindustani, and Gamelan music.
Although rap lyrics can definitely be considered a subset of poetry, it's hard to imagine most rapper's style applied to other poetic forms such as haikus or limericks. While a rapper can and sometimes do rap without music, their lyrics are specifically intended to be performed withinstrumental accompaniment. This separates rap from Spoken Word, which is a definite form of poetry.
They may not be musicians like Rossini or Mozart as one answerer said, but I would argue that they may be. Mozart and and the like gained their popularity by how their arrangements of tones and sounds appealed to the common listener, which is exactly what guys like Jay Z or Snoop Dogg are doing. Time will only tell how long their music will last - don't forget that Mozart was the "sex, drugs, and rock-and-roll" of his time and genre, and Stravinsky's Rite of Spring essentially caused a mosh-pit at it's debut.
With all of that being said, I firmly believe that rappers are musicians.
Friday, November 12, 2010
I haven't blogged in an unforgivably long time. I've been very busy with school and haven't found the time to sit down and blog.
The second highlight is that the school newspaper the Daily Tar Heel ran not just one but two features on me and my Tourette's. One was a print article that went on last Friday's front page, and the other was a multimedia presentation intended for the internet. Here's a link to both!
Sorry for making you wait so long! I'll try to be better about staying updated!
Monday, August 16, 2010
Monday was my birthday!! I:
2) Woke up late
3) Had a ton of birthday wishes on fBook - thanks everyone!
4) Sat and wrote music for a couple hours
5) Was sung 'happy birthday' by my dad ( Pj Crosa) and 'happy beerthday' by my grandma
6) Was almost sung 'happy birthday' by Christina Fluet. But then I wasn't.
7) Talked to my mom ( Melissa Robinson), who made an A on her first med school test!
8) Got a rice krispy treat cake in the mail from the afore-mentioned mother
9) Staff meeting cancelled by Josh Giles Alexander, yeeeeesss!
10) Went to Sugarland, read a couple chapters of "Mozart in the Jungle" and took a picture of what I got.
11) Doodled around in my office (that's right... I have one. Kind of.)
12) Got the ball rolling on a student org for people with neurological... differences
13) Stuffed myself at Chili's with my brothers
14) Went on a food run with Paul Rosser and Sami Card
15) I turned 20!
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
I was scheduled for an OLS session with ten year old boys this week. I was a little nervous about not having the treasure hunt, but still confident. One was in a wheelchair to reduce internal bleeding (he had hemophilia) from a sprained ankle. I met them at the ball field with the external frame backpack full of camping essentials, and we went through the list and talked about each one in the shade. They seemed pretty interested, or at least interested in relating each of the items to a bear attack. When I got to the end of the list, I told them we'd go down to the camping outpost to try some fire building. They were pumped!
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Camp Twitch and Shout had a Hollywood theme for their dance, red carpet and all that. On each of the six doors, they put up a star with somebody's name on it. Two were the camp directors, one was the nurse, one was Jimmy, one was Tim Howard (Team USA goalkeeper, who has Tourette's), and one was for me. It was a small gesture, but a meaningful one. At the end of the night, Brad found me and asked for a picture with me. Also a small but meaningful gesture. Meeting the Twitch and Shout crew really showed me how much is being done, but also how much is still needed. I want to take this motivation back to UNC, raise some money for next year, start a group - and who knows, maybe even create some awareness ;-)