As I stare into the speakers projecting some of the most prolific wordplay from The Almighty, I wonder who values a deep conversation about the wordsmiths hammering the words together over a bass-laden anvil. My conclusion is as follows…
I will no longer entertain the casual Rap music listeners opinionated debates/disputes with me on “what constitutes great rap music or great rappers or dope producers.” If you have not put in a minimum of 10,000 hours of active, critically analytical listening of a variety of rappers (nationally distributed and independent) and have not studied the history of lyrical and Hip-Hop production development and revolution/evolution since Rap’s creation, then you are only speaking from a casual and limited knowledge base on the Art. I do have a very opinionated and invested understanding of Rap. I will try my best to address the casual listener’s arguments and opinions.
However, casual listener’s opinions are valuable from an appeal and emotional standpoint. Nonetheless, that opinion is not critical enough to fully understand the argument that I or my cohort would present about the topics on Rap. We look for challenge to our opinions to be solidly based and backed by “opinionated” facts. The casual listener’s perspective on rap lyrics and art of rapping usually plateaus on words on top of a rhythmic beat to make a song about any number of topics. However, the scholar or practitioner of Rap music sees lyrics as mathematical equation or science in developing musical composition to manipulate the psychology and mental constructs of the listener. I reiterate, I rather debate my opinions with (a) trained and expert rappers and producers (people that have proactively studied and practiced the art for 10,000 hours or more) and (b) people that have studied and invested in Rap like they were writing a dissertation on the Art and Science behind it.
I now view the casual Rap music lover’s opinion similar to a person that loves watching Grey’s Anatomy, The Mob Doctor, Childrens Hospital or any documentary style medical show on TLC/Discovery Channels’ opinion (majority of the population) while the expert Rap music lover is similar to a PhD/MD that continually studies, evolves, and contributes to the Art and Science of Medicine and Biology.
Both, casual listeners and experts, can have respected opinions, be lovers and haters of it, even share in loving and hating some aspects. But, their overall opinions on Rap will usually be from different perspectives and knowledge bases.