Someone once told me “you can’t spell crap without rap”. This particular guy was a douchebag, regardless of musical tastes. But there are some people who are very much not douchebags who feel the same way. It’s not a much of a problem, usually. Nobody’s going to like every song they hear, and that will never change.
Those of us who are obsessive with music just can’t settle for this, though. If we find that we don’t like a particular kind of music, it drives us crazy. Out of the millions of rap songs there has to be something we can enjoy. This article is to help those people
LIKELY REASONS YOU DON’T LIKE RAP
1. You hear it all the time…blasting out of someone else’s car window. We’ve all seen the rocket scientists who feel the need to let everyone on the highway know how much they paid for their subwoofers. Black people are not the only ones guilty of this. Whites, Hispanics and Asians have all blasted me with a repetitive bass line from their car stereos. A lot of rap groups even mix their bass drum to sound like windows vibrating, to give the illusion that your car has “mad pipes” when you’re only shattering people’s nerves, not your windows.
2. Association. To someone on the outside, rap seems to be something enjoyed by mostly riff-raff. Or worse, annoying poser children who cannot seem to grasp the concept of belts. Again, every race is guilty of this, and it annoys the living hell out of me.
3. It’s vulgar. Yes, it is very vulgar in language and content a lot of the time. Good quality clean rap is rare, and usually doesn’t do well commercially. Rappers are usually not only foul-mouthed, but the content in rap almost created the Parental Advisory sticker by itself with lyrics about drugs, prostitution, murder and whatever else you can think of.
For people who don’t like rap music, try these:
1. Storm Warning – Latyrx
This is the first song I pull out when a friend tells me they have trouble enjoying rap. The lyrics are clean as a whistle, and make no mention of drugs, violence, or sex. A couple of people have even asked me if they are a christian group. They aren’t, they simply chose not to swear in this song simply because it wasn’t called for. The entire feel of the song is very different from what most people would think of when they think of rap.
The beat is something I could’ve never thought of for a rap song, and the way the two rappers bounce off each other is just…they can…it sounds…just listen to it. Recommended for people who are just completely sick of usual rap.
2. Good Morning – Kanye West
Okay, hipsters? Bear with me for a minute. Kanye gets a lot of hate these days after his incident at the MTV music awards, but that’s not my department. This is a blog about the music. If you want to read what something thinks about who Kanye’s sexing with now or who bashed who at what award show, kindly go and pick up a tabloid.
Anyways, I couldn’t give you any rock hard evidence that this particular song is “different” or “original”, I simply like it. The video for it is very interesting, also. Which seems rare for any kind of music. The language is only moderately bad by rap standards, so I wouldn’t tell you to forbid your kids to hear it, depending on their age, but I would suggest you listen to it first. And look up the lyrics for yourself, because kids will always hear things you missed. In any case, the YouTube link is a video that was edited for network television, which means most of the swearing has been censored. Recommended for someone who’s not afraid of listening to “mainstream” music.
3. Youth Of The Nation – P.O.D.
More clean rap. Most people in christian music circles have already heard this song several times, and are getting sick of it. Even though the song is free of any swearing, the lyrics go over the subject of teen suicide and violence, so I would encourage letting your kids to listen to it, but not if they’re very young kids.
The song, (that is the musical part, not the lyrics) is unique in rap by being very “acoustic”. The drums are not sampled, but played as in a rock song. As are the guitars and bass, with few effects. Recommended for young religious folk.
4. That Old Pair Of Jeans – Fatboy Slim feat. Lateef the Truth Speaker
This is an extremely unique rap song, played more like an old R&B song than a rap backing track. Gotta love Fatboy Slim. The video’s a lot of fun too, even though it’s simple.
Lateef the Truth Speaker was part of Latyrx long before this collaboration. It’s hard for to pick him out when you listen to Storm Warning just based on hearing him here, though.
Swearing is kept to a minimum, Lateef uses the word a** just once. Recommended for people who are fans of funky beats and sampling.
5. Dance With The Devil – Immortal Technique
This is the darkest song I’ve ever heard from any genre anywhere. Death metal has nothing on Dance With The Devil when it comes to making me feel scared and hopeless. The language is as bad as possible, but that’s the least of your worries. The song tells a story of a young man dead set on joining a street gang by any means necessary. The song is very long by rap standards, almost 7 minutes. The beat and samples used are not unique, but somehow the spirit behind them seems very different.
I would recommend this song to two kinds of people: Emotional masochists, and someone who feels that they are way too happy. I haven’t even watched the video, because honestly I’m a little afraid to after hearing the song.
6. Home Sweet Home (Reborn) – Home Made Kazoku
Yeah, japanese rap. I went there. Deal with it.
I couldn’t tell you if it’s vulgar or not, because I don’t speak japanese. It’s extremely happy though! And like a lot of japanese music groups, these guys throw in a lot of english words for reasons completely foreign to me. This song is just fun and lighthearted, which is unique for good quality rap. Although I’m not really sure if this is what you would call “good quality”…I enjoy it anyway. Recommended for fans of J-pop, or J-anything.
7. Hey Ladies – Beastie Boys
What’s unique about this? It’s nerdy, that’s what! This song is so goofy and funky I just have to nod my head to the beat. The lyrical content is the basic amount of vulgarity, swear words thrown in here and there, and like you would suspect from the title, it’s a song about picking up women. The video is just as goofy as the song sounds, too. Recommended for class clowns.
8. Peacemaker – The Cloud
This song is just crazy. Everything about it just blows me away. It doesn’t use any cursing or swearing, but there’s a couple of metaphors like “chalk up your nostril” that might turn off an extreme prude. It’s a really emotional piece of work anyway, and something I would recommend to anyone who says they don’t like rap.
9. Like Toy Soldiers – Eminem
I just find this interesting. Smackin’ hoes and drugs aren’t mentioned, but it’s still a dark and emotional piece. Eminem is never one to shy away from swearing, so keep the kids away from this one. The style isn’t especially different, but the lyrics aren’t stereotypical of rap.
10. Hell Yes – Beck
Everything from Beck is just plain weird. I love it. Swearing is only during the chorus, when the words “Hell Yes” are repeated. Recommended for stoners.