Book Review: Book of Rhymes - The Poetics of Hip-Hop

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The first thing I listen for in new music is lyrics. I study them, break them down and wonder what the person's thought process was when they were writing them. No really, I do. This is usually the source of countless arguments among my friends about how MC such and such "don't ever be sayin' nothin'". So when I saw this book online, I thought it would be a good read. Now, I don't fancy myself a follower of all the literary greats of yesteryear, but I know a little sumptin' sumptin'. This book takes an ill approach by comparing the lyrics of Hip-Hop's contemporaries with those of history's most renowned poets. The book breaks down all the essential elements of spitting such as rhythm (flow), style, wordplay and more, by chapter. Comparing 15th century English poet John Skelton's work to that of rap star Fabolous' may seem a bit odd on the surface until author Adam Bradley shows just how similar their stanza forms really are. Oftentimes, the artistry of forming songs and the intricacy of the writings gets lost in the snares, 808s and metronome ticks of today's hottest music. By unmasking Hip-Hop's evolution from its earliest poetic counterparts, Adam Bradley has become our Charles Darwin...

Be sure to scoop a copy at a bookstore near you.. -Interstate P

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