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The Flow Essay

749 words - 3 pages

In an ever growing industry where masses of bland mc’s come out of the woodwork to drop hooks it’s becoming more difficult to distinguish yourself in the hip hop community. Hip hop is a numbers game and we’re not talking record sales. Each rapper has a distinctive “flow”. Flow in this case refers to the rhythmic structure that is derived from the interaction between the rapper’s words and the musical rhythms of those words. On the other spectrum of hip hop are bars, a bar is simply a musical duration of time, akin to how minutes measure time. When multiple bars are combined they form a verse or hook, and the hooks and verses form the final song that you are more accustomed to. When combined with the nature of their rhymes, or the nature of their sentences, and the repetition of rhymes an artist’s creates their distinctive sound.
Hailing from the windy city we have Kanye “Yeezus” West. In my opinion Kanye West is one of the most indubitable rappers of this generation; however he is technically a simple rapper. He drops one or two rhymes per bar, and they range from one to two syllables that fall at the end of the line. His rhymes follow the same place in the bar throughout the song. Kanye’s sentences are long and abide by the bar line. They typically come to a stop right before the bar line. This is known as a pick-up note, meaning rhythmically they function to lead to the next beat because they start it off. Kanye may be a simple rapper in terms of technical skill; however his production ability and ear for good beats secures his place as one of the best rappers of all time in my opinion. Kanye is a key example that a person can adopt a more simplistic rhyme scheme and still make it big, so big that they might just be the next pseudo Jesus.
Up next we have the Brooklyn Underground artist Mos Def or Yasiin Bay depending on when you started following the hip hop scene. Mos Def’s rhymes are complex multisyllabic in nature in that the usually range from three or four syllables, that fall both...

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