Jazz with Rap?

I know that we are in a new age of music. Rap becoming easily the most popular genre amongst youth in our generation, I easily am exposed to the new rappers that are up and coming out there. Musically, I see a lot of top chart hits that are a basic trap backbeat with a simple rhythm repeating throughout the song. Most albums lack distinction music wise, however, the lyrics are what is focused on. In this new age, creativity is sparking with unique rhymes and verses that capture audiences with their messages. Besides the fact of interesting themes being rapped about in the songs, these rap songs are a lot more comprehensive with their lyrics making them songs that practically never get old. Every time I listen to a rap song, I hear something that I never noticed the last time I heard that song. It makes me rethink the message that is being presented. I believe the brief chorus, common in a lot of rap songs, supplies less repetitive tunes, and more interesting lyrics.

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Mac Miller’s Swimming

With that being said, the music itself is not near to as comprehensive as the lyrics. The beats are simple and the songs differ ever so slightly with the creativity and diversity of their background music. Sure this is not amplified for the artist wants the listener to appreciate the lyrics rather than the music, however, it provides a lame taste to listen to and songs often lose authenticity due to their indistinction from many other songs out there. The music is all the same and it just seems redundant.

But alas! With every complaint, there is a solution. I recently have found new artists that have added jazzy touch to the usual mundane beats that lie behind common rap songs.

This type of music is not new and can be seen in many popular artist’s pieces of music, such as Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole.

Kendrick Lamar’s album, untitled unmastered., is full of jazzy rhythms to accompany his rapping. Also in his albums DAMN. and To Pimp A Butterfly, one can find songs such as FEAR. and Institutionalized that create a unique rhythm, and I can always find myself bobbing my head to the distinct sounds.

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Saba’s CARE FOR ME

J. Cole, an all-time favourite of mine, lacks the common repetitious trap beat. Songs in the album KOD, such as Photograph and The Cut Off, use the snare to represent a more calm, bluesy feeling that warms up the song. The use of different rhythms and sounds in the background allow for a groovy take on the rap verses.

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J. Cole’s KOD

Some new albums with that same bluesy touch on rap have emerged in recent years including, CARE FOR ME, by Saba; All-Amerikkkan Bada$$, by Joey BadA$$; and Swimming, by Mac Miller. These albums hold calm bluesy beats to jam to. So for every one of you that have been looking to find some rap without that repetitious trap beat, this is where you should look.

Follow my playlist, Jazzy Rap, on Spotify. Username: zippy333b.

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