Is rap art?

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Logic_ill
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Logic_ill » October 19th, 2013, 9:38 pm

jstarr wrote:Which philosophers would be most likely to embrace rap as art and which would be least likely?
I suppose modern philosophers would classify rap as art. I consider it an art. It is, of course, a different genre, but still artful and artistic.

I do not like all rap, just as much as I do not like each and every song of every genre. But still, it has its place in the annals of music history.

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Thinking critical
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Thinking critical » October 29th, 2013, 3:43 am

On a particular thread where posting inspirational songs was a common theme, I posted a hip hop track.......and here's the kicker......... it was one I wrote and performed :oops: about 6 years ago, even a picture of me in the clip as well I think.
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Spiral Out
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Spiral Out » October 30th, 2013, 11:21 pm

Some rap is art: witness Eminem's "Without Me".
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Stormcloud » October 31st, 2013, 5:54 am

There is no truth in what you say - there is only perception.

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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Spiral Out » October 31st, 2013, 6:20 am

You're "absolutely" right.
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Stormcloud » October 31st, 2013, 7:06 am

By the way, Spiral, what happened to that fella Stasis who was going to take you on? I was REALLY looking forward to that little battle. I noted "someone'" ran to Uncle Scott complaining, wasn't you, was it? :wink:

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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Spiral Out » October 31st, 2013, 8:15 pm

Wild Stasis and I had an exchange going on in three different topics simultaneously. I guess you didn't see it before he was erased. Good thing for you he'll be back, and he'll come for me again, and we'll have it out again. Keep an eye out.
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Grecorivera5150 » October 31st, 2013, 9:12 pm

If rap is not art , art is not art. It meets any criteria that matters to human sociality.

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Re:

Post by Welcome2machine » December 18th, 2013, 6:54 am

jstarr wrote:I disagree, not everyone can rap. I'm not saying that all rap music out there is great but it does take talent. Of course a lot of the newer hip hop music about chillin' with bitches and smoking a blunt does not include profound lyircs, but the songs that aren't just about being rich and famous have good messages.

I agree with you. I myself don't care too much for this genre of music, but it does take talent! Old school rap seems to have a lot more meaning and story telling then modern rap! Now they seem to say two words through the whole song, "MONEY, BITCHES"

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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Greta » December 26th, 2013, 9:54 pm

Very late to the discussion but, simply, everything intended to be art is art. Some people deny that rap, noise music, expressionist painting, contemporary sculpture etc, but all that means is they hold narrow views and have certain attitudes towards convention and the need for norming generally.

That's not to say all art is equal or that you have to appreciate it all. Apart from taste, there are standards and these standards can be reflected to some extent by popularity and more reliably by peers and those who do the engaging/hiring.

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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Belinda » December 28th, 2013, 5:58 am

Welcome Greta :) I agree that there are standards and add that standards are those of craftsmanship. Other than those I am not sure about the artist's intention because as the saying goes "good intentions are not always fulfilled". So I'd say that good intentions are necessary but not sufficient. I think that besides good intentions there has to be readiness at some point in time for the art to be appreciated at least by a favoured few. This is like the claim that art has to some extent to reflect society. At least in its idiom, and rap is without doubt an idiom that is much appreciated. Rap also involves skill although to what degree I cannot say as I am not a musician. The extent to which rap reflect the intents of makers and performers is quite likely to be gauged by whether or not the intent includes commercial intent.

Money as the root of all evil art is not true though. I can think of good artists who did it for their livelihoods. I can even think that popular rap artists do it to earn a crust. I venture to claim that some techniques to render their art popular and commercial also make the art bad art. Those techniques are the use of shock for the sake of the sensation alone and not to enhance any meaning. Perhaps if rap expresses truth it is good art and if it does nothing but seduce listeners into the pleasure of sensation it is bad art. Not that sensationalism is bad per se, but it can be a waste of time and energy that is better expended by learning something good and true.
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Greta » December 29th, 2013, 12:43 am

Belinda wrote:Welcome Greta :) I agree that there are standards and add that standards are those of craftsmanship. Other than those I am not sure about the artist's intention because as the saying goes "good intentions are not always fulfilled". So I'd say that good intentions are necessary but not sufficient. I think that besides good intentions there has to be readiness at some point in time for the art to be appreciated at least by a favoured few. This is like the claim that art has to some extent to reflect society. At least in its idiom, and rap is without doubt an idiom that is much appreciated. Rap also involves skill although to what degree I cannot say as I am not a musician. The extent to which rap reflect the intents of makers and performers is quite likely to be gauged by whether or not the intent includes commercial intent.

Money as the root of all evil art is not true though. I can think of good artists who did it for their livelihoods. I can even think that popular rap artists do it to earn a crust. I venture to claim that some techniques to render their art popular and commercial also make the art bad art. Those techniques are the use of shock for the sake of the sensation alone and not to enhance any meaning. Perhaps if rap expresses truth it is good art and if it does nothing but seduce listeners into the pleasure of sensation it is bad art. Not that sensationalism is bad per se, but it can be a waste of time and energy that is better expended by learning something good and true.
Hi Belinda!

Standards may be craftsmanship but that is just one aspect of musicianship. Expressiveness and creativity are arguably more important once a functional standard is achieved.

Sure, good intentions surely aren't enough. As a hobby musician whose home recordings are mostly experimental, acid jazz and free jazz I have at times produced some truly rancid, steaming excrement. It may be "art" but I wouldn't call it "good" :)

Yes, rap does take skill and know-how and it's branching out interestingly. It is, of course, the latest of the waves of musical innovation from poor black Americans - ragtime, blues, jazz, funk and now hop hop. There is a fusion of jazz and hip hop going on, with some nice results. I personally prefer uncommercial music but, yes, some commercial music is amazing.

My father didn't think the music of the 60s and 70s (that I like) was art. He thought it was all crap, in much the same way many of my peers speak of rap and hip hop. Nothing much has changed there.

I agree with you about honest and cynical music, although some cynical music can have its charm. There are performers with all the depth of a Petri dish who simply have a knack for creating viscerally pleasing music. I feel a bit differently to you about sensationalism, though. It's always instructive when artists try different things out. I have more of a beef about formulaic music that the companies deem "safe".

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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Belinda » December 29th, 2013, 9:30 am

Greta wrote:
There are performers with all the depth of a Petri dish who simply have a knack for creating viscerally pleasing music. I feel a bit differently to you about sensationalism, though. It's always instructive when artists try different things out. I have more of a beef about formulaic music that the companies deem "safe".
Greta you make me feel like a weather vane because you have turned my previous idea quite in your direction. I wonder if I have been snobbish, or unwittingly Calvinistic about sensationalism for the sake of sensation. I can understand your displeasure with formulaic music even although I don't know enough about music to tell the difference between formulaic pop and whatever sincere music is called.

I wonder though if this dichotomy has arisen only since the advent of commercial pop. I seem to remember that once upon a time rich people who employed their own musicians influenced which music the composers and performers provided for their employers' entertainment, and that this music cannot seriously be called 'Renaissance pop'. Or can it?

By the end of the sixteenth century, however, patronage was split among many areas: the Catholic Church, Protestant churches and courts, wealthy amateurs, and music printing—all were sources of income for composers. (Wikipedia)

Greta wrote:
Yes, rap does take skill and know-how and it's branching out interestingly. It is, of course, the latest of the waves of musical innovation from poor black Americans - ragtime, blues, jazz, funk and now hop hop. There is a fusion of jazz and hip hop going on, with some nice results. I personally prefer uncommercial music but, yes, some commercial music is amazing.
This alerts me to the history of popular music, which from the Renaissance was a separate progression from that of 'serious' music. Both popular music and serious music require patronage to survive as public media. However while 'serious' music from Renaissance on was the preserve of rich individuals or institutions, popular music and its performers was maintained by the people, and still is to this day, except that commercialism has now infiltrated pop music , including retro folk music.
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Greta » December 30th, 2013, 5:23 am

Sorry about "weather vaning" you! We are coming to the subject from two different directions - I've spoken from more of an artist POV and you from a more political / cultural angle.

If memory serves correctly (huge if :)) there was a clear split between art music and folk music, as you said. Royal court composers and orchestras on one hand and folk music for the working classes.

Things have become jumbled up in the 20th century - modern composers drew from folk/pop and pop artists drew on art music. Then you have jazz, which started as something a little with ragtime and ended up as serious art music taught in conservatories. I suspect this kind of boundary blurring is the natural order (just as they predict that eventually humanity will be pretty well one brown race).

Yes, the irony is that the top rappers, whose equivalent would have once been the local poets - bottom of the heap - are now royalty (skipping the "musicians of the royal court" stage). In some ways economics is like the natural world in its opportunism - if there's a niche, there's an occupant. Meanwhile art musicians struggle to make a crust.
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Re: Is rap art?

Post by Belinda » December 30th, 2013, 6:19 am

Not at all Greta! I am delighted that you induced me to think some more.

I have little more to add but will continue to take an interest in the topic, and in other posts from you :)

The only thing that still intrigues me is what Bertholt Brecht wrote 'Art is not a mirror held up to realitybut a hammer with which to shape it.'

While we are on the topic of rap I wondered if rap is peculiarly suited to shaping the world.
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