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Yo, is Rap Just Another Four Letter Word?
Flaunting any excessive or anti-social behavior is considered brazen. When it is no longer considered brazen it is proof that it has become embedded as part of our culture. Not to say this is a good thing, after all headhunting was considered a cultural norm in some societies. The question to ask here may be, was rap ever truly a part of our culture? Will it eventually run out of steam and go the way of things like doing the twist, afro haircuts or break dancing? I for one would argue that it is not truly a part of the American cultural scene, but is a forced, twisted and contrived money machine that appeals to only the basest passions of the youth in our country.
Long before the "gangsta" element slid over to "hip hop" the reasoning for the whole genre and style was generally purported to be, to show what life in the "hood" was like. That worked for a while and it even drew more sympathy from the otherwise estranged. But as lower passions would have it, the style and language of rap began more and more to take on a life and purpose of its own, namely?sex. If by some magic stroke sex were temporarily extricated from every rappers thoughts and vocabulary, the entire industry would collapse quicker than the stock market in 1929. Now that's brazen!
Referring to rappers as artist and giving them full press doesn't guarantee that it is really an art form, all it says is that its here. But was it here before? Does it really have anything to do with the African American background, culture or heritage? I propose that it does not. Very few whites have succeeded in rap but even that does not prove that it is necessarily a black cultural thing. Growing up as a boy there were only two black families in our town. One of the boys from those families was my best friend. But to say that gave me even a basic knowledge of the African American culture would be an exaggeration. Later I arrived in the city of New Orleans just after the civil rights laws were passed. My exposure to the black culture increased exponentially. Finally I attended two seminaries the last of which was part of the National Baptist Convention a purely African American denomination. What I discovered about the African American culture will always be one of the greatest excursions of my entire life.
Our entire class would sit before some of the most dignified black gentlemen, professors and wait for the streams of their thoughts, opinion and knowledge to flow down to us. Most exciting was when they shifted their emphasis away from the curriculum and began to divulge elements of their private lives and their past. Life in New Orleans as a black man or women was no easy thing. Stories of their upbringing and their struggles would leave anyone with their heart in their throat. These old gentlemen for me were living examples of courage dignity and the best human qualities. What I learned about black culture in short is this. African Americans have a deep and ancient past; they are people with a lasting heritage.
I am sure that the blatant indulgence of sexual descriptive and four letter words that is rap's most prevalent aspect, is not part of their ancient culture and history. It does not accurately depict their culture, their history or any other part of their experience. I don't think my protesting is such a big deal. But I'd guess that if my old seminary professors could see and hear today's rap, you would hear the roar raising up from their graves and billowing down many an American avenue.
Rev Bresciani has written many articles over the past thirty years in such periodicals as Guideposts and Catholic Digest. He is the author of two books available on Amazon.com, Alibris, Barnes and Noble and many other places. Rev Bresciani wrote, Hook Line and Sinker or What has Your Church Been Teaching You, published by PublishAmerica of Baltimore MD. He also wrote a book recently released by Xulon Press entitled An American Prophet and His Message, Questions and Answers on the Second Coming of Christ. Rev Bresciani has his own website at http://americanprophet.org
The British Invasion
The Kasabian concert at the Kool Haus seemed like a concert somewhere in England (even though I haven't been there). This band out of Leicester pumped out amazing electronic, rock beats with an amazing light show. I've heard them on the radio with their hit "Club Foot" and have noticed them gaining more and more interest of us fellow Canadians.
The Time Machine Exist!
We call it music, ever noticed how vividly music triggers memory?
Legal Free Music Downloads - Songs You Want at No Cost
It's all over the news these days. Download music from the Internet and you could be sued, fined, and/or go to jail. The truth is free music downloads, done correctly, are completely legal.
Building A Good Relationship With Your Guitar
The guitar is considered the friendliest musical instrument there is. It is because the guitar is the handiest musical instrument that could stand on its own. A group can enjoy music with just a guitar even without the accompaniment of winds and percussions. The term "acoustic" is referred to, in the music context of today, the rendition of songs in all the glory of guitars. No percussion and piano and other instruments needed, just guitars. Sometimes, it can be the jamming of more than just one guitar. Acoustic is a favorite type of music today because of its relaxed and soulful rendition of songs.
How To Play Guitar Like a Pro!
Having taught the guitar for many years, I see the majority of beginners experiencing the same problems and making the same mistakes over and over again in their quest to learn how to play guitar. It's my job to steer them through these problem areas.
The Dos and Donts of Getting Your Child to Love Learning an Instrument
We all know that music can be inspiring, entertaining, and exhilarating. There are few things more enjoyable than listening to good music. If you're lucky enough to be able to play a musical instrument, you know the joy that can come from strumming those strings, tapping those keys, or blowing those reeds. It's immeasurable. But, with all the amazing aspects of music, why is it such a struggle to get your child to enjoy learning how to play an instrument? Some children naturally enjoy the learning process, while others rally against it like it with all their will.
How to Create a Multi-artistic Piece - Part II
In the last article, the creation of a theme, its development, and the use of a libretto were discussed. As one may recall, the theme is the kernel of a production, which dictates the nature of the piece. And in relation to the theme, is the thematic structure that serves as a guide as to how the production will manifest. Ultimately this information is transferred to a libretto. In contrast to the previous article, the strengths and weaknesses of the arts will be addressed. Before one can choose the various media for their multi-artistic production, one must understand the arts in part and as a whole. There are three general categories that the arts can be classified, which include the auditory, visual, and linguistic. Although some art forms can be placed in two or more categories, such as poetry, fundamentally it is made of words, but can be executed vocally.
Buying A Guitar - Do You Know What To Look For?
Buying a guitar is an important decision that my students have often asked me about. They want to know what they should be looking for. This is an important question because no two are ever exactly alike. There is a wide variety of types, styles, colors, makes, and models to choose from. The question is, which one is right for you? If you don't know what to look for when you're buying a guitar, you could end up spending a lot more money than you really need to. On the other hand, getting a "deal" may also get you a lemon. Following are some important questions to consider.
12 Reasons You Should Learn to Play the Piano
All right, folks, here you go: My 12 reasons why you should start learning how to play the piano. Immediately. As in today. This very minute.
Acclaimed Songwriter and Performer Michael Alan Releases New CD: Searching for the Heartland:
New York born singer songwriter Michael Alan, who records with the Indie-label Global Fish Records in Seattle, is an artist who creates without a prescribed musical formula. His approach to writing is purely straight from his heart, lyrically poetic and honest, and void of any sound-alike comparisons. Michael's songs portray a myriad of lyrical expressions and images that moves the listener through a musical experience which evokes excitement, tenderness, passion, and sadness. His ability to write songs each with their own personality reveals the fact that he is an avid listener of all types of music including, pop, rock, blues, soul, jazz, classical, world music, etc.
Thomas Jefferson and the Chinese Gong
While Richard Nixon's diplomatic visit to China may have created a minor thaw in Sino-US relations, he was not the first President to try to get in sync with the Chinese. Thomas Jefferson preceded him by close to two centuries.
Formation of a Song (Recording)
As industry insiders, we sometimes forget that when discussing the recording process, the rest of the world really has no idea what we are talking about. Hopefully this will provide an explanation of the song formation process in layman's terms so that there may be less disconnect between the professional and the consumer.
Arranging for New Age Piano
A while back, I wrote an article that compared flower arranging to music arranging. While this may seem a world apart, it really isn't.
How To Overcome The Lyric Writing Hurdles That Are Keeping You Behind
The lyric writing side of songwriting is known to create an enormous number of problems for some folks. No matter how hard they try, they are unable to write a single line that they can be pleased with.
The Music Industry and Its Lack of Talent
So it has come to this... what we see overrides what we hear. What we see now influences HOW we hear. And what we see drowns out all that is heard to the point that we are virtually deaf.
Piano Lessons Can be Fun!
There are essentially two ways to learn piano - note reading or chords. For those who want to spend years learning how to play other peoples music, note reading is the way to go.
How the Internet Helps Musicians
Everyone talks about the negative impact of the Internet on the music business. Illegal file sharing and copyright violations have decimated the profits in the industry. Record labels are less willing to take risks with new artists because the profits have dried up. Sales have steadily declined over the past several years due in large part to the proliferation of illegal downloads. All of that is true, but there are two sides to this coin. Sure, things are tougher today for the new musician than ever before, but there are also new opportunities thanks to the Internet.
Piano Music, Perfectionism, and Self-Expression
Is your heart in the music? If so, it won't matter what you play so much as what is received through your playing. Do you still think you need to learn 43 chords to sound good or are you concerned with the joy of expressing yourself through this wonderful instrument called the piano? People who sound like they know what they are doing may indeed know what they are doing but does that mean you want to listen to the music?
In Northern Australia the Didjeridu is seen as a phallic symbol and therefore a male instrument. Women are prohibited from playing.
The Joy of Spontaneous Expression
Do you remember finger-painting as a child? How fun it was. How exciting to be able to dip your fingers into a color that called out to you and put it on paper. The excitement of it all came from the feeling that you were an explorer, looking into uncharted territories of your own creative source.
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