Go go text-sharing blogs: Greg Scruggs offers up Paul Sneed’s’s doctoral thesis on funky Rio.
While we’re at it, allow me to point you to an article I’ve got in a forthcoming “hip-hop issue” of Callaloo: “Giving Up Hip-hop’s Firstborn: A Quest for the Real after the Death of Sampling” (pdf). It’s a recent rivisitation of an ol’ master’s thesis spin-off (a revised chapter really — the other one’s on DJ Premier). Reading ?uestlove’s and the Roots’ musical and extramusical gestures as producing a poetics of the “real,” I examine the effects of copyright law on hip-hop production in the late 90s and the investment of sampled sounds with authenticity. High hip-hop theory (or high theory hip-hop [or hip-hop theory high]), if you’re into that sort of thing. I try to keep it grounded in sound and sentiment, though, knamean?
In addition to doing a close reading of ?uestlove’s “History of Sampling,” as published in Rap Pages, wherein the drummer slyly threads a consistent record of “trad” instrumental practice into and against the development of sample-based techniques, I attempt to explicate the musical poetics at work in the group’s invocations and reformations of hip-hop’s signpost features, focusing largely on Black Thought’s flow and ?uest’s drumming and timbral concerns.
Take, for example, the following (loose) transcription of Black Thought’s flow on the first verse of “Concerto of the Desperado” (listen along and see what you think — rhymes are in bold, with internal rhymes italicized):
And what of new kickass? A spam allegory, perhaps? Take it, Personal.
// &also //
Gastrosonic Tourism: See, Taste, and Hear Italy — and Binaurally, at that!! (Such surreal soundtracking: the first Roman Recording — skip down to Day One — picks up zooming taxis and a street band playing Piazzola.)