Ethnolyrical

making music, writing culture

Hip-Hop Articles
Blues People, Mississippi Hip-Hop : A Book Excerpt

Blues People, Mississippi Hip-Hop : A Bo...

Today, from the corners of the New World district, a new Mississippi Delta blues is rising, one created by and for young people. On Saturday night, old Chevys with big rims bump beats from their trunks as young people gather on street corners, in clubs, and behind the barbeque stand to socialize. Here, members of the current generation of Delta music makers meet and rap. The most accomplished rappers perform longer pieces that deal with their history, neighborhoods, current company, and the possibilities of the night at hand. They are experts at keeping the rhythm.
Tassou: the Ancient Spoken Word of African Women

Tassou: the Ancient Spoken Word of Afric...

Woman Poet Yandé Codou Sene Sings Senegalese Independence, African Creativity: While the work of West African strumming male praise-singers or griots/jalis, has been studied by Western researchers from the earliest years of folklore and ethnology, the region continues to be animated by the rich voices of praise-singing women, whose poetry and song draw from detailed knowledge of the lineages pf neighboring families, a talent for improvisation on ancient songs, themes and rhythms, and an ability to bring a crowd into chanting and dancing communion in the space of a few poetic bars.
Meet Toussa, Senegal’s New Woman Rapper

Meet Toussa, Senegal’s New Woman R...

(Musical Clips, Photos, Lyrics) I first saw 18-year-old rapper Toussa perform in May 2009 at her high school end-of-the-year party in the dusty struggling Dakar suburb of Guediawaye, Senegal. I asked her how she would like to be introduced in this entry, her first public piece, and she gave me these words:
Rhythming Oscar Grant: Oakland Hip-Hop

Rhythming Oscar Grant: Oakland Hip-Hop

Today’s electronica composers, R’n’B soundscapers and skilled/schooled hip-hop practitioners do their best to publicize and trick back on the ruptures in Oakland-of-color’s access to employment, public services and fair housing. They gloss these jagged edges with sound and community, dance and movement, and they overflow the emaciated social structure with musical life
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