Notorious B.I.G. played jazz!

(9 posts)
  1. I know kurt is a fan of biggie, and I figure many of the other people on here are too, so I thought id point out an observation I had about Biggie- He plays over the bar! If you think about his verbal (musical) phrases being delineated by the rhyming syllables, Biggie, more than just about any other rapper, plays phrases over the bar and maybe even the "form" (4 bars, 16 bars whatever you want to call a rap "form" i guess). Not to mention his pretty damn sophisticated rhythmic vocabulary, and murderous improvisational skills... see 1:50 of

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    When you think about it, rhymes are really just acoustic concepts and don't have to limited to words, and Im starting to think that there is alot of musical "rhyming" going on, where two or more "adjacent" phrases (ignoring phrasing ambiguity) are united by a common ending (maybe a similar gesture at the end of each, or a similar interval, or something less concrete). Can't say exactly what does it, but I hear some lines and I think they rhyme... anyone else kind get what I'm talking about or experience it? First guy that comes to mind is keith jarret, like some of his mid tempo stuff with the trio. Certainly heard Kurt do it too. Im aware this concept sounds totally unclear still, but im hoping someone will just be like "yea man, i know EXACTLY what you mean!"...

  2. c0ltrane

    Hehe i'm glad you posted this. I do know exactly what you're talking about. Where someone plays a phrase in a certain way and maybe at the end of the next chord (or anypoint soon after the first phrase) they end it in a similar fashion but different note choice, giving a sort of "rhyme" feel to the line.

    Kurt does that a lot when he plays the next step in this video:

    3:29-3:35 This is a really cool one. Totally has a rhyming vibe to it.
    4:24 - 4:30

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    Let me know if you agree

  3. kurtisrosenwinkel

    i know EXACTLY what you mean!

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  4. I get it too kittles, and it's fantastic. I'd be interested to hear if you guys are into any other rappers besides Biggie. I'm a big fan of Mos Def. His solo stuff as well as his work with Talib Kweli in Blackstar is great. He has some very cool phrasing ideas in some of his songs, and his new album "The Estastic" is a really great hip-hop album.

  5. c0ltrane- yea man, thats exactly it... I was watching the vid and heard a real strong rhyme, and boom, its at 3:35. Cool...

    Another guy that came to mind as far as rapping over the barline was Del, like his stuff on Deltron 3030. It feels a little more unnatural i would say, but i think it something that you get used to and then it sounds cooler (in the same way a 9 starts to sound like a resolution, or how a major 7th starts to sound more consonant...etc). What I'm wondering about is what is underlying this difference between "accesible" (biggie) over the bar rhyming and more "innaccesible" (del) over the bar rhyming? Havent really thought about it too much yet, but I think its interesting...

  6. add4

    Hello everyone.
    Lately i've started working music by writing down every exercise i'd play and i feel this might be a way of developping this kind of 'rhyming'. I mean, when you are, for instance writing a 'toy' phrase over some simple changes, using some constraints. you usually end up developping some creative way of putting notes together on the paper, and you will, for instance, try to write your phrases so that they are related in a way or another. Then you play it and if it sounds cool, you continue exploring that way ..
    I don't know if that's explained clearly, but i wondered if anyone had some comments on that or experienced that feeling when writing down his exercises.

  7. david6strings

    i'm interested in the video exemple you put here but it has beem deleted. somebody can get a link for this?

  8. anjroo.burg

    That's an interesting observation because Biggie actually learned a lot about phrasing from Donald Harrison before he was "Biggie". They used to live near each other in Brooklyn.

    Also, Josh Redman phrases just like a rapper sometimes, esp. on "Put in Your Pocket" from Momentum. Nick Payton too for that matter on the same track.

  9. docbop

    Isn't this kind of a chicken and egg thing talking Jazz players using Rap phrasing. But checkout the stuff Hip hop and Rappers were sampling for their early tune a lot of Grant Green's funky stuff from the 60's and other 60's Funky Jazz and Soul music.

    As they say you want to play like <fill in the blank> then listen don't listen to them, listen to what they listened to.


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