Rap ‘n Roll

Image result for music soothes the savage beastI was recently required to complete a lengthy questionnaire for which I had to swear an oath to answer all questions truthfully and honestly. I’m not going to go into the reason why I was required to take that oath and to complete said questionnaire. That may be fodder for a different post.

But I did find it a bit strange that a number of questions on the questionnaire related to rap music. One question asked how often I listen to rap. The options were “never,” “occasionally,” “often,” and “exclusively.”

I’m not a fan of rap music. I rarely listen to it, and even when I do, I often don’t know what it’s all about. I mostly can’t make out the words. However, since I do regularly watch the TV show “Empire,” I couldn’t answer “never.” Thus, I responded “occasionally.”

The questions then turned to my perception of rap music, asking if I think rap has a negative influence or promotes violence and/or misogyny. The answers were check boxes with the options, “strongly agree,” “somewhat agree,” “somewhat disagree,” and “strongly disagree.”

My impression of rap is that some of it does glorify violence and promotes misogyny. But some rap is uplifting and inspirational. I ended up putting my check marks for those questions on the line that separated the “somewhat agree” and “somewhat disagree” columns.

The next question asked, “explain your answers.” Here is what I wrote:

When I was growing up in the mid-fifties and early sixties, rock ‘n roll was the music most of us teens and young adults listened to. For some reason, many adults at that time thought rock ‘n roll was evil. It was a bad influence, they said. It promoted promiscuity, they said. Many churches called for a ban of rock ‘n roll music.

I remember when Elvis Presley first appeared on the Ed Sullivan show and CBS blacked out the bottom half of the screen so that viewers were unable to see Elvis’ hips gyrating as he sang. I guess CBS didn’t want to pervert the hearts and minds of any viewers.

I also remember the first time The Rolling Stones appeared on the Ed Sullivan show and the censors made Mick Jagger change the lyrics of “Let’s Spend the Night Together” to “Let’s Spend Some Time Together.” Jagger rolled his eyes every time he sang that altered line.

When Gene McDaniels recorded “100 Pounds of Clay,” the Catholic Church called that song blasphemous and demanded that radio stations not play it and record stores not sell it.

Yet somehow, the Baby Boomer generation, of which I am one, managed to survive the evil influences of rock ‘n roll and to thrive.

I believe that like my generation, the generation of those who listen to rap music will survive and will ultimately thrive.

After all, it’s only music. And as they say, music soothes the savage beast.

8 thoughts on “Rap ‘n Roll

  1. Marilyn Armstrong October 10, 2017 / 10:16 am

    I just don’t much LIKE it. To me, it’s not music. It MAY be poetry, but to me, music has melody and rhythm. Rap has rhythm, but no melody, so it’s not music.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. cagedunn October 10, 2017 / 1:50 pm

    Every age has its ‘rebel against the norm’ music – rap did that, too, so it wasn’t any more than the music of the minds who thought it was rebellious. I’m waiting for the next round, where they go back to ebbs and flows of emotion through orchestral – oh, wait, that was Bohemian Rhapsody. maybe my mind isn’t what it used to be …

    Liked by 2 people

  3. newepicauthor October 10, 2017 / 2:58 pm

    I see the effects first hand as a substitute teacher, as students can sing song after song of Rap music, but they do not know how to divide. I listened to Tock music when I was young and I remember my Dad hating it and telling me that I should listen to Frank Sinatra instead of Led Zeppelin. Adolescents are going to like what their peers think is popular, but these kids of today have gone way overboard and I feel that Rap music will be the downfall of Society as we once knew it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango October 10, 2017 / 3:26 pm

      You sound like the old fogies from when I was a kid. It’s only music. Trump is more likely to be the downfall of society than is rap music.

      Liked by 1 person

      • newepicauthor October 11, 2017 / 2:05 am

        Maybe I am an old foggy, but I do not consider Rap to be music, as it is all mindless noise to me. The songs that have the most curse words and those that belittle women are the ones that the kids like the best. These kids think that they can become famous one day if they listen to this stuff but it is just making them more stupid.

        Liked by 1 person

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