Music is probably one of the greatest gifts the world has to offer us. Just like reading and writing, it gives you this indescribable feeling; well at least for me it does. One can only describe it as being something in between magic and freedom.
It is no surprise when people say, “music is the universal language.” Many of us can listen to the same song, but hear it in a different way; we respond differently. That’s because we also have the gift of reason (some more gifted than others 😉 ). But when we listen to a song, what’s more important? Is it the instrumentals or the lyrics? Truly, it’s the combination of both. However, I’m more of a lyric kind of person. I’m sure I’m not the only one when I say music speaks to me. In situations like love, heartbreak, loss, or just a fun night with friends, we can always find that one song that fits the moment.
When talking about analytics, it’s always so closely tied to literature. We use in essays, poetry, short stories, basically anything with words. Which is pretty much… everything. So, music shouldn’t be disregarded as just another group of words plastered into a cloud of noise. It’s an art form and should be respected as such.
With the use of Rap Genius, people are able to talk about what the artist is trying to say in their music. Contributors can go line by line and link to other sources (which is super helpful!) in their lyrical annotations. What the viewer has to do is just click on a lyric and instantly, they can see someone’s annotation. Often times, there are more than one contributors for each line or verse, making it a pretty diverse set of analysis. Here are some songs I was able to look up in the website:
It’s really amazing to see people close-read all of these amazing songs. It puts to use the literary skills we learn when analyzing works by writers like Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, or Charlotte Brontë. When finding a song we really like, we listen to it over and over again, almost mesmerized by what we are hearing. Rap Genius gets us out of that rut of mindlessly listening to a song. These artists take their time and pour their hearts out onto their music. Like most of the stories we come across and analyze, we get to see that there is something behind the language they use. There’s personal connections to places, people, and phrases, which we would not be aware of if no one cared to look into it. Even the most senseless songs have a backstory.
Rap Genius not only caters to music goers, but those interested in history, literature, and even law as well. This goes to show that those in the digital age still care about content and continue to use traditional skills we’ve inherited throughout time. It’s an open community of people sharing valuable ideas, surrounding works that are truly significant to the past and present times.
As a music lover I usually say, “That’s my song” a little too often. There’s just so many great artists out there making music that unifies the world and that’s because of the message they put into their lyrics. It touches so many, in various, yet similar ways. There’s a reason why when Sam Smith’s Lay Me Down plays, I want to hide under my covers and cry. Or when Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off comes on the radio, I drop everything and look completely stupid as I bust dance moves in the middle of my room. We quote from these musicians just as often as we do those authors who give us books and poems. The content, the message behind these words are that freedom we get and the feeling is magic experienced. It’s more than just claiming something as your song, but seeing a connection as to why it is.