Wacky Wednesday: What Artist, Song, or CD Inspires You to Write?

Da Realist 1

When I am working, I prefer complete silence–no distractions from the television, no music, just quiet. Of course, complete silence is pretty hard to come by unless you happen to be up at 1:00 am (as I am right now).

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

When I decide to go to the library or to Starbucks and write, I listen to music help me concentrate. No rap, hip-hop, R&B or even jazz for me though. I’d never get any work done because I’d be singing, bobbing my head, and dancing in my seat. The perfect music for me is classical. In the seventh grade, I had this very eccentric math teacher who always said, “Mozart and math go together.” Students made fun of him then, but now I think he had a point. Mozart goes well with writing also.  Although I could hardly be considered an aficionado, Mozart’s “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik,” is probably my favorite. Rock Me Amadeus!

Da Hype 1

220px-LaurynHillTheMiseducationofLaurynHillalbumcover[1]So, I guess my readers are going to think that I am obsessed with Lauryn Hill’s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill . . .  yep, I am. This is one of the most creative works I have ever listened to, and her work makes me want to be a better writer. The lyrics in her songs are chock-full of metaphors and other types of figurative language and it reminds listeners of the value of well thought out lyrics. I think L-Boogie is an amazing writer, artist, and singer, and I am never tired of hearing this CD.


Wacky Wednesdays: What’s your Favorite Line in Hip Hop?

The FugeesDa Hype 1

From the very first time my sister came home with Eric B. and Rakim’s Paid in Full cassette tape, I was in love with Hip Hop. “Thinking of a master plan, this ain’t nothing but sweat inside my hand…” Alright, alright, enough of that.

So, I had a difficult time answering the question, “What is your favorite line in Hip Hop?”

Biggie perfected the craft of lyricist and amazed me by the way that he strung words together to form lyrics in Ready to Die. And, for me, Nas’s Illmatic was an anthology of some of the best poetry I had ever heard.

But, if I have to pinpoint a favorite line, it would have to be from Lauryn Hill in the Fugees’ song, “Ready or Not.” Remember back in the day when you received the ultimate diss, someone said that you were sh*tted on? In this song, Hill suggests to all the wack rappers, that while they are trying to be gangsters, she is beating them in the rap game with her lyrics.

She says, “So, while you’re imitating Al Capone, I’ll be Nina Simone and defecating on your microphone!”

Da Realist 1

There are so many good lines in Hip Hop that it’s hard to pick just one. Should I go really old school with “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five? Go classic with Biggie–“Please us with your lyrical thesis”? Or, should I pick something from my favorite contemporary artists–Nas, Damian Marley, T.I.?

Of the songs in heavy rotation on my iPod, some of my all-time favorites come from Lauryn Hill’s 1998 release, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. I love the entire CD, but I had to pick “Everything is Everything.” It always makes me happy when I hear it. I love L. Boogie’s voice, and she “rhymes tight.” But I still couldn’t narrow it down to just one line. . .

More powerful than two Cleopatras/Bomb graffiti on the tomb of Nefertiti/ MCs ain’t ready to take it to the Serengeti/ My rhymes is heavy like the mind of Sister Betty

Now you know our favorites, and perhaps this also explains why we are friends.  But we’d love to hear from you. What is your favorite line in Hip Hop?