Droppin' Science: Hip Hop's Lyrical Roots
Being well-versed in scientific terminology, even nominally, was seen as a shortcut to being a good MC. “You gotta have actual knowledge of the world in order to understand the world,” RZA says. “The prior generation of rappers got all these slang terms from reading and studying books they bought from street peddlers, about everything from Kemet, the ancient name for Egypt, to the properties of matter from 100 years ago. Brothers would read them and turn it into music,” he says, adding, “There was a series of books called Pathways in Science that we all learned from in high school. Some of their verses are direct readings from those books.”
The Onion this week has a topical infographic.
Why Are We So Much Better Than All the Other MCs?
25% Roget's Dictionary of Similes, 3rd Edition
11% Frequently Remind audience who we are, what we're here to say
16% Provide trenchat observations on art of pimping
19% Believe our résumé speaks for itself
29% Fresh-ass breath