Karriem Riggins and the “Intersection” between Jazz and Hip Hop

A lot has been made recently of jazz artists working with rappers and hip hop producers, especially folks like Kamasi Washington and Robert Glasper's work with Flying Lotus and Kendrick Lamar. A key focus of jazz critics and journalists writing about these musicians is the "intersection" of jazz and hip hop as if the two …

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What Ted Gioia Missed, and Absolutely Nailed

You might have read Ted Gioia's recent piece on The Daily Beast entitled "Music Criticism Has Degenerated into Lifestyle Reporting."  Gioia laments the current state of music criticism, arguing that it rarely includes analytical discussions of the music in the way that football commentators often include details of how a particular play or strategy works …

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Words Don’t Go There: When “Tight” Just Won’t Do It

So you've probably heard the adage: "writing about music is like dancing about architecture."  That gets to what follows, but I was reading something for my dissertation a couple weeks back (I can't remember the author, perhaps it was Nathaniel Mackey) and the phrase "words don't go there" really stuck out.  What the author was …

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To All the “Critics” Who Dismiss Hip Hop’s Musical Value

To all the "critics" out there who hate on the aesthetic worth of hip hop music: stop writing about hip hop, because you do not know what you are talking about. One would think that since hip hop has been treated as a serious music worth studying and writing about both in and out of …

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