Hip-Hop Poetry Comparison

Powerful Essays
Long Island, New York has cultivated many hip-hop talents in creating masterpieces of hip-hop songs. For example, rap crew Public Enemy’s Fight the power, hip-hop trio De La Soul’s Me, Myself and I, and Eric B and Rakim’s Follow the Leader. All of these songs had great influence over the future hip-hop generations, yet the ones that stood out to me were Public Enemy’s Fight the Power and De La Soul’s Me, Myself, and I. Fight the Power was produced by Public Enemy’s production team The Bomb Squad, and Me, Myself and I was produced by De La Soul and Prince Paul. Although two songs were both released in 1989, they offered different insights for listeners. Me, Myself, and I delivers a message of self-uniqueness in a humorous way yet Fight the Power…show more content…
Both artists employed the signifying technique in their songs. In the intro of Fight the Power, Chuck D raps “yet our best trained, best educated, best equipped, best prepared troops refuse to fight. As a matter of fact, it’s safe to say that they would rather switch than fight.” This is a quote from a civil rights activist and attorney Thomas “TNT” Todd in reference to Vietnam War. He was against the war and argued that a large percent of “absent without office leave” soldiers would choose to behave effeminately rather than fight (Baglio 2015). The quote does not seem to have much relationships with the song, but it seems like Public Enemy appreciates the quote. It seems like they wanted to say “you people could fight for equality for yourselves [African Americans] yet you refuse to do so.” Similarly, from the music video which accompanies the song, De La Soul – Me, Myself and I [Official Video], Prince Paul states, “If you take three glasses of water and put food coloring in them, you have many different colors, but it’s still the same old water” (“De La Soul – Me, Myself and I [Official Video]”). Instead of “water” and “food coloring,” Prince Paul was referencing “hip-hop” and its various appearance of hip-hop artists. He was saying that although De La Soul conveyed…show more content…
Both groups are excellent with samplings. At the time in which sampling became the mainstream, people worried that whether this will lead hip-hop music to innovation or regression. According to Perry, “hip-hop music concerns itself with both the self and the we” (Perry 31). I think both group presented their creativity in their songs. In Fight the Power, Public Enemy uses samples from Different Strokes by Syl Johnson, Funky Drummer by James Brown and Fight the Power by The Isley Brothers (“Public Enemy - Fight the Power”). The samples used in this song complimented with Chuck D’s political rapping; therefore, they must be strong and harsh. It was different in comparison to De La Soul’s D.A.I.S.Y. style. The samples De La Soul employs in Me, Myself, and I were (Not Just) Knee Deep by Funkadelic, Funky Worm by Ohio Players, and Rapper Dapper Snapper by Edwin Birdsong; they have more laidback styles (“De La Soul – Me, Myself and I [Official Video]”). As their samplings usage suggested, their viewpoints at the time was opposite. Although two songs present different styles of hip-hop, their creative ways of employing samples lead them the creation of their own works, which I think are great music at the
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