hip hop music

August 10, 2004

Masta Ace and Wordsworth, Writtens and "Freestyles"

Masta Ace and Wordsworth came by the show last week, and we got into a three way rant about the proper relationship between writtens and freestyles, and how the definition of "freestyle" has been altered over the years. Then they gave a demonstration of how the two can work together. Wordsworth was under the weather and sitting way back in his seat, but still held his own quite nicely.

Cocaine Blunts recently posted the Casual vs. Saafir battle, a textbook case of what I was talking about with Ace and Wordsworth, how ridiculous folks have gotten with this "freestyles are always better than writtens" orthodoxy they've caged themselves into.

Saafir comes with writtens aimed directly at Cas and their history together, and even stumbling through half the verses clearly blows Cas' "when you rap you're a sap and you know that" freestyles out of the water. But some will still proclaim Heiro the winners, often even admitting that Saafir came harder, but declaring him disqualified because kicking writtens in a battle is "not allowed." This is pure insanity.

The extremism on this issue has become profoundly unhealthy for the culture, one of the worst things that ever happened to the art of emceeing. As I've said on okayplayer about fortyleven times, folks who uphold these laws usually think they are "keeping it true" or something, but they are actually shitting all over hip-hop's traditions.


[sidenote: at the end of Ace's 2nd verse he dropped a "faggot", to which I yelled "HEEEEY!" and shook my head, but listening now I wish I'd made it a little clearer on the mic that I was expressing disapproval.. I'm not sure that came across effectively. You'll hear Ace correct himself afterwards, to his credit..]

Posted by jsmooth995 at August 10, 2004 7:20 PM

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