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Examining the dynamics of hip-hop from every region and in every form—mainstream and underground, current and classic—this compelling how-to discusses everything from content and flow to rhythm and delivery in relation to the art and craft of rap. Compiled from the most extensive research on rapping to date, this first-of-its-kind guide delivers countless candid and exclusive insights from more than 100 of the most critically acclaimed artists in hip-hop—including Clipse, Cypress Hill, Nelly, Public Enemy, Remy Ma, Schoolly D, A Tribe Called Quest, and will.i.am—unraveling the stories behind their art and preserving a wealth of the genre’s history through the words of the legends themselves. Exhaustively detailing the many complex aspects of rapping—such as utilizing literary tools and devices to strengthen content, battling, imagery, similes, metaphors, analogies, slang, performing both live and in the studio, word play, controversial content and punchlines, and constructing beats, singles, and freestyling—with emphasis on enunciating and breathing for unique vocal style, this remarkable book will benefit beginners and pros alike with its limitless wealth of rapping lore and insight.

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