Understanding the Pleasures of Wars Audio-vision

First off all these technical music vocabulary went over my head however I get what Mathew sumera was explaining. The music used in “Die Terrorist Die” and “Taliban Bodies” is used as a form of mind control. The mind unconsciously associates songs like die motherfucker die with specific images after seeing these movies. I found it creepy how solders are manipulated by music . The fact that certain songs are used to amp up soldiers in order to kill with this rage and adrenalin is disturbing to me. Of coarse if we are at war it’s kill or be killed but the way it’s sounding to me in this article is that the music is so that they get excited to kill the “enemy” rather than kill because they have no other choice because they have to defend themselves.

I find it interesting how this music is not controversial and rap artists such as Eminem (one of the most controversial rappers ever) got a lot of heat for his lyrics. Rap gets heat for a lot of teen violence especially in African American/ Latino communities.

Do we really live in a society where we can get amped for killing the “enemy” but killing a neighbor is wrong. Does America see itself as superior than every other country ? Another thing is that somewhere in the world Miley Cirus is twerking and viewers are shocked and appalled but clips of war and people chopping other’s heads off is cool. Priorities are mixed up here.

Killing Me Softly with His Song

I really enjoyed how this reading broke down sound and music as more than what we think of it today. I found it interesting how influential music is to the psyche. The way unified the sound of thousands of men installed fear in others is crazy to me. Also the part of using music as a sign of territory is so smart because it uses music or sound as that universal language that everyone can understand. It made me think of how music used to be, for example, southern music vs New York music, you can tell before the rapper starts reciting their lyrics where they are from instantly. Of course today different styles or genre of music is being mixed and used by all. Also gangs used songs and sounds to mark their territory and let others know don’t come here.
Reading this article really reminded me about this story I saw on a talk show. Since the article mentioned a holocaust survivor and one of the torture methods was that loud obnoxious screeching sound to manipulated them I thought this story would be a positive note. Back to my story, A holocaust survivor made it through life because she was inspired by the infamous song I will survive by Gloria Gaynor. It was so beautiful because the woman met Gloria and the song I will survive was sung live. It was very emotional .

I know this article is about using sound and/or music to oppress or torture but I thought I’d spread a little positivity.

Proposal and bibliography

Project proposal outline

– Speak about  what is battle rap
 -Components of a successful battle rounds
– females and battle rap
– how QOTR the ring was established
– what makes a culture
– how it has evolved into a culture
– the struggle of females in a male dominated place
–  why is female rap so aggressive and vulgar


Q.O.T.R Caskets or Classics, Milagros Zapata’s personal experience. March   8, 2014
Miss Miami. facebook correspondence with Milagros Zapata. march 10,2014
Official.facebook correspondence with Milagros Zapata. march 10,2014
Q.O.T.R Facebook fan page
Schneider, C. J. “Culture, Rap Music, “Bitch,” and the Development of the Censorship Frame.” American Behavioral Scientist 55.1 (2010): 36-56. Print.
Mullins, Katie L. ” Black Female Identity and Challenges to Masculine Discourse in Rah Digga’s Dirty Harriet.” Popular Music and Society 36.4(2013):425-443
 “Culture – Google Search.” Culture – Google Search. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Apr. 2014.


I’m from rags to Riches’: The Death Of Jay-Z

This article struck me hard. I personally and I’m sure a lot of individuals do respect Jay- Z not only as a rapper but as a person in general. I feel like he is one of the best examples of a hustler. Unfortunately the youth think of this word as Urban dictionary as “someone who knows how to get money from others. selling drugs,rolling dice,pimpin. your hustlin for that money.” Has Jay done these things to get money ? Yes he makes that very clear, however he took that money and invested it in his goals and dreams in order to get out of the hood and surpass his struggles and the stereotypes of black men living in the ghetto. He still till this day refers to himself as a hustler but now this word is defined as  “an enterprising person determined to succeed; go-getter”  the way it’s defined at dictionary.com.
      The title of this article is deceiving and actually the first pages are too. ” Death  of Jay-Z” is not what I call a diss but its more of a rebirth , re-invention, and all together is just a way of Jay-Z saying he has grown up. He is now Sean Cater ; I’m  not a businessman, I’m a Business, man  <— ( his lyrics lol I thought it was a cool tie-in ).
     Sean Carter never let’s people forget where he’s from not to say he thinks this place is better than any other but I think to remind his fans and other  specifically that he started from the bottom and now is on top. Just because you grew up a certain way or certain area gives you an excuse to be a product of your environment. As far as his videos go I think that stations like MTV don’t give viewers enough credit to come up with their own judgements or perspectives  . In the article it stares that Jay says whiles shooting  he is playing a character well that character may not be him but someone can relate to that character. I think a lot of  audiences who watch his videos with gun violence even most kids aren’t phased by it because they have witnesses it first hand.
      There’s always a reasoning behind everything that goes on with                 Jay-Z  he has been in the business long enough that he has become a master as marketing himself and his label and running businesses he went from being rich which is temporary  to being wealthy.

My Project Pitch : female battle Rap

For my project I want to talk about Female Battle Rap specifically the Battle league called Queen Of The Ring (Q.O.T.R) in NY . I want to cover the time period from when it was first established (2008 ish ) to now.  For my examples I will use interviews, personal experiences at Q.O.T.R events, actual footage of battles found on YouTube, and the Q.O.T.R Facebook page.  I’m really not sure what potential arguments will arise or what questions will help me come up with a thesis but if anyone has any ideas or comments about my topic please feel free vocalize it or in this case comment in the box below.

Cover song: Khan vs. Kanye

Cover Song Kanye vs. Khan
By Milagros Zapata

In today’s music there are a lot of artists who use, borrow, sample seasoned songs. However what may be just a sample or borrowing may be what Michael Coyle “hijacking”. He explains that hijacking is when one artist remakes an existing song while the original song is still charting. This then not only takes takes lime light away from the artist with the original piece but also affects him/her in a financial way. A cover song according to Coyle first has to have historical distance from the original and the artist covering the original song must have an obvious difference which derives from adding his/her personal flare to the song .
Chaka khan was born Yvette Marie Stevens in the cold city of Chicago. Her musical career started in the 70’s and has influenced many artists today. Since then she has won Grammies, soul train awards and has made it to the Soul Music Hall of fame. She has had many other achievements but those were some just to name a few. Today she is well known as a Diva and the Queen of funk. Through the Fire (one of her popular songs) was written by David Foster who is also the producer, Tom Keane and Cynthia Weil , recorded in 1984 under the Warner Brothers label and released in 1985. It came to be number sixty song in the U.S and number 15 on the R&B charts.
Kanye West was originally a producer from Chicago who no one really knew about. He produced most of Jay-Z’s The Blue Print album along with songs for many other rap artists out at the time. One tragic night on october 23 2002 while driving Kanye collided straight on into another car who had cut him off which put him in a near death experience. He was hospitalized for a while and had his mouth wired shut due to a broken jaw. Luckily for him this was a turning point in his life that inspired the song through the wire and would lead to the launch of his rap career. That November after his accident he recorded Through the Wire and the song was released in September 2003 under the label of Roc- A-Fella and Def Jam and of coarse was produced by Kanye himself. The acknowledged writers for this song besides Kanye West is the same three writers responsible for Chaka Khan’s Through the fire.
Like Coyle used different examples to clarify his definition of cover songs vs. hijacking I chose to speak upon Kanye West’s song “Through the wire ” which i believe is a cover song to Chaka Khan’s song “through the Fire” . Although Kanye doesn’t use all of the words form Through the Fire he does use the song’s chorus and ends his song with the same lyrics:
“Through the fire, to the limit to the wall
For a chance to be with you I’d gladly risk it all
Through the fire through whatever ,come what may
For a chance at loving you id take it all the way
Right down to the wire
Even through the fire”
” to the wire , to the limit
Through the fire, through what ever (repeats)”

These lyrics in Chaka’s song is in reference to a man that she is in love with. She wants to be with this man and in order to do so she’ll go through great lengths because she feels its worth it . To Kanye these same lyrics meant the same to him but instead of referring to a significant other he referred it to his dreams which was his musical career and status in the industry . The to the wire part of the song was literal for him because he recorded the song while his mouth was still wired shut that’s why he titled the cover Through the Wire to tell his story of what he went through due to the accident what he learned from it.
Listening to both songs a few times I noticed that Kanye’s version uses Through the Fire’ s rhythm and melody as a platform form his song. He spreads up the tempo and uses different instruments such as base guitar,conga drums and snare drums as well. Chaka’s Through the Fire uses instruments like the piano, keyboard and base drum. Further more Kanye alters the chorus by using auto-tune to change the pitch in which the original song is sung in, I like to call it the chipmunk voice.
In conclusion are alike in many ways yet different due to each artists own personal experiences. They where released almost 20 years apart from each other. Each of the artists got there time to shine equally and make there royals from their songs. Kanye payed homage to Chaka which she accepted with arms wide open and all of this to me makes Kanye’s song a cover.

Response to Craig Werner, “Dylan, Brits, and Blue-Eyed Soul”

I personally enjoyed reading this article because it informed me of something I was un aware of. Everyone knows that the blues influenced many different genres of music and in this reading it spoke of how it influenced Rock and Roll specifically British boy bands or groups. What wowed me about this reading is how so much respect and homage was paid by the bands such as Rolling Stone , the Beatles, Animals have made history and will forever be remembered world wide to Chicago and Memphis and all of the African American blues artists . The level of influence to me seemed more than just in an artistic sense but in a personal relatable sense. From the lyrics to the rhythm and even the performing style. That part that Jagger pretty much developed his own moves from watching the great James Brown made me chuckle a little but in a positive feel. What I also loved was that the black artists wasn’t sour about anything in fact they felt looked up too in a way and welcomed these bands with open arms. The love was real. Although racism was still strong in those days I feel like between these British bands particularly the Stones and black artists like Muddy Waters there was never a color only the love of good music that The listeners can not only enjoy listening to but relate to as well.
At the beginning of the reading it stated that blues “isn’t confined to one musical form” which brought me back to one of last weeks presentations on downtown jazz I believe and although jazz and blues are different genres they do have things in common and that statement from the reading is one of them. Some of the music presented I can’t say I liked but it was the artist’s expression and feeling and most people might think it’s bad but someone in this world can relate to it just like the bands related to blues. Rules are meant to be broken and just like once upon a time blues and jazz was considered “lower class” and now it isn’t down town jazz and all it’s forms might have an up-roar one day.
If there is anything I learned from this article is to keep and open mind, pay respect, because your favorite artists have favorite artists you might not neccersarily be into.