Are freestyle raps considered rap songs

Youth language in hip-hop. An analysis of the "Heck Meck" rape

Table of Contents

1 Introduction - What is Rap?
1.1 history of rap
1.2 The different types of rapeseed

2 From youth culture to subculture
2.1 Youth and scene language

3 vocabulary analysis
3.1 shape
3.2 Content
3.3 time
3.4 space

4 analysis
4.1 External shape
4.2 Interpretation

5 Conclusion and Outlook

6 sources

7 Appendix

1 Introduction - What is Rap?

There are a number of books in linguistics that deal with youth language. This is because youth language changes very quickly. In the language used by young people, there are often new words, borrowings or the like. This is probably also due to the fact that the young people do not all lump together. The youth split up into many small subcultures that share the same hobby or listen to the same music. In this context one no longer speaks of youth language, but of a scene language.

In this term paper, the language of the hip hop scene and rapeseed should be examined more closely. What exactly is the difference between rap and hip hop is a constant issue in the scene as well. Many people claim that hip hop is the culture and rap is the music, while other people say that hip hop wants the listeners to believe that a brighter future is near, whereby rap takes up current issues and questions them critically. There is no clear answer to the question of the difference.

Rap, which is also known as Chanting can denote , is composed musically of a 4/4 time and a text spoken about it. The 4/4 time is also called in the scene Beat designated. In this way the disc jockey (DJ) plays a beat and the rapper performs his lyrics. The rhythm section usually consists of bass drum (electric bass), snare drum, hi-hat and a few high cymbals. Another job of the DJ is that Scratching, with the DJ moving the record rhythmically to highlight certain parts of the rap. In terms of time, the beat in rap is made possible by the use of Loops characterized. Loops are melodic, harmonic or rhythmic figures of one, two or more bars that are repeated throughout the song. Otherwise in rap, as in many other songs, there are mostly stanzas and a chorus, but in the chorus it can also happen that sung or other melodic parts follow. During a rapeseed, there can still be a so-called Break come. Here the loops or only certain parts of these loops are faded out briefly in order to emphasize a certain text passage.1

1.1 history of rap

Rap has existed as party music since the early 1970s, even if the term first appeared in 1976. Even in the early days, rap was considered a cheap and at the same time creative type of live performance. However, the practice of this music was initially limited to African American residential areas in New York. It wasn't until 1980 that Sugar Hill's song "Rapper's Delight" made it into the charts as the first rap text. The result was that white people could now also relate to music. In 1982 the artist Grandmaster Flash landed a hit with his song "The Message". The following years spawned a variety of rap artists such as LL Cool J and the group Run D.M.C. Between 1987 and 1988, rap expanded across North America and new centers of rap culture emerged. The so-called gangsta rap originated in Los Angeles and became the subgenre that the media would use to refer to rap in the future. The first group to shape this type of hip hop was N.W.A. ("Niggaz With Attitude"). This type of rap primarily dealt with the difficult life in the singers' ghettos. A public debate ensued as to whether censorship should be reintroduced on such texts.2

Gangsta rap moved into Germany with the artists Martin Haas and Robert Sattler, who released the album “Direkt aus Rödelheim” in 1994. At the same time there were other rappers who adopted the explicit street slang, the rough choice of words and the American sound aesthetics and revolutionized German hip hop. It was the first time that verbal attacks had been used against real opponents dissed were.3 It is also important to mention Azad, a rapper from Frankfurt, who released his debut album "Leben" in 2001. The album is still considered a classic today. But also in Berlin at the time, many rappers got together to use a harder tone in their lyrics. Mention should be made, for example, of artists and crews such as Royal TS, Bushido, Kool Savas, Westberlin Masculin and many more.4

1.2 The different types of rapeseed

There are many different types of rapeseed in the scene. So called Freestyle an improvisation by the rapper in which the rapper quickly thinks up rhymes and possibly another opponent battles. Around 75% of rap music is in the broadest sense Battle rap (= gangsta rap; the difference between the two types of oilseed rape is difficult to make out ). A rapper ascribes positive attributes to himself and verbally kills another imaginary or actual opponent. A form of expression of rapeseed that is not so popular in German is that Stream of Consciousness, in which the text message is not in the foreground, but the rapper's ability to recite a text to match the beat. This is also called in the scene Flow designated. Further genera of the rapeseed are Story telling and Message rap. In story telling, a story is told that preferably uses a lot of metaphors and where the story often has a deeper meaning. In message rap, the text should always convey a clear message. In the first message raps, political statements were preferred, but later this was expanded to include general social criticism and criticism of consumer society. Love songs and biographical texts also fall under this category.5

It should be pointed out at this point that a rap text is by no means a poem. The formal differences are too great for this equality to be achieved. Such a text consists of much longer stanzas and is not divided into verses. The biggest difference, however, is that the rap lyrics are the lyrics to a beat and the poem stands on its own. In addition, with rap rhyme it is not important that the words rhyme in writing, but that they melt into one rhyme in the rapper's mouth. A rap text can always be identified as such, since no form of the spoken or written word resembles rap in structure, rhyme structure and the fusion between poetry and prose. The following stylistic devices are typical of these texts: enumerations, anaphors, alliterations, but above all comparisons and metaphors.6

The rap text to be analyzed can be assigned to battle rap or gangster rap. It is performed by four rappers. These four rappers are Celo, Abdi, Xatar and Haftbefehl, all well-known figures in the rap scene. Celo and Abdi usually appear as a duo and come from Frankfurt am Main. Celo, whose real name is Erol Huseinćehajić, has Bosnian ancestors and Abdi, whose real name is Abderrahim el Ommali, has Moroccan roots.7 Xatar, whose real name is Giwar Hajabi, is also a successful rapper and producer of Kurdish descent. In addition to his music, he is also known for a robbery on a money transporter. Since then, Xatar has often been referred to as a gangster rapper, with the transitions to battle rap being fluid.8 Haftbefehl, whose real name is Aykut Anhan, is of Turkish-Zaza-Kurdish descent and also a rapper and producer with his own label Azzlackz, which means something like anti-social Kanacke.9 These four rappers carry the rap lyrics Heckmeck which is analyzed with the help of a vocabulary analysis.

2 From youth culture to subculture

In order to recognize the peculiarities of a youth culture or a subculture, it is first important to have a definition for this group. From a sociological point of view, the following definition is appropriate:

"From a sociological point of view, youth is the period in a person's life in which the society in which he lives [...] no longer regards him as a child, but does not yet regard him as having the full status, roles and functions of an adult With regard to behavior, it is defined by the roles that the young person should and may play by virtue of their status in society, that they are forced to play or that they are prevented from playing. It is not determined by a particular point in time, such as physical puberty, but according to Form, content, duration and section in the curriculum vitae are delimited differently by different cultures and societies. "10

Admittedly, youth culture is not central to the investigation here, but the individual scenes are grouped particularly in the course of youth and rap has a great influence on large parts of youth culture11. In the individual subcultures of adolescents, it is claimed that problems are overcome here that arise from the individualization of adolescents. This is especially the handling of a more complex reality and the loss of social reliability.12

The culture of a society is made up of institutions, customs, tools, norms, value systems, preferences, needs, etc., so is one subculture a culture different from the norms mentioned. In a scene people with similar orientations and interests come together, and above all they spend their free time in the same way. There is a “subculture” model for this in research. So subcultures are divided into two subgroups: the progressive subcultures and the regressive subcultures. Progressive subcultures try to work out a fundamentally new state of society, whereby the regressive subcultures try to restore past norms. Progressive subcultures also express their hostility directly against the respective institutions, with the regressive subcultures transferring their aversion to substitute objects. According to the model, the progressive subcultures also come more from the proletariat and the regressive groups from the ever smaller petty bourgeoisie. The definition of the progressive subculture is important for this work, as the hip hop scene falls under this category. This type of subculture is then divided into rationalistic Subculture and emotional Subculture. Examples of rationalist cultures are political subcultures, student and intellectual groups. In contrast, emotional subcultures are groups that attach great importance to individual freedom and the development of individual consciousness. The hip hop scene can also be counted to the latter group.13

The hip hop and rap scene is one of the most successful musical cultures among 13 to 18 year olds. In gangsta rap, the most important thing is to appear authentic and to report from your daily life or from times gone by. Listeners of this music genre look for closeness to the very dangerous ones in this world and identify with them.14

2.1 Youth and scene language

In 1991, youth language appears for the first time in an edition of Dudens. But many other lexicons on youth language have also emerged, such as the Lexicon of youth language or Language and sayings of the youth scene. These books mainly contain play on words or words that violate the standard norm, new word formation patterns and a multitude of anglicisms. As a result, playful use of language is seen as access to young people's speech and to the young generation themselves.15

In current linguistic research, youth language is seen as a means of group-specific communication, which is examined ethnographically and conversationally. Above all, it is about recording certain speaking styles in certain situations. In rap, with the help of group communication, a common context of meaning has developed that is based on shared experiences, agreed norms and values ​​of the group.16 The results of a Wuppertal DFG study with 1200 respondents showed how young people would characterize their way of speaking themselves. Typical features were that youth language is less formal than adult language, many words are adopted from English, the rapid change in this group language, the use of provocative expressions and the use of abbreviations or incomplete sentences.17

It can be seen that youth language manifests itself on the lexical level and is a form of oral colloquial language. At this level, youth language includes assimilations, reductions, enclipses, proclipses, syncopes and apocopes, but also vocal changes, for example when someone is quoted or imitated. At the syntax level, there are often short, paratactic sentences, ellipses and broken sentences. In the pragmatic area there are many particles and greetings, special discourse markers, formulas and so-called attention getters. Above all, however, the vocabulary of young people is very short-lived. The language is dealt with in a playful and experimental way and rule violations are more the rule than the exception. Vulgarisms are also very characteristic of young people and are often used in this context without offensive intent.18

The hip hop scene is considered to be a relatively tough scene in which it is difficult to integrate and assert oneself. This is especially true for gangster rap when it comes to depicting violence, harshness and masculinity. Gangster rap is a musical genre that criticizes social and cultural grievances and reacts to political decisions. In Germany, this type of rape is viewed as an ideological field for misanthropy, sociopathy and the glorification of violence, regardless of the context. It says: "From a widespread perspective, gangsta rappers are young adults with a migration background, but without education and the will to integrate, who are proud of their deviance and who have sacrificed their souls to the quick and dirty money they earned on the street."19

Another point in gangsta rap is the portrayal of masculinity. For example, there is no idealistic representation of women. Women are described as disloyal and materialistic, but most of all they are perceived as sexual objects. As a result, this rap genre is seen as a dialogue between men. In other words, it can be said that the aesthetic of rap is based on an urban, individualistic and therefore masculine identity.20


1 Prince p.49f

2 Grimm p.69ff

3 Dietrich p. 44f

4 Dietrich p. 48ff

5 Severin p. 3f

6 Severin p. 11ff




10 New territory p. 11

11 Severin p. 27

12 Neuland p. 18f

13 New territory p. 66f

14 New territory p. 75

15 Glück p. 98 ff

16 New territory p. 40

17 New territory p. 44

18 Elsen p. 131ff

19 Dietrich p. 22ff

20 Grimm p. 124ff

End of the reading sample from 23 pages