Help on R&B and RAp vocabulary
I try to improve my listening comprehension through several R&B or Rap songs. However I encounter many slang words (or at least which are not academic :wink:) and I can't find their meaning in a dictionary. Could you help me and give me a simple definition of the following words or expressions:
wurrs my cash
pink slip in the lou
There are so many other words but I stop here! I hope that I haven't asked the definition of too indecent words :(
Thanks for your help!!
Re: Help on R&B and RAp vocabulary
Originally Posted by Anonymous
Another useful site to peek at is:
Good luck. I find this stuff very difficult to translate. Hope you will have more luck!
I must confess as a linguistics enthusiast I have extremely mixed feelings about this topic in particular.
Any decent linguist will tell you that any language that is currently spoken is a living thing and that there is no right and wrong way to speak it; it is constantly evolving.
At the same time, however, when confronted with something like rap lyrics, I hate to say it but sometimes I just end up scratching my head in disbelief.
My recommendation is, as much as it pains me, take rap lyrics at face value, entertainment. Don't look for deeper understanding into the English language through it. Rap lyrics and RB slang tend to be whimsical and there is no definite consensus for what they mean. Not to mention that very few people actually talk like they do in rap music. The whole point of slang is that it's colloquial, it's spoken by the people and it's understood by the people. Last I checked I would be hard pressed to find anyone who understood me if I started talking like a Jay-Z video, and I certainly have never heard anyone talk like that outside of MTV.
Excellent. 8) Mixed feelings and other assorted non-thread topics are found in General Language Discussion. :wink:
Originally Posted by Nahualli
Red5 and Natalie27 : Thanks a lot for your replies and useful links. Thanks to you, I have now the right tools to make my research of definitions easier.
Nahualli: I agree with the most part of your obsvervations but I've never pretend that my personal method to practice english was the best way in order to make progress in english, or even a good one . Likewise, I've never meant that the hooks in the rap songs were profound or that this kind of lyrics were usually and widely used in the spoken language. As you said, it's an entertainment and I think that it's the strength of this kind of training. I don't really have the time to do grammar exercises, and for sure, I won't be able to pass the TOEFL or TOEIC exam watching some Jay-Z videos.
My main goal isn't to go in a fast food and speak like a rap singer saying: 'Yo shawty (thanks for definition Natalie27 :wink: ), I'm gonna take...' However, I've really made some progress in my listening comprehension: it seems easier when you listen a 'normal' conversation, with a 'normal' rhythm and with 'normal' words. But of course it's only my opinion. I just want to know the overall meaning of what I'm listening. Moreover, if I want to hum the lyrics of one song in order to practice my pronunciation I need to understand what I'm singing
Have you seen the movie 'The usual suspects' for instance? I've heard a lot of words like 'bullshit', 'bloody...', funking...' in this one. If I just want to know the difference between these expressions, it's only to understand the dialogue, and not to walk down the street and insult the first person I'll meet with the vocabulary I've just heard in the movie.
It's the same with the rap songs: it's funny (for me) but I don't take these lyrics at face value and I won't pretend understand english if I can understand even one of these songs. Sorry but I've never wanted to shock someone with this topic.
I'd just like to add in, however, that like I mentioned there are certain "accepted" idiomatic expressions that are very commonly used in English. "Bullshit!" is an expression of disbelief or denial, just like in Russian they say "shto ty!" or in Spanish they say "Que te pasa?"
Originally Posted by newbie
There's sort of a fine line between what's "normal" slang and what's not. I understand your confusion between the two. I don't want to discourage your goal of understanding slang, just wanting to make sure you understood that the source of said slang is not always as reliable a source :)
You are welcome! Glad it's of some help to you. One of the students gave me two more web sites and asked me to give those to you.
Originally Posted by newbie
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