Listen to Rap!
Exploring a Musical Genre
by Anthony J. Fonseca
September 2019, 248pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-6566-4
$69, £54, 60€, A95
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-6567-1
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Rap music has overtaken rock and roll as the most commercially viable music genre in the United States.

Listen to Rap! Exploring a Musical Genre provides an overview of this kinetic and poetic musical genre for scholars of rap and curious novices alike.

Listen to Rap! Exploring a Musical Genre discusses the 50 most influential, commercially successful, and important rappers, rap crews (bands), rap albums, and rap singles. Rap began as an American phenomenon, so the book’s emphasis is on Americans, although it also includes information on Canadian, British, Indian, and African rappers and crews. Its organization makes information easily accessible for readers, and the emphasis on the sound of the music gives readers a new angle from which to appreciate the music.

Unlike other titles in the series, this volume concentrates solely on rap music. Included in the book are rappers who range from the earliest practitioners of the genre to rappers who are redefining the genre today. A background section introduces the genre, while a legacy section shows how rap has cemented its place in the world. Additionally, another section shows the tremendous impact rap has had on popular culture.


  • Provides readers with a ready list of the 50 most important people and events in rap
  • Discusses vocal styles and musical production in depth
  • Quickly and efficiently characterizes rappers, crews, albums, and singles
  • Provides pertinent information that links rappers, producers, DJs (turntablists), and record labels
  • Discusses the history of rap as a series of local phenomena in the introduction
Anthony J. Fonseca, PhD, is library director and college archivist at Elms College in Massachusetts, where he also teaches courses in rock music and music literature as an adjunct. He co-owns Dapper Kitty Music, an independent music studio, and is the coauthor of Hip Hop Around the World: An Encyclopedia, Encyclopedia of Musicians and Bands on Film, Ghosts in Popular Culture and Legend, Richard Matheson's Monsters, Proactive Marketing for the New and Experienced Library Director, and Encyclopedia of the Zombie.

Exploring Musical Genres

Each book in this genre-and performance group-based collection provides the reader with background information on a specific musical genre, critical analyses of significant examples from the genre, and a discography and analysis of must-hear examples. Although written by scholars, the series is for the lay reader and general music fan.
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