The Hip-hop Word Count is a research database containing the natural language processing analysis, and associated data (artist name, song title, release date, geolocation, lyric content, sentiment analyses and rhyme pattern), from hundreds of thousands of hip-hop songs from 1979 to the present day.
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Who is the best rapper of all time? What champagne was most frequently cited during Hiphop’s Ghetto Fabulous & Jiggy eras? How has the popular slang term ‘shorty’ changed meaning from region to region and year to year? Which city’s rapper writes the most complex rhymes? According to his body of work, which luxury brands are Jay-Z’s favorite? Which contemporary painter is name-dropped the most in the corpus of rap?
Among the millions of Hiphop fans around the world, serious debate starts with questions like these. Not satisfied with having the answers left to conjecture or the loudest voice in the room, we decided to build a tool to help settle these seemingly unanswerable questions.
By locking in a time and location for every metaphor; simile and cultural reference contained in the corpus of Hiphop, the Hip-hop Word Count facilitates the research of the geography of language contained in Hiphop lyrics.
According to a Spotify analysis of 20 billion streamed tracks, rap music is the most listened to genre in the world. By exploring rap music as a text, The Hip-hop Word Count facilitates the analysis, interpretation and comprehension of the meaning embedded in the language of the most influential art form for popular and youth culture—the corpus of American literature created by rap artists.