The 10 Best Jazz Rap Albums

The 10 Best Jazz Rap Albums

Back when A Tribe Called Quest’s Q-Tip was a teenager, the legend goes, his father overheard him playing some hip hop and said it reminded him of bebop. That connection, drawn in the opening seconds of Tribe’s 1991 album The Low End Theory, at first seems a little odd. Musically, late ’80s rap and mid-’40s jazz have very little in common, the former defined by 4/4 rhythms and looped melodies, the latter by its “anything goes” approach to rhythmic structure and melodic composition. But if you look at each genre as a cultural movement, paying particular attention to the backlash each initially received, hip hop and bebop share more parallels than you’d expect. [READ MORE]