Saturday, August 18, 2007

A(n) (Irrelevant) Lost Art

In the Fall of 1988, one Friday night, I spent the night at Wes Wilson's house for a sleepover. Wes and I were some of the few people that we knew that really liked rap music. So this night, we were enthralled with this new song called "It Takes Two" by a rap group called Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock. You all know the song. Instead of playing Contra (^^vv<><>BAselstart) or Double Dribble all night on the Nintendo, Wes and I taped the song off the radio, and then spent all night trying to figure out the lyrics to the song. We would listen to a line, write it down, debate the words, listen to it again, rewind the tape and verify that we were right. Luckily, Wes had one of those tape decks that had a rewind....mine was the kind where you had to take it out and turn it over and fast forward it to rewind the other side.

By the time we were done, I had memorized all the words. Suddenly, we were two of the coolest kids around (for a couple of days at least). I can still rap along to the song, rarely missing a word or a beat. It is a source of no small amount of pride to this day.

Nowadays, if a kid wants to know the lyrics to a song, he just has to go to google and type in the name, or even a piece of the lyrics that he knows. He can instantly know the words, or at least the internet version.....

Transcribing lyrics on notebook paper is a lost art. The kids don't know what they're missing.

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