I’ve heard this debate go on in music, particularly hip-hop, for years. I see so many people online and hear so many people in public debating about whether lyrics matter more in a song or if beats matter more. Some people say that lyrics don’t matter at all and the beat and hook to a song is the most important of all.
I believe that choosing one over the other is both wrong. I believe both lyrics AND beats are equally important. Songs wouldn’t have words if lyrics didn’t matter. Songs wouldn’t have beats if beats didn’t matter. In a lot of songs, there’s a lot of work that gets put into the lyrics. There’s a lot of work that gets put into beats as well. Both take talent and skill to make, so to say either one doesn’t matter, to me, sounds like downplaying the work these people put in to make a song what it is. And it’s only being downplayed due to ignorance. Many people who listen to music have never wrote a song or produced a beat a day in their lives, so they don’t understand the work that goes into it.
I think the people that say lyrics don’t matter in a song more than likely are incapable of listening to lyrics. They just don’t know how to listen to lyrics or they don’t understand them, so they ignore them and go straight to the beat and hook.
I also think saying lyrics don’t matter in a song is a lie probably created by the music industry. A lot of songs send horrible messages. A lot of songs promote things like murder, rape, disrespect, and drugs. The music industry doesn’t want to stop promoting these negative messages, so they try to fool people into not worrying about lyrics.
If we say lyrics don’t matter, then these types of lyrics will go over everyone’s heads and they’ll be listening to these types of songs and promoting these messages without batting an eyelash.
Just like you have to know the type of food you’re putting in your body to stay healthy, you have to know what music you’re listening to in order to keep your mind healthy. It might sound crazy, but it’s true. (You have to do the same with television, too. You have to know what types of shows you’re watching on television and what messages they are sending. It’s not just a TV show. It’s not just a movie. It’s not just a cartoon, but this is a topic for a totally different post.)