Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

The largest vocabularies in hip hop

aesop-rock-live.jpg
rap2.jpg
rap3.jpg

It's not very often that we find ourselves pouring over a report by a coder and data scientist. But then, not many coders and data scientists are as inspired as Matt Daniels.

If you haven't read the New York-based designer's work on the the Etymology of "Shorty" and Outkast in graphs and charts, we implore you to do so - but only after you've discovered more about his work on the largest vocabularies in hip hop.

After taking note of the praise heaped upon Shakespeare for his staggering lexicon, (he uses 28,829 words in his works, suggesting he had one of the largest vocabularies of all time) Daniels was intrigued to see how vocabularies of the hip hop community would stack up against the Bard.

Analysing the first 35,000 lyrics of 85 artists (35,000 to ensure that long-standing artists such as Jay Z can be compared to new comers such as Drake), he used a research methodology known as token analysis to determine the number of unique words to feature in each artist’s vocabulary. The results are as follows (click to enlarge):

Way out in front is Aesop Rock, whose first 35,000 lyrics (roughly 3-5 studio albums) features a staggering 7,392 unique words - 966 words more than the next closest artist, the solo works of GZA.

Along with the stand-out variety of Aesop, Daniels also noted the depth offered by the Wu-Tang Clan - whose collective works came in seventh, while the solo works of GZA, Ghostface, Raekwon, and Method Man all feature in the top 20.

Be sure to head over to Daniels' study to give the data a rigorous read. We're going in search of a thesaurus to bring ourselves up to east coast rap standards.

(Images: Matt Daniels)

(Via: High Snobiety)

Related

snoop-money-supermarket.jpg

9 reasons hip hop is dead

hip-hop-hero.jpg

The 30 greatest hip hop albums ever

wu.jpg

Wu-Tang to release one copy of its secret album

sa1.jpg

Steve Aoki's Ultimate Playlist

ricky1.jpg

Ricky Wilson's Ultimate Playlist

beatleshero.jpg

Beautiful Illustrated Musician Posters

Comments

More

This baffling tune about pineapples in pens is a legitimate banger

You need these fifty seconds of pure joy in your life

27 Sep 2016

All the clues that suggest 2017 will be the year of Daft Punk

We live in hope by Paddy Maddison

26 Sep 2016

Album cover models: where are they now?

From Nirvana's iconic Nevermind baby to Blink's Enema nurse by Paddy Maddison

26 Sep 2016

We went all the way to Ibiza to find the person having the most fun

A quest to find the person having it largest in Europe's club capital

21 Sep 2016

DJ Shadow's Endtroducing is the greatest album you’ve never heard of

Endtroducing..... celebrates a landmark birthday & it's as good as ever by Dave Fawbert

20 Sep 2016

Bros are coming back & here's why we should be celebrating

The hidden genius of their biggest hit by Dave Fawbert

19 Sep 2016

After Skepta, here are the next five grime acts you need to know about

Get these on your playlists right now by Dave Fawbert

16 Sep 2016

This is why, as they reunite, Aqua deserve to be celebrated

The story of one of pop music's great lost songs by Dave Fawbert

15 Sep 2016

11 times Kanye proved he's the most ridiculous guy on Twitter

Twitter was basically made for Kanye. Well, that's probably what he thinks anyway by Paddy Maddison

15 Sep 2016

Where are they now? Forgotten Mercury winners of times gone by

Speech Debelle anyone? by Dave Fawbert

15 Sep 2016