Relationship Between Jazz and Hip-hop
Once during an interview with Wynton Marsalis he asked me what quantifiable musical relationship I could conceivably hear between jazz and hiphop. My first answer, besides the obvious rhythmic one, was the timbre and tonality of the voices, the male voices in particular. Even Wynton didn’t find anything to argue with in that. Developing that idea even further I’d say the great MCs of hiphop and the great players in jazz share the characteristic of having unmistakable tones, tones one can identify in sometimes one or two notes, and certainly within 8 bars. The sonic, rhythmic, lyrical organization of ideas of Trane, Wayne and Joe Henderson are immediately distinguishable to the serious listener from those of Ornette, Dolphy, and David Murray—as those of Biggie, Rakim and Chuck D are distinguishable fron the flows of Q Tip, Ghostface Killa, and Trick Daddy.