Last month, Yale University Press released The Anthology of Rap, an exhaustive compendium of rap lyrics edited by CU professor Adam Bradley and his colleague Andrew DuBois.
Although the book has been praised by some admitted outsiders, it has also been subjected to scrutiny by various hip-hop afficionados, who have taken the editors -- profiled recently on NPR -- to task for supposed errors in the transcriptions.
Paul Devlin, penned a piece for Slate.com ("Fact-Check the Rhyme"), pointing out a number of seemingly glaring errors, which prompted a subsequent piece by Jay Smooth on NilDoctrine.com, noting even more mistakes.
In a follow-up for Slate ("It Was Written"), Devlin reached out directly to Bradley and asked him to account for the inaccuracies. Bradley broke down the process and acknowledged that while online repositories such as The Original Hip-Hop Lyrics Archive were indeed referenced, as Devlin inferred, the site did not serve as the final word.
A sampling of the mistakes Devlin and Smooth uncovered:
Transcription errors pointed out by Paul Devlin on Slate.com
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
1. 50 Cent - "Ghetto Qua'ran" 2. 50 Cent - "50 Shot Ya" 3. Ghostface Killah - "Daytona 500" 4. The Roots feat. Common - "Act Too (Love of my life)" 5. Wu Tang Clan - "Triumph" 6. Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five - "SuperRappin'" 7. Nas - "Ether" 9. Pharoahe Monch - "Simon Says"
Additional errors pointed out by Jay Smooth on NilDoctrine.com
1. Ol' Dirty Bastard - "Brooklyn Zoo" 2. Lauryn Hill - "Final Hour" 3. LL Cool J - "I'm Bad" 4. Ice Cube - "Bird in the Hand" 5. Lil Kim - "Queen Bitch" 6. Notorious B.I.G. - "One More Chance (Remix)" 7. Fugees - "Fu-Gee-La" 8. Big Daddy Kane - "Wrath of Kane" 9. Lady of Rage - "Unfuckwitable"