There’s been much discussion as to whether or not to include a glossary. Some find the whole idea very unnecessary and insulting saying, ‘Hip Hop never had no glossary’. To that others say, ‘I never understood Hip Hop’.
A&R People – ‘Artists and Repertoire’, music biz scouts.
Acid House – Music. 303-intensive House music with fewer vocals. The parent of Techno and Trance.
Ambient – Music. Similar to Trance but more esoteric and abstract. Huge soundscapes, often with minimal or no beats. Strictly for the chill-out rooms.
Amen break – A break characterised by driving cymbals.
Artcore – Music. The Artcore LP series featuring everyone from Foul Play and Aphrodite to Krust and Johnny L. Weird. Intelligent hybrid made from those producers’ influences.
Attitude – Usually prefixed by an unspoken ‘bad’.
‘Avin’ It (Large) – Having a totally wicked time.
Bad Bwoy– Ruffneck yout with too much attitude.
Balearic – Music. Commercial House music favoured by those that enjoy a good old-fashioned knees-up with a pint of beer and a couple of Es whilst on holiday in Ibiza.
Bar – Music. Four beats.
Big up – To exalt, to boast (of oneself).
Blagger – A practitioner of the ‘blag’.
To Blag – Charming your way to get what you want.
Break – Part of the record, usually eight to sixteen beats, often sampled and looped to create a beat for a tune.
Breakbeat – Music. Music with breaks. Anything that’s not a four to the floor kick drum pattern. The forerunner of Hardcore and ultimately JDB.
Breddah – Brother, bloke.
Brukin’ out – Adv. Breaking out, dancing madly.
Bussed it – Played it, play a tune, to recite a lyric.
To cane – Using it, taking it, playing it to the max and further.
To check – Seeing someone socially or sexually (usually past tense).
To chill – To relax.
Chill-Out – Music. Turn on, light up and chill out. Easy Listening with credibility.
“Choon!” (Tune!) – Excl. “What a good record, Mr.DJ!” Show some respect and shout it out! “Chooooooon!”
Clanged it out – Adv. Clashing beats in a mix. Worst possible insult to a DJ.
Coconut – Black on the outside, white on the inside. A racial slur, a black person with white pretensions (see ‘Wigger’).
Come-Down – The terrible effect felt when the drugs wear off. (Although the first few hours are quite nice really).
Cubase – Music software application, usually not paid for.
Crew – See Posse, De Man Dem.
Da lick – Adj. The best thing.
Darkcore – Music. Dark-sounding with low b-lines. Takes influences from Industrial, Rock and Gabba. Also from Chrome and DHR labels (eg. DJ Trace and Sonar).
Darkside – Music. Militant beats, angry JDB (eg. Ed Rush and Optical).
DAT – Digital Audio Tape, recording studio quality.
Deep House – Music. Pared-down house, minimalist, b-line intensive.
Detroit Techno – Music. The original Techno from Detroit. You can’t mention Detroit without mentioning Derrick May … or cars.
Dub – Music. Reggae of which lyrics and melodies are largely stripped out or ‘cut in’ with lots of digital delay (eg. Jah Shaka, King Tubby).
Dub Plate – The very latest records cut on acetate, initially only available to select DJs.
Draw – Weed.
The Drop – Wait for it. Whatfi When the bassline kicks in.
Electro – Music. Originally a form of Hip-Hop, Planet Rock and Wicky Wicky being two famous examples.
EP – Extended Play record, more tracks than a twelve-inch, less than an album.
To EQ – To tweak frequencies of the mix using an equaliser.
Euro – Music. European Techno similar to Gabba but not as hard and mad. Cheesy some might say.
Funki Dread – Not a total dread, a smiling face and a thumpin’ bass for a lovin’ race (eg. Jazzy B).
Gabba – Music. Just play any 33 rpm Techno tune at 78 rpm and you’ll get the picture. Popular in Rotterdam, allegedly (see also Nosebleed).
The Gaff – The place.
Garage – Music. House with lots of R ‘n’ B flavour, vocals and piano.
Going for bruck – Adv. Going for broke.
Gutted – Adv. Definitely not sorted, devastated.
Hardcore – Music. Predecessor of Jungle and harsh bastard child of Techno. Often uses breakbeats.
House – Music. 4-beats-to-the-bar dance music, originated in New York or Chicago (depending on who you believe).
Imprint – Sub-division of a larger record label.
Intelligent – Music. Originally lighter, spacy Sunday afternoon music, but still dancefloor D&B. Probably takes influences from The Orb (eg. LTJ Bukem). For some, a contentious term.
Jump-up – 1. adj. See ‘Tear-out’. / 2. Music. Party music with an upbeat springy flavour that makes you want to bruk out and jump like a maniac.
Knock back – 1. Turn down. / 2. To be turned down (see ‘Gutted’).
Kriss – Adj. Looking or sounding wicked.
Loop – Continually-repeated musical refrain.
Lovers’ Rock – Music. A ‘sweet’ kind of Reggae, always melodic, usually with love song vocals (eg. Gregory Issac).
The massive – The people, the followers.
Mashed it up – Adj. Of an artist’s performance – a very high accolade. See also ‘Rinse out’, rip it up, tear it up, also negatively in context of to destroy.
MCPS – Mechanical Copyright Protection Society.
‘Nuff – Adj. (E)nough, loads (see ‘X-amount’).
Old Skool – Adj. Music, graffiti art, trainers, mentality from a by-gone era. Nostalgia with attitude.
Phat – Adj. looks good, sounds wicked.
Pukka – Adj. Really rather good.
Proppa – Adj. Proper (see ‘Runnin’).
Punters – Customers, clientele.
Ragga – Music. Distinctly rude-sounding modern Reggae strand, with vocals from deep in the throat, generally lewd theme and grinding, aggressive rhythm.
Rare Groove – Music. Not-so-rare 70s funk tunes.
Representin’ – Keeping it real, representing what you believe in and living by those beliefs. or: Turning up and flashing your skills.
Rewind – Play it again DJ – now! (see “Choon!”).
Rinsin’ – Adj. See ‘Tearin’.
Rinse out 1. See ‘Cane’. / 2. A good hard party.
R ‘n’ B – Music. Some would say modern-day soul.
Runnin’ – Adj. Wicked (see ‘Pukka’).
Safe – Adj. Good [of a person], trustworthy, of good character. Feeling comfortable, everything going rather well.
Sample – Electronically recorded segment of sound.
Sampler – Equipment used to record pieces of sound.
To score – To achieve a positive result, usually sexually or pharmaceutically.
Shebeen – Back room drinking den.
Skank – 1. To cheat. / 2. A dance style.
Sorted – Adj. The bird’s in the hand: get it, got it, good (see ‘Score’).
Speed Garage – Music. JDB with ‘Garage style’ vocals, jerky drum patterns and b-lines (kinda Sweet like Chocolate).
Steamed – Go really quickly, sometimes through a crowd.
Suss out – Making your mind up, check out, investigate.
To be sussed – To be in the know.
Tear-out – Adj. Fast and furious (see ‘Jump-Up’).
Tearin’ – Adj. Of music or artists (see ‘Rinsin’).
Tech House – Music. Techno with no harshness but with housey b-lines.
Tech Steppin’ – Music. Generally metallic-sounding Drum & Bass. Techno-influenced. Darker, driving and laced with Sci-Fi samples.
Techno – Music. Faster, more aggressive and more experimental than House with few vocals and a generally ‘metallic’ sound. Pioneered in the ghettos of Detroit.
The one like – Title. Him, her, Ms, Mr etc. [Yer man – Irish].
Timberlands – Boots once fashionable and now available in your local Oxfam.
Tip – Direction of music. Mood, vibe.
Trance – Music. Less hard, spaced-out Techno. ‘Soundscapes’ with a driving rhythm to take you into the clouds.
VJ – Video jockey, TV presenter.
Wicked – Adj. Extremely good, simply marvellous.
Wigger – White person with black pretensions (eg. Ali G) (see ‘Coconut’).
X-amount – Adj. Loads and loads (see ‘Nuff’).
YTS – Abbr. Youth Training Scheme, though others called it a joke.