The Headmess Project involves experiments that involve the use of structural ideas and exploits from literature in the rap medium. For the experiment to be successful in the song, the listener should never notice anything out of the ordinary–the song should not sound strange or affected in any way. Headmess Project already completed, songs with missing vowels such as–“Between Clenched Teeth” and “Check Me Out”–or songs involving lengthy acrostics such as “Wrap” and “X Marks the Spot” provide just a few examples.
Music Like You’ve Never Read
If you have understood these songs only in terms of what they say, in terms of what you hear, then it is likely the song has not been entirely understood. That is why Headmess Project Music is termed music like you’ve never read. There is always rhyme, but also something else, a plus that requires a bit more reflection.
The Headmess Project writ large is based in St. Louis and is a coordinated effort between local artists along with students and teachers of Washington University in St. Louis. A key cog in the wheel has been Henry Biggs, whose course ‘Rap of Ages’ has referenced many of these ideas and been the source of many new lyrical experiments. Biggs’ passion for meter and the poetics of the phrase has been longstanding–he studied Greek and Latin poetry while an undergraduate at Harvard and followed those studies with his doctoral thesis on poetry and rhythm in Metrical Phonology at UCLA.