The few articles I’ve written so far have been primarily focused on rhyming efficiency with not much consideration for other statistics besides length of songs and words on average. What I attempt to do in this article is explain the statistic I’ve developed that is a very simple value measuring word dexterity. We’ve dubbed this value Novel Word Proportion, or in simple terms, how many unique words exist between lines. The higher the value, the more dexteric the word usage is (a value of 1 indicating no repeated words between lines). Generally, most rappers will hover around a value of 0.4 to 0.45.
What I’m saying is, and it’s a profound claim, is that the NWP value is a measure of creativity. This becomes an especially critical value when justifying artist merit for guys with low rhyme efficiency scores. Ghostface Killah is one of the most respected artists of all time but we found his rhyme scores to be less than stellar. In an attempt to try and justify the fact that he is one of the best of all time I looked at other places to find reasons to back up why I think he’s so amazing. Here is a look at the first 10 tracks on his debut album Ironman:
While posting pedestrian rhyme density values, Ghostface shows his incredible word dexterity in this album with his NWP score of 0.6. Although posting a higher than average word per syllable count of 1.38, he does a great job of not putting too much syllables into each line all the while only averaging 300 syllables per song, mostly due to the amount of guest appearances on this album. Smooth delivery, excellent production and a knack for telling tales of the urban environment makes this one of my favorite albums ever. We’re firm believers that Brevity is the Soul of Wit. Or some shit.