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Common

Common

1972—

Rap musician, author, actor, businessman

Rapper Common is not a common rapper. Composing music that comments on such broad-ranging themes as "the hereafter, weather phenomena, the power of imagination, male-female relations, competition between males for women, marijuana, the process of creating hip-hop, commercialism in the music, adulthood, street life and leaving it, competition in the music, contagion, Black intellectual tradition and its liberationist ethic, cellular technology, Chicago race/class stratification, gang violence and its aftereffects, drug dealing, manhood, Egyptian burial practices, Moorish secret societies, and fandom," as listed by Harry Allen in the Village Voice, Common set himself apart as an artist, as a "conscious" rapper. Common grew beyond the boundaries of the music industry to become a "brand" in popular culture. After winning accolades for his music, achieving success in acting, landing a Gap ad, writing children's books, introducing a line of Italian hats, and starting a charitable foundation by 2007, Common looked beyond the personal satisfaction of his success, telling Marti Parham of Jet that "I know my purpose as an artist is even bigger now and I can utilize this platform for bigger things to really help make change." His commitment to change, both in himself and in the world, has endeared him to a growing fan base.

Drawn to Music as a Child

Born in Chicago on March 13, 1972, Common was named Lonnie Rashid Lynn after his father, Lonnie Lynn. He grew up on the south side of Chicago in an economically diverse Black neighborhood called Avalon Park with his mother, Mahalia Ann Hines, a teacher for the Chicago Public Schools; his stepfather, Ralph Hines; and his grandmother.

Two major passions of his early years were basketball and rap. As a young teen, he worked one season as a ball boy for the Chicago Bulls. His love of hip-hop began in the early eighties with a trip to visit his cousin in Cincinnati. When he returned to Chicago, he began, break-dancing, emceeing, and writing rap songs. In 1986, while attending Luther South High School, a Christian (Lutheran) school on Chicago's South Side, he formed his first rap group, called CDR for group members Corey, Dion, and Rashid. Dion, a friend of Common's from the fourth grade at Faulkner Elementary School, later became rapper and producer NO I.D., and continued to work with Common on stage and in the studio after both had started to perform independently.

While Common continued to perform through high school and after, he also continued his education. After high school, he studied at Southern A&M in the College of Business for two years. But then in 1991, Relativity Records, which had begun to move into hip-hop from a straight rock line-up, offered him a contract, and Common decided to stop attending college to become a full-time performer.

Made a Name for Himself

Lonnie Rashid Lynn began recording under the name Common Sense. The title of his first album, Can I Borrow a Dollar?, produced on Relativity's label in 1992, was an allusion to his place as a Chicago rapper on the hip-hop scene. The title seemed to ask if there was room in hip-hop for rappers who were not from the East or West Coast. Common has always had a strong sense of place, and he gives much credit to his early experiences in Chicago as having been an important influence on his musical style. In the area around 87th Street and Stony Island, the neighborhood in which he grew up, Blacks with middle class aspirations, working-class Blacks, and young gang members lived side by side. In a fall 2000 letter to the Chicago Sun-Times, he said, "That area kind of shaped me. It taught me…to be real with myself and to be real with people. It taught me to speak the truth."

Common dropped "Sense" from his moniker after a conflict came up in 1994. Though Common's lyrics represent his own version of common sense, another group—a California-based reggae group going by the same name—challenged his right to call himself "Common Sense." Faced with a lawsuit, he shortened his performance name to simply Common.

Common provoked controversy in the hip-hop community for his allegorical song from his second album Resurrection, "I Used to Love H.E.R." The song describes his relationship with a girl that he met when he was 10, a funny, fresh, creative girl. She moved to L.A. after a few years and got involved with a negative scene, including some folks who, as the song says, "told her if she got an image and a gimmick that she could make money, and she did it like a dummy." Common says that even though he sees her being dragged through the sewer, he hasn't given up on her. He's going to try to help her turn herself around because, as the song's last line reveals, "…who I'm talkin' 'bout y'all is hip-hop." West Coast rapper Ice Cube took Common's attack on West Coast rap as a personal affront and came back with a cut on his album with Mac10, West Side Slaughterhouse. Common responded with another rap single. Apparently fearful of a rap war of words that might lead to physical violence, Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam called the two together at a conference in 1997, and the two rappers declared a truce.

However, the target of Common's criticism wasn't Ice Cube or any one rapper, but his view of the dangerous state of hip-hop because of the tendency for rappers to bend to the will of commercialism and produce tracks that will sell, without regard for the ideas that they put forth. In a Thanksgiving message published in the Chicago Sun-Times in 2000, Common commented on the positive turn he saw hip-hop taking, stating, "I'm definitely grateful that I'm seeing a lot of hip-hop artists out there doing stuff for the community. I'm grateful that I see artists taking a stand in their music. They're saying important things that can affect some lives." As his words indicate, Common sees contemporary hip-hop as a vehicle for conveying messages of importance at the same time that it is generating good music and entertaining its audience. It is his vision that makes him stand out from other rappers. At the same time, his musicality, his blending of multiple musical traditions, and his creative poeticism make his fans want to hear what he has to say.

Developed a Signature Style

Common moved to Brooklyn early in his career to have greater access to the music industry, but he retained his Chicago-based version of reality. Music reviewers and fans generally find Common's raps more wide-ranging and thoughtful than most other rap artists. In an article in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Britt Robson said, "Common's most noteworthy contribution to hip-hop has been his definition of ‘keeping it real.’ The phrase, often used by gangsta rappers to justify their grisly themes, has devolved into a lazy cliché…Common's reality is braver, broader, and more down to earth."

At a Glance …

Born Lonnie Rashid Lynn on March 13, 1972, in Chicago, IL; parents Mahalia Ann Hines and Lonnie Lynn; children: Omoye Assata Lynn. Education: Attended Southern A&M University.

Career : Rap artist, 1991-; actor, 2006-; Common Ground Foundation, founder, 2006.

Awards : Grammy Award, for "Love of My Life," 2003; MTV Video Awards, for "Testify" and Best Hip Hop Video, 2006.

Addresses: Web—www.common-music.com.

One way that Common has "kept it real" is by rapping about some uncommon themes. His 1997 album, OneDay It'll All Make Sense, included the song "Retrospect for Life," about parenthood and abortion. It also featured rapper Lauryn Hill, and was recorded when both Hill and Common were expecting the birth of their first children. In fact, they shared the same due date for their children, August of 1997. The song's last line comments on the emotional price tag of abortion: "315 dollars ain't worth your soul." On the same album, in the song "G.O.D." which also featured artists Cee-Loo of the Goodie Mob, Common comments on world religions, rapping about the Koran and the Bible and concluding, "Who am I or they to say to who you pray ain't right?" Other albums include raps about how it feels to come home and find your place has been robbed, and a series of raps by his father, Lonnie Lynn, called "Pop's Raps."

Common's early albums sold well. His third album, One Day It'll All Make Sense, sold a respectable 435,000 units. However, in 1998, MCA heard a rumor that Common was not happy with Relativity Records. MCA had already signed artists with a similar vision and style, Mos Def and Roots. MCA executives began talking to Common, and MCA bought out his contract that December. Common was given free artistic license on the album. The resulting album, released under Common's imprint, Madame Zenobia, was well received, selling enough units to go gold. The Village Voice's reviewer described it as "an honorable and beautiful continuation of Common's longtime project of bridging the life of the street and the life of the mind."

Although he had yet to break into mainstream popularity Common had developed a solid reputation among fans of hip-hop for his thoughtful lyrics and creative rhymes. The Source, a hip-hop magazine, has described him as "Chicago's lyrical warrior." While his songs offer biting and clever commentaries on contemporary topics, they are definitely not sermons. He told Soren Baker, a Los Angeles Times writer, that rap, while it needs to be socially conscious, needs to stay true to its tradition of word play and creativity. "I believe in balance," he said. "If you're going to educate people, then you've got to entertain them too."

Common's own education, both formal and informal, is a consistent influence on his music. As his social consciousness expanded, his ideas are reflected in his songs' themes and lyrics. And as his knowledge of music expands, his records show the influence of a wider bandwidth of musical styles. His album, Like Water for Chocolate (the title of which is taken from a highly acclaimed novel by Laura Esquivel), released in March of 2000, is a good example of this interplay. One track on the album is a result of an educational journey that Common took. In 1997, he read a biography of Assata Shakur, a former Black Panther accused and convicted of being involved in the killing of a New Jersey policeman, an event that happened the year before Common was born. Shakur escaped from prison and fled to Cuba in 1979, where she has lived ever since. Common penned a rap to her, "A Song For Assata," and went to visit her in Cuba to add her voice to the song.

The album also reflected Common's musical growth. After the release of Resurrection, his 1994 album, Common decided to study more music theory. At the same time, he continued his informal musical education, listing to a wide range of artists including John Coltrane, Curtis Mayfield, Herbie Hancock, and Miles Davis. Many tracks on Like Water for Chocolate pay homage to the rich tapestry of African-American musical tradition. The first track, "Time Travelling," is a tribute to the legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti. It features his son, drummer Femi Kuti, and contemporary jazz trumpeter, Ray Hargrove. Other tracks reflect strong influences of R&B, of jazz, and of James Brown's driving guitar work. While the album is solidly in the genre of rap, it includes a wider range of music than mainstream hip-hop albums typically neglect. The album's cover also makes a statement: it's a black and white photo, taken by photographer Gordon Parks, of a well-dressed African-American woman in the 1950s drinking from a water fountain marked "Colored Only." The single, "The Light," from the album earned Common his first Grammy nomination for best rap solo performance in 2001.

Marched to His Own Beat

After breaking through to mainstream popularity, Common did not feel compelled to stick with the same formula for success. His next album, Electric Circus, was much anticipated by fans and critics alike. The album—on which he experimented with rock music inspired by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Joni Mitchell, and Pink Floyd—disappointed, even though it included what National Public Radio review Will Hermes called a "10-minute gospel space jam." Described by critics with such terms as "sprawling" and "adventurous," the album sold poorly.

Yet the following year, Common rebounded, winning his first Grammy Award, for his song with Erykah Badu "Love of My Life (An Ode to Hip Hop)," for the Brown Sugar movie soundtrack. He followed that success in 2005 with the release of Be. Produced by Kanye West, the album debuted at the top of the Billboard R&B and Hip-Hop Album charts. Rolling Stone listed it among the top 50 albums of the year. Describing the 1970s samplings the album included, a Vanity Fair review noted that the album had "a classic sound that perfectly suits Common." Common appreciated the positive attention. "When you create your art, your music, you want people to say this is a timeless piece of work," he told Jet contributor Marti Yarbrough. "And for the critics to come out and say that from the beginning is just like a testament to my work." The album garnered four Grammy nominations and won two MTV Video Awards.

Common collaborated with West for his next album, Finding Forever, which West touted as the best rap album of the year even before its release, according to Lorainne Ali of Newsweek. It debuted at the number one position on the Billboard 200 chart. The theme of the album returned to Common's core impulse as an artist: to convey significant messages. "The impact of a conscious artist is necessary, and it ripples through the world," he told Brakkton Booker for a report on Weekend All Things Considered. "And it's people with platinum plaques that are forgotten. And in fact, that's why I named my album ‘Finding Forever’ because that's what I was thinking about. What did I want to contribute to this world that would live beyond my physical existence?"

Common's appeal broadened beyond the music industry. His children's book I Like You, But I Love Me was nominated for an NAACP Image Award in 2006. In 2007 he appeared in advertisements for The Gap and Converse Red. He began acting, landing parts in such films as Smokin' Aces with Jeremy Piven, Ben Affleck, and Ray Liotta; American Gangster with Denzel Washington; The Nightwatchman with Keanu Reeves; and Wanted with Morgan Freeman and Angelina Jolie. About Common's transition from music to film, Piven told Ali that "A lot of rappers' acting cadences are a couple clicks off, [b]ut Common's right there in the pocket. He's a natural." Common moved beyond the entertainment industry with such ventures as a line of fashionable hats called Soji, and the establishment of the Common Ground Foundation, through which he aimed to provide underprivileged children with health education and to help fight poverty. With such wide-ranging activities, Common established himself among the most eclectic representatives of the hip-hop generation.

Selected discography

Albums

Can I Borrow A Dollar?, Relativity, 1992.

Resurrection, Relativity, 1994.

One Day It'll All Make Sense, Relativity, 1997.

Like Water for Chocolate, Madame Zenobia/MCA, 2000.

Electric Circus, Geffen, 2002.

Be, Universal, 2005.

Finding Forever, Geffen, 2007.

Books

The Mirror and Me, HipHop Schoolhouse, 2004.

I Like You, But I Love Me, HipHop Schoolhouse, 2006.

M.E. Mixed Emotions, HipHop Schoolhouse, forthcoming.

Films

Smokin' Aces, 2006.

American Gangster, 2007.

The Nightwatchman, 2008.

Wanted, 2008.

Sources

Periodicals

Billboard, Feburary 19, 2000, p. 25.

Chicago Reader, October 10, 1997.

Chicago Sun-Times, November 23, 2000, p. 9.

Jet, June 27, 2005, p. 54.

Los Angeles Times, March 19, 2000, Calendar p. 5.

Rolling Stone, December 29, 2005-January 12, 2006, p. 106.

Source, March 2000.

Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN), November 10, 2000, Freetime section, p. 3.

Vanity Fair, November 2005, p. 306.

Village Voice, November 4, 1997, p. 70; April 12-18, 2000, p. 146.

On-line

"Biography: Common," Billboard.com,/www.billboard.com/bbcom/bio/index.jsp?pid=246651 (September 6, 2007).

Biography Resource Center,www.galenet.com/servlet/BioRC.

Common, www.common-music.com (September 6, 2007).

"Music: Common," MSNBC: Newsweek,www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16240601/site/newsweek (September 6, 2007).

Pop Matters Columns,www.popmatters.com.

Pound Magazine,www.pound.com.

Westword,http://westword.com.

Other

"Common: 'Conscious Sound, Uncommon Success," National Public Radio: Weekend All Things Considered, August 11, 2007.

Additional material for this profile was obtained from an interview with Contemporary Black Biography, July 31, 2001.

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Common 1972–

Common 1972

Rapper

Kept It Real

Albums Reflect Commons Evolution

Selected discography

Sources

In a time when most of rap and hip-hops lyrics are centered on attaining wealth and fame, rapper Common stands out as one of the few who are trying to raise the consciousness of the youth. He joins a long list of rappers who feel a responsibility to the community at large. With keen and thought-provoking poetics, Common is giving music listeners a choice.

Born in Chicago in 1972, Common was named Lonnie Rashid Lynn after his father, Lonnie Lynn. He grew up on the south side of Chicago in an economically diverse Black neighborhood called Avalon Park with his mother, Mahalia Ann Hines, a teacher for the Chicago Public Schools; his stepfather, Ralph Hines; and his grandmother.

Two major passions of his early years were basketball and rap. As a young teen, he worked one season as a ball boy for the Chicago Bulls. His love of hip-hop began in the early eighties with a trip to visit his cousin in Cincinnati. When he returned to Chicago, he began, break-dancing, emceeing, and writing rap songs. In 1986, while attending Luther South High School, a Catholic school on Chicagos South Side, he formed his first rap group, called CDR for group members Corey, Dion, and Rashid. Dion, a friend of Commons from the fourth grade at Faulkner Elementary School, later became rapper and producer NO I.D., and continued to work with Common on stage and in the studio after both had started to perform independently.

While Common continued to perform through high school and after, he also continued his education. After high school, he studied at Florida A & M in the College of Business for two years. But then in 1991, Relativity Records, which had begun to move into hip-hop from a straight rock line-up, offered him a contract, and Common decided to stop attending college to become a full-time performer.

Kept It Real

Lonnie Rashid Lynn began recording under the name Common Sense. The title of his first album, Can I Borrow A Dollar?, produced on Relativitys label in 1992, was an allusion of his place as a Chicago rapper on the hip-hop scene. The title seemed to ask if there was room in hip-hop for rappers who were not from the east or west coast. Common has always had a strong sense of place, and he gives much credit to his early experiences in Chicago as having been an important influence on his musical style.

At a Glance

Born Lonnie Rashid Lynn in Chicago. IL on March 13, 1972; parents Mahalia Ann Hines and Lonnie Lynn; child: Omoye Assata Lynn. Education: Attended Luther South High School and Florida A & M University.

Career: Rap artist. Formed his first rap group in high school. Signed a contract with Relativity records in 1991; produced his first album Can I Borrow A Dollar?, 1992; Resurrection, 1994; One Day Itll All Make Sense, 1997; Like Water for Chocolate, 2000.

Awards: His fourth album, Like Water for Chocolate, went gold; Grammy Awards, nominated for best rap solo performance, The Light, 2001.

Addresses: MCA Records, 2220 Colorado Ave, Santa Monica, CA, 90404. Website-mcahiphop.com

In the area around 87th Street and Stony Island, the neighborhood in which he grew up, Blacks with middle class aspirations, working-class Blacks, and young gang members lived side by side In a fall 2000 letter to the Chicago Sun-Times, he said, That area kind of shaped me. It taught me to be real with myself and to be real with people. It taught me to speak the truth.

Common moved to Brooklyn early in his career to have greater access to the music industry, but he retained his Chicago-based version of reality. Music reviewers and fans generally find Commons raps more wide-ranging and thoughtful than most other rap artists. In an article in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Britt Robson said, Commons most noteworthy contribution to hip-hop has been his definition of keeping it real. The phrase, often used by gangsta rappers to justify their grisly themes, has devolved into a lazy cliché. Commons reality is braver, broader, and more down to earth.

One way that Common has kept it real is by rapping about some uncommon themes. His 1997 album, One Day Itll All Make Sense, included the song Retrospect for Life, about parenthood and abortion. It also featured rapper Lauryn Hill, and was recorded when both Hill and Common were expecting the birth of their first children. In fact, they shared the same due date for their children, August of 1997. The songs last line comments on the emotional price tag of abortion: 315 dollars aint worth your soul. On the same album, in the song G.O.D. which also featured artists Cee-Loo of the Goodie Mob, Common comments on world religions, rapping about the Koran and the Bible and concluding, Who am I or they to say to who you pray aint right? Other albums include raps about how it feels to come home and find your place has been robbed, and a series of raps by his father, Lonnie Lynn, called Pops Raps.

Common has a solid reputation among fans of hip-hop for his thoughtful lyrics and creative rhymes. The Source, a hip-hop magazine, has described him as Chicagos lyrical warrior. While his songs offer biting and clever commentaries on contemporary topics, they are definitely not sermons. He told Soren Baker, a Los Angeles Times writer, that rap, while it needs to be socially conscious, needs to stay true to its tradition of word play and creativity. I believe in balance. he said. If youre going to educate people, then youve got to entertain them too.

A conflict came up in 1994 concerning his name. Though Commons lyrics represent his own version of common sense, another groupa California-based reggae group going by the same namechallenged his right to call himself Common Sense. Faced with a lawsuit, Common shortened his performance name to Common.

Albums Reflect Commons Evolution

Commons own education, both formal and informal, is a consistent influence on his music. As his social consciousness expanded, his ideas are reflected in his songs themes and lyrics. And as his knowledge of music expands, his records show the influence of a wider bandwidth of musical styles. His album, Like Water for Chocolate (the title of which is taken from a highly acclaimed novel by Laura Esquivel), released in March of 2000, is a good example of this interplay. One track on the album is a result of an educational journey that Common took. In 1997, he read a biography of Assata Shakur, a former Black Panther accused and convicted of being involved in the killing of a New Jersey policeman, an event that happened the year before Common was born. Shakur escaped from prison and fled to Cuba in 1979, where she has lived ever since. Common penned a rap to her, A Song For Assata, and went to visit her in Cuba to add her voice to the song.

The album also reflected Commons musical growth. After the release of Resurrection, his 1994 album, Common decided to study more music theory. At the same time, he continued his informal musical education, listening to a wide range of artists including John Coltrane, Curtis Mayfield, Herbie Hancock, and Miles Davis. Many tracks on Like Water for Chocolate pay homage to the rich tapestry of African-American musical tradition. The first track, Time Travelling, is a tribute to the legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti. It features his son, drummer Femi Kuti, and contemporary jazz trumpeter, Ray Hargrove. Other tracks reflect strong influences of R&B, of jazz, and of James Browns driving guitar work. While the album is solidly in the genre of rap, it includes a wider range of music than mainstream hip-hop albums typically neglect. The albums cover also makes a statement: its a black and white photo, taken by photographer Gordon Parks, of a well-dressed African-American woman in the 1950s drinking from a water fountain marked Colored Only.

Each of Commons albums has done well. His third album, One Day Itll All Make Sense, sold a respectable 435,000 units. However, in 1998, MCA heard a rumor that Common was not happy with Relativity Records. MCA had already signed artists with a similar vision and style, Mos Def and Roots. MCA executives began talking to Common, and MCA bought out his contract that December. Common was given free artistic license on the album, The resulting album, released under Commons imprint, Madame Zenobia, was well-received, selling enough units to go gold. The Village Voices reviewer described it as an honorable and beautiful continuation of Commons longtime project of bridging the life of the street and the life of the mind.

A Common single, The Light, had gotten him a Grammy nomination for best rap solo performance. He had also performed at Havanas fifth annual Hip-Hop Conference. Common often performs at concerts, on videos and on albums with other well-known artists, including Erykah Badu, De La Soul, and members of Roots.

He is most famous in the hip-hop community for the allegorical song from Resurrection, I Used to Love H.E.R. The song describes his relationship with a girl that he met when he was 10, a funny, fresh, creative girl. She moved to L.A. after a few years and got involved with a negative scene, including some folks who, as the song says, told her if she got an image and a gimmick that she could make money, and she did it like a dummy. Common says that even though he sees her being dragged through the sewer, he hasnt given up on her. Hes going to try to help her turn herself around because, as the songs last line reveals, who Im talkin bout yall is hip-hop.

West Coast rapper Ice Cube took Commons attack on West Coast rap as a personal affront and came back with a cut on his album with Mac10, West Side Slaughterhouse. Common responded with another rap single. Apparently fearful of a rap war of words that might lead to physical violence, Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam called the two together at a conference in 1997, and the two rappers declared a truce.

However, the target of Commons criticism wasnt Ice Cube or any one rapper, but his view of the dangerous state of hip-hop because of the tendency for rappers to bend to the will of commercialism and produce tracks that will sell, without regard for the ideas that they put forth. In a Thanksgiving message published in the Chicago Sun-Times in 2000, Common commented on the positive turn he saw hip-hop taking, stating, Im definitely grateful that Im seeing a lot of hip-hop artists out there doing stuff for the community. Im grateful that I see artists taking a stand in their music. Theyre saying important things that can affect some lives. As his words indicate, Common sees contemporary hip-hop as a vehicle for conveying messages of importance at the same time that it is generating good music and entertaining its audience. It is his vision that makes him stand out from other rappers. At the same time, his musicality, his blending of multiple musical traditions, and his creative poeticism make his fans want to hear what he has to say.

Selected discography

Can I Borrow A Dollar?, 1992.

Resurrection, (songs include I Used to Love H.E.R.) 1994.

One Day Itll All Make Sense, 1997.

Like Water for Chocolate, (songs include The Light and A Song for Assata) 2000.

Sources

Periodicals

Billboard, Feb 19, 2000, p. 25.

Chicago Reader, Oct 10, 1997.

Chicago Sun-Times, November 23, 2000, page 9.

Los Angeles Times, March 19, 2000, Calendar page 5.

The Source, March, 2000.

Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN), November 10, 2000, Freetime section, p. 3.

Village Voice, April 12-18, 2000.

Online

Biography Resource Center, Gale, http://www.galenet.com/servlet/BioRC.

Pop Matters Columns, http://www.popmatters.com.

Pound Magazine, http://www.pound.com.

Westword, http://westword.com.

Other

Additional material for this profile was obtained from an interview with Contemporary Black Biography, July 31, 2001.

Rory Donnelly

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Common

Common

Rap musician

Hip-hop artist Common, formerly known as Common Sense, is known for his innovative raps and his departure from the "gangsta rap" material and negative posturing sometimes found in popular hip-hop or rap lyrics and videos. A video of his single "Rap City" on the BET network told the story of a young black man who decided to do the right thing by his pregnant girlfriend by staying with her and supporting her. He even featured his own father, Lonnie Lynn, on his recordings; a single titled "Pop's Rap" from the album One Day It'll All Make Sense was an apology from his father for not always being there. As Rolling Stone 's Kevin Powell wrote, "Common could be the most thoughtful, lyrically skilled rapper you've never heard of ... [His] incisive observations offer a contrast to the materialism drowning today's hip-hop." Ann Powers of the New York Times described him as "a gifted word-smith ... Common honors a familiar hip-hop essential: storytelling. Like most rappers, he effortlessly discharges witty phrases; but he also weaves complicated, rich narratives."

Common, born Lonnie Rashid Lynn in 1973, was raised in Chicago. An NBA hopeful, he was a ball boy for the Chicago Bulls. The first widely hailed MC to emerge from Chicago, Common aspired to be as lauded as KRS-1 or Rakim, and wanted to have something substantive to say through his music. He signed with Relativity Records in 1991 when the rock-oriented label first embraced rap and hip-hop music. The label's executive vice president of marketing and promotion, Alan Grunblatt, told Billboard 's Havelock Nelson, "We always wanted to be involved in cool, hip, alternative music. We feel that rap is part of that."

Common released Can I Borrow A Dollar in 1992, and Resurrection in 1994. In 1994 he was forced to abbreviate his name from Common Sense to Common, due to a lawsuit by an Orange County-based reggae group called Common Sense. It him took three years to release One Day It'll All Make Sense, which included a roster of rap and hip-hop's most talented artists. Erykah Badu contributed to the song "All Night Long," and Cee-Lo Green of the Goodie Mob contributed to "G.O. D." (Gaining One's Definition). Lauryn Hill of the Fugees recorded with Common while both were expecting the birth of their first child in August of 1997. The single they worked on, "Retrospect For Life," dealt with the fragile topic of abortion, and concluded, "315 dollars ain't worth your soul." Q-Tip joined Common on his third release as well in the single "Stolen Moments, Part 3," and De La Soul joined him for "Gettin' Down at the Ampitheatre." Black Thought of the Roots contributed to "Stolen Moments, Part 2." Chantay Savage contributed to "Reminding Me (of Sef)," an upbeat remembrance of his youth, dedicated to his deceased best friend. Forrest Green wrote in an article for the Detroit-based Metro Times, "Common's newest release, One Day It'll All Make Sense, was easily one of the most inventive rap albums of 1997. Its loose, band-driven fusillade of rapping, poetry and musicianship revives the rap album format for real, but the piece de resistance, 'Retrospect For Life,' stuffs hip-hop's muses to the gill."

When Common released Resurrection in 1994, he commented on the stagnant state of hip-hop and rap using the single "i used to love h.e.r.," an allegory of hip-hop as an attractive but fickle woman, which created discussion within the hip-hop/rap realm and drew attention to Common's talent. The single also prompted a lawsuit against Common by rapper Ice Cube, who felt he was maligned in the song. The lawsuit did not end favorably for Common, and litigation slowed the production of Resurrection. Common explained to the Orange County Register 's Ben Wener why he was so disillusioned by rap: "Everything became so old. The repetition of not just one sound but every sound, and all the samples that came out were so tired. ... In '88, '89, you had groups coming out in all different directions."

Common told Wener he knew he had to have a distinctive style to separate himself from other rap artists, and the impending birth of his daughter provided fuel for his imagination and creativity for his third release. Other noted rappers such as Snoop Doggy Dogg, LL Cool J, and Coolio also turned to the joys of fatherhood and marriage in their material, and Common was among those ushering in a new lyrical and spiritual trend toward family values and adulthood. In a Newsweek interview with Veronica Chambers, he said, "A lot of my friends were getting turned off to hip-hop music because we were growing up."

Common was the headline act for the Elements of Hip-Hop tour in 1998, which included Rahzel the Godfather of Noyze (of the Roots), four DJs from San Francisco known as the X-Ecutioners (Mista Sinista, Roc Raida, Total Eclipse, and Rob Swift), and Common's four-piece band called A Black Girl Named Becky. After the release of One Day It'll All Make Sense, Common decided to learn to play the piano and drums, and he also took a music theory class and a course in the business of music. In spite of his positive message and status as a "rapper's rapper," Common hadn't yet enjoyed the mainstream success of commercial rappers such as Busta Rhymes or hardcore rapper Ice Cube, but he told Wener, "Sooner or later I'll catch the new people, even if I have to keep reinventing myself. I'll just keep doing what I'm doing and hopefully people will react."

Common moved to Brooklyn in 1998, but kept close ties with the Chicago scene. Signed to MCA, he released Like Water for Chocolate in 2000, an album that borrowed its title from a Mexican novel and film. Featuring guest appearances from rapper Mos Def, modern jazz trumpeter Roy Hargrove, and Nigerian juju sensation Femi Kuti, among others, Like Water for Chocolate brought Common his first taste of wide commercial success. "The Light," which the Los Angeles Times called a "reverent, new-age love song"—three terms rarely associated with hip-hop—won Common a Grammy award nomination in 2001.

Electric Circus (2002) was recorded under the influence of the neo-soul movement, specifically the music of Erykah Badu, whom Common dated for two years. An odd mix of hip-hop, soul, and psychedelia, the music impressed many critics but sold only 65,000 copies. Common looked at the album as a learning experience. "I don't apologize for the record," he said in a Billboard article quoted on the MSN Music website. "It was me being true to what I feel as an artist. Like Miles Davis, it's my Bitches Brew."

Nearly 15 years after first entering the music business, Common released a breakthrough album in 2005. Be made a promising debut at number one on Billboard 's Hip-Hop and R&B album charts. The single "Go" received heavy radio airplay in the summer of 2005. The album again featured a phalanx of guest stars, but none was more important than Chicago rapper and producer Kanye West, who helmed nine of the album's eleven tracks. As Common hit the road with neo-soul vocalist John Legend in support of Be, he had become a key contributor to a broadening of hip-hop's musical vision.

For the Record . . .

Born Lonnie Rashid Lynn in 1973, in Chicago, IL.

Signed with Relativity Records under name Common Sense in 1991; lost a lawsuit to reggae band named Common Sense and shortened his name in 1994; re leased Can I Borrow A Dollar, 1992; released Resurrection, 1994; released One Day It'll All Make Sense, 1997; headline act for the Elements of Hip-Hop tour in 1998; moved from Chicago to Brooklyn, NY; released Like Water for Chocolate, 2000; released Electric Circus, 2002; signed to Geffen label; released Be, 2005.

Addresses: Record company—Geffen Records, 2220 Colorado Ave., Santa Monica, CA 90404. Website— Common Official Website: http://www.common-music.com.

Selected discography

Can I Borrow A Dollar?, Relativity Records, 1992.

Resurrection, Relativity Records, 1994.

One Day It'll All Make Sense, Relativity Records, 1997.

Like Water for Chocolate, MCA, 2000.

Electric Circus, MCA, 2002.

Be, Geffen, 2005.

Sources

Periodicals

Billboard, February 26, 1994.

Chicago Sun-Times, May 22, 2005, Sunday Showcase section, p. 6.

Chicago Tribune, January 27, 1998.

Florida Times Union, May 25, 2005, p. C6.

Los Angeles Times, February 4, 1998; May 24, 2005, p. E1.

Metro Times (Detroit), January 21-27, 1998.

New York Times, January 23, 1998.

Newsweek, January 19, 1998.

Orange County Register, January 29, 1998.

Rolling Stone, January 22, 1998.

USA Today, July 20, 2003.

Online

"Common," All Music Guide,http://www.allmusic.com (July 8, 2005).

"Common an Uncommon Rapper," MSN Music, http://www.music.msn.com/music/article.aspx?news=191962 (July 8, 2005).

—B. Kimberly Taylor andJames M. Manheim

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Common

Common

Rap artist

For the Record

Selected discography

Sources

Hip hop artist Commonformerly known as Common Senseis known for his emphasis on family values and departure from the gansta rap material and negative posturing sometimes found in popular hip hop or rap lyrics and videos. A video of his single Rap City on the BET network told the story of a young black man who decided to do the right thing by his pregnant girlfriend by staying with her and supporting her. Common, along with a few other high-profile rappers, was in the forefront of an unprecedented wave of family values in the hip hop community in 1998. He even featured his own father, Lonnie Lynn, on a single titled Pops Rap from One Day It Will All Make Sense. The single is an apology from his father for not always being there. Rolling Stones Kevin Powell wrote, Common could be the most thoughtful, lyrically skilled rapper you ve ever heard of. Commons incisive observations offer a contrast to the materialism drowning todays hip-hop. Ann Powers of the New York Times described Common as, A gifted wordsmith Common honors a familiar hip-hop essential: storytelling. Like most rappers, he effortlessly discharges witty phrases; but he also weaves complicated, rich narratives.

Common, born Lonnie Rashid Lynn in 1973, was raised in Chicago. An NBA hopeful, he was a ball boy for the Chicago Bulls. The first widely hailed MC to emerge from Chicago, Common aspired to be as lauded as KRS-1 or Rakim and he wanted to have something substantive to say through his music. He signed with Relativity Records in 1991 when the rock-oriented label first embraced rap and hip-hop music. The labels executive vice president of marketing and promotion, Alan Grunblatt, told Billboard s Havelock Nelson, We always wanted to be involved in cool, hip, alternative music. We feel that rap is part of that.

Common released Can I Borrow A Dollar in 1992, and Resurrection in 1994. In 1994, he was forced to abbreviate his name to Common from Common Sense due to a lawsuit by an Orange County-based reggae group called Common Sense. It him took three years to release One Day It II All Make Sense, which included a roster of rap and hip-hops most talented artists. Erykah Badu contributed to the song All Night Long, and Cee-Lo Green of the Goodie Mob contributed to G.O.D. (Gaining Ones Definition). Lauryn Hill of the Fugees recorded with Common while both were expecting the birth of their first child in August of 1997. The single they worked on, Retrospect For Life, dealt with the fragile topic of abortion and concluded, 315 dollars aint worth your soul. Q-Tip joined Common on his third release as well in the single Stolen Moments, Part 3, and De La Soul joined him for Gettin Down at the Ampitheatre. Black Thought of the Roots contributed to Stolen

For the Record

Born Lonnie Rashid Lynn in 1973, was raised in Chicago; father Lonnie Lynn, contributed raps on his second and third album.

Signed with Relativity Records under the name Common Sense in 1991; lost a lawsuit to a reggae band named Common Sense and shortened his name in 1994; released Can I Borrow A Dollar in 1992; released Resurrection in 1994; released One Day itll All Make Sense in 1997; headline act for the Elements of Hip-Hop tour in 1998, which included Rahzel the Godfather of Noyze (of the Roots), four DJs from San Francisco known as the X-Ecutioners (Mista Sinista, Roc Raida, Total Eclipse, and Rob Swift), and Commons four-piece band called A Black Girl Named Becky.

Addresses: Record company Relativity Records, 79 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10003; (212)337-5300

Moments, Part 2. Chantay Savage contributed to Reminding Me (of Sef), an upbeat remembrance of his of his youth, which was dedicated to his deceased best friend. Forrest Green 111 wrote in an article for the Detroit based Metro Times, Commons newest release, One Day Itll All Make Sense, was easily one of the most inventive rap albums of 1997. Its loose, band-driven fusillade of rapping, poetry and musicianship revives the rap album format for real, but the piece de resistance, Retrospect For Life, stuffs hip-hops muses to the gill.

When Common released Resurrection in 1994 he commented on the regretfully stagnant state of hip-hop and rap with the single, i used to love h.e.r. The single was an allegory of hip hop as an attractive but fickle woman, and it created discussion within the hip-hop/rap realm and drew attention to Commons talent. The single also prompted a lawsuit against Common by rapper Ice Cube, who felt he was maligned in the song. Common took on the gangsta rappers with the single and pointed out where hip-hop had grown tiring. The lawsuit did not end favorably for Common, and litigation slowed the production of Resurrection. Common explained to the Orange County Registers Ben Wener why he was so disillusioned by rap when he wrote i used to love h.e.r.. He said, Everything became so old. The repetition of not just one sound but every sound, and all the samples that came out were so tired. In 88, 89, you had groups coming out in all different directions. Why did that suddenly stop I couldnt understand where hip-hop was going. I still cant, you know

Common told Wener he knew he had to have a distinctive style to separate himself from other rap artists, and the impending birth of his daughter provided fuel for his imagination and creativity for his third release. Other noted rappers such as Snoop Doggy Dogg, LL Cool J, and Coolio turned to the joys of fatherhood and marriage in their material, and Common was among those ushering in a new lyrical and spiritual trend toward family values and adulthood. In a Newsweek interview with Veronica Chambers, he said, A lot of my friends were getting turned off to hip-hop music because we were growing up Hip-hop lost part of its audience because of that. Rapper Busta Rhymes, who doesn t rap about family values, told Newsweeks Chambers, I can really appreciate Common on a personal level.

Common was the headline act for the Elements of Hip-Hop tour in 1998, which included Rahzel the Godfather of Noyze (of the Roots), four DJs from San Francisco known as the X-Ecutioners (Mista Sinista, Roc Raida, Total Eclipse, and Rob Swift), and Common s four-piece band called A Black Girl Named Becky. After the release of One Day it Will All make Sense, Common decided to learn to play the piano and drums, and he took a music theory class and a course in the business of music in order to better appreciate his calling. In 1998, he aspired to eventually perform in a quartet and to someday look back on what he created with pride. In spite of his positive message and status as a rappers rapper, Common doesn t yet enjoy the mainstream success of commercial rappers such as Busta Rhymes or hardcore rapper Ice Cube. Common told Wener, Sooner or later Ill catch the new people, even if I have to keep reinventing myself. Ill just keep doing what Im doing and hopefully people will react. Eventually, I pray, theyll come to the songs.

Selected discography

Can I Borrow A Dollar?, Relativity Records, 1992.

Resurrection, Relativity Records, 1994.

One Day itll All Make Sense, Relativity Records, 1997.

Sources

Billboard, February 26, 1994.

The Chicago Tribune, January 27, 1998.

The Los Angeles Times, February 4, 1998.

Metro Times (Detroit), January 21-27, 1998.

New York Times, January 23, 1998.

Newsweek, January 19, 1998.

Orange County Register, January 29, 1998.

Rolling Stone, January 22, 1998.

B. Kimberly Taylor

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Common

COMMON

Born: Lonnie Rashid Lynn; Chicago, Illinois, 13 March 1972

Genre: Hip-Hop

Best-selling album since 1990: Like Water for Chocolate (2000)

Hit songs since 1990: "Reminding Me (of Sef)," "One Nine Nine Nine"


Emerging from Chicago in the early 1990s, Common (then known as Common Sense) was an energetic MC who showed that the Midwest could compete with the East Coast and West Coast styles that dominated hip-hop at that time. Over the course of his career, he has developed an increasingly incisive, spiritual, and often poignant writing style, without losing the quick wit and substantial bravado that were the source of his initial appeal.

The son of a schoolteacher (now principal) and a professional basketball player, Common first presented himself as a so-called "battle rapper," an MC who excels in writing rhymes that use creative wordplay to entertainingly insult real and potential rivals. His first album, Can I Borrow a Dollar? (1992), was primarily concerned with this theme, as well as with promoting the city of Chicago as an underappreciated center of hip-hop music. His rhymes were delivered to the accompaniment of jazz-influenced rhythms and melodies assembled by producer No I.D. from segments of previously recorded music known as samples.



Common's second album, Resurrection (1994), shows a more political and bohemian bent. It was this album that cemented his reputation with hip-hop listeners, particularly the single, "i used to love h.e.r.," a touchingly detailed first-person reminiscence of the blossoming of a childhood romance into mature love and heartbreak. In the last line of the song, the object of his affection is revealed to be hip-hop itself; "h.e.r." stands for "Hip-hop in its Essence and Reality." "i used to love h.e.r." is considered to be a classic by hip-hop insiders.

The song also created some controversy when Los Angeles rapper Ice Cube took offense at a line that referred to his former group N.W.A. (Niggas with Attitude), which had popularized so-called "Gangsta Rap" in the late 1980s. Ice Cube responded with a few vicious lines in the song "Westside Slaughterhouse" (1995), to which Common replied with a single, "The Bitch in Yoo" (1996). Although the song never saw wide release, its intensely detailed attack on Ice Cube impressed fans of the competitive insult ("dissing") tradition, while startling Common's newer listeners, who had come to see him as a relaxed intellectual.

After dropping the "Sense" from his name due to threatened legal action from a similarly named reggae band, Common released his next album, One Day It'll All Make Sense (1997). The album's highlight is the single "Retrospect for Life," which speaks of his misgivings about the abortion of a child he had fathered. The song is filled with heartbreaking details, such as the fact that he "bought a book of African names / in case our minds changed." The apparent contradictions between this sort of self-conscious poetry and the ego-driven outrageousness of his other songs became more of a factor with the release of this album. He was particularly criticized for his frequent use of homophobic epithets. Unlike other artists who have been subject to similar accusations, however, these critiques largely emerged from his own fan base, who saw this tendency as being out of step with his other, more progressive political views.

This period in Common's career brought many changes. In 1999 he left his record label, Relativity, to sign with MCA, a company that was rapidly developing a reputation as a home for the Philadelphia-based "neo-soul" movement, which looked back to an earlier generation of African-American musicians, such as Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway, for its inspiration. The movement is personified by the "hip-hop band" the Roots, who favor the use of live instruments rather than digital sampling. It was largely as a result of his association with the Roots that Common himself began to move away from the sample-based production of his earlier work with No I.D. At this time, he also left his Midwestern home to move to New York, a controversial decision for one who many felt personified Chicago hip-hop.

In a guest appearance on the Roots's song "Act Two (Love of My Life)" (1999), Common seems to sum up these developments in his career, audience, and relationship to hip-hop itself: "Beside God and family, you my life's jewel / Like that, y'all: hip-hop . . . hip-hop . . . hip-hop. . . ."

His literary goals and embrace of live instrumentation continued with his first MCA album, Like Water for Chocolate (2000), produced by Roots drummer and band-leader Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson. On it, he displays his thoughtful, poignant style, particularly on "Song for Assata," dedicated to the Black Liberation Army activist and exile Assata Shakur.

Common's fifth album, Electric Circus (2002), demonstrates his ongoing commitment to experimentation. Taking a page from the R&B tradition, the album's lyrics focus on the relationship between romantic love and spirituality. Musically, Electric Circus takes full advantage of the opportunities afforded by the use of live instrumentation; it even includes a number of extended instrumental improvisations, a gesture that is totally unprecedented in hip-hop music.

Since the beginning of his career, Common has been recognized as an artist who embraces creativity in his music, lyrics, and public persona. From his early days as an intelligent braggart to his later explorations of spirituality, love, and adulthood, he has always taken it upon himself to explore uncharted territory.

SELECTIVE DISCOGRAPHY:

Can I Borrow a Dollar? (Relativity, 1992); Resurrection (Relativity, 1994); One Day It'll All Make Sense (Relativity, 1997); Like Water for Chocolate (MCA, 2000); Electric Circus (MCA, 2002).

joe schloss

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common

com·mon / ˈkämən/ • adj. (-mon·er , -mon·est ) 1. occurring, found, or done often; prevalent. ∎  (of an animal or plant) found or living in relatively large numbers; not rare. ∎  ordinary; of ordinary qualities; without special rank or position: the dwellings of common people. ∎  (of a quality) of a sort or level to be generally expected: common decency. ∎  of the most familiar type: the common or vernacular name. ∎  denoting the most widespread or typical species of an animal or plant: the common blue spruce. 2. showing a lack of taste and refinement; vulgar. 3. shared by, coming from, or done by more than one: problems common to both communities. ∎  belonging to, open to, or affecting the whole of a community or the public: common land. ∎  Math. belonging to two or more quantities. 4. Gram. (in Latin and certain other languages) of or denoting a gender of nouns that are conventionally regarded as masculine or feminine, contrasting with neuter. ∎  (in English) denoting a noun that refers to individuals of either sex (e.g., teacher). 5. Prosody (of a syllable) able to be either short or long. 6. Law (of a crime) of relatively minor importance: common assault. • n. 1. a piece of open land for public use, esp. in a village or town. 2. (in the Christian Church) a form of service used for each of a group of occasions. PHRASES: the common good the benefit or interests of all. common ground a point or argument accepted by both sides in a dispute. ∎  ideas or interests shared by different people: artists from different cultural backgrounds found common ground. common knowledge something known by most people. common property a thing or things held jointly. ∎  something known by most people. the common touch the ability to get along with or appeal to ordinary people. in common 1. in joint use or possession; shared: car engines have nothing in common with aircraft engines. 2. of joint interest: the two men had little in common.See also tenancy in common. in common with in the same way as: in common with other officers, I had to undertake guard duties.DERIVATIVES: com·mon·ness n.

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common

common shared by a number of people; belonging to or affected by the whole of a community.
common fame is seldom to blame reputation is generally founded on fact rather than rumour. The saying is recorded in English from the mid 17th century, but a similar idea occurs in a late 16th-century source, H. Lok's Sundry Christian Passions (1597), ‘Though proverb truly say, by fame's affect, God's judgement lightly doth a truth detect.’
Common Law the part of English law that is derived from custom and judicial precedent rather than statutes, and often contrasted with statute law; the body of English law as adopted and adapted by the different States of the US.
common man a representative of the general populace or the masses. The century of the common man is the 20th century; the term derives from a speech by the American Democratic politician Henry Wallace (1888–1965), made during the Second World War.
Common Market a name for the European Economic Community or European Union, used especially in the 1960s and 1970s.
common or garden ordinary. The phrase is recorded in it literal sense (‘the Common or Garden Nightshade’) from the mid 17th century; this extended usage dates from the late 19th century.
Common Prayer the Church of England liturgy, originally set forth in the Book of Common Prayer.
common sense originally an ‘internal’ sense which was regarded as the common bond or centre of the five senses, in which the various impressions received were reduced to the unity of a common consciousness.

See also the Commons.

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common

common adj. XIII. — OF. comun (mod. commun) :- L. commūnis, OL. comoinis, cogn. with OE. ġemǣne, OHG. gimeini (G. gemein), Goth. gamains.
So commonalty †people of a nation, etc. XIII; general body of the community, common people XIV; †the commons XVI. — OF. comunaltē (mod. communauté) — medL. commūnālitās; see -AL 1, -ITY. commoner †burgess, citizen XIV; member of the House of Commons; student or undergraduate not on the foundation of a college XVII. — medL. commūnārius.

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Common

COMMON

Belonging to or pertaining to the general public. Common lands, also known as public lands, are those that are set aside for use by the community at large, such as parks and public recreation areas. Common also means habitual or recurring, such as offenses that are committed frequently or repeatedly. A common thief is one who has been repeatedly convicted oflarceny. Something that is common is owned equally by two or more people, such as a piece of land. Atenancy in commonis an interest in land wherein at least two people share ownership.

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COMMON

COMMON.
1. Owned or shared by members of a community, general, public, free to be used by all: common land, a common language.

2. Ordinary, familiar, everyday: a common spelling mistake.

3. Cheap, inferior, low-class, unrefined, vulgar: as common as muck, a common accent, very common English.

4. In GRAMMAR, not marked in any way: a common noun as opposed to a PROPER noun; common GENDER as opposed to masculine, feminine, or where applicable neuter.

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"COMMON." Concise Oxford Companion to the English Language. . Retrieved August 17, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/common

common

commonAlabaman, Amman, Ammon, Drammen, gammon, Mammon, salmon •Bradman, Caedmon, madman, madmen •flagman, flagmen •trackman, trackmen •hangman, hangmen •chapman, chapmen •cragsman, cragsmen •cracksman, cracksmen, Flaxman •batsman, batsmen •batman, batmen •Tasman •clansman, clansmen, Klansman, Klansmen, landsman, landsmen •backgammon •barman, barmen, Brahman, Carman, Carmen, shaman, Sharman, Tutankhamencraftsman, craftsmen, draftsman, draftsmen, draughtsman, draughtsmen, raftsman, raftsmen •marksman, marksmen •atman •guardsman, guardsmen •leman, Lemmon, lemon, Yemenheadman, headmen, Stedman •Beckmann •bellman, bellmen, Hellman •gentleman, gentlemen •penman, penmen •Helpmann •pressman, pressmen •freshman, freshmen •Welshman, Welshmen •Frenchman, Frenchmen, henchman, henchmen •desman •headsman, headsmen •helmsman, helmsmen •lensman, lensmen •airman, airmen, chairman, chairmen •Bremen, caiman, Damon, Eamon, layman, laymen, stamen •railman, railmen •brakesman, brakesmen •statesman, statesmen •tradesman, tradesmen •salesman, salesmen •gamesman, gamesmen •plainsman, plainsmen •railwayman, railwaymen •highwayman, highwaymen •cacodemon, daemon, demon, Freeman, freemen, Philemon, Riemann, Schliemann, seaman, seamen, semen •Friedman •liegeman, liegemen •Eastman, policeman, policemen •beadsman, beadsmen, seedsman, seedsmen •fieldsman, fieldsmen •wheelsman, wheelsmen •persimmon, Rimmon •pitchman, pitchmen •Bridgman • milkman • Hillman •signalman, signalmen •Lippmann •pitman, pitmen, Whitman •guildsman, guildsmen •kinsman, kinsmen •Betjeman • regimen •clergyman, clergymen •tallyman, tallymen •talisman •Englishman, Englishmen •businessman, businessmen •Cornishman, Cornishmen •journeyman, journeymen •cavalryman, cavalrymen •ferryman, ferrymen •vestryman, vestrymen •dairyman, dairymen •Irishman, Irishmen •quarryman, quarrymen •Orangeman, Orangemen •congressman, congressmen •countryman, countrymen •infantryman, infantrymen •nurseryman, nurserymen •liveryman, liverymen •midshipman, midshipmen •harvestman, harvestmen •serviceman, servicemen •Hyman, Simon •Eichmann •rifleman, riflemen •Feynman, lineman, linemen •Weismann • Wiseman •tribesman, tribesmen •linesman, linesmen •exciseman, excisemen •common, Roscommon •watchman, watchmen •Godman, hodman, hodmen •Hoffman •frogman, frogmen •stockman, stockmen •dolman, dolmen •Scotsman, Scotsmen, yachtsman, yachtsmen •Boltzmann • Cotman •bondsman, bondsmen •Bormann, doorman, doormen, foreman, foremen, Mormon, Norman, storeman, storemen •Kauffmann • Walkman •horseman, horsemen, Norseman, Norsemen •sportsman, sportsmen •oarsman, oarsmen, outdoorsman, outdoorsmen •swordsman •longshoreman, longshoremen •bowmen, cowman, cowmen, ploughman (US plowman), ploughmen (US plowmen) •councilman, councilmen •Hauptmann • Housman •groundsman, groundsmen, roundsman, roundsmen, townsman, townsmen •warehouseman, warehousemen •Bowman, Oklahoman, Oman, omen, Roman, showman, showmen, yeoman, yeomen •coachman, coachmen •Coleman, Goldman •nobleman, noblemen •postman, postmen •spokesman, spokesmen •boatman, boatmen •lifeboatman, lifeboatmen •dragoman •crewman, crewmen, energumen, human, ichneumon, Newman, numen, Schumann, subhuman, Trueman •woman •woodman, woodmen •bookman, bookmen •Pullman •Bushman, Bushmen •footman, footmen •woodsman, woodsmen •ombudsman, ombudsmen •clanswoman •backwoodsman, backwoodsmen •charwoman •craftswoman, draughtswoman •gentlewoman • Welshwoman •Frenchwoman •airwoman, chairwoman •laywoman • stateswoman •saleswoman • policewoman •kinswoman • Englishwoman •businesswoman • Irishwoman •congresswoman • countrywoman •jurywoman • servicewoman •tribeswoman •Scotswoman, yachtswoman •forewoman • horsewoman •sportswoman • oarswoman •townswoman • spokeswoman •Dutchwoman • frontierswoman •alderwoman • anchorwoman •washerwoman • Ulsterwoman •churchwoman • acumen • summon •Dutchman, Dutchmen •gunman, gunmen •busman, busmen, dustman, dustmen •huntsman, huntsmen •Newcomen • Layamon •privateersman, privateersmen, steersman, steersmen •frontiersman, frontiersmen •fireman • Dobermann • lumbermen •abdomen • Omdurman •alderman, aldermen •Turkoman •cellarman, cellarmen, telamon •cyclamen •Highlandman, Highlandmen •Solomon • trawlerman • cinnamon •Chinaman, Chinamen •trencherman, trenchermen •fisherman, fishermen, militiaman, militiamen •washerman, washermen •ottoman •waterman, watermen •Ulsterman, Ulstermen •Burman, firman, German, Herman, sermon, Sherman •churchman, churchmen •turfman, turfmen •Bergman •kirkman, kirkmen, workman, workmen •Perelman •herdsman, herdsmen

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"common." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 17 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"common." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 17, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/common-0

"common." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved August 17, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/common-0