By: Alexus Matthews, Dominique Ewing, Leah Dantzler, Nyla David , & Jordan Hill
Over the last ten years, hip-hop has become a major genre of popular music. Throughout the era of the 2010’s, the entire aspect of rap from the production of it to the lyrics of the music itself had been completely reinvited and revamped so its platform could successfully gain a larger audience. The revamping of this genre was deemed successful due to its transition from a type of music that wasn’t even accepted from something that was too dangerous to now being a genre heard all over the world. The popular artists in this decade that really aided in the development of the genre were names like Drake, Nicki Minaj, Kendrick Lamar, Asap MOB, Kanye West, and many more. Previous decades like the late 80’s and early 90’s were seen as the Golden Age of hip-hop, but this decade was seen as The Bronze Age: the turning point of hip-hop that was as innovative as past influences but created additional factors that helped evolve and develop the genre in the future.
Hip-hop have developed in many countries and produced successful artists like Kendrick Lamar, Lil Baby, and Drake. Music listeners have witnessed a change in history, especially in the 2010s. In the decade women has become more involved in the hip hop industry. Many female rappers have became successful, such as Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, Megan Thee Stallion, Princess Nokia, Rico Nasty, Tierra Whack, Noname, Rapsody, etc. Women have reshaped, reworked, and reinvented the archetype of female rappers in the past ten years. In the 2010s women proved to the world that they can rap about anything they want.
The top hip-hop artists of the decade, using Billboard’s Top Artists list as a basis:
Nicki Minaj VS Cardi B
Cardi skyrocketed to fame with her single “Bodak Yellow” in 2017. However, Cardi insisted the feud was fabricated by fans in an interview with Apple Music’s Beats 1 in April 2018. In August 2018, Minaj told Beats 1 that she didn’t think Cardi was receptive to criticism.“To me, she may have taken an issue with things that I’ve said, but I’m not going to bite my tongue,” Minaj explained. The feud escalated when Cardi B and Minaj got into a physical altercation at Harper’s Bazaar party at New York Fashion Week in September 2018.
Hip-hop music was developed in the late 1970s; however, only few people knew about its existence as it was created in the most unprivileged districts of New York City by African Americans. Hip-hop involves break dancing, rhyming, beatboxing, clothing, and graffiti art. Hip-hop has been an amazement since its presence, and it has been used as a tool to shape culture and society through history. Hip hop artists communicate through their music. They use their music to express their opinions, perspectives, and feelings in their songs. The artists have been influencing the lives and activities of the society. The messages of hip hop tells stories of how life is in the streets dealing with crime, violence, and drugs. Hip-hop has a major influence on the black community in the world. Hip-hop is apparent as more than just music, but it’s a culture. Hip-hop brings powerful messages as it speaks to its listeners. Mainly because it’s a platform for artists to express their opinions about society, and they use it to address social issues that young black people have, such as racism, inequality, and unjust governance.
2010 had many iconic dances trending globally. Dancing was a form of expression that really unified the world. From Williow Smith’s “Whip my Hair” to people teaching each other how to Dougie, 2010 marked a year of aggressive dance statements. Since then throughout the years, Beyonce, Drake,The Migos, and move have coupled their hit songs with viral dance trends that have lasted for years
Hip Hop is accessible you can tell your life story through performing, rhyming or poetic talent. This story is often relatable to your community story.
During 2009, many hiphop artist endorsed Obama’s campaign, because of this young people in America have taken up Obama’s sense of community responsibility and his subsequent call to service and used their music to do so. Going into 2010 and on many used their music to inspire a sense of community.
Drake’ Album “Thank Me Later” was released on June15,2010, by Young Money Entertainment, Cash Money Records, and Universal Motown Records. It featured other popular artists such as Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Kanye West and many others. Thematically, the album focuses on Drake’s introduction to fame and his romances over the course of confessional, club-oriented, and sexual songs. Drake’s emotionally transparent, self-deprecating lyrics are delivered in both rapped and subtly sung verses, and explore feelings of doubt, insecurity, and heartbreak.Following an anticipated release, Thank Me Later debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 with first week sales of 447,000 copies in the US, eventually selling 1.8 million copies there by August 2015. It also topped the Canadian Albums Chart and attained a platinum certification in Canada in its debut week. All four of the album’s singles became top 40 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, with “Find Your Love” reaching number five. It later ranked as one of 2010’s best albums.
Kanye West album “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” was the fifth studio album he did. It was released on November 22, 2010, by Def Jam Recordings and Roc-A-Fella Records. In its first week of release, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 and sold 496,000 copies, eventually reaching two million for a double platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy was an immediate and widespread critical success, and was named the best album of 2010 in many publications’ year-end lists, including the annual Pazz & Jop poll of American critics nationwide. The album also won Best Rap Album at the 2012 Grammy Awards but was not nominated for Album of the Year, which was viewed as a “snub” by several media outlets. The album’s hit single “All of the Lights” won Best Rap Song and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration. Widely considered West’s best album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy has ranked in several professionally curated lists as the best album of the 2010s and among the greatest of all time according to NME and Rolling Stone.
Eminem’s Album recovery was the seventh studio album released by him.It was released on June 18, 2010, by Aftermath Entertainment, Shady Records, and Interscope Records. He collaborated with other artists such as Pink, Lil Wayne, Slaughterhouseand Rihanna for the album. Recovery featured more introspective and emotional content than its predecessor and the theme of the album revolved around his positive changes, anxiety, and emotional drives. Recovery debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, with first week sales of 741,000 copies. It also reached number one in 16 other countries. It spawned four singles; “Not Afraid“, “Love the Way You Lie“, “No Love“, and “Space Bound“, with the former two both reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100. Recovery was the best-selling album worldwide and best-selling album in the US of 2010. In August 2011, Recovery was certified triple platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). At the 2011 Grammy Awards, it was nominated for Album of the Year, Song of the Year and Record of the Year; the latter two were for “Love the Way You Lie”. The album earned Eminem American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards and Grammy Awards.
Streaming music online became the new norm and changed the way artists release and construct projects. Soundcloud is one streaming service that became popular in the 2010’s. Many popular rappers today have become popular from uploading mixtapes to Soundcloud including 21 savage, Migos, and Post Malone.
Nicki Minaj’s rise in 2010 influenced a rise in more female rappers including Megan Thee Stallion, Cardi B, and The City Girls. These artists became popular through music streaming services and social media.
Celebrities have always been key factors to reintroducing old fashion trends but also in creating new trends by wearing new found brands to show the rest of society. Prominent figures like Pharrell, A$AP Rocky, Rihanna, and Kanye West have really paved the way for creating new fashion trends that society has never seen before. Fashion trends of this era fall into the categories of high-end, streetwear, the hypebeast movement, and footwear. Color palettes of traditional clothing changed from the typical red, green, and yellow to the brighter neons and animated graphic tees.
Of course we saw OG brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, and Prada. But some new high-end names that were introduced from 2010 hip-hop were brands like Versace, Yves St. Laurent, Rick Owens, Balmain, Raf Simmons, Balenciaga, Mason Margiela, Givenchy, etc.
Bathing Ape, Billionaire Boys Club, Pyrex, Supreme, Obey, Snapbacks, Off white, Ti$A VI$ION, Comme des Garcon, Yeezy, Stussy, Thrasher, Fear of God, Carhartt, and many more have been seen widely across the 2010s era.
Footwear choices ranged from Gucci Slides to Versace Chain Reacts. Popular footwear brands seen during this time were Reebok, Adidas, Nike, Balenciaga, Dolce & Gabanna, Louis Vuitton, Vans, etc.
2010’s Hip-Hop allowed artists to connect more with their fans by having an online presence. The rise of social media and streaming services contributed to Hip-Hop’s success in the 2010’s. Rappers like Drake, Nicki Minaj, and Kendrick Lamar started becoming popular, and many of their songs told stories about life in the streets, love, and other topics. This era also had more female rappers who changed the Hip-Hop culture. A Nielsen’s Music year-end report, showed that in 2017 R&B/Hip-Hop was the biggest music genre in the U.S., in terms of consumption.