Hip- Hop

What is Hip Hop?

“I love it when you call me Big Papa, throw ya hands in the air if yous a true playa” -Biggie Smalls

Hip-Hop is a key music form in black culture. Starting in the 1970s, hip hop has completely changed the society that we live in. From jazz and blues, we moved on to other music forms. To a floetic experience full of wordplay, which will eventually show your true inner gangster. What started as a block party frenzy soon turned into a movement. At these parties, the DJs would scratch the record creating extra percussive beats within the music. From their freestyling to the improvised vocals it became a new art form right then and there.

In the 1970s, the infamous Rappers Delight was released. While I was not alive during this time my grandpa remembers it vividly and my father almost knows all the words to the song. During the 1980s us when the diversification of Hip Hop began. Many started to use drum kits, 808s to bring out the beat more in the music they were creating. True lyricism was created during this time. Rappers wanted to make sure their rhymes were hard hitting and had a particular flow and rhythm. If you did not have bars during this time you were not making it during this time period.

The Golden Era of hip hop was the 1990s of course. You had everything you could want Tupac, Biggie, Snoop Dogg, Little Kim, Public Enemy, and A Tribe Called Quest. You were able to see beef and how it impacted “diss tracks” to this day. You got the smoothness of Snoop and the hard-hitting words of biggie all in one era. Little Kims Seductiveness inspires female rappers to this day to not be afraid of the body they were put in and use it to their advantage in the industry. 

The Big Four of Hip Hop


Emceeing or rapping is the art of taking your words and putting them on a beat in a rhythmic way. I believe the 90s had the best emcees because while they wanted money and paper, they also truly respected the art of writing and creating an experience for the listener. 


From poppin and lockin to many other forms of breakdancing. It is an art form of improvisation to the music being played and musicality through your movements. 

The DJ

The DJ creates the experience between the artist and the crowd. If you do not have a good DJ, people will not listen to your music, or you will get booed off the stage. The DJ is the opening act to the artist performing and sets up the experience before they step foot on the stage. 


Graffiti serves as a contemporary art form. People who partake in graffiti use the street as their canvas to create beautiful pieces or to rep who they are as a person. 

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