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Hip Hop artists

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Dj Stavros and Shawan Na - Hip Hop artists

Dj Stavros and Hip Hop and R&B Artist Shawan Na stops by Rational Alchemy for an interview with Nigel Aves to talk about the creation of music, art, and the people behind the masks.

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The history of hip-hop music is rooted in African American and Hispanic communities in the Bronx, New York City, during the 1970s. It emerged as a response to social and economic challenges faced by these communities, providing a creative outlet and a means of expression for marginalized youth. Let's take a journey through the key milestones in the history of hip-hop music:

  1. Early Influences (Late 1960s - Early 1970s):
    • The roots of hip-hop can be traced back to African and Caribbean music traditions, as well as spoken-word poetry and street party culture.
    • Jamaican sound system parties, where DJs played records and MCs (Master of Ceremonies) would hype up the crowd, also influenced the development of hip-hop.
  2. DJ Kool Herc and the Birth of Hip-Hop (1970s):
    • On August 11, 1973, DJ Kool Herc (Clive Campbell), a Jamaican immigrant, held a back-to-school party at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the Bronx. This event is often considered the birth of hip-hop.
    • DJ Kool Herc used two turntables to extend the instrumental breaks of funk and soul records, which became the foundation for early hip-hop beats.
    • Emceeing (later known as rapping) was introduced to engage the audience and enhance the party atmosphere.
  3. The Evolution of MCing and Breakdancing (Mid to Late 1970s):
    • As hip-hop gained popularity, MCs began to develop more complex rhymes and storytelling techniques, becoming a focal point of the culture.
    • Breakdancing (B-boying/B-girling) emerged as a competitive and artistic form of street dance, often performed alongside DJ sets.
  4. The Introduction of Hip-Hop Records (Late 1970s):
    • In 1979, the Sugarhill Gang released "Rapper's Delight," one of the first commercially successful hip-hop records. It brought hip-hop to a broader audience and laid the foundation for future mainstream success.
  5. Golden Age of Hip-Hop (1980s - Early 1990s):
    • The 1980s saw the rise of iconic hip-hop figures and groups such as Run-DMC, LL Cool J, Public Enemy, Beastie Boys, and N.W.A.
    • The introduction of sampling technology allowed producers to create innovative beats by using samples from various genres.
    • The music videos on MTV and the emergence of hip-hop on the radio contributed to the genre's mainstream popularity.
  6. Gangsta Rap and West Coast Hip-Hop (Late 1980s - Early 1990s):
    • Gangsta rap, with artists like N.W.A and Ice-T, gained attention for its gritty and explicit lyrics, reflecting the realities of inner-city life and social issues.
    • West Coast hip-hop, pioneered by artists like Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, and Tupac Shakur, emerged as a distinct sub-genre with its unique sound and storytelling.
  7. East Coast vs. West Coast Rivalry (1990s):
    • The 1990s saw the intensification of a rivalry between East Coast and West Coast hip-hop scenes, fueled by media and fan speculation.
    • The rivalry culminated in the deaths of two of the most influential artists of the era, Tupac Shakur (1996) and The Notorious B.I.G. (1997).
  8. Mainstream Success and Global Influence (Late 1990s - Early 2000s):
    • Hip-hop continued to gain popularity worldwide, with artists like Jay-Z, Eminem, and Missy Elliott achieving mainstream success.
    • Hip-hop also diversified into sub-genres like alternative hip-hop, conscious hip-hop, and crunk.
  9. Contemporary Hip-Hop (Mid-2000s - Present):
    • Hip-hop remains a dominant force in popular music, with artists like Kanye West, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, and Cardi B achieving massive success.
    • The genre has continued to evolve and incorporate elements from various musical styles, reflecting the ever-changing cultural landscape.

Hip-hop music has not only transformed the music industry but also had a profound impact on fashion, language, dance, and societal norms, making it one of the most influential cultural movements of the modern era.

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