"Hip-hop music is generally considered to have been pioneered in New York's South Bronx in 1973 by Jamaican-born Kool DJ Herc. At a Halloween dance party thrown by his younger sister, Herc used an innovative turntable technique to stretch a song's drum break by playing the break portion of two identical records consecutively. The popularity of the extended break lent its name to 'breakdancing'--a style specific to hip-hop culture, which was facilitated by extended drumbreaks played by DJs at New York dance parties. By the mid-1970s, New York's hip-hop scene was dominated by seminal turntablists DJ Grandmaster Flash, Afrika Bambaataa, and Herc. The rappers of Sugarhill Gang produced hip-hop's first commercially successful hit, 'Rapper's Delight,' in 1979'.
Rap itself--the rhymes spoken over hip-hop music--began as a commentary on the ability--or 'skillz'--of a particular DJ while that DJ was playing records at a hip-hop event. MCs, the forerunners of today's rap artists, introduced DJs and their songs and often recognized the presence of friends in the audience at hip-hop performances. Their role was carved out by popular African-American radio disc jockeys in New York during the latel96Os, who introduced songs and artists with spontaneous rhymes. The innovation of MCs caught the attention of hip-hop fans. Their rhymes lapped over from the transition period between the end of one song and the introduction of the next to the songs themselves. Their commentaries moved solely from a DJ's skillz to their own personal experiences and stories. The role of MCs in performances rose steadily, and they began to be recognized as artists in their own right .
The local popularity of the rhythmic music served by DJs at dance parties and clubs, combined with an increase in 'b-boys'--breakdancers--and graffiti artists and the growing importance of MCs, created a distinctive culture known as hip-hop. For the most part, hip-hop culture was defined and embraced by young, urban, working-class African-Americans. Hip-hop music originated from a combination of traditionally African-American forms of music--including jazz, soul, gospel, and reggae. It was created by working-class African-Americans, who, like Herc, took advantage of available tools--vinyl records and turntables--to invent a new form of music that both expressed and shaped the culture of black New York City youth in the 1970s."
(Becky Blanchard, 1999)
2). Information on MCs drawn from the University of Maryland's "Mcing: The Past" and "MCing: The Present" in "A Brief History of Hip-Hop Culture"
The Nick Clegg Apology Song: I'm Sorry (The Autotune Remix); The Shawshank LibDemption [Nick Clegg Resignation Reboot]; RAP BATTLE DAVID CAMERON VS NIGEL FARAGE (PARODY/SPOOF); Cassetteboy vs The Snoopers' Charter; Cassetteboy vs Jeremy Hunt.
"The brief was to create a visual reaction inspired by a chosen sub-culture, in this case, Parkour. Parkour is an urban ‘free-running’ discipline, originated from France. Its aim is for its traceur to overcome obstacles within the path, by adapting physical movement to traverse the urban environment, using physical abilities like jumping and climbing. The intention of this animation is to capture the movement and physical beauty of the traceur while traversing through the environment. This viral is aimed to create an awareness for parkour as an artform, rather than a sport. Credits to Noel Lee for filming and editing, and lecturer Kevin Barrios for the inspiration"
(Serene Teh, 2010)
"Literary elites love to rep Shakespeare's vocabulary: across his entire corpus, he uses 28,829 words, suggesting he knew over 100,000 words and arguably had the largest vocabulary, ever.
I decided to compare this data point against the most famous artists in hip hop. I used each artist's first 35,000 lyrics. That way, prolific artists, such as Jay–Z, could be compared to newer artists, such as Drake.
35,000 words covers 3–5 studio albums and EPs. I included mixtapes if the artist was just short of the 35,000 words. Quite a few rappers don't have enough official material to be included (e.g., Biggie, Kendrick Lamar). As a benchmark, I included data points for Shakespeare and Herman Melville, using the same approach (35,000 words across several plays for Shakespeare, first 35,000 of Moby Dick).
I used a research methodology called token analysis to determine each artist's vocabulary. Each word is counted once, so pimps, pimp, pimping, and pimpin are four unique words. To avoid issues with apostrophes (e.g., pimpin' vs. pimpin), they're removed from the dataset. It still isn't perfect. Hip hop is full of slang that is hard to transcribe (e.g., shorty vs. shawty), compound words (e.g., king shit), featured vocalists, and repetitive choruses.
It's still directionally interesting. Of the 85 artists in the dataset, let's take a look at who is on top."
(Matt Daniels, May 2014)
"It is with great sadness that we confirm that musician, rapper, activist and director Adam 'MCA' Yauch, founding member of Beastie Boys and also of the Milarepa Foundation that produced the Tibetan Freedom Concert benefits, and film production and distribution company Oscilloscope Laboratories, passed away in his native New York City this morning after a near–three–year battle with cancer. He was 47 years old."
Fig.1 Music video by The Beastie Boys performing "Gratitude". (C) 2009 Capitol Records, LLC [recorded in 1992 in Rotorua, Aotearoa New Zealand].