"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"
"One of the most influential figures in German rock music, Edgar Froese of Tangerine Dream, has died. Froese, who was 70, suffered a pulmonary embolism and died in Vienna on Tuesday."
(The Guardian, 23 January 2014)
"'The early history of this art was driven by an interest in color. In the eighteenth century, a Jesuit priest, Louis Bertrand Castel, invented the first color organ. Others, including D.D. Jameson, Bainbridge Bishop, and A. Wallace Rimington, created color organs through the next century ."
(Maura McDonnell, 2002)
"This new instrument, known as the 'Grand Letar,' is the invention of Letritia Kandle shown here playing it. She designed it and had it built specially for her. The instrument as 26 strings and a lighting effect that is very new and novel, being he first instrument to change color while it is played.
The string grouping used on the I 'Grand Letar' which has complete harmony has been studied and developed by Miss Kandle over a period of six years, the development being derived from an eighteen string triple–neck Hawaiian guitar which he also designed and had built for her. Miss Kandle has played coast to coast programs over NBC and has done electrical transcription work for RCA. She also has had her own string ensemble for which she did all the arranging.
Miss Kandle demonstrated this instrument at the recent manufacturers convention in New York City."
(Down Beat, 1937)
"Designs New 24 String Guitar", Down Beat Chicago, October, 1937 [http://1.bp.blogspot.com/–RWXEdfUowkI/UKYBHr–Te2I/AAAAAAAABd0/1lOE20w_nC8/s1600/LetritiaDownBeatArticle.jpg]
"Sony Music has unveiled a graphic installation documenting the company's 125 year musical history. Designed by Alex Fowkes, winner of Creative Review's 'One to Watch' in 2011, the Sony Music Timeline runs throughout the central atrium of Sony's open plan Derry Street offices.
The Installation features nearly 1000 names of artists signed to Sony Music and its affiliated labels from the foundation of Columbia Records in 1887 to the present day, including musical icons Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Janis Joplin, The Clash, Micheal Jackson and many many more.
Interspersed among the artist names are certain key developments in technology, musical formats and corporate history – from the invention of early recording cylinders to vinyl, cassette, CD, radio, MTV, the Sony Walkman, the iPod and the introduction of digital streaming services.
The work is organised by decade into 54 columns measuring over 2 meters tall and covering almost 150 square meters of wall space. It uses CNC cut vinyl as the sole medium for the whole installation.
Emma Pike, VP Industry Relations, who commissioned the piece said, 'The brief was to bring the inspiration of our music into the heart of our building and make our office space live and breathe our incredible musical legacy. Alex's beautiful graphics and illustrations do exactly that.'
Sony's partnership with Fowkes is set to continue as the Sony Music Timeline will grow each year with the addition of new artist names signed by the major.'"
(Sony Music, 2012)
Sony Music Timeline Process Video, Design & Art Direction: Alex Fowkes Photography & Video: Rob Antill, Music Production: Joseph Bird.