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11 NOVEMBER 2016

Rap & Hip-Hop was born in 1973 at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue

"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 [2].

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"

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1970s1973African AmericanAfrika Bambaataaappropriation • b-boys • b-girls • Becky Blanchard • black culture • block party • break dancing • breakbeat • breakdance • breakdancing • Cindy Campbell • civil rights movement • Clive Campbell • cultural expression • dance party • DJ • DJ Grandmaster Flash • DJing • extended break • gospel • graffiti art • graffiti artists • Grandmaster Flash • hip-hophip-hop backbeat • hip-hop culture • hip-hop music • hip-hop performance • hip-hop scene • jazz • Kool DJ Herc • l960s • MC • MCing • music history • musical form • New York City • radio disc jockey • rap • rap artist • rap music • rapperreggae • rhyme • rhythmic music • Sedgwick Avenue • skillz • soul • South Bronx • spoken word • Sugarhill Gang • turntable • turntable technique • turntablist • vinyl record • West Bronx • working classworking class cultureyouth culture

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
05 SEPTEMBER 2014

The Largest Vocabulary in Hip hop

"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)

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benchmark • big vocabulary • choice of words • corpus • cultural expressiondatasetdictiondigital humanitiesEnglish languageexpressive repertoireexpressive vocabulary • extensive vocabulary • Herman Melville • hip-hop • lexicomane • lyrics • Matt Daniels • Moby Dick • musicnaming • pimp • raprapperresearch method • sesquipedalian • slang • speaking vocabulary • token analysis • use of wordsvocabularyWilliam Shakespeareword heapwords

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
10 FEBRUARY 2013

第29届北京奥运会开幕式 (Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony)

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CONTRIBUTOR

Guannan (cassie) Du
24 FEBRUARY 2012

Contents of John Peel's Record Collection to be Made Public

"One of the most revered record collections in the world – that of music legend John Peel – is to be made into an interactive online museum for the public, as part of The Space – a new experimental digital service organised and funded by the Arts Council and the BBC. ...

'It is the first step in creating an interactive online museum with access to the entire collection, which is one of the most important archives in modern music history.' (Tom Barker, Director, John Peel Centre for Creative Arts)

'The idea is to digitally recreate John's home studio and record collection, which users will be able to interact with and contribute to, whilst viewing Peel's personal notes, archive performances and new filmed interviews with musicians.' (Frank Prendergast–Eye Film and Television's Creative Director)

Sheila Ravenscroft, John Peel's wife and Patron of the John Peel Centre for Creative Arts said: 'We're very happy that we've finally found a way to make John's amazing collection available to his fans, as he would have wanted. This project is only the beginning of something very exciting'."

(The John Peel Centre for Creative Arts, 23 February 2012)

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7 inch vinyl • archivesArts Council (UK)BBCCDcollectionconnoisseurshipcreative artscritical perspectivecultural expression • digital service • disc jockeyDJ • experimental digital service • Eye Film and Television • fans • filmed interviews • home studio • indie rockindie scene • interactive online museum • interactive presentationJohn PeelLPmusic • music collection • music historymusic singles • online museum • record • record collection • recreationretrospective • Sheila Ravenscroft • simulation • technological solutions • television project • The John Peel Centre for Creative Arts • The Space (service)UKvinyl recordvirtual museum

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
31 MAY 2011

Adam Curtis: the network ecology myth

"The new series, called All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace, takes complicated ideas and turns them into entertainment by the use of the vertigo–inducing intellectual leaps, choppy archive material and disorienting music with which all Curtis fans are familiar. The central idea leads Curtis on a journey, taking in the chilling über–individualist novelist Ayn Rand, former chairman of the Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan, the 'new economy', hippy communes, Silicon Valley, ecology, Richard Dawkins, the wars in Congo, the lonely suicide in a London squat of the mathematical genius who invented the selfish gene theory, and the computer model of the eating habits of the pronghorn antelope.

You can see why Zoe Williams once wrote that, while watching one of Curtis's programmes, 'I kept thinking the dog was sitting on the remote. ...'

Now he has moved on to machines, but it starts with nature. 'In the 1960s, an idea penetrated deep into the public imagination that nature is a self–regulating ecosystem, there is a natural order,' Curtis says. 'The trouble is, it's not true–as many ecologists have shown, nature is never stable, it's always changing. But the idea took root and spread wider–people started to believe there is an underlying order to the entire world, to how society is structured. Everything became part of a system, like a computer; no more hierarchies, freedom for all, no class, no nation states.' What the series shows is how this idea spread into the heart of the modern world, from internet utopianism and dreams of democracy without leaders to visions of a new kind of stable global capitalism run by computers. But we have paid a price for this: without realising it we, and our leaders, have given up the old progressive dreams of changing the world and instead become like managers–seeing ourselves as components in a system, and believing our duty is to help that system balance itself. Indeed, Curtis says, 'The underlying aim of the series is to make people aware that this has happened–and to try to recapture the optimistic potential of politics to change the world.'

The counterculture of the 1960s, the Californian hippies, took up the idea of the network society because they were disillusioned with politics and believed this alternative way of ordering the world was based on some natural order. So they formed communes that were non–hierarchical and self–regulating, disdaining politics and rejecting alliances. (Many of these hippy dropouts later took these ideas mainstream: they became the Silicon Valley entrepreneurs who decided that computers could liberate everyone and save the world.)...

He draws a parallel with those 1970s communes. 'The experiments with them all failed, and quickly. What tore them apart was the very thing that was supposed to have been banished: power. Some people were more free than others – strong personalities dominated the weak, but the rules didn't allow any organised opposition to the suppression because that would be politics.' As in the commune, so in the world: 'These are the limitations of the self–organising system: it cannot deal with politics and power. And now we're all disillusioned with politics, and this machine–organising principle has risen up to be the ideology of our age.'"

(Katharine Viner, 6 May 2011, Guardian)

Episode 1: 'All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace: Love and Power', First broadcast BBC Two, 9:00PM Mon, 23 May 2011
Episode 2: 'All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace: The Use and Abuse of Vegetational Concepts', First broadcast BBC Two, 9:00PM Mon, 30 May 2011
Episode 3: 'All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace: The Monkey In The Machine and the Machine in the Monkey', First broadcast BBC Two, 9:00PM Mon, 06 June 2011

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1960s1970sabstract modelabstractionAdam Curtis • Alan Greenspan • All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace • archive footageAyn RandBBC2Bill MurrayblogsCarmen Hermosillochange • commune • computer model • computer utopianism • confessional memoirs • control societyconvergencecounterculturecultural expressioncyberspacedemocracydigital cultureecologyemotions become commodified • Esther Rantzen • evolution • expressions of power • Facebookfreedom • Georgia • global capitalism • hierarchical structures • hierarchies • hierarchy • hippy communes • hippy dropouts • hyper-consumerismideologyideology of the timeindividualisminternet utopianism • Kyrgyzstan • Loren Carpenter • machines • Mayfair Set • mercantilist economy • modern world • natural order • network ecologynetworked societynetworksnon-hierarchical • non-hierarchical societies • orderingPongpopular culture • punchdrunk • reflexive modernisationRichard Dawkinsscientific ideasself-organising systemself-regulating • self-regulating ecosystem • selfish gene theory • Silicon Valleysocial experimentssocial mediasocialist realismsociety • Soviet realism • stability • stable order • Stakhanovites • structuresystems theorytechnology convergencetelevision documentary • TUC • TwitterUkraineunderlying orderunstable • Westminster • White House • Zoe Williams

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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