Top 10 Interesting Facts About Hip Hop Culture

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Hip hop culture, or simply known as hip-hop, is a cultural movement that started during the late 1960s among African-American youths residing in New York City. It is described by four diverse elements, each representing different manifestations: rap music (oral), turntablism or “DJing” (aural), b-boying (physical) and graffiti art (visual), although the term is often used in a restrictive way to represent hip hop or rap music. It’s also includes hip hop dance.

Hip hop music, also termed as rap, is a music genre consisting of a rhythmic music accompanied by rapping. Hip-hop dance on the other hand refers to a street style dance performed on hip-hop beats. Its famous styles are locking, breaking and popping to name few.

It’s been said that on August 11, 1973, Clive Campbell, a 16-year young boy threw a back –to-school party, where he showcased his skills on the turntables. This party was widely recognized as for the first time, all elements associated with rap music were brought together on one platform. And since then, the date is marked as the “Birth day of Hip Hop”.

Starting its journey from South Bronx in New York City, hip hop culture has spread to both urban and suburban communities throughout the world today. Learn more about its history and evolution below:

1. Clive Campbell or simply known by his stage name “DJ Kool Herc”, is a Jamaican-born American DJ who is considered as the “father” of hip hop.

2. The credit however also goes to block parties of the Ghetto Brothers, when they plugged the amplifier for their instruments and speakers into the lampposts on 163rd Street and Prospect Avenue and used music to break down ethnic barriers.

3. The third in the mention is DJ Afrika Bambaataa of the hip hop collective Zulu Nation, who specified the pillars of hip hop culture and coined terms like: MCing or “Emceein”, DJing or “Deejayin”, B-boying and graffiti writing or “Aerosol Writin”.

4. Another notable mention would be DJ Grandmaster Flash (birth name: Joseph Saddler), who invented the DJ Mixer and also wrote and performed the first rap ever. Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007, becoming the first hip hop act to be so honored.

5. First Rap Song: Worth a mention is “Walk This Way”, a song composed by the American hard rock band Aerosmith, which also won them a Soul Train Music Award for Best Rap – Single. The song was covered by rappers Run–D.M.C. on their 1986 album Raising Hell (rap rock) and it was a big hit.

6. The next in the list would be “Rapture,” a January 1981 single by New York rock band Blondie. The song concludes with a trailing, extensive and tremulous rap by lead singer Deborah Harry. The song was ranked as number 1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100, and is considered the first rap song to do so.

7. Melle Mel, an American hip-hop musician and one of the pioneers of rap as lead rapper and main songwriter for Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, is often credited for being the first rap lyricist to call himself an “MC”.

8. The name “Hip Hop”: Though the elements of Hip Hop existed long ago, the style missed to have a name until Keith “Cowboy” Wiggins named it unconsciously as “Hip Hop”, while chanting it one day when mimicking marching soldiers. He was an MC and a member of seminal group Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. Then the name made its way to the stage via one of his performances, when Furious Five’s appeared with disco bands, and were referred as “hip-hoppers.”

9. Another song “Rapper’s Delight”, by The Sugarhill Gang, released in 1979, begins with the phrase “I said a hip, hop the hippie the hippie to the hip hip hop, a you don’t stop”, tracing “Hip Hop” words in the picture then.

10. Afrika Bambaataa has once said, “DJ Lovebug Starski was the first to use the term to describe the culture as a whole”, with the term first emerging in print in a 1981 Village Voice piece about Bambaataa.

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