Hip hop is a cultural movement that began amongst urban , African American & Puerto Rican youth in New York and has since spread around the world. The four main elements of hip-hop are MCing, DJing, graffiti art, and breakdancing. Some consider beatboxing the fifth element of hip hop; others might add political activism, hip hop fashion, hip hop slang or other elements as important facets of hip hop. The term has since come to be a synonym for hip hop music and rap to mainstream audiences. They are not, however, interchangeable - rapping (MCing) is the vocal expression of lyrics in sync to a rhythm beneath it; along with DJing, rapping is a part of hip hop music.
Hip hop music
Main article: Hip hop music
U-Roy, one of the earliest Jamaican dub musicians
Hip hop music is related to the griots of West Africa, traveling singers and poets whose musical style is reminiscent of hip hop. Some griot traditions came with slaves to the New World. The most important direct influence on the creation of hip hop music is the Jamaican style called dub, which arose in the 1960s. Dub musicians such as King Tubby isolated percussion breaks because dancers at clubs (sound systems) preferred the energetic rhythms of the often-short breaks. Soon, performers began speaking in sync with these rhythms. In 1967, Jamaican immigrants such as DJ Kool Herc brought dub to New York City, where it evolved into hip hop. In Jamaica, dub music has diversified into genres like ragga and dancehall.
DJ Kool Herc
Herc was one of the most popular DJs in early 70s New York, playing at neighborhood parties (his first gig was on Sedgewick Avenue, Bronx) (block parties), and he quickly switched from using reggae records to funk, rock and disco, since the New York audience did not particularly like reggae. Herc and other DJs extended the percussive breaks using an audio mixer and two records, and other mixing techniques soon developed. Performers spoke while the music played; these were originally called MCs (Master of Ceremonies or Mic Controller) and, later, rappers. These early rappers focused on introducing themselves and others in the audience, with some improvisation and a simple four-count beat, along with a simple chorus. Later MCs added more complex lyrics, often humorous, and incorporated sexual themes. By the end of the 1970s, hip hop music was beginning to become a major commercial and artistic force and had spread throughout the United States. During the 1980s and 1990s, hip hop gradually became mainstream (a transition usually considered to have been completed in 1992) in the US and, to a lesser degree, worldwide.
Main article: Graffiti art
One of the earliest and most important graffiti crews was the Savage Seven (later, as they increased in number, the Black Spades), who included future old school rap star Afrika Bambaataa. The Black Spades were followed by many other crews and graffiti art arose to mark boundaries between them, among other purposes. Graffiti as an art had been known since at least the 1950s, but began developing in earnest in 1969 and flourished during the 1970s. Originality was very important for graffiti artists; for example, in 1972, one well-respected graffiti artist called Super Kool replaced the dispersion cap on his spray paint with a wider one, found on a can of oven cleaner. This is still a common practice. By 1976, graffiti artists like Lee Quinones began painting whole murals using advanced techniques. Some of the most memorable of Quinones' work was political in nature, calling for an end to the arms race, for example.
Main article: DJing
Main article: Breakdancing
Breakdancing, known formally as B-boying or B-girling by its practitioners and followers, is a dynamic style of dance that is part of Hip Hop culture and emerged out of the Hip-Hop movement in the South Bronx of New York City during the late 20th century. Breakdancing is one of the many elements of Hip Hop culture. Commonly associated with, but distinct from, "Popping", which is one element of the Funk Styles that evolved independently in California during the late 20th century.
Main article: MCing
Main article: Beatboxing
Beatboxing, considered by many to be the 'fifth element,' is the vocal percussion of hip hop culture. It is primarily concerned with the art of creating beats, rhythms, and melodies using the human mouth.
Beatboxing is hip hop's vocal percussion whose early pioneers include Doug E Fresh, Biz Markie, and Buffy from the Fat Boys. The term 'beatboxing' is derived from the mimicry of the first generation of drum machines, then known as beatboxes.
The art form enjoyed a strong presence in the 80s. In many ways, beatboxing fell off the radar along with breakdancing in the late 80s, and almost slipped even deeper than the underground. Bboxing has been enjoying a resurgence which began in the late 90s, marked by the release of Rahzel's "Make the Music 2000." The internet has greatly aided the rebirth of modern beatboxing--on a global level never seen before--with thousands of beatboxers from over a dozen countries interacting on UK's Humanbeatbox.com.
The art form has radically evolved extending its reach to include physical theater routines, and has integrated itself into hip hop (and other forms) of theater.
The record producer is an often overlooked component of hip hop, sometimes confused with the DJ position. This is a misconception because not all DJs make beats, and not all producers can DJ. Although hip hop's original music consisted solely of the DJ's recycled breakbeats and other vinyl record pieces, the advent of the drum machine allowed hip hop musicians to develop partially original scores. Drum set sounds could be playe
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