Hip hop music
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Hip hop music, also known as rap music, is a style of music which came into existence in the United States during the mid-1970s, and became a large part of modern pop culture during the 1980s. It consists of two main components: rapping (MCing) and DJing (production and scratching). Along with hip hop dance (notably breakdancing) and urban inspired art, or notably graffiti, these compose the four elements of hip hop, a cultural movement that was initiated by inner-city youth, mostly African Americans and Latinos in New York City, in the early 1970s.
Hip hop music originated within early-1970s block parties in New York City, specifically African American and Hispanic sections of The Bronx, as an alternative to ethnic gangs that proliferated during that era. These large, often outdoor parties were thrown by owners of loud and sometimes expensive stereo equipment, which they would use for community functions, or to compete among themselves in a manner similar to Jamaican sound systems.
Rap music emerged from block parties after DJs isolated and looped percussion breaks favored among dancers. Later, MCs began speaking over the beats in a manner similar to Jamaican toasting. Lil Rodney Cee, of Funky Four Plus One More and Double Trouble, cites Cowboy, of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, as, "the first MC that I know of...He was the first MC to talk about the DJ." (Toop)
On August 11, 1973, Jamaican-born DJ Kool Herc was a DJ and Emcee at a party in the recreation room of 1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the Bronx, adjacent to the Cross-Bronx Expressway. This location is ofen referred to as the "Birthplace of Hip Hop," though the genre actually developed in several places in the 1970s.