The Golden Era Of Hip Hop: Tupac And Other Musicians
Hip Hop means “a cultural movement that attained widespread popularity in the 1980s and ’90s; also, the backing music for rap, the musical style incorporating rhythmic and/or rhyming speech that became the movement’s most lasting and influential art form.’ When you think of gangster rap, you think artists such as, Tupac, Notorious Big, or even the super group, NWA. Before we get to that, we have to go back and did deep in to the roots of hip hop culture that made the transition to this era of the gangster rap. Hip hop wasn’t always like this it had to be evolved into this cause by the political or any other issues going in the black community. With all these issues going, the people needed an outlet to make themselves be heard and express their feeling on what was currently going on during that time.
Rap or hip hop can be traced completely back to the late 1970s in New York. Hip hop was really popular in the neighborhood for the teens. The music was consisted of beats from R&B, disco and funk. Its gets tiny slang which have a significance, although the language itself may be grammatically wrong and does not sound reasonable. The slang word are often thrown into a rap or two As of today, you see the rapper as the star, and the glue that holds everything together, without the rapper you have nothing. But in the early days the star was the dj. The MC named rappers now just introduced the dj and their mixes. The dj spun the records at the parties with turntables to breaking down two songs and putting them together. As the popularity started to grow due them, doing parties, clubs and the emerging of “b-boys” or break-dancers. The first hip hop song to hit mainstream was “Rappers Delight” by the Sugar Hill Gang in the late 1970s. There other rap pioneers such as Grandmaster Flash, who is known to be the best dj to ever touch a part of turntables, and Kurtis Blow, who is the first rapper to sign a record deal.
By the 1980s to be called the “Golden Age”, there was a drastic change that was waiting to surface and change the game forever. The beats in hip hop were starting being made in a studio with drum machines and samples from old funk and disco records. In year of 1987 the New York duo Eric B. & Rakim released the album Paid in Full, which is one of hip hop’s finest albums to be made as of today in the genre. With this change came with a new wave of rappers such Run-DMC, who were sitting at the top of hip during the timely Cool J, who was hip hop’s first romantic rapper. But the 80 is had its dark sided. In the time the crack academic has struck the nation by storm. It broken neighbors, turning them into almost ghost towns. With this came the police and racial profiling. During this academic crack was major found in the low income black neighborhoods, so that’s where law enforcement would go, it brought tension between the black community and law enforcement. A new style of hip hop emerged when groups like Public Enemy began rapping about political change and putting a hold on injustice and racism.
As the 80s came to an end most crime caused by the crack academic and the racial tension were at an all-time high. The popular styles of the 90s was hardcore rap of New York and the gangsta rap or G- funk, which originated in Los Angeles, California. The most successful of this out of New York was the Wu-Tang Clan, who established one of the first hardcore styles of hip hop when they rapped about their gangster life on beats with samples from martial-arts movies. Although, Los Angeles’ gangsta rap Scene made it go mainstream and changed the tracks of hip hop. Like rappers such as, Ice-T and NWA. Ice-T sampled funk rhythms and rapped about drugs, crime, and dropping out of school in songs like “You Played Yourself”. In the in city of Compton, which was one of LA’s poorest, and most crime filled districts. A group of friends wanted to speak up about the everyday day life in their neighborhood and the injustice and police violence. They called themselves N.W. A (N****zs With Attitude). The group called their style of rap “reality rap”. Ice Cube, Eazy E, and Dr. Dre paved the way as West Coast rap grew in the 1990s Their songs was filled with angry raps included a lot of explicit language, which cause a lot of media attention this controversial raps helped their albums reach the top of the charts. Their golden album “Straight Outta Compton” which took the country by storm with songs like “f**k da police”, where they expression their feeling about the LAPD. That song placed N.W.A. on the
FBI’s radar and labeled hip-hop, and gangsta rap in as America’s real public enemy number one. Sadly, the group unfortunately split. Later Dr Dre, former NWA member partnered up with Suge Knight to start death row records. Death Row Records built an empire around Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and soon to jump onboard Tupac Shakur, and the charismatic. Dr Dre back a pioneer to the west coast sound of G-Funk due his classical album “The Chronic”. Death Row was the breaking records sells becoming the mogulabel of hip hop. Their lyrics were often a reflection of ‘their’ experiences they have had in the neighborhoods.
Back to the east coast, in New York two soon be legends are in emerging, Tupac Shakur and The Notorious BIG (Biggies Smalls). Yes Tupac is originally from Baltimore, Maryland. He was signed to record label and New York, but was dropped due to problems with the law. With Death Row at the top of hip hop Suge knight bailed Tupac out from jail and signed him to Death Row. Tupac dropped his Album “All Eyez On Me, which went platinum. On the east coast in New York, there was Biggie Smalls, who was from
Brokenly, New York. He was part of Sean ‘Puffy”Combs and Bad Boy Records, who also at the top of hip hop. Biggie dropped his debut album ‘Ready to Die” which also went platinum. Both Tupac and Big became close friends, nut in an accident which resulted in Tupac getting shot 6 times broke this friendship after he accused them of setting him up. He later dropped a dissed track called “Hit em Up” targeting Biggie and his record label. This incident caused for the division between West Coast and East Coast rap which cause the east coast vs the west coast. This was rap’s most famous split. As of still today people still discuss personal rap preferences they had of the East Coast versus West Coast. This feud ended in a traumatic way. Both rappers were shot to death. Tupac was shot in a drive by shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada after a Mike Tyson Fight on September 7, 1996. He was shot 6 times and later died two days later at the hospital. Later on March 18, 1997 Biggies Smalls was to death in Los Angeles, California in a drive by shooting after his album release party. The album was called “Life After Death”.
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