From a Bronx Party to a Global Force

From a Bronx Party to a Global Force
Hip Hop's History & Evolution
Many, many people with an internet connection, including yours truly, spent a fair amount of time on 11 August 2017 entranced by a Google Doodle. This wasn't your typical such creation, no short animation linking to a Wikipedia entry. This particular Doodle was a full-blown, interactive immersive into the world of [...]

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The story of the funky drummer:

The story of the funky drummer:
The most exploited man in modern music
  “Give the drummer some”, said the voice of funk soul pioneer James Brown as it rang out above his band on the 1967 recording of Cold Sweat. The drummer in question was Clyde Stubblefield who was said to be one of the most sampled and exploited musicians of all time. His playing on [...]

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A History of American Protest Music

A History of American Protest Music
Nina Simone Sang What Everybody Was Thinking
On June 12, 1963, in the early morning after president John F. Kennedy’s Civil Rights address, activist Medgar Evers was shot in the back as he stood in the driveway of his Mississippi home. He was returning from a meeting with NAACP lawyers and officials, and carried an armload of [...]

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The origins of hip hop

The origins of hip hop
Inside Kool Herc’s parties
When we hear “hip-hop” or “rap” (we hardly hear just one of those term separately, because of their common origins), we talk about a musical and cultural phenomenon that covers at least five decades, now consolidated as a real music trend: Kanye West, Jay-Z and before them Eminem, Dr. Dre, [...]

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#HipHopDance

#HipHopDance
From Bboying to Hip Hop Freestyle Dance
How the B-Boy and B-Girl Became Choreographed Count-By-The-Numbers Dancers Prologue: Ihave a dilemma. Every time I pull up old clips of Def Comedy Jam’s first season all I see is the comedians. Which is cool. Bernie Mack made his name with “I ain’t scared of you mothafuckas” on that jawn. But we [...]

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PHASE 2’s Party Flyers

PHASE 2’s Party Flyers
HIP HOP's VISUAL LANGUAGE
In the South Bronx in the 1970s, hip-hop culture was just beginning to form at large musical gatherings called jams. In abandoned buildings packed with people, a group of DJs developed techniques like sampling, breakbeats, scratching, cutting, and backspinning. But news of a jam didn’t spread by word of mouth [...]

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From Prodigy to KDot

From Prodigy to KDot
Photographer Estevan Oriol
Legendary photographer Estevan Oriol has taken more than a half-million photos throughout a career that has spanned over 25 years. The legendary photographer sat down with us to talk about his most iconic shots. Born at Saint John’s hospital in Santa Monica, Estevan Oriol, a Mexican-American photographer and music video director, [...]

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DO THE RIGHT THING

DO THE RIGHT THING
THE ENDURING URGENCY AT 30
Spike Lee’s third feature, “Do the Right Thing,” returns to movie theatres this weekend in honor of the thirtieth anniversary of its release. Lee dedicated the movie, in the end credits, to the families of Eleanor Bumpurs, Michael Griffith, Arthur Miller, Edmund Perry, Yvonne Smallwood, and Michael Stewart—six black people, five [...]

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PROJECT SURREALISM

PROJECT SURREALISM
THE URBAN SPACES OF LA HAINE
As a season of 1990s cinema kicks off at BFI Southbank, we look back at the suburban landscapes of Mathieu Kassovitz’s vital portrait of the Paris suburbs Mathieu Kassovitz’s award-winning drama, La Haine (1995), follows a day in the life of three young men from immigrant families in a poverty-stricken Paris suburb. Fizzing [...]

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FIGHT THE POWER

FIGHT THE POWER
THE MOST PROVOCATIVE SONG EVER !
In the first episode of Ava DuVernay’s Netflix drama When They See Us, a couple of dozen black teenagers pour into Central Park on the night of 19 April, 1989. Five of them will end up spending years in jail for a rape they didn’t commit, but for now they’re [...]

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