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The Evolution of Rap Music. Jamie Webster, Gail Smythe, Ameche’ Gomes. Origin of Rap Music. The history of rap music has its roots since the days of slavery. This form of music was an outlet originally for the pain and suffering experienced by slaves.

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The Evolution of Rap Music

Jamie Webster, Gail Smythe, Ameche’ Gomes


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Origin of Rap Music

  • The history of rap music has its roots since the days of slavery. This form of music was an outlet originally for the pain and suffering experienced by slaves.

  • Although rap music has been around for centuries, it made a comeback in 1975 in New York.


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Rapper’s Delight

  • The premiere record with a rap label was Rapper’s Delight by Sugar Hill.

  • Musical elements in this song included: light guitars, high-hat drumming, and hand claps over very deep funk base line.


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A Growing Industry

  • In 1984, the white population was turned on to rap music.

  • The two races were combined in “Walk This Way” by Aerosmith and Run DMC.

  • With the growth of white audiences came the onset of white rap performers.


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A New Wave

  • Since the 1980s, the artists of this early form of rap music were young black men having white producers.

  • The first lyrics of this new music genre tried to show the ‘blackness’ the artist by using foreign, sexually charged, and criminal underworld against which the norms of white society.


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Public Enemy

  • The first rap group whose music was not formed on inner city streets, but in the middle class of Long Island.

  • This music was about the unequal treatment of police toward blacks and they believed blacks still did not belong in white America.

  • ‘FIGHT THE POWER’

    “Elvis was a hero to most

    But he never meant shit to me, you see

    Straight up racist that sucker was simple and plain

    Mother fuck him and John Wayne

    Cause I’m black and I’m proud

    I’m ready and hyped, plus I’m amped

    Most of my heroes don’t appear on those stamps

    Sample a look back, you look and find

    Nothing but rednecks for four hundred years if you check”


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Gangsta Rap

  • “A style of rap music associated with urban street gangs and characterized by violent, tough-talking, often misogynistic lyrics” (The free dictionary)

  • One of the most influential groups which are described as gangsta rappers are NWA with their hit “Straight Out of Compton.”


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TakeoverInfluence of Other Music Forms

  • In the modern era, rap is getting more commercial, meaning artist are doing whatever they can to sell records.

  • Many rap artist are choosing to collaborate with artist in the R&B, rock, and even country genres mainly to increase their audience which increases there number of record sales.

  • Many rap artist in the modern era are striving for lyrical complexity by adding metaphors to entertain the audience. Similies are known as “punchlines” to rap artist.

  • Some rap artist such as Nelly and 50 Cent think of rap as just a business now and are doing as many commercial tracks to sell cd’s. Other artist such as the Lox and Shyne refuse to rap about anything other then the streets to sell records.



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Rap’s Future

  • The rap industry is still growing and setting trends all over the world, from clothes to jewelry. Many clothing lines have been started by rap artist such as Rocawear and Sean John.

  • Political issues are also being addressed by some rappers in songs and in the media. For example recently Lil Wayne has a song over Kanye West’s beat for “Damage is Done” where he briefly discusses the event of Hurricane Katrina.


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