Hip-Hop is a rebel yell from the soul. It came from the Bronx, which was literally on fire back in the 70’s with slumlords burning their buildings for insurance money after the construction of the Cross Bronx Expressway dropped property values. People were poor and suffering. They needed an outlet. So they raged.
Hip-Hop rages against the machine. It fights against the system and definitely shouts, “Fuck the police!” Hip-Hop is a haven for the youth and a way out for those desperately searching for one. Hip-Hop is the essence of speaking things into existence. We started with a trap house and now we’re living in a mansion.
Hip-Hop is real. It comes from a place of truth. It comes from the heart. Home is where the heart is and, in hip-hop, where you’re from means everything. Whether you’re from its birthplace in the fiery Bronx, the suburbs of Washington, DC or a trailer park in Alabama, you’ve got to rep your hood.
Hip-Hop is the never ending party and the after party at that. It’s Saturday night at the hottest club with the hottest celebs or a sweat box house party where girls in tight jeans, drinks, smoke and a dope underground DJ are salvation. It’s that moment where the MC drops the music and the whole stadium raps along a capella to his or her hit song.
Hip-Hop is most definitely BARS and dope beats, battles and beef. It’s graffiti on a subway train or breakdancing on cardboard. It’s cutting and scratching on Technics and beat boxing and rapping in the streets.
Hip-Hop is snapbacks and tattoos and fitteds and jerseys. It’s Levi’s and white tees or Yves Saint Lauren and Louis V. It’s sagging your ripped jeans just to show off your Gucci belt or wearing a crisp pair of 501’s around your waist just to keep it thorough. Hip-Hop is anything, as long as it’s authentically you.
Hip-Hop is all of the above and so much more. But, above all, it is the voice of the unheard.
One thing hip-hop most definitely is not is Pop. Hip-Hop may be a global phenomenon but, at its core, it will always be DJ Kool Herc yelling over break beats at a house party to pay the rent like that first house party back in the 70’s when the Bronx was on fire.