Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Comparing 1980's Rap/ Hip Hop to Contemporary Rap/ Hip Hop

The meaning behind the music genre rap has changed a lot since the 1980's. Rap acts such as N.W.A and Public Enemy gave voice to the African American community, making noise to make them recognised in order to reform the way that they we're being treated in the United States of America during the 1980's. Graffiti art, break dancing, rap music, and fashion, hip-hop became the dominant cultural movement of the African American and Hispanic communities in the 1980s. The Hip hop musical genre had a strong influence on pop music in the late 1980s which still continues to the present day.

The explosive and noisy messages the acts like N.W.A was that the African American, and in some instances the Hispanic community had been ignored, taken advantage of and treated unfairly for far too long. The emerging of these acts let the world know that they were no longer going to be pushed around, and making a noisy protest was a great way in order to change public opinion and try and force change. With the rap/hip hop culture being liked and being very successful with both black and white cultures, it gave the minorities within America the voice and confidence to make more of themselves and fight ith the rising culture for equal rights for every citizen of the United States of America. Being a ill-treated minority, the noisy music made the culture become recognisable.

A lot has changed for the Rap/Hip Hop culture in the past 30 odd years. And when thinking of a contemporary version of N.W.A, the one act that came into mind was Jay Z. With African Americans now having equal rights, and not such a minority, the meanings behind rap and hip hop music was forced to change.

The song 'Run this town' by Jay Z is a perfect contemporary example of 80's rap. In stead of making people aware that the African American community was there, Jay Z raps about how they no longer need to be noticed by America, because the African American's now 'run' America. The United States now has an African American President, and African Americans often dominate the music industry, it quite amazing how much America has changed and been molded in the past 30 years. Jaz Z boasts that once they had no voice and we're forced to accept they were un-equal and inferior to white Americans. But now that they have political, social, economical and cultural power, the African American community, in Jay Z's opinion, have climbed to the top of the hierarchy, and now control America.

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