Hip-hop, a music genre and cultural movement originating in the Bronx, New York City, was born from the creativity of marginalized youth with African and Latin American heritage. Its influence on fashion, language, art, and film has been immense, shaping global culture and earning it recognition as one of the most significant cultural exports of the 21st century.

Understanding Hip-Hop/Rap

Hip-hop has not only shaped music but also culture and identity, evolving through various cultural and social shifts over time. Rap music, a vital aspect of hip-hop, emerged from the streets of impoverished Bronx communities to become a billion-dollar industry, with performances held in clubs worldwide.

Coined by Keith “Cowboy” Wiggins, a member of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, the term “hip-hop” originally carried derogatory connotations but later became a positive label for the burgeoning music genre, blending the slang terms “hip” and “hop” to signify being “in the know.”

hip-hop music

Hip-Hop/Rap Facts

Originating in the late 1970s in New York, hip-hop music encompasses a diverse range of genres and subcultures, with its influence felt in cities across the U.S., from Los Angeles to Chicago, New Jersey, and San Francisco. Its reach extends beyond urban centers to suburban and rural communities alike.

Subgenres of Hip-Hop/Rap

Disco, a popular rap subgenre characterized by dance music elements, has been a staple since the 1970s, featuring four-on-the-floor beats, syncopated bass lines, and electric rhythm guitars.

Afrocentric rap, also known as ‘boom-bap,’ derives its rhythms from New York City and often blends saxophones with drum machines. In the 1990s, ‘crunk’ emerged as a term synonymous with hype and excitement in hip-hop culture, particularly with groups like Lil’ Jon and The Eastside Boys.


Hip-Hop/Rap music, known for its fast-paced delivery, continues to gain popularity and influence, shaping contemporary music landscapes worldwide with its dynamic and evolving soundscape.