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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Hip Hop Music of the '70s

The 1970s birthed another genre to the music industry...Hip-Hop. The Griot group, one of the earliest known group of singers and poets, had their claim to fame during the 70s as they combined their talents to produce pieces of the unique genre. Their style is actually very similar to that of rappers. To help the baby genre grow, block parties pushed music to the next level in NYC, especially the Bronx. DJs were prominent at the block parties. Funk and soul music fueled their libraries and their love for music inspired them to try something new. The DJs started to isolate "percussion breaks" of the decades popular songs. This isolation resulted in something more commonly known as "beating." The same beating we hear in modern hip-hop!

A hero and revolutionary of Hip-Hop, was DJ Kool Herc, who came from Jamaica, and became the "godfather of Hip-Hop." Originally Herc shared his love for reggae music, but quickly shifted to funk, soul, and disco after recognizing the dislike of the genre. He disliked the shortness of the percussion breaks so, he decided to stretch them using an audio mixer and TWO records.

Turntablist techniques, for example, mixing and scratching, were developed by Grand Wizard Theodore. These techniques allowed for artists to rap over the music by developing them along with the breaks --> Hip-Hop. To watch an awesome video about songs that inspired a modern DJ to mix click HERE.


  1. Hey Casey,
    A few things I wished you expanded on was DJ Kool Herc cause he sounds really kool (hehe) and the turntablist techniques cause they also sound really interesting. I never knew who/what really started the Hip-Hop genre so I'm happy you included that and having a visual adds a lot.
    Great job!

  2. You know, I always wondered who decided to mix it up on the turn table and make those crazy scratchy noises (haha at the proper word choice) This really describes hip hop. DJing started in hip hop and to see who really introduced the style is awesome. Great choice of a topic and great job with the writing! I agree with what Gia said also, having a visual adds so much!