Term Paper: Hip Hop Dance

Pages: 10 (4030 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Music  ·  Buy for $19.77

Hip Hop Dance History

There are many changes that take place in societies and most of the changes take place due to the natures of the societies. Some of the changes are viewed to be new, but they are often revival of old traditions, and then it is very difficult to decide when the change really took place. Hip hop dance is one such matter and it started to be noticed only in the early 70s, and in that respect it is a new dance, but it also gave a freedom to all parts of societies to dance according to their desires. Thus it is very difficult to say that it is a new dance as self-expression is a part and parcel of the living of every society.

Hip hop may be viewed as a culture and is often used to refer to commercial rap music, but hip-hop is not only music. It is loved by the American ghetto youth who claim that it is their method of self-expression and use hip hop to rise over their physical situations. The culture of hip hop has its roots based on truth, self-determination, courage and pride. This is the reason why it has grown to have its impact on almost every part of the world. (Hip-hop History) From its initial days in the U.S., the music is being played in projects and certain underground clubs, but, now it has achieved a profile that has led to include it in the 1992 presidential debates over Sister Soljah. In the 20th Century Fox movie, Bulworth, there is Warren Beatty playing a Senator who berates his opponents using rap. Hip hop, it would seem, has become a part of our lives. (Classified Hip-Hop or I wanna blow up like Marilyn Monroe's skirt)

Hip-hop had started to grow from the early 1970's in New York City, but its various elements, called break dance and graffiti were seen even earlier towards the end of the 1960's. Some persons even trace rap back towards the spoken word poetry that occurred towards the end of the 1960's. There are others who even back towards the ancient African societies who boasted about griots, and these were the men and women of the group who were walking containers of their people's history. They also linked the different stories and histories of the group through talk and music. (Hip-hop History) According to information available from one source, the origins of this phenomenon are from Jamaica of the 1940's. By the period of the 1960's, it was common sight to see a truck fitted with sound equipment parked at the end of a street corner, playing American rhythm as well as blues records in order to entertain people in the neighborhood. Some of these DJs for these programs were Prince Buster, Coxson Dodd and Duke Reid. (Classified Hip-Hop or I wanna blow up like Marilyn Monroe's skirt)

By the 70's this phenomenon had moved over to the U.S., especially in the Farragut Projects in Brooklyn at New York. Some of these initial DJs involved were Maboya, Plummer and Kool DJ D, and they mostly played disco music. Another of those initial figures, Kool Herc, came to the States from Jamaica and had settled at Bronx with his sound system which he named as "the Herculords." Against the other figures that played disco music, Kool Herc concentrated his attention on rhythm and blues as well as funk records. He also had another innovation and that was to play only the "break," or that of the musical material which was between the verses of a song. He also constantly kept repeating that break again and again. To achieve this, he used two turntables which were mounted with the same record. This was later termed as "break-beat deejaying." (Classified Hip-Hop or I wanna blow up like Marilyn Monroe's skirt)

This led to the people around to start strange, acrobatic twisting dance routines in tune with these episodes and those dances came to be known as "break dances." Kool Herc started getting too many invitations and this led him to hire others to be the master of ceremonies of these parties. In addition to the music, this person would converse with the crowd between the songs to make the party rocking. This was the initial start of rapping. DJ Hollywood was one of the initial MC's at Kool Herc's parties and he had the practice of using rhyming verses in his rap. One of these verses was inclusive of the words 'hip hop'. This has been lately used interchangeably to define the music of rap as well as the culture of those who attended Kool Herc's parties. (Classified Hip-Hop or I wanna blow up like Marilyn Monroe's skirt) In the beginning, the creator of music or the DJ was the most important individual in the rap music world, but then the music industry saw dollar signs coming from the direct efforts of MCs, or masters of ceremonies, like Kurtis Blow and "Love Bug" Starski. Then the MCs were known as "rappers" and the music was being called "rap." Soon the appreciators felt that rapping was superior to the art of DJing, and rappers became the kings and queens of the music. (Hip-hop History)

Afrika Bambaataa, TAKI 183, Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, VIC 156, Pete DJ Jones, Kool DJ Herc, DJ Hollywood, Eddie Cheeba, 'Love Bug' Starski, Kurtis Blow, CORNBREAD and COOL EARL, Cold Crush Brothers, The Last Poets, Run DMC, the Fat Boys and Rock Steady Crew" are a few of the most famous names. There are many other important and unsung pioneers of hip-hop. The music and dance are very popular and used in most of the campuses, where there are also a lot of developments which are taking place along various divergent lines. Hip-hop music was started in part by Afrika Bambaataa, who is also called the Godfather of the Hip-Hop culture. He began to disk jockey in the early part of the 1970's with wax records, and in them mixed all types of music, though the most famous was funk along with European electronic music. He went on and started the Universal Zulu Nation. Another pioneer, Grandmaster Flash started the turntable technique that everybody now knows as the scratch. The experts would organize music among crowds in parks, at block parties and at other places by playing the breakdown parts of funk songs, and mixing different songs together on turntablesso which ensured that the music never stopped. Along with the expert was the MC, or "master of ceremonies" who spoke in a manner to hype the crowd and praise the expert. (Hip-hop History)

Afrika Bambaata had participated in many initial battles, or competitions between that of the DJs and MCs. There had to be rapping in them, but these battles were finally decided on who had the more fascinating lot of collection of breaks to play on. Afrika Bambatta had breaks drawn from several genres of music, inclusive of the "rock, rhythm & blues, mambo, German disco and calypso." (Classified Hip-Hop or I wanna blow up like Marilyn Monroe's skirt) This is a unique element of hip hop, which includes "found sounds." This may also be inclusive of recorded samples of music by various other groups in addition to voices or ambient sounds and has led to legal action when the groups involved had failed to provide proper credit to their sources. (Classified Hip-Hop or I wanna blow up like Marilyn Monroe's skirt)

Hip hop has four sub-divisons, and these are popularly called elements. These elements are: dance, which is also called breaking or break dance, graffiti which is also known as writing, rapping and DJing. But these four elements grew at various times and each has their own peculiar history, though all are united under the roof of hip-hop culture. Rap music has progressed at the fastest of all the elements and can claim to have developed several sub-genres. While music developed the other elements of hip hop, graffiti and dance progressed at their own speed. One popular type of hip-hop dance was called break dance, and this developed out of a need for the youth to express themselves and prove their capacity in a creative and non-destructive manner. This led many persons, who would have been involved in gang or street activity to show their frustrations by means of the art of a dance that was once considered to be aggressive and poetic. (Hip-hop History)

Break dance was derived from several dance styles and included elements of Brazil's capoeira, other types of martial arts, and was on occasions combined with other hip-hop styles such as locking and popping. There were crews like the Rock Steady Crew, who emerged and "combated" other crews on the dance floor. This elevated the dance to an art form having classic moves like the "2 step, the Airtrack, the headspin, The Glide" and several others. Krump was derived from clown dancing in the new millennium that is… [END OF PREVIEW]

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