US Rap Game

MC-ing (spitting)

In the beginning of the eighties hiphop as a style of music starts to develop in the Bronx in New York. In that time a dj played a piece of music on a record player and the rapper started to rhyme on the rhythm (called spitting). This was done to entertain the audience. The rapper was referred to an an MC, which means Master of Ceremonies. One of the pioneers was  KRS-One. KRS-One’s nickname was The Philosopher because of his well-thought out lyrics that referred to injustices in society.

At the East Coast of the USA, rap started to rise in the middle of the eighties.  Ice-T and Schoolly D were big names then. This type of rap is called Gangsta rap and originated in the ghettos of the American big cities. The lyrics in this type of rap are often sexist, violent and center around the life as a gang member and drugs. Things these men experience every day. Eric Wright (Eazy-E), a drug dealer at the time, wanted to earn a lot of money. He helped his cousin to sell drugs on the streets. Eric Wright earned a lot of money until his cousin was shot and killed, and then Eric wanted to stop dealing drugs. He had to find another way to become successful and noticed the rise of rap in the US and especially in the East Coast. He discussed this with a number of his friends. A group of men in Compton, California, agreed with Eric that it was strange that gangsta rap was only popupar in the East Coast. Eric Wright (Eazy-E) decided to introduce gangsta rap in the West Coast, and brought together a group of boys who were good rappers. This group was named N.W.A, Niggaz With Attitudes. The group consisted of Arabian Prince, Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, MC Ren and DJ Yella. Although they are not the founders of gangstarap, they are considered to be the pioneers because they have made it famous.

East Coast versus West Coast

In the East Coast and the West Coast a we-against-them atmosphere  started to kick-off, and rappers started to compete against each other.  Two rappers who were seriously involved in the competition were Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G (Biggie Smalls). The two, who were friends before, were having a violent quarrel. Tupac suspected Biggie Smalls of stealing his jewels and lyrics of rap songs. The two rappers threw diss tracks over each other. On September 7, 1996 Tupac was shot. After a week in the hospital and the removal of a lung, Tupac died at the age of 25. A half year later, on March 9, 1997, The Notorious B.I.G died after he was hit by four bullets in his chest.

Trap

Throughout the years, rap has developed further in the United States. In the early years 2000, Trap started to grow in the South of the United States.  Trap is street-language, it stands for a place where you can buy drugs. This style of rap can be recognized by the 808 bass, hihats and synthesizers. Since 2012 Trap has become very popular and it has been used a lot in tracks made by dj’s and pop artists.

Bubblegum trap

This is a form of rap music in which samples are made of older computer games, such as Mario Bros, Charlie Brown, rugrats theme song and the startup sound of a GameCube. This is then mixed with autotune. In 2015 a rapper called Lil Yachty started this type of rap.


Rappers

 

Return to rap trends home page