The Origin of Rap Music

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Michael Avila, Contributor

Back in the day, Rap was really only a thing at block parties in New York in the 1970s. DJ’s would have MC’s or Master of Ceremonies to help keep the crowd energized between songs, sometimes even cracking jokes. But as time went by and MC’s became popular, it became common that MC’s would talk and rhyme over the DJ’s beats. To people in the 70’s, it was just a fad, but rap music proved that it could be a commercial success because of the song “Rappers Delight” by SugarHill Gang in 1979. With this breakout song, it quickly popularized the genre of rap.

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As the art form really began to develop over the years so did the DJ’s. A DJ that went by the name of DJ Grand Wizard Theodore (picture above) was said to have created the record scratching you hear in the background of songs. He also was the one who created the needle drop. Before DJs would just queue the next song in silence, but instead he dropped the needle to the exact beginning of the next song and that was quickly picked up by other DJs. In the mid-’80s it was the golden age of rap. That was when rap was really being pushed into the spotlight by other artists such as Run DMC, Rakim, and the WU-Tang Clan. Together they helped form what rap music is today.

 

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