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Something For Nothing: The Art Of Rap

1301 words - 5 pages

The influence of Hip-Hop has never been as great as it is in this day and age. Often dismissed by a majority of America as simply a fad, hip hop has become a global phenomenon and has arguably been the most popular form of music for the past three decades. Hip-Hop has influenced art, language, fashion, culture, and sports. This music has been used to teach elementary level children, it has been taught in undergraduate universities and serves as a bridge for hundreds of philanthropies. The influence of Hip-Hop has also been felt in films. These films range from fictional works, documentaries, and autobiographies. A film known as, Something from Nothing by famous rapper Ice T sheds light on elements within Hip-Hop that have enabled the genre to reach millions of people.
Most people believe that they know what hip hop is. Yet, these same people are more familiar with rap music than hip hop. Rap music tends to b the music broadcasted on television and radio stations alike. Hip-Hop itself is relates to a culture and history of peoples. Hip-Hop tells the stories of people oppressed in urban ghettos in all cities, and it promotes change and a transition in those oppressed. Dr. Charles Pinckney author of The Influence of Hip Hop Culture on the Perceptions, Attitudes, Values and Lifestyles of African American College Students states that "Hip hop culture is a form of musical art in words and stories that describe critical messages that are spoken over music" (Pinckney). William Boone who has conducted research in hip hop best explains the phenomenon of Hip Hop as, " Art in "the hood". Hip Hop is the antitheses of economic discrimination and social alienation in Americas impoverished African American communities" (Boone).These origins of Hip-Hop are rarely observational now, but former rapper and actor Ice T wishes to educate the new generations about the origins and culture of Hip Hop. In his film, Something from Nothing: The Art of Rap. Ice T describes that he felt the urge to show people the true origins of Hip Hop for a few reasons, "There’s so many rappers. To be heard, you’ve got to do radio, and radio doesn’t want you to really talk about nothing. They have diluted everything down to party records. For the cats that really have something to say, there is no platform for them to make these statements, it has to get back conscious eventually" (Something from Nothing). Ice T continues by using a real world example to support his statement, "When Kanye West said ‘President Bush doesn’t care about Black people.’ People were overwhelmed. I was like, they must have never heard a Public Enemy album” (Something from Nothing). Do to his connections and friendships in the Hip Hop community Ice T is able to interview a number of successful Hip Hop artists in the documentary type film, including Common, Grandmaster Caz, and Dr. Dre.
The movie begins with a bird's eye view of the birthplace of Hip Hop, New York City. The film appears constructed so that the...

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