Genre Research: R&B/Hip Hop

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Genre Research: R&B/Hip Hop

  1. 1. R&B and Hip Hop
  2. 2.         R&B/RnB is an abbreviation for Rhythm and Blues; a genre of popular African American music which originated in the 1940s. The term Rhythm and Blues was devised by music journalist, Jerry Wexler, who worked for Billboard magazine to replace the offensive term, ‘Race Music’, prior to RnB. The term "Rhythm and Blues" replaced the Billboard category Harlem Hit Parade in 1949. RnB in the 1940s was characterised by its jazz based, urbane rock style accompanied by a heavy, continuous beat. Record companies at the time used the term RnB to describe increasingly popular recordings that were predominantly aimed at urban African Americans. In 1948, Louis Jordan (left) dominated the top five listings of the R&B charts with three songs, two of which were based on the prominent rhythm called the ‘boogiewoogie’. Jordan played the the saxophone and provided vocals for his band the ‘Tympany Five’, accompanied by musicians on trumpet, tenor saxophone, piano, bass and drums – key instruments in RnB. Early 1950s – The meaning of RnB was modified as it was often associated with blues records and contributed to the development of rock and roll. Mid 1950s – The term R&B again evolved into a term used to describe music styles and subgenres that came from and incorporated electric blues, gospel and soul music. 1970s - Rhythm and Blues was used as a general term for soul and funk. 1980s - A newer style of R&B developed, becoming known as Contemporary R&B; a music genre that combines elements of rhythm and blues, pop, soul, funk, and hip hop. Contemporary R&B is categorised by its refined record production style and drum machine backing along with a smooth vocal arrangement. Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey are all vocalists who popularized Contemporary RnB. It is essentially newer version of soul and funk-influenced pop music that originated as disco faded from popularity. Nowadays, the term R&B is almost always used instead of the full rhythm and blues, and mainstream use of the term usually refers to contemporary R&B. Electronic influences are becoming an increasing trend along with the influence of hip hop/dance inspired beats although the grittiness of hip hop are reduced. In the future
  3. 3.     Hip hop music is a music genre consisting of rhythmic music that follows certain established conventions such as the incorporation of rapping - a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted by the artist. It formed as a music genre and culture during the 1970s in New York City when block parties became increasingly popular especially amongst African American youth residing in The Bronx (one of the five boroughs in NYC). The term Hip Hop is believed to have been created by rapper Keith Cowboy (top right) who was part of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. Cowboy later worked the "hip hop" term into a part of his stage performance, which was quickly used by other artists such as The Sugarhill Gang (right) in their song "Rapper's Delight” (1979). The four key conventional elements of Hip Hop include: Mcing/Rapping | DJing/Scratching | Break Dancing | Graffiti Writing DJs who performed at block parties often played popular genres of music, especially funk and soul music. Having noticed the positive response they began to isolate the percussive breaks of popular songs. Jamaican dub music often used this technique and was introduced into New York by Jamaican and other Caribbean immigrants such as DJ Kool Herc aka Clive Campbell (left) who is considered the father of Hip Hop whilst soul singer James Brown, and musical 'comedy' acts such as Rudy Ray Moore and Blowfly are often considered Godfathers of hip hop music. Ultimately African music, particularly that of the griots ( a West African historian, storyteller, prai se singer, poet and/or musician) of West African culture are known to be the root of rapping. Influences of rap include the African-American traditions of signifyin', the dozens, and jazz poetry as well as the call and response patterns of African and African-American religious ceremonies. 1983-84 - The New School of hip hop was the second wave of hip hop music, examples include the early records of Run-D.M.C. and LL Cool J. Mid-1980s, Early 1990s – The Golden Age of hip hop, a period in mainstream hip hop characterized by its diversity, quality, innovation and influence as every new record that emerged reinvented the genre. 1986, early 1990s – Gangsta Rap and West Coast hip hop reflects the violent lifestyles of inner-city American black youths. 2000s –Figures like Dr Dre, 50 cent and Eminem kept hip hop popular. However in 2005, the sales of hip hop music began to decline; mainstream hip hop was thought to have died. Mid-2000s – The hip hop genre was revitalised by artists such as Kanye West, Outkast and M.I.A who allowed Alternative hip hop to gain a place on the market.
  4. 4. R & B and Hip Hop are the pop (i.e. popular music) of today. Like all pop music from the 1950's until now, it's aimed at 16-25 year olds. It's aimed at black and white audiences of both genders, because the corporates want to maximise revenue so they need to appeal as large an audience as possible.
  5. 5. Although R&B has been around since the 1950s, the modern public still listen to Contemporary R&B . Furthermore, songs of this genre continue to appear on the charts and garner millions of views on YouTube which showcases how popular the genre remains. The YouTube comments on some R&B music videos also express how much the genre reaches out and brings out empathy within people. The same can be said about the Hip Hop and Rap genre as the artists, old and new, keep the genre alive with new music that features the key conventions of hip hop as well as the fresh, modern twist provided by the lyrical content that continues to provoke thought from the listeners. Hip hop remains a mainstream genre due to the devoted fans of hip hop artists who have been a part of the music industry for decades such as Jay Z who’s singles continue to top the charts. Artists such as J Cole appeal to the public because of the 90s hip hop influence on his music, the comeback of lyrical content accompanied by his ‘dope’ beats has gained positive reception from the public.

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