Top 5 Hip Hop Documentaries

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5- Stations of the Elevated

It’s as if you are riding the rails in 79′ while listening to Mingus on your walk man. Eye candy up the wazzoo from graffiti to Nylon paisley shirts but there are no characters per say; except for the subways themselves.

4- Scratch

But one new instrument has been growing in popularity for twenty years, and according to one interviewee, is now outselling the electric guitar in some parts of the world. It’s something you can find in your parents’ house. It’s the turntable.An energizing, intoxicating documentary charting the rise of hip-hop culture in general and the art of scratching (or turntablism) in particular.

3- The Freshest Kids

The Freshest Kids brilliantly chronicles the birth, death, and reemergence of the B Boy and all encompassing facets of break culture.

2- Rhyme and Reason

“Rhyme and Reason”, the documentary featuring Rap Music and Rap Musicians like Ice-T and Notorious B.I.G., starts in the beginning — that would be 1974 in the Bronx, where needles scratching L.P.’s, breakdancers, and graffiti artists created hip, the clever, streetwise, expresson of people with no other means of getting their message out there.

Even if early Hip Hop was a Power Force, it was like a high-energy block party, without the money, the rivalries, and chilling death wish of West Coast Gangsta Rap. Hip hop Hop split from Rap in 1985, Crack hit the streets bigtime in ’86, and Rap became Big Business and a musical force to be dealt with.

So Rap has two faces — on one side, it’s the high-energy, homegrown voice of people in the ghetto demanding recognition and respect, whose best lyrics and rhymes are real poetry. The other side is the sexist, violent, crime-obsessed attitude of Gangsta Rap, where many performers have been criminals and drug dealers.

1- Style Wars

If you want to see what today`s urban swagger looked like 25 years ago, before corporations corrupted, Style Wars is the place to start. This Grand, gritty look at life along the outskirts of normal society illustrates how rap and hip hop combined with break dancing and graffiti form the backdrop of a major social revolution.

  1. HH1 says

    much love for the origins of hip hop…

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