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THE HIP HOP Connect

phase one

For as long as I can remember, music has been a core part of my life. Throughout my childhood, I can vividly remember listening to songs on my iPod and instantly zoning out. Whenever I had a chance to throw my headphones on I did, whether it was during class, road trips, or bus rides back home from school. Music provided a kind of escape, a form of meditation almost and has always been by my side altering my state of mind and bringing me a sense of peace.

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phase two

I find that peoples taste in music was much more diverse during that time. It wasn’t all just Trap Music. We listened to Jazz, Funk, R&B, Soul, Rock, Bachata and Rap music. It was that variance that gave you some insight into all the amazing ways one could express themselves musically. So, like most people, my tastes at that time might have varied a bit by genre, but certainly not by depth. Everything I listened to was something that got radio play. The earliest memories of rap music are Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz, The Yang Yang twins, Ludacris, E-40, etc. The assumption that my knowledge of rap music, let alone the hip hop culture was very shallow would be a gross understatement, but a correct one at that.

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phase three

As I got older, my taste in music hadn’t changed much organically nor out of my own volition. It wasn’t until my sister came home one day from school and told me that she had enrolled in a new elective class - a Hip Hop music class. This class was taught by a teacher named E Rock who along with fellow Emcee Calvin formed the rap group Foundation Movement. That day she told me everything she learned that day and introduced me to several new artists she was put on to.
 
I explored these artists and they were the rap group Dead Prez and Emcee Immortal Technique. Songs I heard were, “They Schools” from the(Let’s get free) album & “Poverty of Philosophy” from the (Revolutionary Vol. 1)” were so different from any music playing on the radio at the time. Listening to these tracks at that point in my life, really I broadened my horizons musically.  They sent me down a rabbit hole of great music  Jedi Mind tricks, Cunninlynguists and Non Phixion, just to name a few.

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phase four

When learned about the creative process for this genre of music I was totally mind blown. To think that all this music was made with piecing together different samples, pulling from all kinds of music and using them as the foundation to create something new left me stunned. Underground Rap was a genre of music that when executed properly paid homage to musicians from all walks of life that came before. I knew that this was something a had to explore for myself.
 
For you to understand my passion for music I needed you to understand how this passion has grown and evolved with me.
 
 

Musical influences

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EL-P

From tracks like “The jig is up” to  “$4 Vic” EL-P blew my mind with his creative production. Tunes that kept me listening years after its release. On top of that tracks like “Tougher Colder Killer” laid the foundation for the super duo Run the Jewels.

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Chino XL

Chino XL has always been a favorite for me. An exceptional lyricist, and outstanding story teller. This album is an Emcee at his prime. A double LP consisting of 35 unskippable tracks.

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Brother ali

This is by far the most impactful collection music I’ve ever had the pleasure of listening to. Brother Ali lays his emotions, fears and hopes for the future lay bear on this record. The bonus track “Just Fine” is the most relaxing rap song I’ve ever heard.

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cunninlynguists

The 3rd release in their strange journey series. Being a fan curated record, where fans would suggest song concepts, potential collars, etc. This album has some of the most beautiful musical compositions I’ve heard yet. “Innerspace” is in my mind the pinnacle of human musical creativity and ingenuity.

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aesop

“Zero Dark Thirty” and “Crows 2” let you know that this record was on another level. Being Aesop’s first foray into handling all the production himself. I couldn’t think of a more cohesive project.

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lowkey

Although UK Based Lowkey’s masterful selection of instrumentals, combined with his insightful social commentary outshine most American acts. The skits alone are inarguably profound. Skit #1 still gives me chills even to this day.

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