Hip hop is more than just a type of music - its a culture. Ever wonder where it came from and how it has progressed? Hip hop has opened the eyes and ears of listeners in all countries. With the rhythm patterns of the musical beat, to the lyrical components of the rapper, it all has its musical style. Hip hop has created an empire over the years and is going strong. Hip hop began with legandary artists, a distinct beat, and influential lyrics. One of the first representatives of hip hop was Kool Herc in southern Bronx during 1973. He was a DJ, who hosted block parties and introduced the flow of a musical beat. Adding an MC to the DJ was soon turned into what would be the focus point of hip-hop. MCs were used along with DJs to hype up the crowd and use call and response. While recording live performances, DJs noticed that while producing these mixtapes, it also helped self-promotion. S. Craig Watkins states, " Mix tapes were a battle to earn street credit, as one of the greatest on the block." (Watkins, 2006, pg 13) According to Watkins, " Rapper 50 Cent can say that at least half of his success is due to his mix-tapes and the fan base from the street." (Watkins, 2006, pg 14.) .
The progression of hip hop is crucial as it gives an inside look at how it has developed. The " Old School Era" dated 1979-1987 introduced Grandmaster Flash, who was the first to scratch on turntables. Also, The Sugarhill Gang became the first commercial element group of hip hop (Watkins, 2006.) In 1979 Wakins states: " Sylvia Vanderpool found three men on the streets of Jersey. As a result, they recorded a whole album in one day. The album at that time had cost Sylvia $750.00 to produce." (Watkins, 2006, pg23) During the years 1989-1993 the "Golden Era" started the more commercial element of hip hop. Starting a trend Salt N Pepper were the first female rap group. Public Enemy had more of a voice on the political side, and NWA began the era of gangster rap (Watkins, 2006.