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Hip-Hop Comes To The Smithsonian


Here are some shots from yesterday’s news conference where a group of hip hop legends gathered to help announce Hip-Hop Won’t Stop: The Beat, The Rhymes, The Life, an exhibition being planned by the Smithsonian Institute. Bambaataa, Ice-T, and Grandmaster Flash all handed over items from their personal collections use in the exhibit. Donations included a Technics turntable from Flash, clothing from Bam, and M.C. Lyte’s diary.


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27 Responses to “Hip-Hop Comes To The Smithsonian”

  1. Puzzle Says:

    sad that the new generation actually thinks none of this shit matters. Its like denouncing your heritage cause it doesnt have a catchy hook or price tag. The world is dying to follow something else in 2006, and you can go above and beyond to explain why all this ‘save hip hop’ talk is a waste but your just spitting on OUR history, you aint helping nothing…north south east or west, no matter who cries about what, every region always had at least 1 rep in hip hop history….the shit matters to us all no matter what you think. Hell it should matter more to the fans but its the artist who really feel like this 9 outta 10 and cant express it cause the fans might ‘switch’ on them…why you think most artist say they listen to old shit anyway? Nothing playing to day will rock in 50 yrs. no album, maybe a few exceptions but not many, its not designed to last long and thats fucked up. look at it like this…..for niggas like Kool Herc and the bambaataa’s, watching hip hop in 2006 for them must be like hooking up a car from the ground up, just to sell it to the kid up the street….watch him upgrade this same car over the years only to watch him wreck it and then act like he doesnt even care nor does it matter. Hip Hop is a wrecked car, a hooked up 76 caddi with a broken rear view mirror…pause

  2. the green eyed bandit Says:

    well said.

  3. The Truth... Says:

    No doubt….

  4. KingML Says:

    I think its bigger than all that, its not just that hiphop artists dont respect their heritage i think its more like nobody respects anything unless there is consequences.

    people just dont care anymore, cant blame them , but at the same time its too bad because its always going to be about the next thing, no matter how shitty its going to be. and thats the sad degeneration of hiphop

    “wahts next”
    “whats next”
    “whats next”

    its like the car market now, only as good as u were last year.

  5. jerzey Says:

    Fab five freddy up n dis peice….lol….n**ga allite wit me…..

  6. AGeezee Says:

    Yeah, it’s not just hip hop. The world is a “what have you done for my lately” place. From professional sports to the NEW Escalade (which is hot, by the way) and the NEW XBox 360, the new will always outshine the old. Today it’s all about the new.

  7. Ricky D Says:

    That’s all well and good, but if I go to the museum I don’t just want to see a 1200 that Flash touched. I want to see that original mixer where he soldered in his own version of the crossfader, you know?

  8. DrumFunk » HipHop amongst the Dinosaurs. Says:

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    Posted by rayray |


  9. The Truth... Says:

    Before, it was about good music….now, it’s about big money….and there are consequences that come with that. Low quality, old in a week, wack consumers, etc, etc…they aim at a younger crowd too, so they can’t give them something too complicated to listen to….

  10. dCs Says:

    i hope people who visit it are there for a good reason. id fuckin hate to see that place get tagged up cause there are a lot of people “in the know” around there. i really hope this is used well…

  11. the green eyed bandit Says:

    it was said above that the world is a “what have you done for me lately” place but I tend to think that this is a side effect of having an accelerated form of capitalism here in the states. When I say accelerated I refer to how big business is beyond the law and political decisions are made with corporations in mind before the people. In this scenario if you are not making cash you are kicked to the curb. and fast!

    I have been lucky to be able to travel to places like germany, hungary, holland, and a few others and let me tell you these places pay no mind to the “hot shit” and stick to quality. Sure they got the little pop-hop radio station here and there but all the heads out there bang real shit all day.
    In 2002 I was out there and I was consistantly hearing O.C.’s “times up” bumping outta cars!!! I thought I was in hiphop heaven.

    Products were also mentioned above in another post, and how disposable everything is. I have my degree in product design and studied abroad for that. Once again, other countries tend to buy quality over trendiness so it is much more a part of there consumer mind state. Thus, when people design products for other countries marketplaces

  12. the green eyed bandit Says:

    …..Cont’d from above….

    thus, when designers create products for other countries marketplace the emphasis is a little more on quality then on marketability. Case in point: quality was always an issue in my classes in england, never at my design school in the states.

    The bottom line: I think this problem is worldwide but it is more accelerated here in America. Our minds are so brainwashed to buy buy buy that we dont even have a moment to think about quality, content, and the biggest issue of all – do I even need this stuff?

    this goes for everything, especially music

  13. B-HEEZIE Says:

    PUZZLE, well typed Homie.

    I feel like muthaf***as are trying to be the next “BIG SH*T” out the gate, instead of just playing their position. Who believes that dudes like JEEZY, JUELZ, CASSIDY, and FAB are gonna be like the BAMBAATAS, RAKIMS, KOOL G.s of the future??????? You tell me that these dudes are what we gonna look back on and say “DAMN, they revolutionized the GAME?!?!?!?!?!?!”…….I doubt that…….

  14. the green eyed bandit Says:

    the thing I am worried about is that at some point these kids wont even have rakim, krs, kane, etc. as a point of reference. I hear kids recite lyrics from these legends that current rappers put in there lines and they have NO IDEA where it came from. its a shame.

  15. eskay Says:

    man I’m glad to see this thread has more then 10 comments and they’re not about Bambaataa’s hat. most of these posts that have nothing to do with beef or stupid rapper tricks usually go wood.

    green eyed bandit:

    You said it. I don’t know if you saw my PSA:


  16. B-HEEZIE Says:

    Green Eyed Bandit…….. so f*ckin’ true homie…..

  17. posta child Says:

    Off the top I am very glad that the exibit was opened on the real and true Hip Hop culture. Props on that. Radio ‘Hip Hop’ is a joke and is not a artform. I would had graf artist, but they would have gotten bad press from those looking for a reason to disrespect the move. B-boys/girls.
    Second people do care. There isn’t any unity in the support of the realness. So the only unity voice are the radio one/clear channel/ 106 & park/ trl ‘hip hop’ fans who make blind un-intelligent representation and support of these talentless ‘icons’. (See Luis) Of who their comments are not posted when the topic involves actual thought. Do not buy ‘so-so’ or manufactured rap acts who do nothing more than help push negative sterotypes and tear down what has been built with care and skill. Set up and tear down of sound/parties. Trying and winning mc battles. Not the silly ass shows in public to sell records. Or, how many time another nigger (b’cuz that’s what the suburban kids see them as) in and out of jail and shot. This having nothing to do with the ability to spit fire on the mic. It takes love and the desire to do that. Not ‘acting black’.
    This is a time that I think that love should be given. They could have very easily had nelly and and any number of the flavor of the week rap acts up there to open the exibit. The did the right thing. Not the ‘cool’ one.
    Eskay. Why not do more focus on real rap acts like Dilated Peoples and the djs. Tossing in some other related topics. I say that because it would be a move to atleast draw a line between those who are in it for the love and those who are happy with riding on the bandwagon.

  18. Demiks Says:

    posta child is right, I don’t know if I read him right, but its true that kids (especially in the suburbs) look at rappers by how long they’ve been in jail and not by mic skill. These stupid stereotypes that are suppose to be aligned with black people are dumb as hell. It’s like your not really black unless you shot somebody, sold crack, or done time. It’s mostly non-blacks who make these accusations too. I see white kids every day with bandanas outside they’re back pocket and their fitteds barely siting on their head.

    When this generation of 14-17 year old rap fans grow up, what are we gonna get out of it? They all grew up on 50 Cent, Mike Jones, and Nelly. How many pimp anthems can we take?

  19. dCs Says:

    yo Demiks its both white, blacks, and latino placing stereotypes. even asians nowadays… its ridiculous.

    as for judging by mic skill… what if some really white kid from a private school could spit like no one else? he could tear people apart on the mic but didnt live the life. i mean, im generalizing and taking what you said about “jail time” and relating it to “hardness.” dudes like that will never survive in this hip hop climate. thats why no one bumps the fresh prince anymore because its just not what we want to hear anymore. im just tryin to play devils advocate with that. i agree with you though, it shouldnt be about jail time. talent is talent, black, white, rich, poor, whatever.

  20. the green eyed bandit Says:

    eskay – yeah I peeped your psa. and agree.

    since we are on these subjects…..

    I read this quote by dj quik in scratch magazine that said something to the effect that gangster rap was fun when rappers were trying to emulate these gangsters from the block but it lost its luster when real gangsters got involved and brought gangster politics with them (suge knight and peeps of his ilk). He no longer fucks with gangster rap now because its no longer fun. (thats we he said – I stopped listening to him after “way 2 fonky” so I have to take him for his word on that).

    I thought that was rather poinent – its not fun anymore.

  21. Demiks Says:

    Yea, I see you dCs. There could be a nice kid from a private school who can rap like crazy. Today’s fans wouldn’t embrace it though, unless he was rapping about moving cocaine. And they’re probably is a nice ass white kid from a private school too.

  22. posta child Says:

    Off the top, the private school kid would get love. The difference about the image thing is that its “urban market” (black people) who carry almost all of the load of all this negative imaging. The “suburban market” does not want to see, in a effect, one of their own stoop to such levels. 3rd Base and hosts of others never saw such support. They were “products of the environment”. They didn’t send out the “wigger” image. Its was to real. Some would say that rap was still in its early stages. B.s. I have noticed when there is an underlying vibe that a person/group has will determine success. I was not surprised when that Eminem track was “leaked” a couple years ago. Going back to my props to Chuck D on the modern day sambo image, and its guarantee that rap stays successful as long as its souled out.

  23. Puzzle Says:

    ^ just to add on, you all are 100% correct about imaging. The problem is rap music dont take you no where anymore, its like its against the law or some shit. back in the day I would listen to ‘3 feet high and rising’ and actually rock the whole tape cause it was on some gameshow shit and it was a picture being painted if you allowed yourself to get into it. Niggas dont create anything to get into, its called following now.
    Most people who buy rap in 06 are people who most likely didnt even grow up on the shit for real, just jumped on the party train…The white kid in iowa who believes everything a 50 cent would say is still gettin into whatever he hears cause it aint crazy in iowa, niggas aint getting bodied out there, there are no jump outs so all of what 50 says to him is like a movie he can turn off and on. And he follows…millions follow just like him…

    In the hoods of america its like a fucking reality TV show now, you HAVE to be the most thugged out, HAVE to have the hoods apporval, HAVE to have a jail record and have proof cause you like to say spaced out killa shit that sounds hot, but you HAVE to do it 1st for the streets to follow you!
    see the trend? You have to actually have to have caught a body to speak on it or the streets wont embrace you or your not ‘real’, but you also have to speak about catching bodies now so the masses can get into you. I guess thats why strippers are gettin waaay too much shine!!
    Another hip hop double edge sword killing us slowly…

  24. posta child Says:

    Hip Hop was a culture that was an out let from that. This was not the brain child of some suburban teacher/do-gooder type. Afrika Bambaataa and all those involved was in the streets (and still are) that brought this about. There is a lot of creativity and talent that are in areas that are not supposed to. Who would have know that when these people were putting these parties together, battling, and tagging (graf. art for the trl/106 & park peeps) that it would be here now. Now used to keep a firm hold on ignorance and stereotypes. Totally pulling the rug from under this culture. How is it a repectable artform on mtv. It is possible to have rap on tv and keep things real. Yo! (mtv raps) was hella real. People need to speak and act out against this. Off the top its rap. Directly in the big picture is hella racist. Niggers are supposed to be talented and intellegent. Can you really see people like Paris and those like him on top 40 radio, and ect.? Rap was not allowed on “urban (black) stations” (often owned by companies people who should not). I am from Chicago not some small market. Light needs to shed on this. On the real.

  25. MySteeK Says:


  26. MySteeK Says:

    yo word up to Posta Boy 2 posts ago. totally right man

  27. MySteeK Says:


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