|West Coast hip-hop|
|Stylistic origins||Hip hop, Dancehall (Toasting), Funk, Jazz, Rhythm and blues, Soul music|
|Cultural origins||Early 1980s, western United States|
|Typical instruments||Prominent Bass, Drum machine, Rapping, Sampler, Synthesizer|
|Mainstream popularity||Popular in the U.S. during late 1980s through mid-1990s. Gangsta rap subgenre dominant from early to mid-90s. Popularity declined during remainder of decade up to 2000s with small degree of mainstream exposure.|
|Subgenres||Alternative hip-hop, Chicano rap, Gangsta rap, G-funk, Hyphy, Latin hip hop, Underground hip-hop|
|Fusion genres||Jazz rap, G-funk, Mobb music, Hyphy|
|Regional scenes||Greater Los Angeles Area, San Francisco Bay Area|
|Local scenes||Los Angeles, San Diego, Long Beach, San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Sacramento, Seattle, Compton, Hayward|
|Other topics||East Coast-West Coast hip hop rivalry, Golden age hip-hop, Hip-hop, List of West Coast hip-hop artists (rappers and rap group), List of West Coast hip hop record labels|
West Coast hip hop is a hip hop music subgenre that encompasses any artists or music that originates in the westernmost region of the United States, as opposed to East Coast hip hop, based originally in New York alone. The gangsta rap subgenre of West Coast hip hop began to dominate from a radio play and sales standpoint during the early 1990s.
- Main article: Old school hip-hop
Some believe that the five elements of hip hop culture, which include B-Boying, beatboxing, DJing, graffiti art, and MCing, existed on the East and West Coasts of the United States simultaneously during the mid-seventies. This theory runs in opposition to the more universally accepted belief that the fundamental elements of hip hop were all born and cultivated exclusively on the East Coast, New York City in particular, in the most early stages of the culture. Although it is agreed that hip hop was given its name in New York, some say a culture that closely mirrored the East Coast hip hop culture had emerged in the West existing from Los Angeles to the San Francisco Bay Area during the same period. The culture itself is believed to have been a mutual creation which probably evolved from interaction between people who identified with elements from their respective coasts.
The entire west coast hip hop scene started in 1978, with the founding of Uncle Jamm's Army (originally called "Unique Dreams Entertainment"). The group was influenced by Prince, East Coast hip hop, Kraftwerk, Parliament-Funkadelic etc. In 1980, Uncle Jamm's Army became the best party promoters in LA. In 1983, the group's leader Roger Clayton influenced by Funkadelic's album Uncle Jam Wants You changes the group's name from Unique Entertainment to Uncle Jamm's Army. 1984 was the year that Uncle Jamm's Army released their first single Dial-a-Freak and the year Egyptian Lover released his On the Nile album which includes the most listened 12' single Egypt Egypt.City of Compton former locking dancer Alonzo Williams formed his own electro-hop group World Class Wreckin' Cru which included future N.W.A members Dr. Dre and DJ Yella. Williams founded Kru-Cut Records and made a recording studio in the back of his Compton-based night club Eve's After Dark. The club was the place where local drug dealer Eazy-E and Jerry Heller would come to the conclusion of founding Ruthless Records and where Dr. Dre and DJ Yella met the group CIA which included future N.W.A member and Ice Cube, Dr. Dre's cousin Sir Jinx and K-Dee. But the one greatest factor who spread the west coast hip hop style was the radio station 1580 KDAY and its hottest DJ Greg "Mack Attack" Mack.
Late 1993,Tupac Shakur formed the group Thug Life with a number of his friends, including Big Syke, Macadoshis, his stepbrother Mopreme Shakur, and Rated R. The group released their only album Thug Life: Volume 1 on September 26, 1994, which went gold. The album featured the single "Pour Out a Little Liquor" produced by Johnny "J" Jackson, who went on to produce a large part of Shakur's album All Eyez on Me. The group usually performed their concerts without Shakur.Shakur's music and philosophy is rooted in many American, African-American, and World entities, including the Black Panther Party, Black nationalism, egalitarianism, and liberty. His debut album, 2Pacalypse Now, revealed the socially conscious side of Shakur. On this album, Shakur attacked social injustice, poverty and police brutality on songs "Brenda's Got a Baby", "Trapped" and "Part Time Mutha". His style on this album was highly influenced by the social consciousness and Afrocentrism pervading hip hop in the late 1980s and early 1990s. On this initial release, Shakur helped extend the success of such rap groups as Boogie Down Productions, Public Enemy, X-Clan, and Grandmaster Flash, as he became one of the first major socially conscious rappers from the West Coast.
Early West Coast rap sceneEdit
The rap scene started in 1981, when Duffy Hooks launched the first West Coast rap label Rappers Rapp Records, inspired by Sugar Hill Records in New York. Its first act was the prime duo of Disco Daddy & Captain Rapp. Their first single was Gigolo Rapp or Gigolo Groove. Captain Rapp would in 1983 create the classic West Coast song that to this day is played on the radio "Bad Times". 1981 would also bring the Rappers Rapp Group, a West Coast version of Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five. The group consisted of King MC, Lovin C, MC Fosty, DJ Flash, Macker Moe and Mr. Ice. One year later, the group broke up because MC Fosty & Lovin C went solo and released "Radio Activity Rapp", which was produced by Rich Cason and "When Doves Cry Rapp". DJ Flash and King MC became the Future MC's and had two hits, "State of Shock Rapp" and "Erotic City Rapp". "Beverly Hills Rapp" was done by DJ Flash and MC Fosty. In the mid-80s, Mixmaster Spade and his Compton Posse would define the early form of gangsta rap or reality rap. Out of this group future rap stars of the West Coast were mentored by Spade himself. In 1985, Spade's protégé Toddy Tee recorded South Central LA's first anthem before Straight Outta Compton, "The Batteram".
Alternative and underground sceneEdit
In the early 1990s, many of the Los Angeles hip hop scene's most talented and progressive-minded MCs would attend the Good Life Cafe to hone their skills and develop their craft. Artists such as Del tha Funkee Homosapien, Abstract Rude, Spinz, Ahmad, Freestyle Fellowship, Jurassic 5, the Pharcyde, Skee-Lo, a pre-Dogg Pound Kurupt, and many others performed at the Good Life's open mic Thursday nights from the late-80s into the mid-90s. In the 2008 documentary This Is the Life, L.A. hip hop artist and Good Life regular 2Mex likened the Good Life movement to that of the New York punk rock and Seattle music scenes.
- List of Hip-Hop genres
- List of west coast hip-hop artists (rappers and rap group)
- East Coast–West Coast hip hop rivalry
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