LL COOL J’s Rock The Bells platform hosted a special live event on Wednesday (August 11) to celebrate Hip Hop’s 48th birthday. Held at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the Bronx, where DJ Kool Herc threw his groundbreaking back-to-school party in 1973, the event featured sets from Grand Wizard Theodore and Herc himself.
It also commemorated the early days of the culture when the four elements — DJing, emceeing, graffiti and breaking — were integral to everything Hip Hop and looked far different from what mainstream rap is today. The culture has come a long way since The Sugar Hill Gang first released “Rapper’s Delight” in 1980 and Grandmaster Flash and The Furious 5 dropped “The Message” in 1982, two of Hip Hop’s most iconic, groundbreaking songs.
As Hip Hop inches toward 50, it’s now become the biggest genre in the world. Earlier this month, the U.S. Senate passed Resolution 331, a bill that officially designates August 11 as “Hip Hop Celebration Day.”
It also recognizes November 2021 as “Hip Hop History Month.” Introduced on July 29, the bill is a nod to the aforementioned “Back To School Jam” organized by DJ Kool Herc and his sister Cindy Campbell on August 11, 1973.
The resolution noted Hip Hop as a genre “transcend[s] many different ages, ethnicities, religions, locations, political affiliations, and socioeconomic statuses, which demonstrates the melting-pot quality of Hip Hop art and culture.”
With Hip Hop’s impact impossible to ignore, its influence touches almost every avenue of pop culture. It’s no surprise several pioneering artists are showing love online.
Public Enemy, Busta Rhymes, MC Sha-Rock, Grandmaster Caz, Kid Capri, Nas, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, The Fat Boys’ Kool Rock Ski, The Furious 5 and Beastie Boys’ Mix Master Mike are among the many celebrating the momentous occasion on social media.
Check out some of the posts below.