How Hip Hop Music and Videos Influenced Other Genres and Art Forms

At around this time, hip hop videos with big budget production values first emerged on the scene, with producers trying to create new forms of spectacle for their audiences using shiny suits and fish-eye lenses as staples of success.

Camera movements such as panning, tracking and crane shots can also be employed to highlight artists in videos. Artists will often be shown close up in low-angled shots that give them power and status.


Hip hop artists frequently utilize their art to address social and political issues and share stories. Music videos serve as vibrant canvases for these artists to communicate their messages and create iconic cultural moments. Hip hop has inspired numerous genres and art forms such as poetry, visual art, short stories novels and comic book-style graphic novels; additionally songs can amplify these works while giving audiences more meaning through song.

Hip-hop culture is founded on a philosophy of self-knowledge, and this can have a dramatic impact on an artist’s style and technique. Hip hop values include freedom, wisdom, peace, love, unity and having fun – principles which help bind together its community as they inspire a different way of life and offer hope for a brighter future through lyrics in its music.

Hip-hop music and videos may present both positive and negative themes depending on their context. For instance, some rap songs depict objectification of women in music videos; author Jennifer McLune points out this tendency in her essay “Hip-Hop’s Betrayal of Black Women.” This contributes to negative stereotypes as well as hinders female self-image issues in general.

Hip-hop’s themes can evoke strong emotional responses, with popular examples including urban life, crime and social justice. Many of its core ideas stem from historical events – for instance the rise of disco in 1979 when Afrika Bambaataa created hip-hop as an antidote for watered-down, Europeanized disco music at that time.


Hip hop emerged in the Bronx during the 1970s through collaboration between Black, Latino, and Caribbean American youth at block parties featuring DJs spinning soul and funk music. DJs such as Kool Herc, Grand Wizzard theodore, and Afrika Bambaata explored different techniques at these parties including longer percussive breaks (known as “breakbeats”) and scratching techniques – often performed during extended musical breaks (known as “breakbeats”). At these parties MCs or rappers would rap over these beats by singing repetitive rhythmic phrases or singing in time with them while interchanging between songs or phrases while simultaneously singing along to these beats–interacting with the beat by singing melodious, rhythmic verses that interacted with the beat.

The MCs developed personae that were either super-smooth and cool or tough and intimidating, using humor, slang, and cultural references to craft extended metaphors that communicated their message effectively. Their skills translated to literary forms such as short stories, novels, poetry, scripts or plays which could either be deeply personal or political; many reflected inner city reality through drugs, gangs, poverty or crime–sometimes using language which was coarse and explicit.

As the 1980s progressed, hip hop found an international audience. Renowned MCs and rappers such as Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Run DMC, Public Enemy and Tupac Shakur made waves within hip hop culture through innovations like drum kits (particularly an 808 drum machine), complex sampling strategies and cross-genre collaboration with genres like electro music.

By the 1990s, hip hop had become an established genre, giving rise to artists such as Lil Wayne, Timbaland, Missy Elliott, Snoop Dogg, Jay-Z and 50 Cent. Additionally, its influence could be found elsewhere including punk rock, jazz music and indie rock genres before ultimately giving birth to alternative hip hop styles like New Jack Swing.


Hip hop music has the ability to elicit many different feelings within its listeners, from sadness and happiness to energetic empowerment or curiosity about its topic. Topics range from motivation, poverty, culture and revenge as well as drugs or flighty girls – everything that hip hop covers!

Hip hop music often features rapping, which is a rhythmic and usually rhymed type of chant that syncopates with the beat of the song, along with other vocal styles like singing, spoken word ad-libs or autotune. Many hip hop songs also incorporate “breaks,” long percussive periods which encourage dancing (also known as breaking or b-boying). DJ Kool Herc is widely credited with developing this concept back in the 1970s.

Many MCs of Hip Hop can convey thoughts and ideas through their voice with remarkable clarity. They can speak about childhood memories, relationships, partying experiences and life lessons in an articulate fashion that often borders on poetic or philosophical. Furthermore, they can address social injustice, crime or racial discrimination with great skill.

At its height in the late 1980s, hip hop’s golden age saw MCs champion Afrocentrism and political activism; this period saw such greats as N.W.A., Public Enemy, De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest emerge and experiment with music that sampled diverse sources for its soundscapes.

The early 90s witnessed the advent of gangsta rap music as a response to disillusionment with Black America. Artists within this genre spoke out against racism, sexism, and capitalism in ways never heard before; furthermore it provided a platform for discussions regarding mental health in its lyrics.

Camera Movements

Camera movements in music videos can help create a specific look and feel, including tracking (when the camera follows a moving object in its field of vision) and panning (movement in circles around an object), to give each video its signature look and feel. Movement may depend on genre of music or director’s personal taste – these factors will all come into play when creating these types of films.

Music videos provide artists a platform to showcase their skills and talent while providing fans with an exciting visual experience. Rap artists may choose to work with professional directors who can bring their vision to life on screen. The best rap videos use captivating settings and eye-catching dance moves to attract an audience – as well as featuring some of the biggest names in hip hop/rap today.

When shooting a hip hop music video, it is key to take multiple takes of each scene in case something unexpectedly arises during production. Furthermore, taking shots from different angles and perspectives gives your final cut more options for editing.

Color choice in hip hop music videos can have an enormous effect on their overall impact and feel. Darker lighting often conveys more meaningful, thoughtful tracks while brighter tones convey positive, upbeat tunes. Furthermore, hip hop artists frequently wear basketball jerseys or other sporting apparel to symbolize strength and athleticism in their videos.

Rap music videos typically employ short, crisp cuts that correspond with the beat of their song to keep viewers engaged and prevent it from becoming dull and tedious. This ensures viewers remain interested and prevents the video from dragging on.


Mise-en-scene is the set design, lighting and actors seen before any camera in film or video production. Mise-en-scene is a vital aspect of movie making that can determine its success; filmmakers and music artists alike use mise-en-scene to convey a specific mood or storyline to their audiences.

Hip hop music videos often combine different elements of mise-en-scene. For instance, they may feature urban settings with clubs and street scenes as the setting, expensive jewellery or cars to demonstrate wealth or even jump cuts to add effect and change the scene of the video; often an artist may wear basketball shirts to signify athleticism or sporting prowess while being filmed before a large crowd to demonstrate popularity and an impressive fan base.

Lighting in hip hop music videos varies according to the mood of each song being depicted, from brighter for more upbeat numbers, to darker ones that convey melancholy emotions. Clothes worn may also vary based on song theme and message; female figures often depicted sexually, which will draw male viewers’ interest.

Hip hop music videos often incorporate scenes that draw in young viewers by including sex scenes that capture excitement and sensuality – this helps attract an audience that may not otherwise watch these types of videos. Many also employ animation techniques which give these music videos more stylised looks; for example, The Fat Boys’ “Sex Machine” featured animation in a style somewhere between The Benny Hill Show and arthouse filmmaking.