Influences: From todays underground rap scene to NWA and the Beatles

2018 is dominated by hip-hop/rap music, and there’s no sign of it falling out of the mainstream any time soon as its been on the rise for many years. And with this throne taking genre come the underground scene where artist that don’t receive as much attention are now getting some attention, so much so that some artists have burst out of the underground and into the mainstream. With this being said, artists like XXXtentacion, Lil Pump, and Juice WRLD have taken the charts over and are now some of the biggest names in music, but who inspired this new harsh 808 and ad-lib heavy generation of rappers/artists?

When it comes to the “ soundcloud “ scene, many artists that blew up are more dark toned and aggressive, such as $uicideboy$, Denzel Curry, and Ski Mask the Slump God. The major rap influence, especially for more of the metal influenced rappers of someone like Ghostemane or Blvk Svnd, seem to have the horrorcore/crunk group Three 6 Mafia as a major influence on the rap portion of most newer artist music. Most of the artists mentioned most likely or have ( some have cited ) the rap group as a major influence and grew up listening to Mafia’s material.

Three 6 Mafia formed in 1991 which was right after the end of the most influential Rap group to date NWA. coincidence? I don’t think so since NWA’s influenced many people to join the “ Rap Game ” and get their voices heard. Three 6 Mafia formed their own record label as well ( Similar to Dr.Dre ) and supported many artists under Juicy J, Lord Infamous, and DJ Pauls label called Prophet Entertainment.

Rap group NWA becomes a bit more difficult to trace the influences for since Dr.Dre was around before the groups origination performing with Brass Construction and since every member has their own influence.. But nevertheless, the Main influence on the group would be from LL Cool J and even Run D.M.C, big names from the 80’s who were also heavy influencers of rap. From here we can tell that Afrika Bambaataa and The Sugarhill Gang influenced them since these were the earliest hip-hop artists.

The Sugarhill Gang was brought together by producer Sylvia Robinson, who was most known for doing backup for Ike & Tina Turner while also having a hit R&B song in the 1950’s. Meanwhile George Clinton influenced Afrika Bambaataa, along with the likes of Frank Zappa, Jimi Hendrix, and Parliament.

These individuals would take influence from a lot of the same individuals and groups before them, such as The Beatles, Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, and even some popular R&B singers who had hits in the 50’s.

This chain of influences shows how far back musical influence could go.

Music Critic and Historian.

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