Get rich or die tryin’: how hip-hop changed the world

Public Enemy's Chuck D, Lauryn Hill and Afrika Bambaataa

“Public Enemy changed everything: not just for hip-hop but for the world. In 1989, they were the flipside of the summer of love. While ecstasy and acid house told us to forget politics and love one another with the deep shallowness of E, Public Enemy were the cold shower, the wake-up call. By today’s hip-hop standards, they were austere and minimal: more like a Leninist sub-committee than rap artists. But the sheer relentlessness of their anger (“Elvis never meant shit to me … my heroes don’t appear on no stamps”) and cold scientific analysis of prejudice (“black father, white mother, black baby”), combined with the sound of a drill piercing your head, made for something urgent and spellbinding.”

Continue reading: http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/musicblog/2011/aug/10/how-hip-hop-changed-the-world

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