Hip Hop’s Brave New Frontier
By Adarious Smith
This new decade is ushering in an exciting time in the music industry, specifically in the hip hop arena where a significant stylistic shift is beginning to take place. Never stagnant, hip hop continues to be an evolutionary force to be reckoned with, bringing new artists and sounds that will redefine the industry.
Early signs of the emergence of hot new hip hop styles point to the production of the music, specifically the collision of the industry’s legendary practices with an influx of live instrumentation.
Historically, hip hop has not been defined by instrumentation and tone in such a way as other popular musical genres have been, which is what makes it recognizable by any average listener. Hip hop has thrived in a category all its own, stylized by rapping over any background from country music to classic beats to even complete silence.
The soundscape of hip hop has evolved over the years due to its seemingly infinite degree of adaptability and endless creative landscape. In the 70’s it was DJ driven, then the 80’s brought in drum machines, the 90’s showcased geographical styles with east versus west coast approach.
In the following years, alpha male stars would draw in millions of fans with their ability to maximize their influence in the sound and production of the music. Then technology ushered in a new phase of digital recording that set the stage for new artists to become famous worldwide with the touch of a button.
These platforms gave way to where we are now, the next decade of hip hop, where classification will be a crucial part of the conversation. As the music continues to delve into other genres for a creative outlet, hip hop will be extending its borders.
Rising new artist management companies like Plug Brudaz and their artists are setting the path for others to follow with their vision for artist centered hip hop sound. Representing artists such as Lil Migo, who masters lyrical style blended with intoxicating beats, Plug Brudaz is taking aim at the future of hip hop.
Where hip hop is headed is greatly influenced by its past as well as by the vision of those who are pushing the boundaries in style and sound to the edges, and then jumping off into the unknown. Hip hop ended the decade as the dominant musical genre, giving it enough momentum to propel into creative sounds with unbridled free reigns.