Hip Hop/Rap

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Characteristics of Hip Hop/Rap

  • A music genre consisting of a stylized rhythmic music that commonly accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech that is chanted.
  • Syncopated drum rhythms (usually built with samples), the use of turntables and an MC rhyming spoken lyrics on top.
  • Originally created by DJs isolating the percussion breaks of popular songs, sometimes with two turntables to extend the breaks. Turntablist techniques, such as scratching, beat mixing/matching, and beat juggling eventually developed along with the breaks.


  • Tupac was born on June 16, 1971, in the East Harlem section of Manhattan in New York City.
  • He lived from an early age with people who were involved with the Black Liberation Army and convicted of serious criminal offenses and who were imprisoned.
  • At the age of twelve, Tupac enrolled in Harlem's 127th Street Repertory Ensemble and was cast as the Travis Younger character in the play A Raisin in the Sun, which was performed at the Apollo Theater. He was actively involved in dramatics.
  • In 1986, the family relocated to Baltimore, Maryland. After completing his second year at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, he transferred to the Baltimore School for the Arts, where he studied acting, poetry, jazz, and ballet.
  • Shakur, accompanied by one of his friends, Dana "Mouse" Smith, as his beatbox, won many rap competitions and was considered to be the best rapper in his school. He was remembered as one of the most popular kids in his school because of his sense of humor, superior rapping skills, and ability to mix with all crowds.
  • He began his career as a roadie, backup dancer, and MC for the alternative hip hop group Digital Underground, eventually branching off as a solo artist.
  • The themes of most of his songs revolved around the violence and hardship in inner cities, racism and other social problems.
  • Both of his parents and several other of his family were members of the Black Panther Party, whose ideals were reflected in his songs.
  • During the later part of his career, he was a vocal participant in the so-called East Coast–West Coast hip hop rivalry, becoming involved in conflicts with other rappers, producers and record-label staff members, most notably The Notorious B.I.G. and the label Bad Boy Records.
  • On September 7, 1996, he was shot multiple times in a drive-by shooting at the intersection of Flamingo Road and Koval Lane in Las Vegas, Nevada. He was taken to the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada, where he died six days later.


  • Tupacs professional entertainment career began in the early 1990s, when he debuted his rapping skills in a vocal turn in Digital Underground's "Same Song" from the soundtrack to the 1991 film Nothing but Trouble and also appeared with the group in the film of the same name.
  • He has sold over 75 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling music artists of all time. His double disc albums All Eyez on Me and his Greatest Hits are among the best selling albums in the United States.
  • He has been listed and ranked as one of the greatest artists of all time by many magazines, including Rolling Stone which ranked him 86th on its list of The 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. Consistently ranked as one of the greatest rappers ever, he was ranked number 2 by MTV in their list of The Greatest MCs of All-Time in 2006. Tupac is also ranked as the most influential rapper of all time.
  • While he was alive he won Soul Trains Award for best R&B/Soul Album of the Year, American Music Award for Favorite Rap/Hip Hop Artist, and Soul Train Music Award for Best Rap Album.

Top Songs

"Dear Mama"

"Hit Em' Up"

"Hail Mary"

"Life Goes On"

"I Ain't Mad At Cha"

"Starin' Through My Rear View"

Top Albums

All Eyez On Me

Me Against The World

Better Dayz

Still I Rise

Until the End of Time

SHMRG- "I Ain't Mad At Cha"

S- Main Vocals, Back-up Vocals, Piano, Chimes, Drum Set, Synthesizer

H- Back-up Vocals, Chimes, Drum Set, Synthesizer

M- Main Vocals

R- Moderate, in 4

G- Moderate (Line)

Intro-Verse 1-Chorus-Verse 2-Chorus-Verse 3-Bridge-Chorus-Outro


  • Nelson, Jessica. "Characteristics of Hip Hop Music." EHow. Demand Media, 03 June 2010. Web. 27 May 2015.
  • "Tupac Shakur." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 27 May 2015.
  • The, Dditions To. ADDITIONS TO THE ISUICE DANCE MUSIC RHYTHMS BOOKLET 1995 (n.d.): n. pag. Web.