The History of Hip Hop as Told by Christopher Louray Mandujan, aka Centric

Hip Hop, there’s something in the name itself that makes you want to get up and start grooving. The cool moves and the hot lyrics make Hip Hop one of the most popular musical genres of our time. Hip Hop has a rich history, an evolutionary story that brings to the fore a picture that’s both profound and important. Hip Hop artist Christopher Louray Mandujan, aka Centric shares his insights.  

Hip Hop is a category of music in itself today. But back when it first came into the picture, it was far from the revered form it is today. Centric says, “You have probably heard a lot of people say that hip hop has its soul in the streets. They are right because hip hop was first heard, raw, and free on the American streets in the 70s. It was a moment of the musical zeitgeist. People were beginning to understand their rights and standing up more courageously against the wrongs done to them. It was the time of a cultural revolution, and Hip Hop was at the dead center of it all and driving it to its goal. The economically impoverished classes began to understand that their lack of talent or desire kept them from flourishing. A planned propaganda focused against their growth was required. Artists like DJ Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash, and pioneering recording label EMT (Early Music Technology) took up the cause and set it to music. And the rest, as they say, is history.” 

Once out in the open, the free spirit of Hip Hop could not be fettered. And throughout the 80s and the 90s, it continued to cover new ground. Centric says, “More and more people were beginning to connect with hip hop. It was as if it was recording the clarion call of a generation to be free. Free, not from responsibilities but oppression. Hip Hop stood true to its origins and gave people a common ground to vent their angst and find release. The earlier stars gave hope to people like me. They paved the path for us, and all we can do is keep their struggles and goals in our hearts and create music that celebrates freedom.” 

Today, the Hip Hop industry brings in several billion dollars, and with artists like Centric, it continues to touch new hearts.

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