Cassius Life Featured Video

1. Hip Hop’s Birth Father

DJ Kool Herc, looking through his records, DJing, Blackpool, UK 07.10.2000 Source:Getty

The start of hip-hop is credited to Clive Campbell, aka Hercules, aka DJ Kool Herc.

2. The Party Where It All Began

Seeger Fest Press Conference Source:Getty

Plainly enough, Hip Hop began at a back-to-school party Herc threw on August 11, 1973. He decided to use two turntables to extend the instrumental portions (aka breaks) of the songs he played, while people danced and MCs gave shoutouts over the music.

3. Before It Was Called ‘Hip Hop’

House of Courvoisier and Phat Farm presents the Phat Classics Flavas Party New York City Source:Getty

Prior to the term ‘hip hop,’ the genre of music was reportedly called disco rap.

4. Coining Hip Hop’s Name

Portrait Of Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five Source:Getty

Variations of the term ‘hip hop’ reportedly date back to the 1950s, but according to legend, Cowboy of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five used ‘hip hop’ to mimic a friend who joined the U.S. Army. It was supposed to sound like the cadence of a marching band.

5. Break Dancing

Boy breakdancing Source:Getty

The term ‘break dancing’ was also born from Kool Herc’s ‘breakbeat’ DJ’ing. He called the dancers ‘break boys’ (b-boys) and ‘break girls’ (b-girls). They were described as ‘breaking’ when they danced.

6. ‘Breaking’

Kourou, French Guiana (2009), street scene Source:Getty

Fittingly, the term ‘breaking’ was also a slang word for getting excited.

7. Location, Location, Location

1520 Sedgwick Avenue Recognized As Official Birthplace Of Hip-Hop In The Bronx Source:Getty

Herc’s party was thrown at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the Bronx. Here’s a photo of his old spot more recently in 2016.