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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0609805037, Paperback)In his introduction, founding Vibe editor Alan Light justifies the magazine's 300-page hip-hop chronicle in historical terms, noting that while less than 15 years passed between Elvis's first single and Woodstock, it's been two full decades since rap busted out of New York City street parties via the Sugar Hill Gang's "Rapper's Delight." It's a righteous point, and the multi-author Vibe History indeed deserves to be filed next to The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock & Roll. Like that book, Vibe's serves both as a fact-heavy primer and a passionate critical missive aimed straight for fans' hearts. Here we find all the contradictions of a pop-culture phenomenon: art and a hope for immortality rolled into a brightly colored form whose practitioners, even the most politically driven, demand to get paid. Or, as Charles Aaron writes in his essay on KRS-One, the rapper "has never failed to passionately contradict himself--footnotes, bibliography, and dope beats included." Those contradictions may not make the culture go, but as with rock's, they help make it both more frustrating and more fascinating. Whether reminiscing about the future shock of first hearing Run-D.M.C.'s "Sucker M.C.'s," gnawing at the tragic knots at the heart of Tupac Shakur's story, or celebrating women rappers, hip-hop movies, and dancehall reggae, these chapters do what the best music writing should--educate, excite, and lead the reader to the record racks. --Rickey Wright
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:04:17 -0400)
"VIBE, the voice of the hip hop generation, presents the essence of hip hop. Music, fashion, dance, graffiti, movies, videos, and business: it's all in this tale of a cultural revolution that spans race and gender, language and nationality. The definitive history of an underdocumented music genre, The VIBE History of Hip Hop tells the full story of this grassroots cultural movement, from its origins on the streets of the Bronx to its explosion as an international phenomenon. Illustrated with almost 200 photos, and accompanied by comprehensive discographies, this book is a vivid review of the hip hop world through the eyes and ears of more than 50 of the finest music writers and cultural critics at work today."--BOOK JACKET.
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