Since the late 1970s, hip-hop has made its way from insurgent music genre to the defining cultural movement of our times. But it hasn’t been entirely about the music.
To look at fashion today is to understand that hip-hop has been an undeniable influence on the way we dress. From Run-DMC’s endorsement of Adidas and Sean Combs’ launching his own fashion label to Kanye West and Pharrell embracing the world of high-end European fashion, here’s a look at the players who led the way.
LIKE THE FICTIONAL Yoknapatawpha County where writer William Faulkner set many of his stories, the rapper and lyricist Kendrick Lamar, who is nominated for seven Grammy Awards including album of the year, has populated his hometown of Compton with stories, plots, images and recollections that map the contours of his city.
Mixing fact and fiction with rhythm and sound, Lamar since his debut mixtape in 2009 has become South L.A.'s most crucial storyteller, and he's harnessed the area's most notable corridor, Rosecrans Avenue, in service of those narratives.
Whether on tracks including "Backseat Freestyle," "Keisha's Song (Her Pain)" or "Money Trees" or in the videos for his tracks "Compton State of Mind" (a riff on Jay-Z's "Empire State of Mind), "King Kunta" and "i," Lamar locates his creative world in the area in which he was raised.