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Hip hop music is a style of music which came into existence in the United States during the mid-1970s, and became a large part of modern pop culture during the 1980s. It consists of two main components: rapping (MCing) and DJing (production and scratching). Along with hip hop dance (notably breakdancing) and urban inspired art, or notably graffiti, these compose the four elements of hip hop, a cultural movement that was initiated by inner-city youth, mostly African Americans in New York City, in the early 1970s.
Typically, hip hop music consists of intensely rhythmic lyrical form making abundant use of techniques like assonance, alliteration, and rhyme. The rapper is accompanied by an instrumental track, usually referred to as a "beat", performed by a DJ, created by a producer, or one or more instrumentalists. This beat is often created using a sample of the percussion break of another song, usually a funk or soul recording. In addition to the beat other sounds are often sampled, synthesized, or performed. Sometimes a track can be instrumental, as a showcase of the skills of the DJ or producer.
Hip hop began in The Bronx, located in New York City, when DJs began isolating the percussion break from funk and disco songs. The early role of the MC was to introduce the DJ and the music and to keep the audience excited. MCs began by speaking between songs, giving exhortations to dance, greetings to audience members, jokes and anecdotes. Eventually this practice became more stylized and became known as rapping. By 1979 hip hop had become a commercially popular music genre and began to enter the American mainstream. In the 1990s, a form of hip hop called gangsta rap became a major part of American music, causing significant controversy over lyrics which were perceived as promoting violence, terrorism , promiscuity, drug use and misogyny. Nevertheless, by the beginning of the 2000s, hip hop was a staple of popular music charts and was being performed in many styles across the world.