YO! The early days of hip hop 1982 - 84
"Birth of Hip Hop: Unveiling Rare Moments" is an engrossing visual chronicle that delves into the emergence of hip hop during the early 1980s, as seen through the lens of accomplished French photographer Sophie Bramly. Stationed in New York during this transformative period, Bramly became deeply embedded in the burgeoning hip hop scene, capturing more than 150 seldom-seen images that offer a remarkable insight into the genre's formative years.
The book's pages come alive with intimate portraits of iconic hip hop trailblazers who were on the cusp of fame or just beginning their journey. Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmixer DST, Jazzy Jay, and Run-DMC are among the luminaries featured, their images frozen in time as they laid the foundation for the global hip hop movement.
Recognizing hip hop's transition from mere musical genre to cultural phenomenon, Bramly dedicated her photographic exploration to the four pillars of the culture: emcees, deejays, graffiti artists, and break dancers. The visual narrative comes alive with the exuberant expressions of legendary graffiti artists such as Keith Haring, Dondi, and Lady Pink, their creations both on the canvas and amidst the urban landscape. The dynamic energy of break dancers from groups like the Rock Steady Crew and Dynamic Breakers is vividly captured, immortalizing their rhythmic movements.
Amidst the captivating images, the book also documents the gritty backdrop of the cityscape that gave birth to hip hop. Bramly's lens turns to the fervent energy of the fans who were captivated by this burgeoning cultural wave. Moreover, the book shines a spotlight on the behind-the-scenes influencers who played crucial roles in shaping the genre's trajectory. Figures like Bill Laswell, Bernard Zekri, Rick Rubin, and Patti Astor, co-owner of the Fun Gallery, are captured in their roles as visionaries and catalysts for hip hop's ascent.