For your experimentation, for change the rules of the game, out of the parameters laid down by gender, by challenging the structures of machismo, by their speeches or by their aesthetics: these are some albums that managed to drastically change the course of hip hop. Of course, they are not the only ones, but yes they are chapters significant.
“The Miseducation” of Lauryn Hill
“The Miseducation” – the title of which was inspired by Miseducation of the Negro, a book that criticizes the education of black children in american schools – it is a statement brash about what it means to be a woman, a single mother, black, in love and desenamorada. At 22 years and while I was pregnant, he launched this work by marking an entire generation of women with this plaque recording 16 songs, and hammer a nail into the foundation of a gender, since gender on a silver platter to men. Hip hop, r&b, soul and of course the spirit of the reggae hovering strong throughout the work, are the cardinal points of the first, unique, but above all brave disc of Hill.
“The Chronic” by Dr. Dre
After that Dr. Dre he left the ranks, and not on very good terms, of NWAit proposed to found his own record label named as Death Row. “The Chronic”, album released in 1992, not only was the business card of the seal nascent, but a disk that broke in two the history of hip hop. The work, in addition to being a catapult for Snoop Dog, he managed to give a return to gangsta rap, and influenced by the P-funk (the current funkera led by George Clinton in the decade of the seventies) to give life to the G-Funk, mixing elements mesmerizing and made for the dance as a vocal female, Groove, soft synths into overdrive and of course the legacy funkero watered along the tracks. “The Chronic” managed to change the musical structures of the rap and give it a tinge of fun and of course put Dre on the pedestal of one of the best producers of the genre
“Channel Orange” Frank Ocean
In the year 2012 Frank Oceanthe rapper from California, released on his TUMBLR a letter where he spoke of a failed relationship with a man. But the letter is not only meant to be a simple confession or a statement about his sexuality, but a real change in the rules of the game of a genre that historically had given clear examples of homophobia and misogyny. A week after published “Channel Orange“. At 17 songs, the album shows the virtuosity of the Ocean, that becomes heartbreaking moments in which her voice seems to be a cry, and no song ends as the listener waits for him. It is a jewel impossible to label in any genre, because when it feels like an album of R&B, psychedelia appears and shows us a disk of rock, and there then appears the funk and the electronics to end up mislead. What is true is that if something binds to the disc is a conversation about love and pain.
“Supa Dupa Fly” by Missy Elliot
In 1997, when the universe of hip hop was mourning the death of Notorius BIG and living a bloody war between the sides, Missy Elliot he decided to get his debut album and is played with a disc that will do the remove from the context that I was living the gender. “Supa Dupa Fly” reactivated another way of living the hip-hop, did it first with the back-visual mirror on the cover and in the videos, injecting a good dose of feminism, challenging gender norms (just watch the video of Rain, the first single from that album, and the mythical dress of garbage bags bright), with the production of Timbaland assuming with eminence the adventure of presenting an album of futuristic and farfetched that it would open up the spectrum for women in the rap.
“ILL Communication” by Beastie boys
In 1992 when the Beastie Boys launched “Check your Head” they returned to the ways of the hardcore and punk and glimmered its way loud with the format of guitar, bass, and drums. That door opened to let in a disk that was definitive in the history of the Beastie Boys and hip-hop: “Ill Communication”. With this album, new york trio managed to settle as a group matures, giving a twist to his anarchism and making it into a narrative, soundtrack and multicultural worthy of their city of origin. At the point of a comedy shrewd, of an experiment based on the genesis of his musical influences and an aesthetic that ended up giving him to the world videos of the likes of Self-Sabotage, directed by Spike Jonzethe Beastie Boys show the world that a new way of doing hip hop it was possible.
“Swimming” of Mac Miller
Malcolm James McCormick he died in 2018, at the age of 26, leaving behind a legacy of more than 7 discs and at least 10 mixtapes. But “Swimming”the last work published during his lifetime, has been crowned as possibly the best album of his entire career. In this work of 13 songs, the rapper from Pennsylvania, is planning to introduce the listener in his mood, and he does so. With a handful of deep confessions about love, depression and darkness, each track seems to be a part of your process of hitting bottom, of putting your head in a sea of uncertainty, and then pull it out. Collaborations Thundercat, John Mayer, Snoop Doggthey are just an essential part of what it means to this album in terms of production, lyrics and the construction of a disc intimate, reflective, and nostalgic.
“Black Reign” by Queen Latifah
Unitysimple , which makes part of this album, is perhaps one of the songs strongest in the career of the now actress Queen Latifah. It is a criticism which he lashes out against the misogyny, against the harassment of street and the abuse towards women, it is a statement of the black woman that screams for respect in a genre and for men mostly. With this song, Latifah won in 1995 Grammy Award for the Best performance rap solo, and in that way the album became also a document about a woman lifted up her voice, high and strong.
“It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back” de Public Enemy
“Public Enemy no rapeó about the festival, Public Enemy spoke about the state of the American black and how every black child in the united States was a public enemy.” once said Russell Simmons of Def Jam Recordings and in effect each album was a revolution. “It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back”, released in 1998, was no exception; it is a work full of anger, avant-garde, of political criticism, it is noisy, it is radical, it is disruptive. You can’t talk about this album as something part of a musical context, but of activism in the ranks of hip hop by Chuck D and commanded by Flavor Flav.
“Ready to Die” Notorious B. I. G
In 1994, Christopher Wallace – better known as Notorious B. I. G, Big Poppa, or Biggie Smalls – was launched “Ready to Die”disk , a biographical and film, capable of narrating with feat the misadventures of a young black man in the most dangerous streets of New York and his intimate relationship with the drug trade, but above all, the death. It is an album violent yes, but at the same time the work is experiential and heartbreaking, where the rawness is not fiction and where the humor appears at times to balance. Some say that this is the best album in the history of rap, at least yes it is one of the most honest.
“To Pimp a Butterfly” by Kendrick Lamar
As if it were an essay, Kendrick Lamar leads us song by song analysis on the various topics that will haunt the head from “Good kid, m.To.To.d city” (2012), disco predecessor “To Pimp a Butterfly” (2015): the eternal machinations of the music industry, the fallacies of fame, Compton – his home town – the feelings of guilt for having left his ward, dissertations on the black community and its realization as a leader of youth. All that, plus the alter egos of Lamar singing with different voices, theatricality watered by all the work, the collaboration of names such as Pharrell Williams, Flying Lotus, Snoop Dogg, Thundercat, Sounwave, Rahki, Terrace Martin or Knxwledge, Robert Glasper or the references to Tupac, makes this album a masterpiece that will be referenced in the future for your fund and its form.