From the block party to the board room.
British DJ and long-time rap fanatic DJ Semtex has put together a book exploring the genesis of hip-hop, from its beginnings in NYC in the early 1970s, through the gangster rap (and G-funk) era through to the modern rap sound, which has informed pop throughout the world. It features a foreword from none other than Public Enemy frontman Chuck D.
Entitled Hip Hop Raised Me, the book will be released on October 6 and will be accompanied by a soundtrack, which has been selected by Semtex and will be released on Sony. According to the book’s press release, the soundtrack will feature “only the most ground-breaking, epoch-making tracks of the genre.”
The book’s publication coincides with a number of key dates in the rap calendar. It’s 40 years since Grandmaster Flash took his sound out of the Bronx; 30 years since the release of the Beastie Boys Licensed to Ill; and 20 years since the release of Jay-Z’s unbeatable debut Reasonable Doubt. With this in mind, Semtex is hosting a special show in London this October with “some of the biggest names in the Hip Hop game”. It’s billed as a “once in a lifetime” event, and will feature a “multi-generational” line up of artists who will be performing on the same UK bill for the first time.
To drum up interest in the run up to the book’s launch, Semtex has started a special podcast series where he talks to important members of the hip-hop community, and you can check it out on iTunes now.