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Alternative hip hop - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Alternative hip hop (also known as alternative rap) is a subgenre of hip hop music that encompasses the wide range of styles of hip hop that have not become identified as mainstream. All. Music defines it as follows: . Instead, they blur genres . Its commercial momentum was impeded by the then also newly emerging, significantly harder- edged West Coast gangsta rap. A resurgence came about in the late 1. In the 2. 00. 0s alternative hip hop reattained its place within the mainstream, due in part to the declining commercial viability of gangsta rap as well as the crossover success of artists such as Out.
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Kast and Kanye West. The alternative hip hop movement expanded beyond the US to include the Somali- Canadian poet K'naan, Japanese rapper Shing. British artist MIA.
Alternative hip hop acts have attained much critical acclaim, but receive relatively little exposure through radio and other media outlets. History. Smooth, Jungle Brothers, A Tribe Called Quest, Brand Nubian, and Digable Planets in subsidiary conjunction by West Coast acts such as The Pharcyde, Del Tha Funkee Homosapien, Digital Underground, Freestyle Fellowship as well as certain Southern acts such as Arrested Development, Goodie Mob, and Out. Kast. Similar to the alternative rock movement, alternative hip hop segued into the mainstream at the dawn of the 1. Arrested Development along with The Fugees, stand as some of the first few alternative rap to be recognized by mainstream audiences. As music critic Jon Bush wrote in retrospect: The most inventive, assured, and playful debut in hip- hop history, 3 Feet High and Rising not only proved that rappers didn't have to talk about the streets to succeed, but also expanded the palette of sampling material with a kaleidoscope of sounds and references culled from pop, soul, disco, and even country music. Weaving clever wordplay and deft rhymes across two dozen tracks loosely organized around a game- show theme, De La Soul broke down boundaries all over the LP, moving easily from the groovy my- philosophy intro .
Thinly disguised under a layer of humor, their lyrical themes ranged from true love (. Download Application Nokia Belle. Prince Paul (from Stetsasonic) and DJ Pasemaster Mase led the way on the production end, with dozens of samples from all sorts of left- field artists. The pair didn't just use those samples as hooks or drumbreaks.
If it was easy to believe the revolution was here from listening to the rapping and production on Public Enemy's It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back, with De La Soul the Daisy Age seemed to promise a new era of positivity in hip- hop. Both West Coast gangsta rap and East Coast hardcore and their many derivatives subsequently became more prominent in popular music, whereas alt- rap became largely relegated to the underground scene. Following this development, many alternative rap acts eventually either disbanded or faded into obscurity.
In his 1. 99. 5 book on the current state of hip hop culture, music critic Stephen Rodrick wrote that, at that time, alternative hip- hop had . Since the mid- 9. Rawkus Records, Rhymesayers, Anticon, Stones Throw and Definitive Jux have experienced lesser mainstream success with alternative rap acts such as MF DOOM, Atmosphere, Antipop Consortium, Black Star, Gorillaz, Pharoahe Monch, El- P, and Aesop Rock.
It was in the 2. 00. Out. Kast, Kanye West, and Gnarls Barkley. The album eventually went on to win a Grammy Award for Album of the Year. Due to high download sales, it reached number- one of the single charts in several countries, including the United Kingdom, where it became the best selling single of 2. The song has since sold over two million copies in the United States alone and has been certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. West emerged the victor, selling nearly a million copies in the first week alone. Ben Detrick of XXL cited the outcome of the sales competition as being responsible for altering the direction of hip hop and paving the way for new rappers who didn't follow the hardcore- gangster mold, writing, .
Kanye led a wave of new artists. K'naan's 2. 00. 9 single Wavin' Flag reached number two on the Canadian Hot 1. Shing. 02 was chosen for rapping . Today, due in part to the increasing use of music distribution through the internet, many alternative rap artists are able to find acceptance by far- reaching audiences.