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Apple Music Celebrates 50 Years Of hip-hop With New Audio Series Called “Hip-Hop DNA”
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Apple Music Celebrates 50 Years Of hip-hop With New Audio Series Called “Hip-Hop DNA” 

Hip-Hop DNA is a celebration of 50 years of hip-hop by Apple Music.

By Omotayo Olutekunbi

Apple Music has released a 20-episode audio series that mines the extensive libraries of today’s top musicians to trace their artistic history back to the birth of the art form.

The program’s underlying idea is that all artists, regardless of era or discipline, carry with them the music and practices of their influences, as well as the effects of their influences, whether they are conscious of it or not.

Ebro Darden, Apple Music’s worldwide editorial head of hip-hop and R&B, hosts the audio series, which examines the chain of influence via four diverse lenses.

The series, which premieres on May 8, 2023, begins with ‘Origins,’ which has nine episodes dedicated to excavating the narratives that define hip-hop’s most major regions (East Coast, West Coast, Midwest, and South).

Following ‘Origins,’ Episodes 10-20 will delve into the arts of MCing, producing, and DJing. Hip-Hop DNA is intended to educate and inform listeners of all ages, introducing them to links within the music that many fans never examine.

See a breakdown of the first five episodes about the birth of hip-hop on the East Coast.

The Beginning (Ep 1)

In the first episode of Apple Music’s Hip-Hop DNA series, we explain how every one of our favorite stars’ music carries centuries of influence. Hip-Hop DNA connects artists and eras the average fan is utterly unaware of, teaching new and seasoned hip-hop enthusiasts. In this sense, we’re exploring numerous aspects of hip-hop, including MCs, Production, and DJs, each with its dedicated series uncovering its fascinating history.

Apple Music’s Hip-Hop DNA proves that hip-hop has always been and will always be a family affair. Or, to paraphrase a Dr. Dre-produced deep-cut, “We’re All In The Same Gang.”

Bronx Tale (Part 2)

In the Bronx Tale episode, we examine some of the borough’s biggest performers, such as Cardi B and French Montana, while dissecting a musical genealogy that dates back to hip-hop historian KRS-One and beyond. It’s a long road from Cardi B to KRS, with many musicians in between, but as the adage goes, you can’t know where you’re going unless you know where you came from.

Just Want to Rock (Episode 3)

Contemporary hip-hop artists such as Lil Uzi Vert primarily rely on rock sonics and aesthetics, but Uzi is far from the first. The Hip-Hop DNA episode Just wants a Rock delves into that tradition, including rap-rock pioneers such as the Beastie Boys and Run DMC.

New York State of Mind (Episode 4)

“New York to the heart, but got love for all,” begins Lord Tariq and Peter Gunz’s east coast classic “Deja Vu (Uptown Baby).” It’s the perfect statement to summarize the premise of Apple Music’s Origins series’ “NY State of Mind” episode. We’re emphasizing the effect of some of New York’s biggest stars and tracing a lineage back to Rakim (the man he was named after).

It’s A Queen’s Thing (Ep 5)

With as many universally adored performers as Queens, New York has produced for hip-hop, the city deserves recognition. From Nicki Minaj to Nasty Nas to A Tribe Called Quest to Roxane Shante, the Queens MC pedigree is extensive and diverse. We’re showing you how everyone in that lineage took something from the players who came before them with It’s A Queen’s Thing, Baby.

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