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Cultural Fusion: The Evolution of Rap Rock

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by Josh Stevens

 

Rap rock is a music genre that took rap and rock to create a new, exciting listening experience. Rap uses lyrics and rhythmic flow, combining that with rock music’s energy and instrumentals to create a sound that’s powerful and new that people weren’t used to. Rap rock started to get popular in the late 1980s and early 1990s with groups like RUN D.M.C. and Beastie Boys adding rock features to their songs like the loud bass, guitars, and drums.

One characteristic of rap rock is the ability to take two very different sounds and blend them into one. The combination of the creative lyrics alongside the lively loud instruments allowed for even more bands like Linkin Park and Rage Against the Machine to create songs that essentially blended rap lyrics and culture to the rock genre. This fusion of styles created a unique listening experience and helped bridge different cultures.

The influence of rap music on rock and vice versa can’t be overlooked. Lil Wayne, for example, is one of the rap artists in more recent years that really took the idea of rap rock and embraced it. Wayne’s upbringing came from his rap songs, but he would go on to do things that no other rap artist had done before. He not only took influence from the music, but he also took inspiration from the rockstar lifestyle. He was one of the first rap artists to be considered a modern day rockstar.

Lil Wayne’s influence led the new generation to grow and evolve with artists like Playboi Carti, Travis Scott, and Lil Uzi Vert. These artists have crazy live performances that have been adapted from rock culture, featuring things like stage diving and mosh pits. These rap rock stars have often talked about how much influence they take from rock stars from the past. Marilyn Manson and Kurt Cobain are two of the names that come up often, whether it’s from their lifestyle or their fashion.

By bridging the gap between rap and rock, it’s opened the door for artists all over the world to express themselves through lyrical flow while having the same energy as a rock song. Whether it’s the lifestyle, live performances, or fashion influence, rap rock is a genre that’s here to stay.

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