Hip Hop vs. Rock and Roll

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Lady Gaga does a great job of explaining that music is one of the best ways for people of different backgrounds to connect. No matter what genre of music somebody listens to, they can be sure to find others who also love the same type of music they do. Some genres of music even blend into each other with their similarities and differences. Two genres like this are hip hop and rock music. Hip hop music and rock music have many similarities in their origins but have evolved to have many differences as well.

Differencebetween.net explains that rap started in the 1970s, right out of New York. The genre focused on societal issues. It was mostly performed by African American artists.

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Stuart A. Kallen notes that rock and roll began with the baby boomers when they were teenagers, and it quickly became the fastest-growing form of music and absolutely changed society (8). Rock and roll focused on creating a divide, which removed its audience from everyone else. This was called the generation gap. It was provocative and pushed specific social behaviors, which was often viewed as disrespectful, thus creating a divide between generation, but a connection between the baby boomers (8). This was very different from hip hop music because hip hop was meant to unite different classes and generations through talking about the same societal struggles, while rock and roll’s focus was the divide. Rock and roll was also different from hip hop because of how the music was made. Stuart A. Kallen mentions that rock and roll’s main component is rhythm with a compelling beat. Its origins were in music from African tribes hundreds of years ago. African tribal music inspired the back-beats and call and response vocals, which are very popular in rock and roll. This evolved into blues, which was about bias and struggle, which also incorporated rock and roll (11).

Hip hop music and rock music have many similarities in their origins but have evolved to have many differences as well. Hip hop began in the late nineties, after rock and roll became popularized in the fifties and sixties. The culture surrounding the genres are also unlike in the ways that one is about a generational gap and the other is about uniting an entire group of people. However, there are many similarities in these genres as well. Such as writing songs about struggles people were facing.

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