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Deconstructing Rap Music, Measure for Measure

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Most music experts point to The Sugar Hill Gang’s 1980 hit, “Rapper’s Delight,” as the first official rap song. From there, the genre has lifted off, evolving into an intricate set of styles, deliveries, beats, rhythms, and most importantly, lyrics. Vox recently produced this video below, attempting to deconstruct a variety of rappers’ verbal artistry. After you’re done watching it, we’d suggest spending some time with the two-part film narrated by rapper Ice-T, Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap, at the bottom.