Hip-Hop’s Lasting Influence On Major Industries
Hip-hop's fingerprints can be seen in most major industries, more so now that it's been fully incorporated into the mainstream.
You see its influences in fashion, sports, video games, and even film — it truly knows no bounds, as everyone has been impacted by hip-hop in one way or another. It isn't just a music genre, it isn't just a collection of songs from your favourite artists; it is a way of life. In much the same way country music has had an influence on culture, or in a similar manner to the way punk shaped the eighties, hip hop has left an indelible print on pop culture.
So, let's take a look at how hip-hop has changed the cultural landscape and molded it according to its own image.
As previously mentioned, hip-hop is well intertwined with the film industry through movies such as Boyz N The Hood. This connection has gotten stronger over the years, as the film industry's interest in hip-hop culture seems to be growing by the day.
Look no further than 2015's Straight Outta Compton, a film that followed the legendary rap group N.W.A. and their meteoric ascent into superstardom. The Hollywood Reporter explains how Straight Outta Compton made a staggering $56.1 million in its opening weekend and created quite the buzz at that year's Academy Awards. Sadly, the film didn't win big, but it has established the bright future of the partnership between hip-hop and the film industry.
Other great films influenced by hip-hop include classics such as New Jack City and Gangsta's Paradise, both released long before the music became quite as popular as it is today.
Video games have always held a special place in hip-hop. Artists such as Notorious B.I.G. and Eminem have references to video games in their songs. This is due to the popularity of video games in pop culture.
Today, the two industries have overlapped. Instead of hip-hop artists rapping about video games, developers have started putting hip-hop references into the games themselves. Foxy Bingo's hip-hop-inspired online slots attest to the scene’s infiltration into this industry. Games like Wild Fury, 60 Second Heist and Neon Rush Splitz have elements reminiscent of the urban themes and neon lights most commonly associated with hip-hop. Another example of this would be the Def Jam series of video games that feature hip-hop artists from all generations in a unique, no-holds-barred fighting game. The games included stars such as Snoop Dogg, Ghostface Killah, and Busta Rhymes, just to name a few. Def Jam paved the way for hip-hop and video game collaborations since its release in 2004.
Hip-hop has affected fashion since it broke through to the mainstream. In fact, many of the trends popularized by 1991's Boyz N The Hood, starring hip-hop star Ice Cube, are still seen in today's fashion trends. However, the influence of hip-hop doesn't end there, as the two industries are closer than ever.
Fashion brands have turned to hip-hop stars for collaborations, as it brings their name to the forefront of the industry. High-fashion brand Gucci recently made waves by naming Gucci Mane one of the brand's newest faces for its Gucci Cruise slated for 2020. In a similar fashion, industry giant Kanye West has started his own footwear and apparel brand. His brand Yeezy is valued at $3 billion, making Kanye the perfect poster boy of hip-hop's influence on the fashion industry. This has become the new normal, as countless other stars have launched collaborations with fashion brands all over the world.
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