Forged in the fires of the Bronx and Kingston, Jamaica, hip-hop became the Esperanto of youth rebellion and a generation-defining movement. In a post-civil rights era defined by deindustrialization and globalization, hip-hop crystallized a multiracial, polycultural generation's worldview and transformed American politics and culture. But that epic story has never been told with this kind of breadth, insight, and style.
Based on original interviews with DJs, b-boys, rappers, graffiti writers, activists, and gang members, with unforgettable portraits of many of hip-hop's forebears, founders, and mavericks, including DJ Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Chuck D, and Ice Cube, Can't Stop Won't Stop chronicles the events, the ideas, the music, and the art that marked the hip-hop generation's rise from the ashes of the '60s into the new millennium. Here is a powerful cultural and social history of the end of the American century and a provocative look into the new world that the hip-hop generation created.
©2005 Jeff Chang; introduction copyright 2005 by DJ Kool Herc (P)2016 Tantor
I started reading this in college for a class about 8 years ago and finally decided to finish it via audiobook. I'm an old school hip-hop nerd and was hoping for a bunch of behind the scenes stories about guys like Eric B. and Rakim, A Tribe Called Quest, etc. About 20% of this book is that, the rest is about why Republicans are evil. It felt like the entire second half of the book was about the LA riots, which was interesting and informative, but if I wanted to learn more about that, I would have downloaded an audiobook about the LA riots. I understand that it all ties in with "hip-hop activism", but it's weird when an audiobook that is supposedly about a genre of music goes on for hours without mentioning said genre of music. The narrator was solid, I recommend imagining him wearing a beret the whole time you are listening. Don't get me wrong, I learned a lot from this book and there were many interesting anecdotes, but I would recommend this more as a political science book than a book about hip-hop.
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