Different Rap Styles

Cars, money, fame-to the untrained ear, that seems to be the main theme of rap music nowadays, but that couldn't be further from the truth. Rewind back to the 80's when rap first went mainstream and what group comes to mind is the Sugarhill Gang and their hit, "Rapper's Delight." Fast forward to the late 80's and early 90's, and rap went from humor and lightheartedness, and began to take a darker turn. With the group NWA, led by Eazy-E, Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, began what is now called gangsta rap.

The daily struggles of living in poverty and illegal ways of obtaining money became the theme, and it took off from there. Rap has since branched out with people having commercial and underground success, and it exploded in popularity. Now, rap is mainly divided regionally, with each side having it's own unique sound. Rappers from the East Coast tend to be more philosophical in nature, with what can be described as a gritty beat.

Many purists will tell you that rap originated in the East Coast, but has since spread. The rappers from the West Coast were able to have more commercial success with stand-outs like Tupac Shakur and Snoop Dogg, and the originators, NWA. Midwestern rappers were characterized by fast rapping styles with groups like Bone Thugs n Harmony, and Twista standing out. Finally, Southern rap has recently come into its own within the last couple of years. Their rap style is usually characterized by slow beats with a lot of bass, and then the party beats, used strictly for clubs and dancing. Rap now, is a cultural mainstay being used everywhere from children's shows to music today and will continue to evolve.