In light of some of the "beef" that has been brewin' as of late between the some of the new(er) jacks and some pioneers in this game, I think this is the perfect time for this video. It's a 20/20 hip-hop special from 1981. The clip depicts a time when hip-hop was seen by many as a passing fad and was brand new to mainstream America. This aired before I was even born, but I think it's important for all of us, rappers and fans alike, to do our history and realize how far hip-hop has come, and to also keep in mind that none of this would be possible without these pioneers. The story behind the making of this 20/20 episode will be a part of Dan Charnas' upcoming book, The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop, coming out on New American Library/Penguin in 2010. Watch part 2 after the jump. Big shout out to Rap Radar for putting this out there.



  • KK..Fuck You!

    Damn Cracka ass reporters!

  • Skeptic NYC

    KK.. Seems like you have some seroius personal issues to work through. That was all that you had on the networks at that time, and through the piece, they were trying to explore a phenomenon that they had niether lived experience or understanding of, so it is intrepreted as an objectified alien item. That same investigation today would look much different, and hopefully people 30 years down the line will have a much different response than yours.

  • zk

    i think they actually did a pretty decent job, for a mainstream media outlet at the time

  • The zul

    Hip Hop. Clearly it is bigger than hip hop, when you take a look at the report. I can understand KK and his frustration. Obviously he is a black man or woman, who has been victimized in this country, which causes black people to make out bursts such as that one. Oppression is deep, and it is internalized. I rather not go into detail, :Damn Cracka reporters didn’t do a good job. The H Rap Brown part at the end, was a nice three second excerpt. They should have showed the LAST POETS, MALCOLM X who was a very good rapper, listen to his speeches.

    Hip hop goes back to the continent, “AFRICA”. Hip hop in its essence is just a transformation of existing peoples, subjects, traditions, and culture. therefore its bigger than hip hop

  • Something 2 say

    Thanks for posting shamz, honestly I thought that was well done. It was objective and informative. It’s interesting to see the foresight even in 1981 with the educational tools and the political usage. How interesting that the piece ended with raps ‘staying power for years to come’ 1981 was almost 30 years ago(Sure doesn’t seem like it) A lot of people should see this, we all have to reconnect with our roots.

  • Pusha T For President

    This is surprisingly good! I was expecting something corny beyond belief.

    On a side note, Kurtis Blow looked like Kid Cudi’s long lost brother back in ’81.

  • PVD


  • antoinethereal
  • Hocus Pocus

    Kurtis blow does look like KID CUDI, I have to echo what PUSHA said lol…

  • Mr. DAP

    Anyone who considers themselves to be a HIP-HOP head, rap fan, music lover or whatever must copy, steal, and memorize these video clips and give them to ALL they encounter.

    Like it or not, this has spread over the planet like a plague and there’s nothing anyone can do about it!!!!

    Hip-hop is Dead, My ass….

  • Rif Raf

    Actually, Kanye seems to favor Kurtis Blow to me for some reason

  • blondie’s number one fan

    THIS SHIT WAS RIDICULOUS!!!!!!!!! Did you see Blondie acting all pretentious about it “lol yeah you know its the music of the streets” Bitch you were just singing about hanging on the telephone one way or another!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Quealy Jackson

    I needed to see that.

  • Josh B

    Great stuff. Really enjoyed watching this. Thanks!

  • music lova

    Rocking!? What is this ROCKING? It must be found and stopped!!

  • kenster

    You know I remeber when this aired it was tight then and Blondie was Hot back in the day. Did you peep Fab 5 Freddy spraying on the wall. I think that was his first music video.

  • Mike Shousky

    Who ever got mad at Cracka Ass Reporters is lame! If Richard Pryor said it you would have been laughing on the floor. This was a good peice of history. And oh yeah Cracka Ass Reporter! lol all in fun

  • Mike Shousky

    And wait Kanye favors Eddie Murphy on Raw LMAO

  • jDOT

    Wow! Imagine how rap would be if it only had white people rapping! Wow. That would be amazing! No homo.

  • dj RDEE

    Brings back some childhood memories. I sorta remember this being aired back in the day when the TV only had a dial with 2 through 13 and the UHF band…. (OLD School for ya)