Rakim attending the 65th annual Grammy Awards.

Rakim attending the 65th annual Grammy Awards.

Photo by Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images.

The Best Free Hip-Hop 50 Events in New York City

Looking to celebrate hip-hop’s 50th anniversary without breaking the bank? Here are some things to do for free to celebrate rap’s historic milestone.

The 50th anniversary of hip-hop is fast approaching, with many different events sprouting from it. Across all five boroughs, artists both local and around the world are celebrating hip-hop 50, hosting tributes. From performances to screenings, there is tons to do for free in celebration of hip-hop 50 throughout the month of August.

Staten Island Celebrates 50 Years of Hip-Hop

Date: August 11

Location:Stapleton Waterfront Park, Staten Island

As a part of the Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage, hip-hop 50 is coming to Staten Island, with who else but Raekwon to highlight the performance. Other performers include Staten Island native Tyrone Briggs and Shyheim, who was closely affiliated with the Wu-Tang Clan throughout his career.

Funk Flex and Friends Birthday Concert

Date: August 13

Location:Coney Island Amphitheater, Brooklyn

One of many events that the Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage is offering this month, New York City DJ and radio icon Funk Flex is hosting his birthday function in Coney Island. Along with the famed DJ, artists Raheem Devaughn, Rob Base, and other special guests.

Hip-Hop 50: Native Tongues Edition

Date: August 20

Location:Marcus Garvey Park, Manhattan

As another Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage event, this tribute looks to celebrate the Native Tongues, a group which established itself in the early '90s around Afrocentric lyrics. Hosted by Ralph McDaniels, performing artists include the Jungle Brothers, Monie Love, Black Sheep Dres, Chi Ali, and DJ Red Alert.

BRIC Hip-Hop 50th Anniversary Weekend

Date(s): August 11-12

Location:Lena Horne Bandshell, Brooklyn

Spanning both Friday and Saturday, the BRIC Hip-Hop 50th Anniversary event features performances and a screening of the movie Brown Sugar. On Friday, performers include Afrofuturist hip-hop trio Digable Planets, along with Kari Faux, and Wiki. Brown Sugar will be shown on Saturday, in addition to Hip-Hop trivia with University of Dope, which highlights the women in hip-hop throughout its history.

J.PERIOD Live Mixtape: Gods & Kings Edition

Date: August 9

Location: Damrosch Park, Manhattan

Located right in the heart of Lincoln Center, this performance features famed Brooklyn DJ J.PERIOD, known for his “auto-biography” mixtapes. The featured artists include New York legends Rakim and Big Daddy Kane, along with other special guests.

Rakim + Rapsody & Special Guests

Date: August 12

Location:Damrosch Park, Manhattan

Rakim is back at Damrosch Park within Lincoln Center, this time with Roc Nation artist Rhapsody. Opening the event is Bedford-Stuyvesant native Mr. Life Of Your Party and there is also a silent disco at 10 p.m. following the performance.

BLACK GIRLS ROCK! - Who Rocks Next: The Future of Hip-Hop

Date: August 5

Location:Brooklyn Academy of Music, Brooklyn

The first of two events in partnership with The Brooklyn Academy of Music, ItsAllAboutBlackMusic is holding a conversation regarding the future of women in hip-hop. The discussion will include artists Beverly Bond, Rhapsody, Dede Lovelace, and Kenya Vaun.

A Very Necessary Conversation With Women in Hip-Hop

Date: August 6

Location:Laguardia Arts Center, Long Island City

In partnership with The Brooklyn Academy of Music and LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, ItsAllAboutBlackMusic is hosting its second of two events featuring women in hip-hop. This day features a conversation with renowned female artists Salt-N-Pepa, Remy Ma, and Flo Milli, moderated by TT Torrez.

Genius IQ/BBQ Festival

Date: August 19

Location: Knockdown Center, Maspeth

Headlined by Pusha T and Malice of The Clipse, the Genius IQ/BBQ is a free festival to honor the 50th anniversary of hip-hop. According to the press release, there are going to be some of the city’s most popular food trucks in attendance in addition to the live music.

Sainted: A Trap Choir Experience

Date: August 12

Location: Damrosch Park, Manhattan

One of the numerous free events offered at Lincoln Center this month, Santed pays homage to the Southern Black Church Experience. In addition to a full choir, there will be a live band and original choreography.

Jazz Está Morto: Arthur Verocai with Orchestra

Date: August 11

Location: Damrosch Park, Manhattan

Sampled by the likes of MF DOOM, Ludacris, Common, Action Bronson, and many more, Brazilian musician Arthur Verocai is set to perform his 1972 debut album live. The event will be hosted by music producer Adrian Younge and artist Ali Shaheed Muhammad from A Tribe Called Quest.