Vice President Kamala Harris on Saturday (Sept. 9) hosted a celebration of hip-hop’s 50th anniversary with appearances by some of the music genre’s pioneers and stars.
Hip-hop’s 50th birthday has inspired a host of anniversary events this year. Many trace the genre’s creation to an Aug. 11, 1973, back-to-school party where 18-year-old Clive Campbell, also known as DJ Kool Herc, deejayed at a Bronx apartment building in New York City.
Harris said hip-hop is “the ultimate American art form” that “shapes every aspect of America’s popular culture.”
“Hip-hop culture is American culture,” she told the crowd.
Hip-hop has grown into a global artform, becoming one of the world’s most influential cultural forces, an integral part of social and racial justice movements, and a multibillion-dollar industry built on generations of rapping, emceeing, deejaying, breaking and graffiti.
“It has always channeled the voices of the people. It tells the stories that don’t make the news,” she said before joining her husband, Doug Emhoff, to watch musicians’ performances.
Saturday’s celebration was a collaboration with the Recording Academy’s Black Music Collective and Live Nation Urban.
“This is a hip-hop household!” Emhoff said.