As we honor the 50th anniversary of hip hop, we must take a moment to appreciate the year that started it all – 1973.

It was a year that witnessed a seismic shift in culture, music, and history. The Bronx birthed hip hop, while punk rock came to life in the Lower East Side. The Knicks took home their last championship, but it was the creation of hip hop that would prove to be the lasting legacy of that year.

1973 was a time of immense change and turbulence. The Bronx was a hotbed of poverty, crime, and neglect, and yet from its streets rose a cultural revolution that would shake the world. The birth of hip hop was a testament to the resilience and creativity of the marginalized communities that produced it. It was a form of expression that was raw, honest, and unapologetic, giving voice to those who had long been silenced by mainstream society.

But hip hop was not created in a vacuum. It emerged from a cultural melting pot that was simmering with new ideas and influences. The emergence of punk rock in the Lower East Side was one such influence. Punk rock was a rejection of the mainstream, a rebellion against the status quo, and it spoke to the same spirit of resistance that drove hip hop. Both genres were born out of a desire to create something new, something that reflected the experiences and struggles of their creators.

The impact of hip hop on music and society over the past 50 years cannot be overstated. It has given rise to a global movement that transcends borders and cultures, bringing together people from all walks of life. Hip hop has been a vehicle for social and political change, a platform for marginalized communities to speak truth to power, and a source of inspiration and empowerment for generations of young people.

So, as we reflect on the significance of 1973, let us celebrate the birth of hip hop and the enduring legacy that it has left on the world. Let us honor the communities that gave birth to this incredible cultural phenomenon and continue to push for change and progress. Let us never forget the power of music to unite, inspire, and transform, and let us continue to strive towards a better, more just, and more equitable world.

Tune in for my episode on 50 years of New York a look back to summer of 1973 coming soon, and for more episodes, follows us on all social media platforms @riddimandpoetry and subscribe to our youtube channel