Why U.S. Hip Hop has become relevant (again)

A few months ago, tracking down my mate Rudibell‘s music picks, I started picking up interest for U.S. Hip Hop after years apart – my last solid fond memories would go back to 2004’s N*E*R*D’s Fly or Die album. By that time, I used to listen repeatedly to the groove of Chad Hugo and Pharrell Williams on CD, in my young expat room in Vietnam. 8 years later, here I am in the very same Saïgon thinking about how Hip Hop has been a contributing force in contemporary creative industries.

As a cruising fashion contributor, I must say these past few months have been a blast for the Hip Hop scene. After years of reconfiguration with basement work from heavyweights Timbaland (who’s to thank for JT’s unchallengeable Futuresex/Lovesounds), Jay-Z and Kanye West, the industry has found a second breath, if not a second life.

Kanye West tried his way in the fashion industry alone then with cult brand A.P.C., from which the very posh Givenchy brand has recently invited young gun Dominic Lord onto the row, while Jay-Z shared the scene with Marina Abramovic and Pusha-T mentioned Philip Lim and Derek Lam in Trust You lyrics. Not to mention the thing with Alexander Wang (New Slaves).

The reason why Hip Hop has become so… Hip – is simple: this bunch of artists are the only ones in the world with such an interest in their Lifestyle, and have a unique way of talking about it, creating around it.

A$ap Rocky’s Fashion Killa:

Her attitude Rihanna, she get it from her mama
She jiggy like Madonna, but she trippy like Nirvana
Cause everything designer, her jeans is Helmut Lang
Shoes is Alexander Wang and her shirt the newest Donna
Karan,
 wearing all the Cartier frames

Jean Paul Gaultiers cause they match with her persona

A$ap Rocky (c) Mark Pillai for L’Express Styles
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