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Celebrations Planned for Hip Hop Appreciation Week May 15–20

Hip Hop Appreciation Week 2017

Hip Hop Appreciation Week begins every third week in May as a time to acknowledge and appreciate the actual existence of Hip Hop itself. Instead of wondering what happened to “real Hip Hop,” Hip Hop Appreciation Week is an opportunity to answer that question; to become a supporter of Hip Hop’s original culture.

This year Hip Hop Appreciation Week is May 15 – May 20, 2017. “Unity” is the theme this year. Such an important principle is not to be taken lightly. With all of the arguing, debating and extreme individualism being expressed everywhere, a serious look at the meaning of Unity seems to be an appropriate theme for the celebration this year. Without UNITY there is no commUNITY!

MIAMI HHAWHip Hop Appreciation Week will kick off in Miami on with some of the most influential Hip Hop masters and vivid storytellers on Saturday, May 13th at the Watsco Center. DNA Entertainment and Addictive Affairs has created an incredible line up that includes DMX, Jadakiss, Styles P and Sheek Louch (The Lox), Raekwon (Wu Tang Clan), DJ Premier, Royce Da 5’9 AKA PRhyme, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, Smoke Dza, M.O.P., Smif-N-Wessun, Beatnuts, Jeru the Damaja and Big Shug, DJ Klassik, Heron, Exes and Self Born.  For more info, click here.

St. Louis (MO) Public Library celebrates the history and culture of hip-hop with its Annual Hip Hop Appreciation Week, running May 15-20 at Central Library. This year, the Library’s Hip-Hop Appreciation Week programming events, free and open to the public, includes a Straight Outta Central Talent Show, DJ Kimmie Nu Live, Nappy DJ Needles, DJing workshop with DJ Alejan, for a on . On May 16th will feature the iLLPHONiCs Concert. iLLPHONiCs is more than a band, it’s an identity. All five individuals in the band are founding members and, since 2006, they’ve consistently made some of the most groundbreaking music in the Midwest, tastefully blend rap vocals with strong musical composition.

Aja La’ Starr’s celebrates the LGBTQ community in Hip Hop with a live performance and discussion. In The Business of Hip Hop Workshop on May 20, Alonzo “Zo” Lee, from the ex’treme Institute by Nelly, will explore the inner workings of the business of Hip Hop. The event closes out with screening of “Hip Hop: Beyond Beats & Rhymes,” a riveting examination of manhood, sexism and homophobia in hip-hop culture. Director Byron Hurt, former star college quarterback, longtime hip-hop fan and gender violence prevention educator, conceived the documentary as a “loving critique” of a number of disturbing trends in the world of rap music.  For info, click here.

Harrisburg Hip Hop Appreciation WeekHip Hop Education 4 Youth in Harrisburg, PA will host the Hip Hop Debate Part 1 as a part of their Hip Hop Appreciation Week event. Topics will include Who’s your Boss?, Lawsuit Artist are facing when fighting to become independent, Should Rappers be held Accountable for their violence lyrics?, Is Mumbling Rap Acceptable or UnAcceptable?, The Un-Expectance of Dark-Skin Woman and Don’t Blame Hip Hop for the violence in the community. The Founder, Michelle Hairston, received her education in the area of the History of Hip Hop from different pioneers such as; Kool Herc, Krs-one, and Dj Red Alert and more who later became her mentors. She uses her knowledge to empower youth in the community and to inspire passion to learn about the History of the Hip Hop Culture. For more info, click here.

Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton proclaimed the third week in May Hip Hop Appreciation Week in that state. The Hip Hop Appreciation Week concert takes place in Minneapolis on May 20. This is a one day Music Festival showcasing the best of Hip Hop culture featuring Snoop Lion, A Tribe Called Quest, Bushwick Bill, Missy Elliott and others. For more info, click here.

Hip Hop Appreciation Week - CanadaIn Canada on May 16th, 2017 Studio.89 in Mississauga, Ontario the  Hip Hop Appreciation Week will explore this year’s theme of ‘UNITY with a night full of Hip Hop history, performances and an amazing panel discussion that will inspire all to take action in our communities. The legendary panelists will delve deeper into the impact of Hip Hop culture on the community, both locally and internationally and its power for change. For more info, click here.

Despite the sometimes irresponsible handling of “hip-hop” in mass media, Hip Hop Appreciation Week acknowledges the original intent of Hip Hop (peace, unity, love and safely having fun), and urges those who may work in any area of media, or entertainment, and/or education to upgrade their presentation of productive and uplifting expressions of Hip Hop to the public.

During Hip Hop Appreciation Week, please be inspired to:

  • Study and accurately teach the culture, arts, history and philosophies of Hip Hop.
  • Without criticism, talk to young people about the images and performances of today’s mainstream rappers and DJs.
  • Acknowledge and celebrate the person or place that introduced you to Hip Hop. you. Try not to block another’s opportunity; be mindful of this.
  • With the theme of maturity and civility in mind, give a stranger the right of way. Allow others to pass
  • Donate your skill to someone who cannot afford it. Offer assistance to a neighbor; baby-sit, tutor, lend your car, or money, etc. Seek to help those in need this week.
  • Practice higher levels of civility this week. Deliberately refrain from the violation of laws and common order.
  • Perform forgiveness. Seek to reconcile the differences that you may have with others.
  • If you can, give 10% of your salary to your child’s teacher, or to your teacher, or to a teacher as a gift.
  • Buy and read a book related to Hip Hop Studies.

During Hip Hop Appreciation Week (May 15th -20th 2017) let us do whatever we can from wherever we are to promote the original intent of Hip Hop to the public, to our children and to ourselves above whatever financial gain that may be achieved.

Let us unite as Hip Hop! Remember, when Hip Hop unites, it unites the whole world.

Spread the word!  It’s Hip Hop Appreciation Week!

How will you show your appreciation?

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Phyllis Coley
Phyllis D. Coley is CEO/Publisher of Spectacular Magazine and Host of Spectacular Magazine Radio Show. With a B.A. in English from NCCU, the Durham native began her professional career as Promotions/Marketing Director for New York City’s WKTU-FM. While at the radio station, Coley discovered the rap group Kid ‘n Play and managed them for five years, guiding their music and movie careers to success. Moving back to Durham, Coley produced a nationally syndicated television show, The Electric Factory, while working as News Director for FOXY 107/104. In April 2002, recognizing a void in highlighting the achievements of African Americans, she started her own business publishing ACE Magazine. Coley launched Spectacular Magazine in November 2004. Recognizing the lack of pertinent and truthful information, Coley began Spectacular Magazine Radio Show in March 2009. Coley is the organizer of Durham's Annual MLK/Black History Month Parade and the Annual North Carolina Juneteenth Celebration. She currently serves on Central Children’s Home Board of Directors, Raleigh Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Advisors, as Immediate Past Secretary of the Durham Rotary Club Board of Directors and is one of the founding members of the Triangle United Way’s African American Leadership Initiative.

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