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    10 Hip Hop/Rap Songs That Embody Black History Month

    Since its creation, hip hop has always been a staple of the black community. Rap culture and black culture are almost identical, and have largely influenced each other throughout the years. Here are 10 hip hop songs that embody the meaning and energy of black history month.

    HiiiPoWeR- Kendrick Lamar

    “Who said a black man in Illuminati?

    Last time I checked, that was the biggest racist party”

    You know this list wouldn’t be complete without Kendrick on it. On top of being one of the best rappers alive, he has always been in tune with the complications of black history in the United States. In this deep, grounded track, K.Dot doesn’t shy away from holding a mirror up to racist America.

    My President is Black- Young Jeezy ft. Nas

    One of the most uplifting and inspirational songs you’ll ever hear from Young Jeezy and Nas. This song came promptly after the news that Obama will be the 44th president. This served as a milestone to further immortalize the accomplishment of the first black president.

    Black History- Master P ft. Romeo

    Taking the early down south sound, mixed with very informative lyrics about the past icons in the black community. With the chorus chanting “tell em who my people is, y’all know who my people is” Master P drove the point home in a way you can’t miss.

    A Song for Assata- Common ft. CeeLo Green

    As stated in the title, this tune was dedicated to political activist, and Black Liberation Army member, Assata Shakur. The song tells the story of Assata’s arrest, and ultimately, her legacy. Her iconic story, though not known by all, was beautifully illustrated by common and CeeLo.

    By the Time I Get to Arizona- Public Enemy

    One of the first rap groups to really apply pressure to the issue of racism in America. Public Enemy had a message for Arizona and the Governor who tried to deny the Martin Luther King holiday. The rock influenced song sent a chilling message directly to the Governor that their prejudiced stance on the holiday will not stand.

    The Message- Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five

    One of the first forms of modern hip hop, and one of the earliest rap groups. The message was well received in this iconic hit that has been relayed and sampled millions of times since its release. The iconic beat can be recognized by most the second it starts.

    Rosa Parks- Outkast

    Another southern tune, this time to shed light on one of the most iconic faces of African American history. Rosa Parks’ name is brought up in millions of schools during Black History Month, reminding the youth of her pivotal impact in the fight of black Americans.

    Mortal Man- Kendrick Lamar

    Another song from the iconic and immortal To Pimp a Butterfly album by Kendrick Lamar. Kung Fu Kenny has proven to be a master of making meaningful songs in a way that spread widely throughout the community. Accompanied by an old school, somewhat public enemy sounding beat, Kendrick accomplishes a lot on this track. He raps an entire song, recites a poem, and gives an interview to the late Tupac Shakur.

    Panther Power- 2pac

    It’s no surprise that Tupac Shakur had his fair share of songs to illustrate Black History Month and the struggles of the African American citizen. The flows and instrumentation of this song sound highly inspired by predecessors such as NWA and Grandmaster flash. The world’s most poetic gangster Similar to how you can’t mention hip hop without 2pac, you can’t study black history without the last name Shakur.

    The Blacker the Berry- Kendrick Lamar

    In what is probably the most aggressive song on this list, Kendrick spares no feelings with this one. The high energy beat lets you know that K.Dot is about to strike, and strike he definitely did. This is my personal favorite song on this list, leaving peace on the sideline and voicing the frustration and uneasiness that these racial tensions have created.

    That is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to songs that highlight Black History Month and the ongoing fight for equality. Hip hop has always been a form of expression against oppression, and the dozens of songs about black power remind us all of the common goal, equality.

    What songs do you think should have made this list? Should we continue to have a Black History Month? Is Black History just a large chunk of American History? Should the story and legacy of African Americans really be relegated to just a month? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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