Hip Hop Matriarchs are the first of thousands of girls around the world, to appear on the hip hop scene in The Bronx, NY -- the Home of Hip Hop. This elite group of women are solely responsible for laying the maternal blueprint for women in hip hop.
Hip Hop Matriarchs are women who were visible at park jams, schoolyards and clubs, before the genre got its name, emceeing was called rapping, hip hop was played on the radio, seen in a movie, used on social media or found in books or a museum. These are the girls who wrote and spit the first rhymes on the microphone to break beats and was seen scratching on the turntables. In the '70s, their names appear on hip hop's first handdrawn flyers. These are the girls who you saw "behind the ropes" at the jams and heard emceeing on cassette tapes, as young boys walked down the street with Pumas, Kangols and large boom boxes on their shoulders! Each Matriarch is so deeply embedded into the origin of hip hop, that her name can be directly, and without any discrepancy, traced back to the Patriarchs, DJ Kool Herc, DJ Afrika Bambaataa and DJ GrandMaster Flash. An honorable mention of each Matriarch's name is located in the Communities Hip Hop Section of the Smithsonian (NMAAHC) in Washington, DC.
Whether as a BGirl, MC or DJ, all of the Matriarchs began their hip hop career in the Summer of 1976-78, in various sections of The Bronx. While history denotes that other girls were also on the scene, the criteria of a Hip Hop Matriarch, qualifies as one who made an indelible impact in hip hop and was working within the culture for at least 10 years, consistently, since the inception of female MCs and DJs.
Although hip hop has become a global phenomenon and many women have now contributed to the culture, these Matriarchs are distinct in that, they were there from the beginning, over four decades ago, when the culture was in its infancy! Hip Hop Matriarchs are the foundation to where hip hop history begins for women and who's shoulders every girl who partakes in the culture, past, present and future, stand upon!
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