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Hip Hop Family Treeby Ed Piskor
Synopses & Reviews
The lore of the early days of hip hop has become the stuff of myth, so what better way to document this fascinating, epic true story than in another great American mythological medium — the comic book? From exciting young talent and self-proclaimed hip hop nerd Ed Piskor, acclaimed for his hacker graphic novel , comes this explosively entertaining, encyclopedic history of the formative years of the music genre that changed global culture. Originally serialized on the hugely popular website Boing Boing, is now collected in a single volume cleverly presented and packaged in a style mimicking the Marvel comics of the same era. Piskor's exuberant yet controlled cartooning takes you from the parks and rec rooms of the South Bronx to the night clubs, recording studios, and radio stations where the scene started to boom, capturing the flavor of late-1970s New York City in panels bursting with obsessively authentic detail.
With a painstaking, vigorous and engaging Ken Burns meets- Stan Lee approach, the battles and rivalries, the technical innovations, the triumphs and failures are all thoroughly researched and lovingly depicted. plus the charismatic players behind the scenes like Russell Simmons, Sylvia Robinson and then-punker Rick Rubin. Piskor also traces graffiti master Fab 5 Freddy's rise in the art world, and Debbie Harry, Keith Haring, The Clash, and other luminaries make cameos as the music and culture begin to penetrate downtown Manhattan and the mainstream at large. Like the acclaimed hip hop documentaries and , is an exciting and essential cultural chronicle and a must for hip hop fans, pop-culture addicts, and anyone who wants to know how it went down back in the day.
"Originating as a webcomic serialized at Boing Boing, this oversize volume is an epic, exhaustive chronicle of the most culturally impactful popular music movement of the past four decades. With its roots embedded in the streets of 1970s New York City, hip-hop and rap slowly germinated as a DIY urban party phenomenon, weaving a powerful funky spell among the Big Apple's people of color. Local deejays and rappers were catapulted into the scene's spotlight overnight, and the battles for performance supremacy honed the skills of the form's progenitors at parties and clubs, which soon led the sounds they created to be recorded and distributed on bootleg vinyl. As the movement grew, so too did its visibility, and the rest is international pop-culture history. The strip's visual tone bears a borderline underground aesthetic that perfectly suits the material — brown-edged paper and antique flat color — with a semi-cartoony feel, reminiscent of the graffiti that helped define the graphic aspect of the movement. It's a massive undertaking, but Piskor succeeds mightily in chronicling hip-hop's formative years with riveting detail. (Nov.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Imagining the early days of the hip-hop movement with writing and art that intentionally evoke the bombast and energy of an early '80s Marvel comic, Piskor has introduced scores of music fans to comics by serializing the series for free on , but these stories look even better in Fantagraphics' printed collections." Los Angeles Times
"In Piskor's comics, the ... lyrics breakdance off the page... the print version is beautiful, with faux-yellowed pages, a muted color palette and an oversized 'treasury' format recalling its subject's era. Piskor's art falls somewhere between R. Crumb's blues portraits and Joe Sacco's journalism comics." Chicago Tribune
"Captures the personalities, imagery and milestones with a hilarity and efficiency that no other medium could." Seattle Times
"Piskor has an aficionado's eye for details and connections." The New York Times Book Review
This encyclopedic comics history of the formative years of hip hop captures the vivid personalities and magnetic performances of old-school pioneers and early stars like DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, plus the charismatic players behind the scenes like Russell Simmons; Debbie Harry, Keith Haring and other luminaries make cameos.
About the Author
Ed Piskor lives in Pittsburgh, PA.
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Arts and Entertainment » Music » Genres and Styles » Rap and Hip-Hop