Black thought: "The principles of hip‑hop mean adding on like this: I got this dope style that nobody ever used before, or I thought of this shit and I thought of this rhyme, or I thought of how to break the syllables down this way. That is what hip‑hop is about, and that has long been lost. It's about motherfuckers bringing that shit back. So that is what I'm talking about."
Kanye West: "We can teach about hip-hop history, we can teach about legends, hip-hop theory. It’s been around so long that text books can be written about it. This is a perfect time to capitalize on and get kids excited about [music] education. " “I don’t even listen to rap. My apartment is too nice to listen to rap in. I have to be in a way more grimey environment to turn any rap music on.”
Pete Rock: "It was very important, and I felt like music ran through my blood lines, with my father being a deejay and teaching me about records. I always thought vinyl was just intriguing. A black piece of wax that spins on a turntable and nothing but good sound comes from it. So that inspiration just keeps me going in hip-hop. "
Pharoah Monch: "Man, I would demand that artist come to the table with better variety. I would demand that musicians know music history, not just Hip-Hop, so that we could understand. The better your ‘listening ear’ is, the better your music will be."
Chuck D: "Rap comes from the humble beginnings of rebelling against the status quo. Now, rappers have become the status quo themselves. You can’t rebel against the Queen and then become the Queen yourself. I attribute much of the blame to testosterone—male dominance and patriarchy."
Eminem: "Personally, I just think rap music is the best thing out there, period. If you look at my deck in my car radio, you're always going to find a hip-hop tape; that's all I buy, that's all I live, that's all I listen to, that's all I love." "When you're a little kid, you don't see color, and the fact that my friends were black never crossed my mind. It never became an issue until I was a teenager and started trying to rap." "Sometimes I feel like rap music is almost the key to stopping racism."
Common: "When I did the album Electric Circus, not only was it not commercially received. But even the critics and hip-hop community was like "What is this?" At that moment, I could've been written off. But I had to believe because I really love what I do. I'm passionate about it. If 12 million recognize it, that's beautiful. If 12,000 do, that's beautiful. But I'm always going to put my heart and soul in it and I'm going to shoot for the stars and go for the highest levels of recognition and creativity. I definitely doubted myself at the time. But it always come back to believing what I do."
Lauryn Hill: "Hip-Hop isn't just music, it is also a spiritual movement of the blacks! You can't just call Hip-Hop a trend!" "Hip-Hop started out in the heart"
Krs One: "Rap is something you do, hip hop is something you live"