Hip house

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Hip house, also known as rap house or house rap, is a musical genre that mixes elements of house music and hip hop. Originating in Chicago and in the United Kingdom, the style quickly became popular with tracks like "Rok da House" by British electronic group the Beatmasters featuring British female MCs the Cookie Crew.[1] In the U.S., the style rose to prominence during the late 1980s in Chicago and New York.[2]

Minor controversy ensued in 1989 when a U.S. record called "Turn Up the Bass" by Tyree Cooper featuring Kool Rock Steady claimed it was the "first hip house record on vinyl". The Beatmasters disputed this, pointing out that "Rok da House" had originally been written and pressed to vinyl in 1986.[3] The outfit then released "Who’s in the House?" featuring British emcee Merlin, containing the lines "Beatmasters stand to attention, hip house is your invention" and "Watch out Tyree, we come faster". More claims to the hip-house crown were subsequently laid down in tracks by Fast Eddie, Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock, Pamp & Da Knox, and Tony Scott. Jack Street Records' 1990 release of Vitamin C's "The Chicago Way" helped to bring focus to the lyrical prowess of hip house rappers.

Hip house chart and club successes in the UK[edit]

After successful releases by the Beatmasters, Deskee, Tyree, Doug Lazy and Mr. Lee, hip-house became popular in the acid house warehouse scene and nightclubs. Hip house also garnered substantial chart success.[2] The style complemented sample-based records of the period, produced by artists such as S-Express, Bomb the Bass and M/A/R/R/S.

Hip house's further crossover success would come in the form of two ground breaking records: "I'll House You" by the Jungle Brothers and "It Takes Two" by Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock. "I'll House You" is generally seen as a collaboration between New York City house-music producer Todd Terry and the Jungle Brothers (an Afrocentric hip-hop group from New York). "It Takes Two" was described by Hip Hop Connection magazine as "...the first palatable form of hip-house for hardcore hip hop fans".

Hip-house tracks featured on popular dance compilations including Telstar's compilation series and was championed by DJs such as To Kool Chris and Chad Jackson.

UK garage[edit]

When R&B was fused with garage house, it created a new genre termed "UK garage". In the later 1990s, UK garage would turn darker, and feature MCing influenced by genres such as jungle and dancehall.[4] Crews such as So Solid and Pay As U Go would pave the way for what would eventually become "grime".[5][6] A derivative form of grime known as "grindie" adds a flavour of rap rock, drum and bass and alternative dance.

Hip house in the present day[edit]

A modern form of hip house became popular in the mid to late 2000s with many artists enjoying mainstream success worldwide. A fusion of electro and hip hop (also known as electro hop) proved very popular and dominated the charts in the late 2000s and early 2010s. Such artists include LMFAO,[7] The Black Eyed Peas,[8] Pitbull, Flo Rida, Far East Movement, Hyper Crush,[9] The Streets,[8] Example and Azealia Banks.[10] Dance music DJs/producers also had hits in the hip house genre, which featured vocals from rappers. These include "C'mon (Catch 'em by Surprise)" by Tiësto and Diplo with Busta Rhymes, and "Forever" by Wolfgang Gartner and will.i.am. French artist David Guetta had several hip house hits such as "Memories" with Kid Cudi, "Where Them Girls At" with Flo Rida and Nicki Minaj, "Gettin' Over You" with LMFAO and "Little Bad Girl" with Taio Cruz and Ludacris.


  1. ^ Goldsmith, Melissa Ursula Dawn; Fonseca, Anthony J. (1 December 2018). "Hip Hop around the World: An Encyclopedia [2 volumes]". ABC-CLIO – via Google Books.
  2. ^ a b Henderson, Alex. "Hip House". AllMusic. Retrieved 2010-06-01.
  3. ^ Duthel, C. "Pitbull - Mr. Worldwide" – via Google Books.
  4. ^ "History of UK GARAGE - 20 Years (1994-2014)". Music Is My Sanctuary. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
  5. ^ "A history of grime in 10 tracks". Mixmag. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
  6. ^ "A brief history of grime". Time Out London. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
  7. ^ "Together Festival Featuring LMFAO, Lil Jon and DJ Afrojack". bk.asia-city.com.
  8. ^ a b "The Best Hip House DJs".
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ "Azealia Banks 1991". exclaim.ca.