MONDAY, JUNE 12, 2017 |
Posted by: Nailah Andre
Harlem will soon be home to the Hip Hop Hall of Fame opening February of 2010 on 125th. The Hip Hop Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization founded by James "JT" Thomas a Hip Hop pioneer who originally started the organization in 1992 as award shows commemorating the best of the genre but JT always had bigger hopes for it.
After the late 90s new plans were always launching for the HHHOF but none of them ever took off. Bust last week in a press release from the Hip Hop Television Channel announced that HHHOF won the bid to acquire a major development site in Harlem sharing a street with the famous Apollo Theater.
The Hip Hop Hall of Fame aims to preserve, educate, and study the impact hip-hop culture has had on pop culture at large. As Phase I of the plan is debuted in February visitors can expect a cafe, gallery, event space and multimedia studio space for the HHHOF Arts & Media Youth Academy where NYC students can train for careers in tech and media.
As someone who has a love for both preserving history and hip-hop I am beyond ecstatic about the news of the Hip Hop Hall of Fame. It is something that has been a long time in the making not only as a physical plan for which the building will be made but as a symbol that hip-hop is finally getting the respect and treatment it deserves. Hip-hop is arguably the fastest growing and most influential subculture of music that we have ever known and yet it is constantly delegitimize in mainstream media.
What first started as misfits scratching records in project basements has quickly grown into chart topping, Grammy award winning, White House performing excellence. The Hip Hop Hall of Fame has the opportunity to set the standard for what is accepted as legendary status for hip-hop acts who have had to look in from the outside of the famed Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Established in 1983 it would take the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nearly twenty-five years to induct their first hip-hop act Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five to much contempt of music fans everywhere. Every hip-hop related inductee has face backlash ever since which poses the question, why are we even fighting to get into these spaces where we're unwanted and don't belong? Let rock artists and fans have their Hall of Fame and let us build something great built for us by us on 125th.
James Thomas founder of the Hip Hop Hall of Fame has many plans for the institution past its phase one plan. He hopes to expand to a 20 stories tall building that will included a 5 star hotel, retail mall, arcade, sports bar and many more attractions. Although it is estimated to cost $150 million to fund this endeavor HHHOF has said that the museum will create countless jobs and internships for the community as well as contribute $350 million to the NYC economy once Phase II is completed.