|Stylistic origins||Hip hop, urban, garage house|
|Cultural origins||Early to mid-1980s, United Kingdom|
|Typical instruments||Turntable, synthesizer, rapping, drum machine, sampler, guitar, computer|
|Derivative forms||Trip hop|
|Drum and bass, dubstep, grime, UK garage|
In the 1980s the elements of hip hop culture had spread to Scotland. Hip hop and electro music reached Scotland and were adopted and developed locally by DJs and later MCs.
From the inception of Hip hop culture in Scotland, possibly due to the universal nature of the element, break dancing has been popular. Like most of the rest of the United Kingdom, Scotland has had a number of strong breaking crews over the years, such as Glasgow City Breakers, Lazer City Crew (LCC), Ayrshire, Skywalkers, Floor Freaks, White City Breakers, The Clan, Random Aspekts, Flying Jalapeños, Psycho Styles and Heavy Smokers. Bboys such as Archie Easton, Brian Sharp,Baby J, Billy Todd, Mark Auldy Alderson, Gaz, Nancy McAndrew, Hammy,John Todd & Coza are all well known for their skills in Breakin and more recent b-boys and b-girls such as Sideshow Maule, Emma Ready, Dhalsim, Tony Thrills, Eggy, Presto, T Pop, Maroc, Sam, Super Stevie, Tiger, Harribo, Karol & Matt Finnish are taking Breakin forward. In the late 90s Livingston Skate Park became an unlikely venue for a now legendary jam with legends such as Storm (Germany), Evo (England) amongst others it was from this jam that Floor Freaks were formed. Later Castle Rocks BBoy Championships helped put Scottish breaking back on the map. Castle Rocks was Scotland's biggest ever bboy competition and attracted competitors from Korea, Brazil, France, Belgium, Holland, Norway etc. and across the UK. It was established in 2005 and ended in 2012.
Scotland also has a strong history of DJ talent such as DJ Plus One (ex-world DMC champ), DJ Sonny The SunGod from (Perfect Practice),DJ U-Turn (Scottish DMC Champion 2005) Aberdeen's A La Fu playing far and wide overseas solo and as part of the Big Dada roster, D.J/Producer Nasty P(soul biscuits). Richie Rufftone (Scratch), DJ Krash Slaughta (II Tone Committee, Monkey Mafia), DJ Bunty and others.
Throughout the 1990s the popularity of hip hop culture spread outwards from the city to the coast, with groups appearing from further afield, such as All Time High and Speech Therapy. Contemporary Scottish hip hop is often overlooked due to the dominance of the general British, and specifically London, rap scene. Contemporary Scottish acts that have managed to gain attention beyond the country's borders include Two Tone Committee, the ICARUS (who's track 'Longing for Reason' was used on a 'Bones' TV advert worldwide), Steg G and the Freestyle Master, Big Div, Mr Jinx Scotland Yard Emcees, CatchKlick Emceez, Madhat McGore, Riddlah (UVBeatz), Werd (S.O.S), Hector Bizerk, Stanley Odd, Respek BA, Bigg Taj and All Time High.
Edinburgh (Auld Reekie / The Burgh)
Edinburgh hip hop artists include: Capitol 12 12 (Fly T and Profreesor Fresh), DJ U-Turn ( Scottish DMC Champion 2005), Reachout (Oh Aye Records/Seen), CatchKlick Emceez (Fader, Monolith, Cyrical C and Mr.MacKenzie),Perfect Practice (Nostal/Holmes and Dj Sonny), Hero Records, DJ Sokol, Hex Co.(Sandman/Charlie Chong/Captain Howdy) S.T.M (O.D.G Records), Dead Set Gemini (Jee4ce/Deezy/Show N Prove), Stonez The Riddlah'(UVBeatz), Werd (S.O.S), Deeko (SOS), Jordan Butler (SOS), Greg Nicolson (ODDacity), EL Green, Mickey Blues, One Oz, Elmi Tha Mos' Hi, Silvertongue, Thomson, E.V.I.L, Aye Q, Onetzu, Teknique, S-Type, Whys (better known under the UK Bass music alias Akira Kiteshi), DJ Nasty P, Dave Gunn, Bone def (GhostGroove Records), Northern Exposure, Madhat McGore (MCFR), Conscious Route (CCF/SOS), Blasfima Sinna (You Sonix Records/SOS), Han CMC (SOS), Kon-Tempt (AV8 Records), Simba (Rush Music Group), Zambian Astronaut, Black Lantern Music, including Eaters, Church Of When The Shit Hits The Fan, who played the T-Break stage in 2011, Tickle, Asthmatic Astronaut, The G.O.V.E.R.N.M.E.N.T. and Texture.
The Capital City's hip hop scene is much the same as any other. It relies on the club promoters to book the big acts, then giving the local acts a chance to perform in support. A lot of Hip Hop club nights have come and gone but a few like Soul Biscuits, Urban Scot, Pass The Vibes and Noizteez have managed to maintain a regular slot in clubs like Cabaret Voltaire, Studio 24 and G.R.V (formally Octapus Diamond)and more recently Medina(D.J Nasty P & Cunnie) still pull the crowds in. MC Profisee (Clokes x Daggers) who has always played an active role in the emerging Hip hop scene since his Dark Paragons/Scotland Yard days he has recently been mixing flavors of Dub-Step, Electronica and Grime into his style, playing a big part in the success of club nights like Volume (Termite, G Mac) and Soul Biscuits. English Rapper Skinnyman recorded a song called 'Soul Buscuits' for the album 'Choosers Can't Be Beggars' by Nasty P who was also the main figure behind the night club.
Glasgow Hip Hop crews such as II Tone Committee Krack Free Media (Kryptic & D.J.Science),Business As Usual (D.J.Easi and Live), Steg G & the Freestyle Master, Eastborn, Major Threat and The Being built reputations as quality groups. Groups like Gail Force Crew (GFC) whose roots are based in Hip Hop are still releasing new material and performing at show's have stepped it up another level by using live instruments bring a different vibe to the growing Scottish Hip Hop scene.Also the amount of talented producers from Glasgow has increased recently including, Konchis (The Being MC's), Scatabrainz (The Being MC's), Bill Breaks (The Being MC's), Toni Smoke (Shadowpeople), Boydy from (Deadly Combo) and Steve Scant from (scant Squad) using various samples and scratching to emulate the sounds of hip hop. Other Glasgow or outside Glasgow (Renfrew etc.) MC's also include: Loki(The Being MC's), Gasp (The Being MC's), Respek BA (The Being MC's), NoahMean, Nity Gritz (Shadowpeople) Konchis & Physiks (The Being MC's), Oogie Zoogie (Roadrunners), TailZz (Roadrunners), Zayn, Bigg Taj, Big Div, MOG, Phantom, Mistah Bohze (The Being MC's), Marrik Layden Deft (The Being MC's), Doonhamer (The Being MC's), Louie (Dead Life), Butterscotch (The Being MC's), Wee D (Shadowpeople) & Kayce One (Shadowpeople), DeadSoundz. Djs include : DJ Bunty (Mixkings), DJ Krash Slaughta ( II Tone Committee ),DJ Easi a pioneer of Scottish Hip Hop Djing famously travelled to legendary 'Fridge' club in Brixton in 1990/1991? to compete against a number of UK DJ's in the Tizer Zap competition for best UK DJ (U18) blowing away all comers much to the delight of the Glasgow contingent and dismay of the home crowd and their competitor who was tipped as favourite.
In recent years Scotland, and the city of Glasgow in particular, has been the home of aqua crunk. Aqua crunk step, or Glitch hop as it is sometimes known, is the latest offshoot in the continually evolving world of hip hop. Notable pioneers of this musical development are Rustie, Towny James and Hudson Mohawke of the Luckyme collective. Another Scottish act, Capitol 1212-2 djs/producers aka Fly-T and Professa Fresh, have released records across Europe, America and Asia. They have built up a following with collaborations with international artists such as ED OG, Jungle Brothers, and Grandmaster Caz.
Breakers include : The Flying Jalapeños Crew Graffiti crews include : Easy Riders (ER), WMD, TCK, BRC, SOE, FBR, KNT, ORS, CID, KLM.
Aberdeen Hip Hop artists such as Granite Emcees, Ekizel, Cheeens and SHY & DRS are just a few of the acts that bring light to the City of Aberdeen in Scottish Hip Hop music culture.
The first notable group to emerge and incidentally the first to release a Scottish Hip Hop track on vinyl (1991) was Dope Incorporated, Dope Inc. A side Frontal Attack...a polemic on the implementation of Thatcher's Poll Tax on Scotland. B side Born with a Dope Affliction.
The Aberdeen Hip Hop scene is very different to others in Scotland. Due to lack of club and DJ Support from the City. Most of the Acts have made way for themselves by video marketing and Album/ep Production. The first group to make noise this way was Granite Emcees in 2005. Although very rough in their approach, they were the one act to open many doors for more successful artists in the City. Most notably "The Emcees" who also released a video in the same way in 2006. This group put together by Local producer Ekizel seen two of currently the more successful Scottish groups/acts of the year 2009, they are SHY & DRS and Cheeens.
SHY & DRS being picked up by Awe RECORDS and releasing their self-funded 20 track DEMO "Behind Closed Doors" in January 2009 (including a single release and two music videos) and Cheeens releasing his debut EP "My Miind in Rhyme" (including release of his single/video "For So Long) in September 2009. Both these releases featured Production from Aberdeens most well known producer Ekizel producing most of both releases and all video tracks. Ekizel working with the likes of Loki, Mic assassin, Syanide, Eastborn profit as well as Putting Cheeens, SHY & DRS, Granite emcees and more into the forefront of Aberdeens Hip hop music scene opened many doors and cemented Aberdeens place in the Scottish Hip Hop music scene.
Successful DJs from the City like DJ A La Fu have brough different sides and angles into the Aberdeen Music scene with big name feature tracks and Live shows at his nights in Club Snafu make him one of the Best loved DJs in his field.
Hissy and Cassidy also a strong influence in the Hip Hop scene in the schemes of Viewpark and further afield.
Dundee (Tha Dungeon)
Dundee has been struggling to embrace hip-hop with lack of emcee's repping the game, R.I.P and Shifty Presidents tried to kick off the scene with Elemental Gathering. Had a few hip-hop nights in Dundee with limited success, various attempts have been made to establish a well rounded hip-hop scene in the city . Around 2005 figures such as a D-Team, West and Big G represented for the Dundee scene.
Inverness is perhaps the most overlooked area of Scottish Hip Hop though acts such as Spit-Dis and T-E-C were prominent in the Highlands & Islands. Spit-Dis consists of Brude(Glass Cage), John-Boi (Focus on the Day), KD (Life is a Game) and Sherbit(Hip-Hop). Their most misunderstood track "Morgue City", highlighted the high suicide rate in the North's capital. The members of T-E-C, Mgoff and Paul Scotti are perhaps most recognised for their tracks "Don't Doubt The Flow", "These Parts" and "The Movement". In an area disproportionately dominated by traditional Highland music and Rock bands, these groups are particularly influential in the local and national scene in a way which was previously unassociated with artists from this area.
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- "Like A Boss: Scottish hip-hop prodigy Loki returns | Interview". The Skinny. Retrieved 2013-09-15.
- "Rap duo Hector Bizerk on Scottish hip-hop’s rise". The Scotsman. 2013-07-02. Retrieved 2013-09-15.
- SOS Music. "Werd Music". bandcamp.com. Retrieved 2013-09-12.
- SOS Music. "Han CMC Music". bandcamp.com. Retrieved 2013-09-12.