How are So Solid Crew typical of the genre they belong to?

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Stefan Newton                 6th November

How are ‘So Solid Crew’ typical of the genre they belong to?

So Solid Crew were the first British group to adopt the hip/hop garage genre from America and consequently they made quite a significant mark on British music. They were declared as “The most talked about and controversial musicians of the 21st century”.  A lot of what made the band so successful is the way in which they conform to all aspects of the American rap genre.

As So Solid were one of the first to bring this genre of music to the UK almost all other examples of those in the same genre were from the US, where one of the main conventions of rap genre is criminality, as seen from artists such as 2pac and 50cent who both have history of gun related violence. By bringing elements of America’s hip hop culture they gained a lot of press attention. From the Channel 4 documentary about the group (This is So Solid); we can see that even if their felonious reputation was not intentional, that’s the type of label they received from the papers with some headlines reading: ‘top pop stars in gun terror’ and ‘so squalid crew’. The group were even accused of a rise in crime in their Battersea origins. In November 2001, at the Astoria Club in London, gun shots were fired at a So Solid gig and despite the band being on-stage, they were still accused in the following days and the press began to associate the band with gun terror. The group’s tour was cancelled and they were banned from performing. This branding of the group by the papers allows us to draw upon Gerbner’s cultivation theory, as the paper’s produced similar stories all-round the public have no option but to accept it. It then becomes a popular trend,

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The group responded by doing a school tour and hosting gigs with an invited audience. In addition they released ‘Broken Silence’ which acted as a public message conveying how they feel regarding their mistreatment in the press and the government prejudice they have faced. They way in which the lyrics are passed along in the music video links to how So Solid want everyone to spread the word and the message of the song. As they scan the room at the start and end of the music video there is a direct mode of address from each member, making it ...

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