Style of hip hop that focused on electronic sounds such as TR-808 drums, vocals featuring vocoding, talkboxing, and other forms of distortion or effects. Beats were more syncopated and often was used for more dance oriented music. The style was most popular in Hip Hop mainstream during the early 80s. As Hip Hop evolved more electronic techniques and sounds became the norm in Hip Hop and it stopped existing as a distinct subgenre but has heavily influenced many subgenres that followed it.
New Jack Swing
A fusion subgenre of Hip Hop and R&B that fuses rhythms, samples, and production techniques of Hip Hop and dance-pop with contemporary R&B vocals. The term comes from the Hip Hop “swing” beats made by the drum machine. Although produced by a machine swing beats maintain a human feel by having drum sounds that hit at slightly different volume or lengths unlike a pure electronic production that has perfect consistency. New Jack Swing was most popular in the late 80s and early 90s. It is credited for bridging the worlds between R&B and Hip Hop.
Crossover Hip Hop
This subgenre combines rap verses with melodious vocals on the hook and catchy tunes traditionally found in R&B and Pop music. During the 80s and early 1990 there was a strong divide between the hardcore rap community and radio friendly acts that led to many people referring to Pop Rap acts as sell outs. During the mid 90s hardcore rap acts started making music that blended the two styles and gained more acceptance for crossover music by both fan groups. As a style built for radio, crossover Hip Hop has maintained a presence throughout all Hip Hop history.
Sometimes considered Hip Pop, this fusion genre combines rap verses with melodious vocals on the hook and catchy tunes traditionally found in Pop music. The lyrics are usually more lighthearted, simple, and targeted at casual music fans and the radio. Pop rap hit its peak in the early 80s and early 90s but has maintained a presence throughout all Hip Hop history.