Hip-Hop is diving headfirst into the non-fungible token (NFT) space with its very own collection to honor 47 years of the culture.
On June 19, the Universal Hip Hop Museum in the Bronx — in partnership with blockchain platform NEAR Protocol and celebrated illustrator André LeRoy Davis — debuted a special collection of NFTs in which Hip-Hop fans are now able to own a piece of the genre’s history, a press release states.
The goal of the new collection is to both honor years of Hip-Hop’s rich music culture that has given artists a space to be creative and also champion ownership of their intellectual property through cutting-edge decentralized blockchain and NFT technologies.
“NFTs bring a unique opportunity to honor Hip Hop icons as well as offer artists more control of their creations” Peter DePaulo — head of NEAR’s product lab, Satori — said in a statement. “Our goal is to offer a familiar, smooth onboarding and purchasing experience unlike what’s required at NFT marketplaces built on other blockchains––while also being carbon-neutral.”
A press release reviewed by AfroTech reports that the NFT series — which features everyone from Eazy-E to Lil Wayne — went live on Hip Hop Heads’ NFT marketplace, NFT.HipHop, featuring the work of Davis — who’s responsible for The Source Magazine’s iconic “The Last Word” series that appeared on the last page of every issue from 1990 to 2007.
Davis’ Hip Hop Heads illustrations have portrayed artists who have been central to Hip-Hop over the years and played a role in shaping its history. Being regarded as a Hip Hop Head has become a badge of honor for some of the genre’s biggest artists and now they’re being honored in the most technologically-advanced way.
“We are doing this to spur the revolution,” The Source Magazine co-founder Ed Young said in a statement. “I got my start in Hip Hop and in business more than 30 years ago. In the years since, the music business has gone through dozens of disruption cycles around technology and distribution, from cassettes sold out of the trunk of the artist’s car around their neighborhood to independent and major labels to digital downloads and streaming. I’ve seen enough to know the signs: the next wave of Hip Hop is here, and it’s happening on the blockchain.”
The new NFT collection has a total of 103 creations and No. 1 of each series has been donated to the Universal Hip Hop Museum to help it establish its own crypto art collection.
Editions 2 to 37 of each Hip Hop Head are being auctioned to the public daily, while editions 38 through 47 have been put in escrow wallets for the Hip Hop artist or their estate that help inspired each series.
Fans can bid on the NFT artwork at NFT.HipHop now until July 24.
For more information about the NFT auction, click here.