Beez in the Trap kicked off Trap Week, a weeklong series examining trap music culture and its origins, on Monday, Nov. 26.
The event was hosted by the Mu Zeta chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, in collaboration with Student Hip Hop Organization and Minim Seles.
The event was a culmination of the rich history of trap music, tutorials on how to create your own trap track and a discussion that centered around how trap music is perceived in society.
Senior Nicho Stevens, co-president of Student Hip Hop Organization, started the panel with the breakdown of the technical aspects of trap music and the unique things that define it.
“A lot of trap is based on the use of the 808 drum machine,” Nicho said. “That’s really what sets the sound apart.”
Stevens went on to talk about the advancement of trap sound. He talked about how lyrics followed the same type of progression from the 1990s until present day.
“Trap was originally used to describe locations where drugs were bought and sold,” Stevens said. “Trap soon grew to describe the inner city environment.”
The history of trap music itself often comes from the artist and their experiences, but it can be more complicated than that.
During the discussion portion of the panel, the exact definition of trap and which artists actually fit the definition of the genre was considered.
“I think to be a trap artist you have to come from a certain set of circumstances so that it’s actually authentic,” attendee Richard Hall said.
Attendees also debated how the immersion of trap music in popular culture is currently being perceived in society and the how it can affect listeners.
“I feel like it made hip-hop more inclusive, so how trap has been immersed in a lot of mainstream music these days,” Chandler Evans, CEO of Minim Seles said. “It’s made that and hip-hop more accessible to anyone but it also is kind of prone to glorifying a lot of different cultural characteristics that are more so are conditions of survival and not stuff that they want to do.”
Jalen Heyward, member of the Mu Zeta Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha, gave the group a mini-tutorial into creating a trap music beat on garage band. Heyward came prepared with a beat to show the group.
Evans volunteered and created a short piece with assistance from the audience to make a flow that included 808 tracks, beats and piano.
The entire session was interactive from start to finish. Stevens answered questions throughout the entire presentation, despite the designated discussion section.
From Zaytoven to Snoop Dogg, all aspects of one of the many niches of the rap world were brought to light and analyzed in a productive and informative environment.
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