Cal State Northridge (CSUN) to Host Free All-Day Celebration Marking 50 Years of Hip Hop

April 18, 2023

CIPHER Flyer with Sway Calloway     CIPHER Flyer with Skyy and featured artists    

C.I.P.H.E.R. Symposium to feature live performances, dance battles, panels & more

Northridge, CA (Tuesday, April 18, 2023) ~ 2023 marks the 50th Anniversary of Hip Hop with monumental celebrations planned both nationally and internationally. California State University, Northridge is marking this epic event with a symposium hosted by CSUN’s Center for the Interdisciplinary Pursuit of Hip Hop Elevation & Research (C.I.P.H.E.R.) this Friday, April 21st at the university’s Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya.) Located at 18111 Nordhoff St. in Northridge, the all-day, free event is open to the public. Kicking things off at 11am is an in-depth Hip Hop Culture Discussion Panel sponsored By Boom Bap Nation that will feature; Los Angeles Hip Hop industry staple, artist Bishop Lamont, legendary emcee and storytelling afficionado, Money B of the Hip Hop group Digital Underground, world renowned SiriusXM Shade45 music selector, DJ Revolution, famed American music industryexecutive, music supervisor and executive producer, Adrian Miller, and music industry executive and tour titan, Troy Shelton. Live performances will begin at 12:30pm with phenomenal local emcees; Gumbo, 60 East, and A-F-R-O with DJ Patty Clover. B-Boy and B-Girl dance battles, live graffiti installations and other attractions will take place throughout the day. A highlight of the day’s festivities will be a RARE, one-on-one interview at 1pm with American music journalist, radio personality, MTV legend, executive producer and Hip Hop historian, Sway Calloway himself!! (limited seating, RSVP today.)

Founded in 2021, C.I.P.H.E.R was created by Dean Dr. Yan Searcy, in partnership with Hip-Hop journalist, radio personality and show producer, Skyy Hook, in her new role as visiting scholar. It is designed as an innovative and collaborative community academic center that focuses on the interdisciplinary examination of Hip Hop by hosting panels, workshops, conferences, discussions, exhibitions, and a research journal. Some of the genres dignitaries to grace Sky Hook’s classroom include Big Daddy Kane, Pete Rock, Naughty By Nature, Kid from Kid 'n Play, Kwamè, Special Ed, KXNG Crooked, Sway and King Tech, Rich Nice, Jerry Barrow, Alvin Blanco, Dart Adams, Mr. Mec, DJ Eclipse, Jeff Robinson, Ron Mills, Kelly Jackson, Mr. Len and Sean Williams since the program launched.

“Hip-hop differs from other genres in its emotional connections and its reflection of human struggles and triumphs,” said dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Yan Searcy. “It’s often an unfiltered expression of the human condition.”

Sky Hook, who helped to plan the symposium, will also lead one of the day’s discussion panels, “The Boom Bap Nation”, where she and her guests will cover Hip Hop’s first 50 years.

"Teaching my students about the culture of Hip Hop has been absolutely amazing! I've enjoyed the last 5 semesters tremendously!” Skyy enthused. “Getting to share with them in these personal histories and observations from within the culture has been the cherry on an already incredible sundae in my career. My friends that have come and enlightened my classes with the tales of what it was really like "back in the day" have given my CSUN students a completely different perspective on what Hip Hop Culture and Rap Music are about. Some of them are even relating better with their parents as a result. That makes me the happiest! This event will be almost like a version of my class just much bigger!"

Media is encouraged to attend this event where key figure interviews and photo opps will be made available. Post-event visuals can be provided upon request. Kindly RSVP your coverage intentions to nancyb@ogpr.net

Parking is $9.50 per vehicle via Information Booth 2, located at Prairie Street and Darby Avenue. Communication and accommodation services are available upon request, and must be submitted at least five working days in advance at csbsevents@csun.edu.

Visit the Celebrating 50 Years of Hip-Hop: C.I.P.H.E.R. Inaugural Symposium Webpage for a schedule of events and to RSVP for Sway Calloway interview.