norway2Hip Hop Scene: The hip hop scene in Norway actually started twice. The first wave followed the Beat Street and Wild Style movies in the early eighties which generated a small wave of break dancers and writers. However, that movement died down quite a bit and then reappeared just before 1990. After 1990 a lot of groups started to appear and more and more writers got up. This was a period where basically anyone who wasn’t a complete nerd had a tag.

One of the biggest influences on the Norwegian scene during the early nineties was Tommy Tee. Tommy provided the essentials for all the new heads through his weekly radio show Strictly HipHop, his fanzine FatCap and concert and club arrangements. In addition to Tee, there was also the A-Team, the first recording hip hop group and a lot of breakers, DJs and writers who worked hard to cultivate the movement.

Around this time practically all Norwegian MCs rapped in English as the scene was inspired to a large degree by British Hip Hop. While the US was the greatest source of rap, Oslo was probably one of the cities in the world where UK Hip Hop had the strongest following among heads.

This changed dramatically after Gatas Parlament started flowing in their native tongue. After 2000, an explosion in Norwegian-speaking rap followed which garnered a lot of media attention and shook up the scene with effects still felt today. As a result of this shift the hip hop scene has grown and expanded and gained more followers but has also begun to show signs of mainstream influence. Overall the scene benefits from more participants but suffers as there may not be as many true heads.

Sources: Shout out to Don Martin from Goodshit Radio for hooking me up with the info and tracks.

The Kingdom of Norway, famously known as the home of the Vikings, is located on the norwayScandinavian Peninsula bordering Sweden, Finland and Russia. Much has been said about the Vikings and their affect on history from vast exploration to their advances in sea navigation and unending sieges and raids but that it is only part of the story. Norway is said to have been inhabited since the Ice Age and around 800 A.D. entered the Viking Age which lasted until 1050 A.D. Wars, Danish rule and a union with Sweden followed until Norway seceded in 1814.

After secession the Norwegian romantic nationalism cultural movement began as natives sought to define and express a distinct national character. This movement covered all branches of culture, including literature, painting, music, and language policy, where attempts to define a native written language led to today’s two official written forms of Norwegian, BokmÃ¥l and Nynorsk.

Although it claimed neutrality during both World Wars, Norway was occupied by Germany during World War II and suffered heavy damage during the five year Nazi occupation. By the late 1940s, it began to rebuild its shattered economy and grew tremendously following a discovery of oil and gas deposits in the North Sea in the 1960s.

Today, the Norwegian government faces many of the same problems that confront other nations: violent crime, drugs, immigration control, unemployment, acid rain, and pollution, but it’s making great strides. In 1993 Norway applied for membership in the European Union (E.U.) and began to assert itself more on the international scene. It also continued to push forward with major engineering projects such as building a number of bridges and tunnels to connect sparsely inhabited outcroppings and interior fjord-side villages. And In 2001 Norway ranked first (with the U.S. in sixth place) as the best country in the world in which to live. How’s that for progress?

Sources: Wikipedia.com, CIA.gov, Norway.org, VisitNorway.com, Frommers, Fodors, and Lonely Planet.

Date: December 21, 2012