Oliver Wang has assembled over two dozen hip-hop critics around the world and
has released "Classic Material, The Hip-Hop Album Guide," the first
comprehensive review guide for hip-hop albums.
"At the beginning
of the year, if you walked into any bookstore in the country and tried to find
any books dedicated to reviewing hip-hop albums, you’d find at most, one book,
if even that," Wang told AllHipHop.com. "Compare that to the number
of dedicated guides to everything from jazz to the blues to rock to reggae to
world music, etc. It was a glaring omission to me that for whatever reason,
publishers were not willing to give a music with a 25+ year history, arguably
the most important and popular genre in the U.S. since the 1980s, a few books
for readers to learn something about hip-hop that’s more than just another slang
dictionary or set of artist profiles."
The review guide
tackles hip-hop’s history thought it’s most important albums and covers over
seventy albums, from "pioneers to pimps, platinum to politics."
The book features
commentaries from Rolling Stone’s Kris Ex, LA Weekly’s Ernest Hardy, Vibe’s
Serena Kim, former Source/XXL editor Reginald Dennis, Joseph Patel and Jon Caramanica.
agree with every opinion spoken in the book and that’s the point," Wang
continued. "’Classic Material’ taps into the conversations we have about
hip-hop everyday and aspires to be a starting point, not an ending point."
The Hip-Hop Album Guide" is edited by Wang, features a forward by legendary
hip-hop A&R, Dante Ross and is in stores now.