The history of rap music would not be complete without a look at the performers who make it all possible – the rap artists. Most rap music typically includes one or more rappers who often rap about their own personal life stories, important events in their lives, or social problems that they wish to make a public statement about. Rap songs can also represent romanticized or fictional themes. The sky is the limit. Musicically, rap songs usually have a strong rhythmic aspect with the spoken lyrics emulating the intense rhythm of the beat. Rap songs are known to make use of many poetic techniques including simple word rhymes and alliteration.
The history of rap music also shows that the instrumental track or beat performed by the DJ often includes the rhythms and beat "samplings" from popular and / or well-known funk, rock, or soul songs. These sampled sounds and rhythms are synthesized, integrated, and reinvented with original twists by the performers.
Two other highly popular aspects of rap music that saw their rapid growth into the American mainstream are break dancing and tagging (graffiti). Break dancers and taggers are now stars in their own right with loyal followers and fans throughout the world. Annual break dancing competitions are now very popular even in countries throughout Europe and Asia. The history of rap music can be considered relatively new, yet it is clearly a powerful influence in today's music world. Indeed, the musical influence of New York City African American and Latino culture is now as pervasive worldwide as fast food hamburger chains.