I recently stumbled upon the genre of LoFi hip hop while scouring YouTube for a chill study playlist. I decided to do a little research and figure out exactly what it is and how it originated. Before I get into it, I interviewed a few Transy students to see what they thought LoFi hip hop was.
“It seems like it would be chill rap that’s more focused on being background music” one student said.
Another student laughed and replied “What the heck is LowFi? Is it the opposite of HighFi?”
One of the music minors on campus replied with, “I think it could be a sub-category of hip hop, maybe something that’s not as intense-sounding as what we think of as classic hip hop.”
LoFi hip hop is not actually related to what we categorize as normal hip hop. It’s more of a mellow mix of distorted sounds that are relaxing and often make up a short song, with many ranging from 40 seconds to two minutes.
For starters, the term Lo-fi is short for “low fidelity” and refers to music that is usually recorded and mixed at home, which results in a sound quality that’s less polished than most contemporary music.
LoFi hip hop is formed when the genres of classic hip hop and jazz come together and are remixed to create a new sound. This music officially gained a title in 1986 when WMFU DJ William Berger hosted a half hour segment on his show and played home-recorded music, calling it “LoFi.” Today, this genre’s music can be found on Soundcloud and Spotify, but it is most common on YouTube, with Chillhop Records being the most popular channel for LoFi music.
Lofi is good for studying or relaxing due to its relaxed rythms and melodies. It became popular in the 1960s-1980s with the American underground music trend, and it has recently made a comeback, on Youtube especially. The platforms like SoundCloud and Youtube have more remixes found on them versus Spotify, which is better for well-known artists.
Take a break from life with my collection of LoFi hip hop, Chillhop, and chill trap tunes.
Take it easy,
For our Art Event of the Week, let’s take it to senior J.T. Henderson. He will be performing his percussion Senior Recital this Sunday in Carrick Theater at 3pm! Also don’t forget to stop by Mitchell Fine Arts’ Morlan Gallery to see the New Domesticity: An Examination of Women’s Work in Women’s Art exhibit! It will be on display through February 16th.