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A Brief History of Hip-Hop's Connection to CryptoCurrency

The world and the ways that we function in it are constantly evolving, but one thing that remains the same is man's insatiable need to get C.R.E.A.M. One of the most buzz-worthy developments in today’s global market is cryptocurrency. It’s hard to go anywhere these days without hearing about this intangible tender. With more coins—and more ways to service these coins—popping up every month, barring some major political interference, it doesn’t seem like it will be slowing down any time soon. And hip-hop is getting in on the action.

Starting in 2009 with Bitcoin, the decentralized digital assets have made some major paper for early adopters. Nipsey Hussle got hip to Bitcoin in 2013 at the advice of entrepreneur Marc Ecko. Today, he serves as a vocal ambassador for the expanding industry, and part-owner of Amsterdam-based crypto company Follow Coin.

 "The hip-hop culture shouldn't be left out like we always are," Nipsey told XXL. "Our influence is leveraged, but we're always left out until it's too late. That’s why I thought it was important to be involved as an entrepreneur and to be vocal and bring it to the hip-hop consciousness, so that people who have resources and assets available can participate."Other rappers have taken notice. Hip Hop Promoter Roy Robin following in the footsteps of other tech guru's launched an ICO for a popular cryptocurrency cleverly named "Initial Coin Offering Token". Unlike Bitcoin and the aforementioned projects, Initial Coin Offering Token or ICOT for short, is a project designed to help new crypto traders develop a passive income. In a recent interview Roy was quoted in saying, "At the end of the day people want to make money off this all. And they want to make that money as fast as possible. It's total hysteria and the time for the urban community to get money is now.." Recently his "Crypto Hedge Fund" bought a considerable stake in 3 undisclosed ICO's which began to rocket their price upwards (at the moment ICOT has $127,216.33 in 24 hr trading volume.)

Ghostface Killah has thrown his hat in the ring, investing in the cryptocurrency venture, Cream Capital, while 50 Cent may or may not have made millions accepting the virtual moolah as payment for his Animal Instinct album. Cryptocurrency culture has infiltrated rap lyrics, song titles and even artist monikers—at this moment, there is a rapper who goes by the name of CoinDaddy.

Back before it was the thing to do, Nas took a gamble and invested in then-fledgling digital currency transaction company Coinbase in 2014. Today, Coinbase is one of the world's most popular cryptocurrency exchanges.  Wherever cryptocurrency goes, rap will likely be close by. They make for an odd couple, but they suit each other. The digital asset is in need of powerful voices to shout its praises and downplay its uncertainties, and rappers never stop looking for ways to build fortunes. There’s no telling, but maybe one day rap empires will be measured in cryptocurrency—in Bitcoin, or Litecoin, or Ethereum, or whatever’s next on the blockchain. After all, when 50 Cent said get rich or die trying, he didn’t specify how. 

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