Real Hip-Hop Finally Has Its Own Home On TV
“It’s like that uh and it sounds so nice. Hip-hop, you the love of my life.” I’ve been on the same mission for 20 years. Having grown up in the 80s, the soundtrack to my coming of age was fueled by the sounds of Grandmaster Melle Mel, Run-D.M.C., LL Cool J, Whodini, Big Daddy Kane, Eric B. & Rakim, Public Enemy, Boogie Down Productions and too many other greats to name.
By the time I left home to tackle life on my own, recorded Rap music was 10 years old, not a baby, but far from grown. As I made my transition into young adulthood, so did Hip-Hop, morphing from a collage of James Brown samples to a musical diaspora wide and varied enough to include De La Soul, N.W.A., A Tribe Called Quest, Tupac, Nas, Wu-Tang Clan, Biggie, Snoop, OutKast, The Geto Boys and countless others.
Even in the 90s, when Hip-Hop had 15 to 20 years under its belt, it was still dismissed as a fad or somehow an inferior form of music to other genres. In the meantime, those who understood what the culture meant to the people who lived it built empires, many of which endure to this day.
But, despite the industries galvanized by Hip-Hop–music, fashion, spirits, headphones…something has been woefully lacking: TV. There definitely have been great shows documenting the culture, like Video Music Box, Yo! MTV Raps, Rap City, Hip-Hop Evolution, and more. Also, some of the best shows on TV live and breathe Hip-Hop’s ethos, like Atlanta, Power and The Wire, to name a few. But, there has never been a TV network home for Hip-Hop culture…until now.
We at Ambrosia For Heads (AFH) are proud to announce, AFH TV, the first real Hip-Hop TV network. Our thoughts about what “TV” is are out of the box, literally. TV networks are no longer numbers you tune to on a cable box. They are apps that you access, where you want and when you want. Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go and ESPN+ are examples of the new networks, and AFH TV is planting the flag for Hip-Hop lifestyle.
This has been my personal mission for decades, both with my own companies and while I was an executive at Viacom, where I was a senior vice president at MTV Networks and then at BET. While I was at BET, I had a hand in launching the careers of Kendrick Lamar, Big K.R.I.T. ScHoolboy Q, J. Cole, Logic, Rapsody, Joey Bada$$, Vic Mensa, Chance The Rapper and others, many of whom I gave their first TV looks through vehicles like 106 & Park, The Backroom freestyle sessions and the BET Hip Hop Awards Cyphers. When I left, it was to build AFH and, eventually, launch AFH TV.
That time is finally here, and we could not be more excited. AFH TV is now available on iPhone, Android, Roku and online. In addition to our own content, including many of the earliest interviews of the artists mentioned above, we have forged content partnerships with some of the pioneers in Hip-Hop video. Ralph McDaniels has opened up his treasure chest of Video Music Box footage, featuring early clips of Eminem, LL Cool J, DMX, JAY-Z, Aaliyah and many more. DJ Eclipse has shared jewels from his Fat Beats collection, with freestyles from Talib Kweli, Common, Organized Konfusion, Run The Jewels and the old Kanye. And, Phat Phillie, with his rare Croatian archives, has provided some of the only freestyle footage of Big L, as well as performances by Redman and Method Man, Das EFX and others.
But, this is just the beginning. In the coming weeks and months, you’re going to find classic movies, TV shows, documentaries and music videos. We also will be ramping up our original content with talk shows, TV series and more interviews. If you’re familiar with our Ambrosia For Heads website and social media platforms, you know that we stand for the highest quality in Hip-Hop, old and new. That same standard will apply for AFH TV, but we need your help. The more subscribers we get, the better the content will be. It’s a virtuous cycle.
We are asking all Heads–all true fans of Hip-Hop–to help make AFH TV great by subscribing. Subscriptions are $1.99/month or the heavily discounted fee of $12/year. Just like people thought Hip-Hop music was a fad, there are those who don’t think Hip-Hop deserves its own TV network. We know they are wrong and challenge you to prove it. We’ve launched a campaign for subscriptions and have a goal of 50,000 subs over the next two months.
We know you can do it. We’ve seen your power before. Rock with us, and we will not disappoint you.