The year is 2010 and hip-hop has officially entered its fifth decade since its birth in the "boogie-down" Bronx.
And it would be no surprise that it's Brooklyn-bred rapper, Jay-Z, who kicks down the door for the next 10 years.
His latest video for "On the Next One," which features Swizz Beatz, was released on "NBC's New Year's Eve with Carson Daly." It's being touted as the first music video of the decade.
The four-minute black and white video is a mix of artistic expression, including everything from flaming basketballs to skulls dripping with black and white liquid. I'm not going to read into every image displayed in the video and look for a meaning behind it. Regardless of the messages in the video, I think it's dope!
The video also helps to remind us of how much hip-hop has evolved since its first recording "Rapper's Delight" by the Sugar Hill Gang in 1979.
The late Notorious B.I.G. put it best in 1994 on "Juicy" when he said, "You never thought that hip-hop would take it this far."
He was absolutely right.
I don't think anyone expected hip-hop to enter its fifth decade and be a multi-billion dollar industry with hits that top all the charts.
Hip-hop is not a black thing. It's not an American thing. It's an everybody thing. And it's clear that it will be here forever.
Welcome to the fifth decade of hip-hop.
(Below: Videos from the early 80s -- Kurtis Blow "Basketball"; credited as the first rap music video / Whodini "Magic Wand"; credited as the first rap group to shoot a music video / and also check out "The Message" by Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five)