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In time for the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, Paramount+ has announced upcoming documentary Mixtape, which chronicles the rise of physical and digital mixtape culture. Appearing in the film are multigenerational hip-hop acts, including A$AP Rocky, Lil Wayne, 2 Chainz, Fat Joe, DJ Drama, DJ Khaled, Jadakiss, The Game, and more. Directed and produced by Omar Acosta, the documentary is also produced by MTV Entertainment Studios, Mercury Studios and Saboteur Media in association with Def Jam Recordings.

MIXTAPE | Official Trailer | Paramount+www.youtube.com

“‘MIXTAPE’ is the story of hip-hop refusing to take no for an answer. Before radio play, the internet, and social media, there were mixtapes. DJs were tastemakers, trendsetters and creators of the sound that became the biggest musical genre on the planet,” reads the documentary’s synopsis. “The importance of mixtapes goes well beyond the tapes themselves. Mixtapes were a form of currency and a signifier that someone was “in the know” and had their ear to the streets. The culture was too strong to be stopped, and the artists were too talented to be ignored – so they turned the sub-culture into the mainstream, and made hip-hop what it is today.”

“Hip-hop is 50 years old and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate its journey and contextualize its evolution than through the story of the mixtape. Every voice in this film played a critical role, especially the DJs who, as KRS-ONE says beautifully in the film, risked everything to ‘bring us the music’,” said Omar Acosta, director of MIXTAPE. Producer Tony Touch added, “It’s an honor to be involved in this film and to help tell the real story of the mixtape, its origins, its impact, and its on-going relevance for the culture.”

While the documentary will honor the undeniable legacy of mixtapes, some mixtape-hosting platforms have recently gone defunct, including Spinrilla, Zippyshare and Live Mixtapes. DatPiff announced in March that it would be pivoting to an archival service for music.

Mixtape premieres on August 1. A companion soundtrack to the film will also arrive next month.

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