The Periodic Table
of Hip Hop Elements

The Process

Droppin' Science: The Periodic Table of Hip Hop Elements

Numerous hours spent staring at the Periodic Table of Elements for Chemistry 101 had taken it's toll.  Enter the Periodic Table of Hip Hop elements.  You all know the Ancient Greek's primary four Elements… Earth, Air, Fire, Water, well just as those elements needed updating, so did Hip Hop’s original four elements.

The Periodic Table of Hip Hop Elements is based on the primary Hip Hop elements at the top, and later elements in succession. And just like the chemical Periodic Table of the Elements, it's organized by rows and vertical columns. Another similarity is that some of the abbreviations don't appear to be shorted versions for the name of elements themselves. For example the chemical element Gold is "Au" (because it is Latin for aurum), likewise the element Boom Box "Gb" is short for Ghetto Blaster.  Element Block Party "He" is short for Herc (Kool Herc) because, after all, it was his Block Party that started this thing called Hip Hop.

After months of compilation and collaboration with my co-author Uptownkid, scrutinizing the validity of each element became a massive task.  So to help us, we came up with the following basic rules…

Basic Element Rules:

• Elements are things, not people (that's why there is no "Rakim" or "2pac" elements)

Elements (at some point in time) must have been closely associated with or embraced by the Hip Hop culture

Elements must be agreed upon by a majority of heads as genuinely Hip Hop (For example we thought about "Sprite" because of the Hip Hop commercials years ago being in the Name Brand column, but decided it was basically a mere side note compared to brand names that did make it)

Elements should be arranged in chronological order (if possible) by row and in categories by columns This was difficult, but our latest current configuration is about as close as we can come to following that general rule.

Periodic Table of Hip Hop Elements (click for larger image)

This is version 2.2 (latest version) of the table.

We understand that heads and haters will collectively provide feedback for changes, additions and improvements. Feel free to comment on what changes you would like to see, or what elements are missing by emailing feedback on the Contact Us page. We realize that in order for it to be validated it must be fairly universally accepted and likewise in order to be a viable document in the future it has to evolve with the times. The final row will therefore remain open for future elements yet to be determined.

Arrangement of the Elements: Methodology

Each vertical column is grouped according to element categories.  The Periodic Table of the Hip Hop Elements is the ONLY Hip Hop Table to compile it's elements both vertically and horizontally.  

Periodic Table of Hip Hop Elements Column Breakdown

Ancient History

Before making this public years ago, we put this through further quality control by submitting this to True Schoolers Eyegetzraw, DJ Ready Red, and Neb Dirty all who have contributed either with new elements or cosigned off on it that it is good.  After that, eventually we proposed the idea to various Hip Hop forums.

Here’s what Old School Hip Hop Heads are said about the Periodic Table of the Hip Hop Elements…

Old School Hip Hop Forum  (This link takes you to

Here’s what DJ Hip Hop Heads said about the Periodic Table of the Hip Hop Elements…

DJ Forums Hip Hop Board  (This link takes you to

Process of Elimination: The Scrutiny of Choosing Just 1 Element

For certain Elements like Hh "Hip-House" we battled to keep off the Periodic Table of the Hip Hop Elements.  But majority rules in Hip Hop, and the people have spoken, so the Hip House element made the final cut.

Old School Hip Hop Forum - The Legitimacy of  Hip House Debate (This link takes you to

Additional and Archived Images of the Periodic Table of Hip Hop Elements

Periodic_Table_of_Hip_Hop_Elements_2.2_Jpg (800 pix wide smallest)

Oldest version of the Periodic Table of Hip Hop Elements from 1.1 (now archived) (pdf)