New documentary highlights hip-hop’s mixtape culture

Photo by YUKI IWAMURA/AFP via Getty Images

A new documentary is taking a look into the mixtapes that helped shape hip-hop culture. 

Tale of the Tape: How the Mixtape Revolutionized Hip-Hopexecutive produced by DJ Envy and Kim Osorio, covers a decade’s worth of mixtapes from 2012 to 2022 and features unreleased footage of Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole that has never been seen before. Also making appearances are DJ EnvyKid Capri, DJ DramaDJ Clue and the late Combat Jack, to name a few, with Royce Da 5’9″ serving as the doc’s primary narrator.

“Hip-hop has been my lifeline and driving force,” director Malik K. Buie tells Billboard. “I’ve interviewed and documented some of the biggest hip-hop artists and DJs ever, and they all have a common story with how they became who they were — mixtapes. So, let’s talk about it. Let’s examine it. Let’s give it it’s [sic] just due.”

“If we don’t start telling our own history, they will tell it for us,” Osorio adds. “We are taking back the control of our own narratives in hip-hop, specifically on this project with Tale of the Tape.

Tale of the Tape: How the Mixtape Revolutionized Hip-Hop is now available for streaming on Prime Video, Verizon and Spectrum.

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