Continuing to reinforce its classification as the black TV network that isn’t referred to as a black TV network, VH1 teamed up with filmmakers Billy Corben and Alfred Spellman and author, advertising executive, and record executive Steve Stoute for a 4-part documentary series based on Stoute’s best-selling book, The Tanning of America: How Hip-Hop Created a Culture That Rewrote the Rules of the New Economy.
Titled The Tanning of America: One Nation Under Hip Hop, the 4-parter gives audiences a thorough examination of hip-hop as a cultural movement, whose profound influence in music, film, television, fashion, business, race relations and politics eventually paved the way for the election of Barack Obama.
The 4-part 4-hour series features never-seen-before footage and interviews from numerous pop culture icons and entertainment personalities in America: Diddy, Dr Dre, Mariah Carey, Will.i.am, Russell Simmons, Pharrell, Nas, Reverend Run, Rick Rubin, Fab 5 Freddy, Jimmy Iovine, Al Sharpton, Cory Booker, Brett Ratner, Brian Grazer, Tommy Hilfiger, Ron Howard, Steve Stoute and many more.
The series premiered with each of it 4 parts airing over 4 nights, starting on February 24th, 2014, through the 27th, on VH1. If you missed it, or don’t have cable TV, and you’re interested in watching it, you’re in luck, because VH1 has made all 4 parts of the docu-series available online, and I’ve embedded them all below. At close to 4 hours long in total, maybe you can set it aside for some weekend watching: