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@JayShells and @TheRapQuotes via Twitter

Check out the most famous street corners in hip hop history

Artist has produced street signs to mark locations that inspired NYC hip hop scene.

JAY SHELLS is an artist and graphic designer based in Manhattan who combines his love for design with his passion for hip hop in his latest project, “Rap Quotes.”

First seen on ANIMAL New York, Shells has been installing signs with rap lyrics that reference street corners and locations all around New York City. He then posts the pictures of the official-looking signs to his @TheRapQuotes twitter feed.

“The idea came to me while working at home and listening to music,” Shells explains.

“The Big L song ‘Lifestyles Ov Da Poor And Dangerous’ was playing. I’ve heard it hundreds of times, but this time when I heard myself rapping along out loud: “On 139 and Lenox Ave there’s a big park / And if you’re soft don’t go through it when it gets dark,” I thought it would be cool to mark that location so anyone who walked by would know it was part of NYCs hip hop history.”

He realised there were dozens of rap songs that mention specific NYC locations like housing projects and music venues, and so he started to produce his bright red street signs and put them up around the city.

“Many have already been stolen, which I knew would happen,” Shells said of his ongoing project

“One day I hope to use brass plaques to permanently mark these locations. But I would need permission from the city as well as a sponsor. I can’t afford to do that in my own.”

Check out the most famous street corners in hip hop history
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  • From You Wouldn't Understand by Nas

    Brooklyn's Lewis Avenue and Halsey Street.
  • From Give Up The Goods (Just Step) by Mobb Deep

  • From Neva Die Alone Pt. 2 by Tragedy Khadafi

  • From All Falls Down by Kanye West

  • From For Da Brothaz by Kool G Rap

  • From Vibe Ratings by Capital STEEZ

    Brooklyn's Flatbush Junction - a triangle made by Flatbush Avenue and Nostrand Avenue.
  • From Brownsville by M.O.P./Lil Fame

  • From Rated R by Redman

  • From Mathematics by Mos Def

  • From Crooklyn by Buckshot

    Howard Avenue, Tapscott Street and Sutter Avenue - three roads in the Ocean Hill/Brownsville neighbourhoods of Brooklyn.

- Megan Willett

Published with permission from
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