The Last Poets
The Last Poets were a collective of African American and Hispanic poets and percussionists that formed in Mount Morris Park (now Marcus Garvey Park) in Harlem, New York, in 1968. In casual get-togethers, group members would recite their poetry, sometimes improvised and often political in nature, while the percussionists played African-based rhythms. The results have often been cited as a precursor to Rap music.
Their 1970 self-titled debut album featured politically charged songs like "When the Revolution Comes" and "Wake Up, Niggers" — messages of self-empowerment that sought to inspire and educate, and that put the group at the forefront of the Black Power movement.
Members of the group are still active today, often collaborating with the very Hip Hop artists on whom they had such an important influence.