Afrofuturist ideas surfaced in the funk music of 1975, led by George Clinton and his band Parliament Funkadelic. With album titles like Mothership Connection and The Clones of Dr. Funkenstein and heavy psychedelic rock influences, they launched a new tradition of "certified Afronauts, capable of funkitizing galaxies."

What Funkadelic and other artists (most notably jazz futurist Sun Ra) started, Hip hop artists like Dr. Octagon and Missy Elliot finished. During the 1960s, black music had often carried themes connecting black authenticity to "naturalness": think of the appeal to "roots", "natural vibrations," and "mother Africa" in early Reggae or 1960s groups like "Earth, Wind and Fire". By the late 1970s, the names of hip hop bands like "Digital Underground" and albums like "Fear of a Black Planet" had replaced the "back to nature" themes with a sense that the African diaspora needed to move forward into the future.