November 29, 2010 7:00 AM EST

TIME sent photographer-filmmaker Shaul Schwarz to Los Angeles and to the Mexican border for three weeks to investigate the underworld of narco-culture and the explosive influence that the drug wars are having on music, film, television and fashion. He shows how the wars are paving the way for Latin gangsta rap.

See the story by Tim McGirk for TIME.

See TIME’s video “Narcocorridos: Singing Songs of Drug Violence”:

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