DJ of the Month for March 2021
Perhaps one of the iconic DJ’s in hip-hop history is Grandmaster Flash, an artist born in Barbados and raised in the Bronx went on to become the first ever hip-hop artist to be admitted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Flash has said that his fascination with records began with his father who had an extensive collection and his mother who pushed him to be educated about electronic.
Flash began his music at neighborhood block parties and innovated many practices considered standard in modern DJing. According to his official website, “He was the first DJ to physically lay his hands on the vinyl and manipulate it in a backward, forward or counterclockwise motion,” and that he would mark the records with crayons, pens and grease pencils which “became his compass.”
He began the legendary group “Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five” in the late 70s and went on to go platinum with the hit single “The Message.” The song was one of the first big hip-hop songs that provided a social commentary, and it described the experience of the inner-city poverty he witnessed in the Bronx.
Later in his career Flash spent five years as musical director on HBO’s “The Chris Rock Show” where he was selected to be a part of it by Rock himself. The artist has released him memoirs “The Adventures of Grandmaster Flash- My Life My Beats” but is still very much active in his career with no sign of slowing down as he still tours and creates music around the world.