Saturday, August 17, 2013

40 Years Ago, Hip Hop was Born at 1520 Sedgwick Avenue!

The Father of Hip Hop: DJ Kool Herc

40 years ago, on August 11, 1973, hip hop was born at 
1520 Sedgwick Avenue in the Bronx! Here's what happened: 
         Getting ready for the end of summer and her return to school, Cindy Campbell came up with the idea to have a "Back to School Jam" in the recreation room of their 100 unit apartment building to raise money for the school clothes she wanted. She hand-drew the invitation to the party on an index card and recruited the help of her then 16 year old brother, Clive Campbell, nicknamed Hercules because of his huge build, to provide the entertainment, and their parents for the drinks and snacks. Admission was 25 cents for the ladies and 50 cents for the fellas. 

Cindy Campbell

The invitation

          Though Clive was already laying down the foundations of hip hop with his building of a new kind of bass-heavy sound system with his father and his development of various deejaying techniques like the "break" and the "merry-go-round", at the party, Clive, aka DJ Kool Herc, introduced a new technique called the "extension". Then during the party, Clive's friend, Coke La Rock, a NY City rapper, started shouting out friends and partygoers over the deejay's music initiating the art of rap and thus becoming the first MC! That night, they made $500, and hip hop, a ground-breaking new genre of music, was born!

DJ Kool Herc and Coke La Rock back in the 70's
The duo today
 * In 2007, the state of New York officially recognized 1520 Sedgwick Avenue as the "Birthplace of Hip Hop"! To find out more about the humble beginnings of hip hop, Google the Father of hip hop, 
DJ Kool Herc, Cindy Campbell, the First Lady of Hip Hop,
 and Coke La Rock today!

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