Black History Month: DJ Kool Herc

DJ Kool Herc

Learn Something:

Yes Yes Yall and you don’t stop!. Classic Hip-Hop phrasing shouted out by most most DJ’s/Emcees of the early era of Hip-Hop. If you’re like me you grew up on Hip-Hop and have love affair with it. Hip Hop was the eventual offspring to the disco era (Music) which preceeded the Civil Rights (Culturally) era. We have one man to thank, Clive Campbell AKA DJ Kool Herc. Dj Kool Herc was actually born on the island of Jamaica but his family moved to the Bronx when he was about 12 years old. Kool Herc then known mostly as Hercules started to throw parties in his neighborhood primary in the community room in his building, 1520 Sedgwick Ave in the Bronx, NY. Which is now known to be the birthplace of the Hip Hop Culture. Many people consider the actual birth of the culture to be 1972/73 when he first started throwing parties.

Herc started it all with the purchase of a James Brown record  “Sex Machine”. Herc would take the funkiest parts of the song and let them play the break portion while he ignited the crowd with Hip-Hop Vernacular such as the classic “Yes Yes Yall!“. He was the Emcee before the Emcee role existed. Herc was the inventor of blending music which he used 2 turntables to help elongate the break portion of the song. This Technique (no pun intented) was also used to to set up the next song for play he call this style the “Merry Go Round”. It goes without saying that DJ Kool Herc was before his time and because of that we were all beneficiaries of his innovation of Hip-Hop along with his sister (Cindy Campbell) who was the driving force behind many of the parties.

DJ Kool Herc is indeed a living Legend who recently has fallen on some hard times, due to health ailments. Herc suffered from kidney stones and eventual internal bleeding brought on by the fact that this man “the Father of Hip-Hop” doesn’t have health insurance. Like many other Americans, this is a shame that in the day an age we still don’t provide basic free healthcare for our citizens. Just to think that this man of his stature falls into the category of the uninsured is heartbreaking. Everytime i hear or see the rappers of today (who benefit greatly from this mans’ creation) flaunt their wealth on frivolous things it angers me. Knowing that they can give back to the community that has given so much to them especially Kool Herc in his time of need. The term paying homage is often spoke but rarely acted out. It seems like all artist should be paying some sort financial respect to this man, but then again this is just the opinion of #Tellmehowilooknow. This man should be honored and referenced almost any and everytime you mention Hip-Hop.

DJ Kool Herc

To donate to the DJ Kool Herc Fund, you may choose to donate through Paypal below or to send a check made out to “Kool Herc” in care of:

Kool Herc Productions
P.O. Box 20472
Huntington Station, NY 11746

The Campbell family would like to express their deepest gratitude to all of you who have graciously donated and who have sent their best wishes for DJ Kool Herc’s healing.




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