Grandmaster Flash, one of the three “Holy Trinities” of the Hip Hop culture along with Herc and Bambaataa. Flash is often credited with “inventing” a number of techniques that hip hop DJ’s still use today, “cutting” (moving between tracks exactly on the beat), “back-spinning” (manually turning records to repeat brief snippets of sound) and “phasing” (manipulating turntable speeds). He would get his start in the Bronx in 1977 and with his group of MC’s, which included Kid Creole, Scorpio, Cowboy, Melle Mel and Raihem, they would soon become one of the most popular crews rockin’ the parties and the clubs in the early hip hop scene.
In 1979, the crew dropped “Superrappin’” on Enjoy records, only to be beat out by Sugarhill’s “Rapper’s Delight” as the first rap on record. In 1980, they would sign to “Sugarhill Record’s” and drop classic singles such as “The Message”, “White Lines”, “New York, New York”, and “Adventures On The Wheel”, they would also drop an LP in ’82 called “The Message”. The single “The Message” made noise, which was only Melle Mel and Duke Bootee, there was enough internal strife in which Melle, Scorpio and Cowboy went one way while Flash, Creole (who was Mel’s brother ironically) and Rahiem went the other.
As you would expect, there are plenty of old school tapes floating around of Flash & the Furious Five’s performances. Oddly enough though, and I’m not sure why this is, not many of them are labeled as “Classic Tapes”. I’m not going to lie like I’ve heard all the tapes, not even close, but reading some of the sources, they don’t really include their tapes in the best of the best. Regardless, if you are an old fogey such as myself, you can appreciate that these are just a piece of hip hop history and I feel strongly that they should be kept alive and passed on to the future generations so the history will never be lost.
Grandmaster Flash & Melle Mel @ Christ The King High School – 1980 w/ Cipher Of Sounds
Grandmaster Flash & The Four MCs at Audobon Ballroom 12/23/78
these were recorded before Rahiem joined. Cowboy was being billed as Keith Keith and Scorpio was known as Mr. Ness.