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Musician Prince Be.

From the hip-hop group, PM Dawn, Prince Be. The duo consists of Prince Be (Attrell Cordes) and his brother J.C. the Eternal (Jarrett Cordes). One reviewer writes of them, "the duo effortlessly blends disparate elements -- balladeering and rapping, samples and live orchestration -- into gorgeous, wide-screen tableaux of sound. They also write terrific songs, from galloping melodies. . . to exquisite forlorn ballads." Their new album is "Jesus Wept" (Gee Street, Island Records).


From Funk to Rap.

Critic Milo Miles reviews Volume One of "Kurtis Blow Presents the History of Rap" (Rhino)


Ken Tucker

Rock critic Ken Tucker reviews 2 new albums: “Just Push Play” by Aerosmith and “Crown Royal” by Run DMC.


DJ and hip-hop forefather Grandmaster Flash

At the dawn of hip-hop, he recorded with the Furious Five. Their hits included "The Message" and "White Lines (Don't Do it)." Nearly 30 years ago, Flash created the "Quick Mix Theory" — the process of blending one music break with another. This interview first aired July 8, 2002.


Drummer Ahmir Thompson

He is also known as "Questlove" of the hip-hop group The Roots. The Grammy award-winning sextet has six albums to its credit. Their latest CD is Phrenology. Their first single from the album is "Break You Off." One reviewer writes, "To fully savor the sound, you've got to commit to spending time with The Roots, to wallow in both the music and the message.


Kool Herc: A Founding Father of Hip Hop

DJ Kool Herc is the father of the breakbeat, the deejay practice of isolating and repeating "breaks," the most danceable portions of songs; breakbeats make up the foundation of modern hip-hop. Herc has written the introduction to the new book Can't Stop, Won't Stop: A History of the Hip Hop Generation (St.Martins, 2005) by Jeff Chang.


DJ Kool Herc and the Birth of the Breakbeat

DJ Kool Herc is known as the father of the DJ breakbeat, part of the foundation of modern hip-hop. He also wrote the introduction to the recent history of hip-hop, Can't Stop Won't Stop. Kool Herc kicks off Fresh Air's Hip-Hop Week. (This interview originally aired March 30, 2005.)


Rapper Melle Mel: Delivering 'The Message'

When the hit rap song "The Message" by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five came out in the early 1980s, many rappers regarded it as an inspiration and political message. Melle Mel was the original vocalist on the song. (This interview originally aired August 4, 1992.)

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