Kool Herc’s Playlist. Every Hip-Hop DJ should know these…


“Give It Up Or Turnit A Loose (In The Jungle Groove Remix)” by James Brown. This is the national anthem of hip-hop. Every B-Boy, MC, rapper, DJ, rap group, break-dancer, and aerosol artist knew this song, and when it was played at a party or club, everyone knew it was time for the best B-Boys to do battle. Definitely the highlight of the night.

“Get Into Something” by The Isley Brothers. Many people remember The Isley Brothers for their ballads, but this song has a drum break that is incredible. Excellent for the B-Boy break-dancer in you.

“Melting Pot” by Booker T. & The M.G.’s. This song is one of my favorites. The jazz feel epitomizes what hip-hop is all about. You’ll love this one.

“Listen To Me” by Baby Huey. A strictly underground song for real B-Boys and Kool DJ Herc fans. Strong intro with strong R&B tracks.

“Scorpio” by Dennis Coffey & The Detroit Guitar Band. This song was a big national hit in 1971. Very funky and with an incredible break as well. Young MC used it in “Bust A Move” as did LL Cool J in “Jingling Baby.”

“It’s Just Begun” by The Jimmy Castor Bunch. The song’s intro is probably its most popular part: “What we’re gonna do right here is go back — way back.” Check out the guitar solo and the break.

“Apache” by Michael Viner’s Incredible Bongo Band. This is one of the records Kool DJ Herc brought over from Jamaica. A calypso hip-hop feel with incredible percussion breaks. Also check out the guitar line that the Sugarhill Gang pilfered in their version of the same song.

“Hum Along And Dance” by The Jackson 5ive. Only a real B-Boy or a hard-core Jacksons fan would know this song. It may seem unbelievable that Michael Jackson contributed to the creation of hip-hop, but if you don’t believe me, check out how funky this song is.

“Love The Life You Live” by Black Heat was another of my B-Boy favorites. This song has the most incredible break for your power moves. Many people know the original by Kool & The Gang, but this version is for the real B-Boy.

“Theme From S.W.A.T.” by Rhythm Heritage. Pete DJ Jones loved to cut up the break of this song whereas Kool Herc couldn’t quite pull it off. Remember the TV series S.W.A.T.? We’re going way back here….

“Dance To The Drummer’s Beat” by Herman Kelly & Life actually came out during the end of Kool Herc’s reign. Hollywood, Eddie Cheeba, Starski, and Flash made it popular in the late ’70s. There is a great percussion break that became very popular, enabling the DJ to show his skills.

“King Tim III (Personality Jock)” by Fatback was the first rap record. King Tim III was a rapper from Harlem who got a break by landing a job with old school dogs of funk Fatback. He would rap during the band’s musical breakdowns, entertaining the crowd with call and response. When it comes to giving credit for making the first rap record, people get amnesia. I remember him — he deserves the credit.


Freedom of Beats sponsored by The Originators…


Freedom of Beats-July
Freedom of Beats is a platform for DJ’s to express themselves without any musical limitations. The mantra is: NO PLAYLIST. NO FORMAT. NO RESTRICTIONS. Consider this a jam session for DJ’s. This Season’s guest DJ’s will include: DJ AM, DJ Spinbad, DJ Adam 12, DJ Icy Ice, Julio G & Tony G, Mr. Choc, DJ Rhettmatic, DJ Crazy Toones, DJ Battlecat and more to be announced.