The Kurtis Blow is one of those names in hip-hop that when it’s mentioned, everyone just sort of pauses in homage. Even the 80’s babies know the name even if they can’t pin point exactly why they know it. So for those who are unfamiliar (especially new comers in hip-hop), class is in session.
“In 1979, Kurtis Blow signed a deal with Mercury Records, making him the first rapper signed by a major label. His album Christmas Rappin’ sold more than 400,000 copies. His follow-up album, The Breaks, went gold. He went on to release 10 albums over the next 11 years and also produced albums. Blow became an ordained minister in 2009 and founded Hip Hop Ministry.” (http://www.biography.com/people/kurtis-blow-5444) How many times have you said or heard someone say,”these are the breaks” or “those are the breaks” and they almost always do it with a shoulder shimmy and a tune? How many of you instantly think of Nas when someone mentions the song title “If I ruled the world”? Now you’ll know exactly where they came from if you didn’t before.
Rapper and producer Kurtis Walker on August 9, 1959, in Harlem, New York. Blow got his first practice as a DJ in grade school, mingling with guests at his mother’s parties to take their music requests. By the time he was 13, he had a fake ID and was sneaking into New York City clubs to hear DJs spin their tracks.
In 1975, Kurtis Blow enrolled in Harlem’s High School of Music and Art, but was kicked out for selling marijuana. He transferred to another high school, where he was soon caught selling the psychedelic drug PCP. Recognizing Blow’s intelligence, the dean gave Blow the chance to test for his General Equivalency Degree as an alternative to expulsion. Blow passed, and went on to study at New York’s City College.
In 1979, Blow signed a deal with Mercury Records, making him the first rapper signed by a major label. His album Christmas Rappin’ sold more than 400,000 copies. His follow-up album, The Breaks, went gold, led by its iconic title track: “Brakes on a bus, brakes on a car, breaks to make you a superstar.”
Blow was soon officially a superstar as well. He went on to release 10 albums over the next 11 years. This included 1985’s America, featuring the song “If I Ruled the World.” The song cracked the Top 5 on the Billboard charts on first release, and returned (in sample form) a decade later when Nas’s version debuted at No. 1. Blow also produced albums for artists like The Fat Boys, Run-D.M.C., Russell Simmons and Wyclef Jean. His influence on hip-hop was so profound that rapper Run of the seminal trio Run-D.M.C. initially called himself the “Son of Kurtis Blow” when just starting his career.
As his rap career progressed, Blow—a devout Christian—made a commitment to himself to keep his lyrics family-friendly. “I’ve recorded over two hundred songs and I have never used a profanity and I always thought that was just me trying to have some dignity, some integrity,” Blow said. “I knew that in order for this thing [hip-hop] to last and spread all around the world, it had to be wholesome, it had to be something that families could listen to, something people could play for their kid, something you could sing in church and I can sing all my songs in church.” Blow’s songs include “Magic Words,” a track recorded with a children’s rap group about the importance of saying “please” and “thank you.”
Kurtis Blow’s faith eventually led him to a new career, when he found himself reading the Bible and unable to put the book away. “I got to the last book in the Bible, Revelations, and it’s sort of like a prophecy. And I said I’d better get my act together before all this stuff starts to happen.” Blow became an ordained minister in 2009 and founded Hip Hop Ministry, a movement that incorporates rap into worship.
Besides recording, producing and hosting radio shows, Blow speaks out on behalf of a variety of causes. He coordinated the recording of the song “King Holiday” in tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr. He also campaigns against racism and drug use. He will always be credited as one of the biggest influences on rap music. “Rappin’ is totally ours—nothing can take it away,” Blow said in 1980, when rap was still in its infancy. “It’s kinda what we are giving to ourselves.” Kurtis Blow. (2015). The Biography.com website. Retrieved 09:12, Aug 10, 2015, from http://www.biography.com/people/kurtis-blow-5444.
Discography Info: http://www.discogs.com/artist/13151-Kurtis-Blow
Be sure to check out & support his latest project, “Hip Hop Church, Volume 3” now available on iTunes!
QTP: Peace fam, Wingz Up!
QTP: For those that don’t know, tell us who you are, what you do:
KNA-LO: “Kna-Lo Venge” Artist, Producer, Actor, Visionary.
QTP: When did you start rapping?
KNA-LO: 12 years old
QTP: Who were your role models music wise?
KNA-LO: Biggie, Wu-Tang, Jay-Z, DMX, Prince, Michael Jackson, 50 Cent, Pitbull, FloRida, to name just a few.
QTP: How did you get hooked up with Razah and the GGO movement?
KNA-LO: We’re family!
QTP: What projects are you working on? What can folks expect over the next year?
KNA-LO: New Single “Blood Pressure” available now on BandCamp.com/Knalo. Shows nation wide and album coming next year.
QTP: Is there anyone that you really want to work with that you haven’t yet?
KNA-LO: P!nk, Nas, Prince, Jay-Z, Eminem. Off the top of my head.
QTP: How can folks reach you? ItsMyUrls.com/Venge
Kna-Lo/Venge defines his music as a testament to all that was and is good in Music. He originates from Queens, New York, the birth place of Hip Hop and hopes to set a standard in the music industry. “Kna-Lo does Hip-Hop as if it were written in his DNA” —AllHipHop.com
Kna-Lo/Venge is currently working on tracks for Avatar 2 and several reality tv shows, as well as several music licensing projects and commercials. More recently, he has music tracks that can be heard on MTV, Bridezillas, The Millionaire Matchmaker, My Sweet Sixteen and 2009-2010 Hottest MC In The Game. In addition, Kna-Lo/Venge is embarking on a solo project and his goal is to develop his own artists, but he’s not stopping there. Kna-Lo/Venge writes, produces, arranges, performs, develops and, is involved in every aspect of the music industry. Kna-Lo/Venge is his new moniker and he has put together a new image to go along with that addition to his name.
Originally just Kna-Lo, Venge represents his new attitude “to aVenge those without a voice”. With a new single & video “Blood Pressure” co-produced by D/R Period it looks like Kna-Lo/Venge has carved out a lane totally original and all his own.
Kna-Lo/Venge has built a solid background in the music business. He’s met, worked with and produced such artists as Big Pun, AZ, N.o.r.e., SPK, Sean Kingston, Lady GaGa, Ashanti, Akinyele, Jerome Benton, Red Café, Capone, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis M.O.P., Lil Kim, The Jacksons and many more. Kna-lo/Venge has also appeared in music videos with Wu-Tang, Rick Ross, Nas, Jay-Z, Eminem, 50 Cent, Pink and many others.
Kna-Lo Venge has just finished (4/10/2013) two new songs, 1: for Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis’ licensing co. and a follow up single produced by hit maker SPK (famous for his work with Nina Sky, N.O.R.E. etc.). In 2008, he released a CD on “Bomb Hip Hop”, which he had the role as producer/executive producer, writer and performer.
Kna-Lo/Venge is aware of how audiences musical preferences fluctuate quite often. His new music and image is a bit darker but, more accessible to a wider audience. With his ear to the ground, Kna-Lo/Venge will continue to produce music to entice listeners and increase his current fan base. We’re excited to see where he takes us next!!
“Let me whip it around, so you know just what’s thorough, I can be your hero, you’ve had enough zeros, you’ve got the most natural swag I’ve ever seen attitude is tight and your shape is so mean” Quote from fan released single “Sexy Girl”.
Freelance Music Critic/Author/Screenwriter.
They tried to smother you in skinny jeans. We wore baggy clothes because we needed to dance every time we heard you. They’ve been singing songs to your beats with lyrics they didn’t write in battles they never won, because the hired help had no idea what you ever stood for. They started cutting your 16s into 12s… maybe because since they weren’t telling a story, then ran out of things to say.
They forgot you were created to transcend barriers of ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and the “social norms”. You represented folks coming from NOTHING and turning into something. You brought hope that dreams came true. You told stories. You did what they said was impossible.
They have attempted to brain wash an entire generation making music about things most people will never have. Hired help spits songs about things they don’t own, lifestyles they never lived until they were hired. The people were no longer allowed to CHOOSE their role models, they were bought. The stories of struggle & victory were replaced by skinny jean molly amped bottle poppin BS. We have an entire generation now of DISRESPECTFUL youth that sag skinny jeans and believe that hip-hop is about sex and poppin bottles in the club. They will even be as so bold to disrespect the FOUNDERS of hip-hop on social media simply because they have never heard real hip-hop. They have disrespected one of the most important roles in music… the DJ. Our youth is destroying SELF because they now believe the only “arrived” they need to get to, is enough money to wear expensive jeans and buy $80bottles of liquor for $400 in the VIP section. When they can’t obtain these things…. They destroy themselves trying to get them. They don’t know that the impossible is possible because what is on the radio is not telling them that. They have no idea that the world is not just made for rich folks.
Something began to happen in 2012…. Many people missed it because didn’t and still don’t yet comprehend the importance of social media…. even if you get it today… You won’t catch those of us who already locked that up last year 🙂 You see, there was a time of local shows and selling mix tapes out of the back of your car. Now that we are in an electronic generation, we don’t have to sell anything out of the back of our car. We can email our music to every corner of the earth that wants it & has internet access.
The people are once again using their voices … they are choosing their champs AS IT SHOULD BE, AS IT ALWAYS WAS.
There was a meteor shower called #LIFEONMARS…. then when the clock struck 12 on 12/31/12 the #HipHopApocalypse began… on 1/14/13 one month from the day #CONNECTICUT became a household name the 7th Trumpet sounded… Symbol? 7th Trumpet is the symbol of KINGDOM reign time… #OPERATIONREVOLUTION is in full effect across the globe.
7th Trumpet “26Project” Watch on Utube : http://youtu.be/–pGEKMCZ6c
7th Trumpet on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/battlegrowndentertainment/the-7th-trumpet
Support on iTunes: Grand Giovanni – 7th Trumpet (feat. QueenTheProphet) – Single – http://itun.es/i6JM95W #iTunes
#OPERATIONREVOLUTION is not just about #BATTLEGROWNDENT, it represents UPROAR in the #indie community. We are by the thousands turning our backs on your industry and everything you stand for. We are coming together, supporting each other. We don’t have to be millionaires to accomplish this. We are though, supporting each other so EVERYBODY EATS. They said it was just Twitter…. It wasn’t real life. Those are real people behind those accounts able to buy, sell, & trade music, services, and support via the internet.
All we’re doing is telling the TRUTH. We believe there is enough for everybody… If 100k people buy 10 singles (yup $10) from 10 #Indie Artists, you the people just changed the lives of 10 people who have friends & family JUST LIKE YOU instead of just one…
We didn’t come for contracts, you can keep your 80/20 & 70/30. We don’t want ANYTHING we haven’t earned. If you came from the underground and EARNED yours? We #SALUTE you. To the frauds? GETCHOBARZ UP because there has been an earthquake in the underground across the globe, most of us hail from “the most violent cities in the US” and we’re screaming #OPERATIONREVOLUTION
If you know nothing about these folks, LEARN ABOUT IT…. Because there’s too many of us to number….
#SsNation @Thrilla_Ssn http://www.thrillassn.blogspot.com #CHICAGO
#GNATION @G_Nationcrown www.gnationcrown.com #HUSTON
#KUSHFACEGANG @callmekushface @detpromoking313 #PHILLY #DETROIT
#TTO @FLA_Phantom @IceCold_ @medley_ceo #ATLANTA #VA
#TeamFollowOrDie @ihannibalaka730 #BOSTON
Well behaved women seldom make history…. and people crazy enough to believe that they can change the world? OFTEN DO.
What can I say? I’m just a little girl who grew up WU.
My name is QueentheProphet, your friendly #HipHopApocalypse Robin Hood of Hip-Hop and I approve this message.
Welcome to the revolution.
@queentheprophet , CT
@iambrandonheat , NJ
These aren’t all, but these are some of the greatest men & women that have ever been heard. If you are unable to recall music from at least 7 of those pictured below… please go back to your studio. Fire the DJ, slap the producer for allowing such nonsense, burn your masters, go apologize to eveyone who’s ears you made bleed with your garbage music and you are now only allowed to sing in the shower, because you have NEVER really heard hip-hop. (We still love you, don’t do it again please.)