As per Wikipedia, "Old school hip hop (also spelled "old skool") describes the earliest commercially recorded hip hop music (approximately from 1979–1984), and the music in the period preceding it from which it was directly descended. Old school hip hop is said to end around 1983 or 1984 with the emergence of Run–D.M.C., the first new school hip hop group. However, some old school rap stations cover 1980s hip hop in general, occasionally extending even into the mid 1990s. The image, styles and sounds of the old school were exemplified by figures like Afrika Bambaataa, The Sugarhill Gang, Spoonie Gee, Treacherous Three, Funky Four Plus One, Kurtis Blow, Fab Five Freddy, Busy Bee Starski, Lovebug Starski, Doug E. Fresh, LL Cool J, The Fat Boys, The Cold Crush Brothers, Kool Kyle, and Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five,and it is characterized by the simpler rapping techniques of the time and the general focus on party related subject matter."
Below we list some of our favorite "old skool" party jams (defined as 80s hip hop), but paying particular homage to the early 80s. Please leave comments with our own favorite selections!
Rapper's Delight - The Sugarhill Gang
Fat Boys - Fat Boys
Beat Street - Grandmaster Melle Mel & The Furious Five
Rockin' It - Fearless Four
Rockit - Herbie Hancock
The Message - Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five
That's the Joint - The Funky 4 + 1 (the first hip hop group to appear on Saturday Night Live!)
Rappin' & Rocking the House" - The Funky 4 + 1
Sucker M.C.'s - Run-D.M.C.
Roxanne - U.T.F.O.
Planet Rock - Afrika Bambaataa & Soul Sonic Force
Hard Times - Run-D.M.C.
The Breaks - Kurtis Blow
At the Dixie - Cold Crush Brothers
Paul Revere - The Beastie Boys
Warm it Up, Kane - Big Daddy Kane
The Bridge - MC Shan
The Show - Doug E. Fresh
Mona Lisa - Slick Rick
The Whodini Mega-Mix (5 Minutes of Funk/Friends/Freaks Come Out at Night) - Whodini
Larry's Dance Theme - Grandmaster Flash
One For the Treble - Davy DMX
Breakers Revenge - Arthur Baker (featured in breakdance battle from Beat Street in video below!)
Al Naafijsh - Kashim
Freedom - Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five
Adventures of Rhyme - Jimmy Spicer
Wild, Wild West - Kool Moe Dee
The Adventures of Grandmaster Flash on the Wheels of Steel - Grandmaster Flash
Rapture - Blondie (her rap verse payed deference to Grandmaster Flash and Francois K.!) (sure, the record doesn't fall exactly into the genre, but does capture the feeling of the time!)
I Can't Live Without My Radio - LL Cool J
White Lines (Don't Do It) - Grandmaster Flash & Melle Mel
Don't Believe the Hype - Public Enemy
Basketball - Kurtis Blow
8th Wonder - The Sugarhill Gang
Brass Monkey - The Beastie Boys
It's Like That - Run-D.M.C.
Jam Master Jay - Run-D.M.C.
|Iron Mike and I catch up with the Cold Crush Crew!|
|Catching up with the legendary Grandmaster Flash!|