Known for his energetic performances and fun, infectious beats, DJ Kool Herc (author of the delightfully infectious rap single “Let Me Clear My Throat”) says it’s a blessing to be a part of the hip-hop genre. talk.
“Because we made it to 50 and they didn’t think we could make it to 50. That’s what it all means,” he said during a crowd-pleasing performance at the Apollo’s Spring afterparty. Afterwards, he told EBONY. advantage. This annual event supports the organization’s year-round world-class arts, education and community programs, as well as its commitment to black arts and culture. “Hip-hop is now a billion dollar industry, and I’m proud to have been a part of it for 46 years.”
DJ Kool Herc, whose real name is John W. Bowman, Jr., began his hip-hop career in Washington, DC in 1977, first becoming a DJ in the local party scene. His most famous single was released in 1996. Featuring samples of Kool & The Gang’s “Hollywood Swinging” (1974) and The 45 King’s “The 900 Number” (1987), “Let Me Clear My Throat” blends hip-hop elements . , funk, go-go music. It entered the Billboard Top 100.
Looking back on 50 years of hip-hop, he said the genre has expanded exponentially. “It’s more creative. There are things happening now that didn’t happen in the past. It’s just evolution.”
His music has had a lasting influence on the next generation of rappers and hosts. In 2016, he said, “It’s because of DJ Khaled that DJ Kool Herc opened for Beyoncé.” In 2018, he opened Beyoncé and Jay-Z.
And he’s amassed some pretty influential fans along the way, like former First Lady Michelle Obama. “I met her in 2016 and she was amazing. I told her who I was. let me do it,’ he cried. “She looked at me and started laughing and did the same to me. She said to me, ‘DJ Kool Herc, I know exactly who you are. I love ‘Clear My Throat,'” he said. I didn’t care about anything else at that point. It was good. “