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Friday FroBack: Kurtis Blow - ‘The Breaks’ (on Soul Train)

12 Feb, 2010 Music
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For your sake, I hope you didn’t miss VH1′s documentary “Soul Train: The Hippest Trip in America.” You got archival clips from its early beginnings as a local program in Chicago in 1970 and on through its move to Los Angeles, where its social impact reached far beyond hair styles and hot-minute singles. Then you got Don Cornelius, his baritone voice and the flyest wardrobe you’ve ever seen. You got Ike & Tina, you got Earth Wind and Fire and you got Public Enemy.

But for this FroBack, we got Kurtis Blow singing the Breaks in front of a sea of afros (love the aerial shots).  “The Breaks” off his 1980 debut album was the first hip hop record to go Gold.

Ready for this list of other firsts:

  • First rapper to sign to a major label
  • First rapper to tour US & Europe (with The Commodores, 1980)
  • First rapper to record a national commercial (Sprite)
  • First rapper to use the drum machine, sample and sample loop
  • First rap music video (“Basketball”)
  • First rap producer (rap’s producer of the year in 1983 and 1985)
  • First rapper featured in a soap opera (One Life to Live)
  • First rap millionaire
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