Grandmaster Flash Educates & Demonstrates Pioneer DJ Techniques (Video)

If not for the work of pioneers like Grandmaster Flash, Hip-Hop would not be on radio today. Long before strong signals were freely broadcasting cutting, scratching, and Rap music into the universe, DJs were transmitting live in the parks, house parties, and New York City clubs in the mid-1970s. That era and attitude is the subject of The Get Down. For the Netflix series (which is executive produced by Nas), series creators consulted Flash and others to get the style, the sounds, and the techniques portrayed properly.

In turn, Joseph Saddler appeared on HOT 97’s morning show. There, one of Hip-Hop’s first household name DJs gave a clinic on why his original made a lot of people rich later on. Flash plays the break-beats that were heard in the sound-systems in his Bronx, New York borough and others back in the day. Playing Little Boy Blues, Leon Haywood, and others, Flash’s hands and mixing translate the original records to their hit counterparts.

Beyond playing several quick mixes, Flash unplugs the laptop and Serato and goes all vinyl, to show other DJs how it’s (always been) done, long before the technological advances. At an hour long, this is truly a multi-faceted tutorial and so much about what Heads may wish to know about DJ’ing, but never thought to ask.

Episode 1 of The Message Documentary Speaks on Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Grandmaster Flash, Run-D.M.C., LL Coo J & Much More (Full Video)

The Notorious B.I.G.’s “Hypnotize,” Dr. Dre’s “Nuthin’ But A ‘G’ Thang,” and Puff Daddy & The Family’s “All About The Benjamins” are just some of the contemporary classics that Flash traces back to his stylus-need injections of sound.

Wonder What A 1977 New York City Park Jam Sounded Like? Press Play… (Mix)

For DJs, this is free game on some mix-master techniques from one of music most important sound providers. He also reveals how poverty prompts ingenuity, and why he was criticized for touching vinyl records in the ’70s.