This is a continuous in-the-mix CD compiled and mixed by DJ Grandmaster Flash.
Compilation producer: Grandmaster Flash.
Recorded at Reddlite Studios, Staten Island, New York.
Audio Mixer: Grandmaster Flash.
Recording information: Reddlite Studios, Stanten Island (The House Of Sin).
Photographer: Mo Daoud.
This is not a collection of classic Grandmaster Flash 12-inch jams from back in the day (try the essential MESSAGE FROM BEAT STREET for that) but Grandmaster Flash's own live mix of 16 classic dance tracks from the 1970s and '80s, combined on the master's own deck. It is a rather brilliant selection of tracks, from the pop fluff of Nu Shooz's "I Can't Wait" (containing possibly the coolest synth sound of the '80s) to acknowledged genre classics like Liquid Liquid's punk-funk milestone "Cavern" (the birthplace of the famous bass line from Flash's later hit "White Lines") and Indeep's "Last Night a DJ Saved My Life." Flash keeps the cutting and scratching to a minimum, preferring to let the songs groove on their own. This isn't a full-length display of bravura technique like the genre-defining masterpiece "The Adventures of Grandmaster Flash on the Wheels of Steel," but as a suite of old-school dance-floor jams, it's pretty hard to beat.
Quite possibly the most influential and innovative figure in rap music, Grandmaster Flash pioneered the turntable techniques that eventually became standard in the rapidly growing genre. Born Joseph Saddler, Flash grew up in the Bronx and, along with Kool Herc and Afrika Bambaataa, became an integral part of the late-1970s/early-'80s New York City rap community. His deft turntable stylings were so entrancing to his club audiences that he had to enlist the help of others to shift the focus away from him, and this group formed the Furious Five, one of the first MC crews. He also helped pioneer the socially conscious aspect of rap with 1981's pop crossover hit "The Message."
Rolling Stone (6/20/02, p.83) - 4 stars out of 5 - "...Simply greater than the sum of its parts. And the parts are great....required reading for anyone who dares step behind the wheels of steel."
Entertainment Weekly (5/31/02, p.109) - "...Flash re-creates that stellar era [before hip-hop] on this mix of tracks that ignores borders, bridging James Brown's frenetic funk breaks to Cyanide's elastic bass lines..." - Rating: A-
I Can't Wait - (with Nu Shooz)
I Found Lovin' - (with The Fatback Band)
Before I Let Go - (with Maze/Frankie Beverly)
We Got The Funk - (with Positive Force)
Rapture - (with Blondie)
Last Night A DJ Saved My Life - (with In Deep)
Cavern - (with Liquid Liquid)
I'll Do Anything For You - (with Denroy Morgan)
Bra - (with Cymande)
Walking On Sunshine - (with Rocker's Revenge)
Rock Your World - (with Weeks & Co.)
Love Is The Message - (with MFSB/The Three Degrees)
Give It Up Or Turnit A Loose - (with James Brown)
It's Just Begun - (with Jimmy Castor Bunch)
You're The One For Me - (with D Train)
Planet Rock - (with Afrika Bambaataa & The Soul Sonic Force)