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Posts Tagged ‘Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five’

Died On This Date (January 7, 2011) Bobby Robinson / Prolific R&B Producer & Harlem Record Store Owner

Posted by themusicsover on January 7, 2012

Bobby Robinson
April 16, 1917 – January 7, 2011

Bobby Robinson was a pioneering R&B and later, hip-hop record producer, as well as a longtime record store owner.  He opened Bobby’s Record Shop in 1946, making it the first Black-owned business on Harlem’s famous 125th Street.  The store and cultural landmark remained open until he was forced to close in 2008 due to his landlord’s desire to raze and rebuild at that spot.  As a producer, Robinson had a hand in creating a string of R&B and hip-hop hits that stretched from the early ’50s through the mid ’80s.  The list of greats that he enjoyed success with includes Gladys Knight & The Pips, Lee Dorsey, The Shirelles, Elmore James, Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Kool Moe Dee, and Doug E. Fresh.  Bobby Robinson was 93 when he passed away on January 7, 2011.

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Died On This Date (September 29, 2011) Sylvia Robinson / Founder Of Sugar Hill Records; Hip-Hop Pioneer

Posted by themusicsover on September 29, 2011

Sylvia Robinson (Born Sylvia Vanterpool)
March 6, 1936 – September 29, 2011

Sylvia Robinson is best remembered as the founder and CEO of influential rap label, Sugar Hill Records who introduced most of the world to rap and hip-hop thanks to a stable of artists that included the Sugarhill Gang, Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five, Melle Mel, and the Treacherous Three.  In doing so, Robinson was largely responsible for what we know as popular music, fashion, and pop culture today.  Born in New York City, Robinson achieved a bit of success as a singer herself when she released the moderate hit, “Love Is Strange” in 1957.  By the late ’60s, she had moved over to the label side of the business with her own company, All Platinum Records where she produced and released mostly soul records.  In 1973, Robinson released another record, this time simply as Sylvia.  It was called “Pillow Talk” and sold over 2 million copies, ultimately reaching #3 on the pop charts.  It is widely considered one of the foundations on which disco was built, while its drumming rhythm would later be heard on “Running Up The Hill” by Kate Bush and “Big Love” by Fleetwood Mac.  During the late ’70s, Robinson, her husband, Joe Robinson, and Milton Malden launched Sugar Hill Records where she quickly helped form the Sugarhill Gang who went on to release rap music’s first commercially successful single, 1979’s “Rapper’s Delight.”  Robinson soon followed that with “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five.  That song is credited for bringing socially conscience lyrics to rap, and along with other early releases from Sugar Hill, introduced the fine art of sampling to the world.  According to S2S Magazine, Sylvia Robinson reportedly died of congestive heart failure on September 29, 2011.  She was 75.

Thanks to Henk de Bruin at 2+ Printing for the assist.


Posted in Disco, Hip Hop, Producer, R&B, Rap, Record Label, Singer | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »