exists in many types of popular music, but the DJ is especially
important in the hip hop world. The DJ is the person that keeps
the party going, he is the one responsible for lacing down dope
beats that the MC’s can rhyme over. The first hip hop DJ
was Kool Herc. In 1973, Herc was asked to DJ a party for a relative.
During his set he would use two turntables and switch from record
to record without cutting the music. Kool Herc was the first to
use a continuos mix of music. Herc also invented the break-beat
by cutting together two samples of James Brown’s hit, ‘Get
on the Good Foot’. The break beat allowed dancers to have
a continuos rhythm to step to. Soon Herc was doing this cutting
from record to record to invent different ‘breaks’
way Herc mixed the records was very rudimentary and often at times
he was guessing about where and when to switch records. In 1974,
this all changed when a DJ named Pete Jones uses a toggle switch,
so that he can change which record he hears through his headphones.
This made him able to match beats better and made the transitions
between beats a lot smoother. DJ mixers were soon produced that
had this toggle switch for headphones as well as a crossfader
that allowed seamless crosses between records.
1977 a DJ known as Grand Wizard Theodore invented the most popular
technique used by DJ’s in the hip hop world today. The ‘scratch’,
so the story goes, was invented while Theodore was practicing
in his room. His mother came in and while she talked to him, Theodore
stopped the record by laying his hand on it. She continued talking
and he started moving his hand back and forward over the record.
This was the birth of the scratch. Theodore began using the scratch
over other records while they played and the scratch became an