Before there was hip hop, there was DJ Kool Herc.
On a hot day at the end of summer in 1973 Cindy Campbell threw a back-to-school party at a park in the South Bronx. Her brother, Clive Campbell, spun the records. He had a new way of playing the music to make the breaks—the musical interludes between verses—longer for dancing. He called himself DJ Kool Herc and this is When the Beat Was Born. From his childhood in Jamaica to his youth in the Bronx, Laban Carrick Hill's book tells how Kool Herc came to be a DJ, how kids in gangs stopped fighting in order to breakdance, and how the music he invented went on to define a culture and transform the world
This picture-book biography introduces one of the unsung creators of hip-hop, Clive Campbell, who was born in Jamaica in 1955. He was entranced by the massive dance parties thrown by a neighbor, and when his family moved to the Bronx, he took up the name Kool Herc and created the innovative techniques behind hip-hop DJing. Stacking musical breaks on top of each other to fuel long stretches of dancing frenzy, calling the kids with the best moves “break-dancers,” and sending shout-outs to friends and little offhand rhymes over the music—Kool Herc unique and hip-hop wouldn’t exist without any one of these flashes of inspiration. By the time rap music really took off, in the early 1980s, he was already out of the limelight but not without leaving a massive legacy. Aside from the bouncy bio of the book’s star, Hill also highlights the positive social force of hip-hop and the boundless energy of musical joy. It’s all matched by Taylor’s freewheeling artwork. A treat from an underrepresented corner of music history. Grades 2-4. --Ian Chipman (Booklist)
Dear Book Beat Customer,
We are sorry to inform you we are having technical problems with our ordering site.
As a temporary solution we can offer you the options of calling your order to our phone: 248-968-1190
. You can leave a message with your phone and we will look for the item and call you back.
You may also fax an order at: 248-968-3102 or request a Paypal invoice.
Please write "Book Beat Order" in the subject space in an email to email@example.com
We will respond within one or two days. A new system will be available shortly. We are sorry for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience.
The Book Beat
Shipping charges are customized for each order.
Media Mail in the USA is $3.95 on most orders, insurance is extra and
required on orders over $100.00.
Most overseas orders are $15. and up depending on weight and insurance.