HOUSTON- Rap music has always existed as an element of Hip Hop since the culture’s birth in the early 1970s. The first rappers (called MCs) would rap over funk, reggae, dub, soul, and disco beats and would hold spontaneous rhyming battles that were meant to verbally attack an opponent called “freestyles” (freestyling and flowing were words used to describe the impromptu vocal delivery).
Artists that laid the template for such aggressive spoken word set to a funky beat include James Brown, Gil Scott-Heron, The Watts Prophets, and The Last Poets. According to research, Hip Hop music on record is born by Fatback Band’s “King Tim III”, Younger Generation’s “We Rap More Mellow”, and The Sugarhill Gang’s “Rapper’s Delight” (Hip Hop legend Grandmaster Caz wrote the lyrics but never got credit). Important artists such as Kurtis Blow and Grandmaster Flash also began their careers, and some of the first socio-political-conscious records arise on the Paul Winley label through chiefly Tanya Winley. Philadelphia’s legendary radio personality Lady B became the first female rapper to have a record, and Steve Gordon’s “Take My Rap” is considered to be the first white rap record. Afro-Filipino Joe Bataan creates a hit with his “Rap-O, Clap-O”, the first signs of Hip Hop’s diversity. Enjoy Records and Sugar Hill Records became the defining Hip Hop labels of the old school era.
In this day and time it is very hard to find places that can remind you of the “Old School Era” with the defining labels such as Sugar Hill Records and Hip Hop pioneers, Rev Run who is best known for being one-third of the legendary rap group Run-D.M.C. that left an indelible mark on the hip-hop genre with albums like Raising Hell, Tougher Than Leather and King of Rock.
So where can you find HIP HOP?
Mr. & Mrs. Thomas developed a strategy to bring HIP HOP to H-Town with a concept of old school Hip Hop & R&B with the new venue, Club SugarHill. “It’s the epitome of Hip Hop, first the Rap Label, and recognizing one of the First Rap Groups” said Owner Anthony Thomas, who has been inspired by DJ Run. Club SugarHill opened on December 23, 2011 at 3337 FM 1960 & TC Jester on the North Side Houston, Texas gravitating too so many Hip Hop lovers. Anthony’s states his love for hip hop began when “I was living in New York in 79’ when it started and have been a part of Hip Hop as it traveled to New Orleans and worked its way to Houston.” Club SugarHill creates an atmosphere of the old school era as one could enjoy “theme night” and signature drinks that will keep you on the dance floor as “Its not just a club…it’s a movement….Join the movement! Anthony & Wife Temetra have a humble spirit and plans to spread their love for Hip Hop throughout the nation with Club Sugar Hill. “Created by Grown folks, for Grown Folks is the key as you can get a signature drink that will decapitate you lyrically.”