The Freshest Kids

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In the early '70s, the rough-and-tumble South Bronx gave birth to several distinct but related phenomena which would in time be heard around the world. A disc jockey named Kool Herc who spun records at block parties began digging up obscure records with great rhythm breaks, and he began cutting back and forth between two copies of the same record, allowing the breaks to go on as long as he pleased. Other Bronx DJ's, such as Grandmaster Flash, began combining "cross-mixing" with "scratching," in which the sound of the record being manually moved back and forth against the stylus was used for sonic and rhythmic effect. The new sounds prompted new styles of dancing, bringing in wild acrobatic moves including back spins and head balancing. And some DJ's began working with MC's who would add rhyming raps over the newly extended rhythm breaks. Add in the flashy and distinctive style of Bronx graffiti art and you have the birth of the hip-hop revolution, which over the next 30 years would impact practically every aspect of Western popular culture. The Freshest Kids: The History of the B-Boy is a documentary which looks at the pioneers of Bronx hip-hop, featuring interviews with a number of the major players in the original "B-Boy" movement (including Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, KRS-One, and Fab Five Freddy) as well as current rap and hip-hop artists who acknowledge the importance of these musical pioneers (among them Redman, Mos Def, and Jurassic Five).

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