Grandmaster Flash [ Saddler, Joseph ]
- David Toop
(b Barbados, c1957). American DJ. He grew up in the Bronx, New York, listening to his father’s jazz records and with a keen interest in electronics. He was inspired by disco DJs such as Pete ‘DJ’ Jones, along with the original hip hop DJ, Kool Herc. After building his own mixing unit in order to switch between records on two turntables, he developed the technique of Scratching. Concerned that his innovations were distracting to dancers, he began working with rappers Cowboy (Keith Wiggins) and Melle Mel (Melvin Glover). In 1976 the group expanded to become Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. Initially recording for Brass Records and Enjoy, they signed a contract with Sugarhill Records. After releasing party records such as Freedom and Birthday Party the group recorded two tracks that changed the course of hip hop The Adventures of Grandmaster Flash on the ...
A version of this article originally appeared in Grove Music Online.