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DMC Says 'Larry Smith's Musical Arsenal Equals Dr. Dre's'

Who is Larry Smith? Since the start of VIBE’s Greatest Hip Hop Producers of All-Time tournament that’s been one of the most frequently asked questions by fans not familiar with the man who has been cited as rap’s first studio superstar.

But Run-D.M.C.'s Darryl “DMC” McDaniels says Smith more than deserves the nod.

“I want the world to know when you talk about the best producers like Jam Master Jay, DJ Premier, Swizz Beatz, and Dr. Dre, you have to add Larry Smith,” DMC tells VIBE. “I feel so bad because when Run-D.M.C. got inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame [in 2009] I wanted to take that platform to mention Larry. Because there would be no hip-hop as we know it today if it wasn’t for Larry Smith.”

Indeed, Smith’s contributions to hip-hop are truly impressive when you figure that his mammoth beats, rocking guitars, and punchy synthesizer sound was competing with the non-rap dominating likes of Michael Jackson, Prince and Madonna. Among the former Orange Crush bassist’s landmark works: Run-D.M.C.’s “Sucker MC’s,” “It’s Like That,” “Hard Times,” King of Rock,” and “Rock Box” as well as Whodini’s “5 Minutes Of Funk,” “The Freaks Come Out At Night,” “One Love” and “Friends.”

“He did both of Run-D.M.C.’s first two albums (Run-D.M.C., King of Rock), and he did Whodini’s biggest singles… Come on!” DMC exclaims. “Larry Smith’s musical arsenal equals Dr. Dre's. I know Jermaine Dupri knows that because he was touring with Whodini in those days.”

Unfortunately, in recent years, Smith has had to battle debilitating health issues. “He had a stroke, but he’s still with us,” DMC says of Smith’s current state. “Physically, it’s not all good. But spiritually, historically and mentally, he can express himself through his music. Think about the body of work that he did. I think Larry’s notoriety gets lost because of Rick Rubin. People still think that Rick produced the first two Run-D.M.C. albums. But there would be no Raising Hell without those first two albums.”

As for DMC, the legendary MC is set to release his second solo album The Origins Of Block Music, due out this summer. “This is a more of rock-centered album,” DMC says of the upcoming release. “I have a lot of live instrumentation on it, but I still had to make three hip hop joints because people still want that “I’ll cut the head off the devil and I’ll throw it at you” DMC music too.”—Keith Murphy

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Kerry Lathan, Man Injured In Nipsey Hussle Shooting, To Be Released From Jail

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Lathan, Hussle's friend, was receiving clothes at The Marathon Store where the fatal shooting took place on March 31. Because of Hussle's Rollin 60s Crips affiliation, authorities arrested Lathan and placed him in the Men’s Central Jail for violating his parole.

Before this occurrence, Lathan was released from prison after serving 25 years. “I’m in a wheelchair, but now they’re trying to send me back for life for just being there. Gang association. And I was sitting there with an activist, a peace maker, a person representing the community,” he said, per The New York Daily News reports. Lathan was convicted of murder in 1996.

“He’s very, very grateful,” Lathan's lawyer, Lauren Noriega, said. “He is very eager to get home. He was away for 25 years, so his children and grandchild don’t really known him and he wants to reunite with his family and live a low-key life.”

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Trailer Released For Ava DuVernay's Central Park Five Flick, 'When They See Us'

Ava DuVernay's last work of cinematic excellence is coming pretty quickly. The writer and director's forthcoming film When They See Us has officially released the trailer. The Netflix film, which takes a look at the true story of the Central Park Five—five black teenaged boys who were falsely convicted for the 1989 rape of a white female jogger—is set to hit the streaming platform on May 31.

The four-part series will follow the lives of Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana, Jr., Kevin Richardson and Korey Wise over the course of 25 years, allowing viewers to follow their perspectives from accusation to conviction to exoneration to their eventual settlement in 2014.

 

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On this exact day 30 years ago, a woman was raped in Central Park. Five black + brown boys were framed for her rape. The story you know is the lie that police, prosecutors and Donald Trump told you. WHEN THEY SEE US is the story of the boys from their eyes and their hearts. May 31 on @Netflix.

A post shared by Ava DuVernay (@ava) on Apr 19, 2019 at 9:25am PDT

When They See Us boasts a laundry list of talented stars, including Michael K. Williams, Vera Farmiga, John Leguizamo, Felicity Huffman, Niecy Nash, Blair Underwood, Famke Janssen, Aurora Perrineau, William Sadler, Jharrel Jerome, Christopher Jackson, Joshua Jackson, Omar J. Dorsey, Adepero Oduye, Jovan Adepo, Aunjanue Ellis, Storm Reid, Dascha Polanco, Chris Chalk, Freddy Miyares, Kylie Bunbury, Marsha Stephanie Blake, Justin Cunningham, Ethan Herisse, Asante Blackk, Caleel Harris, and Marquis Rodriguez.

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Wendy Williams' Estranged Husband Reportedly Fired As Executive Producer From Talk Show

Wendy Williams’ estranged husband, Kevin Hunter, was reportedly fired as an executive producer on her eponymous talk show, Deadline reports. The news follows a tumultuous time for the host, who allegedly filed for divorce due to Hunter’s reported infidelity.

Since 2011, Hunter served as an executive producer of The Wendy Williams Show. Nationally syndicated and distributed by Debmar-Mercury, the company issued a statement on Hunter’s departure. “Kevin Hunter is no longer an Executive Producer on The Wendy Williams Show. Debmar-Mercury wishes him well in his future endeavors,” a spokesperson for the company told Deadline.

Williams tearfully admitted on her show in March that she relapsed and was living in a sober house. Prior to that, she embarked on a brief hiatus from the show due to health concerns as she was recovering from a fractured shoulder. The show then took another hiatus because of her bout with Graves disease.

Hunter recently spoke out publicly about the divorce and has expressed remorse for what he did to their marriage. “I am not proud of my recent actions and take full accountability and apologize to my wife, my family and her amazing fans,” Hunter told PEOPLE. “I am going through a time of self-reflection and am trying to right some wrongs.”

“Twenty-eight years ago I met an amazing woman: Wendy Williams. At the time, I didn’t realize that she would not only become my wife, but would also change the face of entertainment and the world," he said. "I have dedicated most of our lives to the business empire that is Wendy Williams Hunter, a person that I truly love and respect unconditionally."

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