As you may already know, VIBE has been covering The Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest for the past couple of days of the six day long event, and last night was no exception. ‘Salute The DJ’ was definitely a treat to hold everyone over before the big show on Saturday. The Disc Jockey (said to be the cornerstone of Hip Hop) was represented in such a way that, as host Torae put it, “if you are a DJ, this made you want to quit. And if you’re not a DJ, it made you want to be a DJ!”
Opening the show was DJ Henry C, who won an open call to show his skills on stage. DJ’s Twilite Tone, Chairman Mao, and the inventor of “the scratch” himself Grand Wizzard Theodore followed suit with sets that were nothing short of amazing. DJ Mista Sinista took his set to a completely different level. His tricks, mixes, scratches, and precision almost made you question if you were correctly seeing what was in front of you. We caught up with him backstage to get his take on the importance of the DJ and the state of DJ’s in Hip Hop today. He felt that DJ’s today should “keep the crowd rocking, try to introduce as much skills as possible without going over their heads, and at the same time keeping them rocking—showing them the true meaning of a DJ” and felt that a lot of DJ’s today are just playing music and not truly showing off their craft. “[DJ’s] gotta play it with skills. You gotta keep the importance of the skill level of the DJ” he said.
Roli Rho and DJ Getlive gave a double team show on the turntable with their mix of everything from A Tribe Called Quest to LL Cool J. But it was DJ Marley Marl who took the show down with his set dedicated to the memory of Mr. Magic, legendary DJ who passed away back in 2009. Roxanne Shanté and Keith Murray were just a few among the many people he brought out during his set. The crowd enjoyed every bit of the event, even starting a break dance battle (all in good fun of course). Be sure to check out Saturday’s main show, where Q-Tip will be headlining and bringing out who we’ve only being teased with as “friends.” —Keenan Higgins