I remember when Hip-Hop was so far away. There wasn't a Youtube and the internet was funny noises in a dial up world. I was in elementary school in Newark, New Jersey. I remember coming to school and the kids in my class were excited because they had family in a music video. The group was called Lords of the Underground and they were local. It was all good to hear but when the Chief Rocka video came out Jersey Hip-Hop for me was bigger. Redman was out and The Artifacts were big. Lords of the Underground were different because we saw them as people we saw everyday that we could relate to. The biggest revelation of Lords of the Underground to me though was when my dad, (Big Lords of the Underground fan), gave me a towel and said his co-worker wanted me to have a towel given to her by a Mr. Dupree Kelly. This is when fandom for me grew even more because my dad knew the Lords of the Underground.
The Lords brought funk, lyrics, beats, and style that were Brick City to the game. They were real and home grown. Songs like Grave Digga, and Sleep for Dinner made them rappers we could understand and relate to walking the same streets we knew. While they were known for their voices and rhyme patterns, we knew them as legends because they were one of us NJ kids that wanted our voices to be known and heard. Hip-Hop was always New York and California driven, but for New Jersey to be heard it is always monumental to be recognized by the bigger world.
Today the cool kid Lord Jazz is still doing music and making an impact in the culture by being active and never letting his turntables stay quiet. Mr. Funke still releases music as his album DXM is out and his lyrical delivery is as sharp as ever. Doitall has made himself a political landmark in Hip-Hop culture by running for councilman in Newark, NJ and making his face known for more than lyrical delivery, but as a voice in the political world for the people in his community on a bigger stage being government.
25 years ago the world was introduced to two young men from Newark New Jersey and a DJ from Cleveland, Ohio. These young men made the world know Hip-Hop is bigger than the hood, with a story of unity from Shaw University to now a bigger stage: The World. May the Next 25 years bring more blessings to them and as a hip-hop fan know that whenever our children and countless generations hear their music, they will be
treated to the beginning of a movement. Here are the Lords!