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Pioneers

Lovebug Starski


By Christine Obiamalu


Lovebug Starski


Kevin Smith was an American MC, musician, and record producer. He began his career as a record boy in 1971 when hip-hop first appeared in the Bronx. He eventually became a DJ at the Disco Fever club in 1978. His popularity grew beyond the boroughs of New York when he was featured in 1984’s Beat Street, a film about graffiti, B-boying and DJing that has become a cult classic in the Hip Hop world. He is one of two people who may have come up with the term "hip-hop". Starski claimed that he coined the phrase while trading the two words back and forth while improvising lines with DJ Hollywood at a farewell party for a friend who was headed into the Army. While some argue that Keith “Cowboy” Wiggins of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five introduced “hip-hop” into the genre’s vernacular, Smith accepted credit for the phrase in a 2017 interview with Amoeba Music. “That was one of my rhymes when I would get stuck for words and I used to go ‘hip, hop, the hip, the hip, hip the hopping,” he said. “You know it was just a nursery rhyme that coincided with the music, and that’s the God’s honest truth.”

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