Yo Kangol!: INDUSTRY ADVISOR

Wow!!!  There is honestly no other way to start this without thanking AllHipHop.com for this opportunity. I especially wanna thank my dude Chuck “Jigsaw” Creekmur for seeing my vision and being more than just talk (unlike the d**kheads that saturate the industry today).  So before I tell you about this new column and how you will benefit from it, I’m gonna take a minute to introduce myself and share with you what qualifies me for a column of this magnitude. I am professionally known as “Kangol Kid” and I am a member of one of the first nationally recognized rap groups.  The group was UTFO (Untouchable Force Organization) and was made popular by the mid 80’s classic “Roxanne, Roxanne”.  In that I song, I said, “Baby don’t you know/I could sing, rap and dance in just one show.” No other lyric has ever been truer in describing my abilities as a performer.  At the age of eight as an avid AM radio listener, I decided to become an entertainer, began singing and wrote my first Pop song “Rain Go Away.”  By the age of 16, I had become the most popular rapper/breakdancer in my hood of East Flatbush, Brooklyn, New York as well as won a dance contest at Radio Music Hall which led me to become the first dancer ever for a rap group. The group was Whodini (“Friends,,” “Freaks Come Out At Night”) which allowed me to travel the world with them as we introduced foreigners to Hip-Hop.Whodini “Freaks Come Out At Night” Video

At the age of 17, I signed my first recording contract (as a minor and without a lawyer present) which led my group and me to our legendary status with accomplishments such as:•        First Rap Group to appear/perform at the world famous Apollo Theater.•        First rap group to record an R&B Love Ballad (“Fairytale Lover”)•        First rap group to integrate Rap with Reggae (“Pick Up The Pace”)•        First Breakdancers to appear on a national talk show (Phil Donahue (see video below)

•        First Dancers for a rap group (Whodini)•        First rap group Rap & Breakdance Group•        First Haitian-American rap artist (Kangol Kid)•        First Hip-Hop Beef (UTFO vs. Roxanne Shante (see video below)) 

•        One of Hip-Hop’s First Sex Symbols (Kangol according to The Source Magazine)•        ….and the only group ever to have over 25 remakes to a record in one year (The Roxanne Phenomenon) which is worthy of appearing in the Guinness Book of World Records.  Though being a rap star was fun, that s**t was absolutely hard work and nothing like I dreamt it would be. I wish someone would have schooled me before I became this dude.  For example:  I thought making a girl faint would be the coolest thing in the world, until one day while in an arena before our show, I wander away from backstage into an area that I had no business being in and found myself among the fans that came to see us.  This one chick saw me and began screaming with excitement while crying happy-tears and within seconds she fainted then hit the ground HARD and passed the f**k Out.  As I reached down to help her, security guards ran toward us while yelling at me.  I explained that I was just trying to help her up and they angrily replied, “If she wakes up and sees you…she’s gonna pass out again.”  I was like, Duh?  They’re f**kin’ right.  I was then forced to leave the area like I had committed some crime.  Honestly, I was guilty of not understanding how the world viewed celebrity status and with no one to teach me any better, I continued to make more mistakes that can not be taught in any school or by any teacher.  This brings me to why I’ve decided to take on this project. I’ve been in this entertainment business for 25 years.  I am a father to my three sons.  My daddy skills is a combination of Mr. Huxtable meets Damon Wayans in “My Wife and Kids” meets Joe Jackson. As an official “Hip-Hop Pop”, I know what it takes to penetrate the entertainment industry and how to achieve that well-needed initial recognition.  That first impression is truly everything. Unfortunately, record companies find it no longer necessary to provide a true Artist Development division to prepare our up & coming artists for the challenges they face ahead.  If you’re like most starving artists, you can’t afford a lawyer nor do you know where to find publishers, promoters and/or proper management, and you don’t know where else turn and get the answers you need to succeed.  Well today we’re changing that. Introducing … “Yo Kangol”- The industry’s informative-advice column for aspiring artists that has found their talent but cannot find the answer of what to do with their God given talents.  This column is NOT for the stars and will not feature the stars.  This column is for the “Star Maker.”  The individuals whose titles mean nothing to the fans, but means everything towards one generating their own fans.  The A&R Department, Program Director, Choreographer, Manager, Designers, Stylists, Make-Up Artists, Sound Engineer, Video Director, Music Publisher, Photographer, Event Planners, Promoters… and more are never recognized for their contributions.  Fortunately, they will be the focus in this column as they help mold you into individuals that better understand and respect this culture. So how do we get started?  It’s simple.  Ask me anything.  You’ll notice that I am well versed in Language Arts as well as an Ebonic Scholar (LOL).  I swear like a sailor while verbally disarming you like an attorney. Just think of me as your Hip-Hop Dr. Phil and ask me questions like: Yo Kangol, My producer said we will go 50/50 on the songs I wrote but he sampled all his music.  Is that fair? – G. Thomas, Bklyn NY.   And I will reply, “Yo G, tell dat [redacted] to keep his hands out ur pockets.  If he didn’t write lyrics, he don’t get lyric money.  If he sampled tracks, he don’t own s**t.  The publishing belongs to the owners of the tracks he sampled.  After you’re sued, the money he steals from you will be stolen from him and awarded to it rightful owners.”  Or, think of me as your Hip-Hop Encyclopedia and ask me questions like:  Yo Kangol, Who was the first rapper and/or rap group to be signed to a major record company? – Bree Peeler, ATL, GA.  And I will reply, “Yo Bree, The first rapper was Kurtis Blow, signed to Mercury/Polygram Records and the first rap group was The Fearless Four which was signed to Warner Bros.” Send your questions to: yokangol@gmail.com and don’t forget to include your name and the city & state you’re from.  I look forward to giving you what I wish I had…GUIDANCE. Respectfully yours,Kangol

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