VH1 Celebrates Def Jam’s 25th

For the third consecutive year, actor/comedian Tracy Morgan served as the host of the sixth annual VH1 Hip-Hop Honors, which aired last night. The annual celebration was held at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) Howard Gilman Opera House in Brooklyn, New York last month. This year’s highly anticipated show celebrated the 25th anniversary of Def Jam Records, the imprint which most would say catapulted Hip-Hop.

 

Tons of celebrities came out to pay respect to Def Jam including Public

Enemy, Warren G, Kid Rock, Chris Rock, Eminem, Rick Ross, Fabolous,

Ludacris, DMX, Mary J. Blige, Redman, The Roots, Method Man, ONYXWale, KRS-One, the Gym Class Heroes’ Travis McCoy, Kid Rock, Jimmy Fallon, film/video director Brett Ratner, Trey Songz, Ja Rule and Scarface, among others.

 

In

front of a packed house and with DJ Jazzy Jeff on the one’s and two’s

Black Thought of the Roots and Eminem opened up the show with a tribute

to LL Cool J performing his hit “Rock the Bells.” In 1984 LL Cool J

became Def Jam’s flagship artist. He was the first rap artist to

accrue ten platinum-plus selling albums.

 

During

the course of evening video interviews of the pioneers of Def Jam were

broadcast featuring the likes of Russell Simmons, Rick Rubin, Lyor Cohen, Kevin Liles and

Julie Greenwald, who told stories reflecting on the label

since its inception.

 

Other

performances of the night included Scarface with “Guess Who’s Back” and Ludacris hit

the stage performing “Southern Hospitality,” representing for Def Jam

South. Redman and Method Man performed “Da Rockwilder,” Foxy Brown

made an appearance performing “I’ll Be Good” with Fabolous, who replaced Jay-Z.

 

The

Def Jam legacy transcends through many generations, and the new

generation of Hip-Hop and R&B also came out to pay homage. “Def Jam

has created legends, not only stars and superstars, but legends. I

would definitely say this award or honor is very well deserved and I’m

honored to be here,” Trey Songz told AllHipHop.com, who performed Nate Dogg’s part on

“Regulate” alongside rapper Warren G.

 

Rapper

Wale performed Kanye West‘s “Touch the sky” and he also reflected on

the importance of Def Jam. “First of all Krush Groove is one of my

favorite movies of all time, it’s synonymous with Hip-Hop. You got to

respect the company that’s for the artist, for the culture. They

haven’t bastardized the culture at all so you got to respect that,” he said.

 

Birthed

by Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin in 1984, Def Jam Records continues to

be a major player in the Hip-Hop industry today with a roster that

currently includes Young Jeezy, The Dream, Fabolous, and Ace Hood to

name a few.LL Cool J, Jay-Z and Kanye West were among some of artists that was noticeably missing from Def Jam’s 25th Honors celebration.

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