Scorpio - Legend2Legend - Roots Of Hip-Hop Part 1

AllHipHop Staff

Any emcee who rhymes on beat owes a debt to Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. When Hip-Hop was just a newborn baby this crew gave it a name, then brought a musical language and a culture which has since flourished into a worldwide phenomenon. Scorpio, along with group members Melle Mel, Kidd Creole, Cowboy and Rahiem pioneered the genre of Hip-Hop and opened many doors that anyone associated with the genre has since walked through. In Part 1 of a two-part interview, Scorpio discusses a new series named Legends of Legends coming to that details a number of old-school rapper’s experiences and stories. had the pleasure of speaking to Scorpio about his experience with the Furious Five MC's during the birth of Hip-Hop, and unfortunately, a strained relationship with group member Grandmaster Flash. What was your inspiration for this new Legends of Legends project? Scorpio: Legends of Legends is an idea I came up with when I was speaking with Grouchy. A lot of interviewers ask questions of a lot of cats but they always have their own agenda and ulterior motives, they want to paint a legend the way they see them. And I thought it would be fair and righteous to have another legend speak to a another legend, because you know it is always going to come from a position of respect and never the intention to throw a cat under the bus or paint them as being something old school. I interviewed all type of cats. Big Daddy Kane, Rob Base, Cold Crush, Fantastic, its nothing for me to get anybody on the phone. This is so important because if these stories are not recorded they will be lost. Scorpio: The stories are not lost, the legendary cats just need to be put in a light of respect. When it comes to the real media we don't currently have no part of that. That's why I'm so delighted to jump start this Legend of Legends show on Because it ain't like people don't want to know, you can take a 16-year-old kid who might only know Lil Wayne or T.I. but they will be interested to know the real foundation of how Hip-Hop started. How what we did affects what they like today. All the rappers that came out and got hot ain't really gave props to where it came from. Some of them stop at when they started listening to Hip-Hop. They listened to Run [DMC] and that's when they fell in love with it, and I'm like cool, that's great I got love for Run but then do you stop and think where did Run and them get if from? We feel like we should have a place at the table of Hip-Hop. If you look at any other genre of records or basketball, football, whatever, you see they always have positions for the Charles Barkley’s or the Julius Ervings‘, all the greats, they are always around the table that they helped build and they can still eat and earn a living. Where as Hip-Hop music is the first culture, the first music on this level to basically spit out the old school cats like, "You old and you can't do it." We invented the game. We made the rules. And now they changed the rules like, "Oh this game ain't for you, its for them." And we are the original ones who built it. The creators of this music, from the beginning, are mostly still alive and available. Scorpio: We are walking amongst the cats. The cats that invented rock and roll most likely are gone, cats that invented jazz are out of here, but the true cats that invented Hip-Hop, the culture that is a world wide phenomenon, are still here. We are still walking amongst them. When groups like Run DMC started coming out, they came directly from our blood line, you can hear they whole flow, the whole style, the switch-over going from one MC to another. The Furious Five created that. After it got to a certain level cats started looking back and trying to define themselves like "We not like the cats that came before us because we don't dress like them," and this and that and I think that's when all of that first started. Them saying stuff like, instead of saying we dress like this A, B, and C and don't point back at us like we fools or something. They basically opened the door for people to say "Oh you don't have to respect the people that come before y'all?" And right now that same stuff that they was doing, people doing to everybody now. Just like cats can talk about Jay-Z, one of the most talented cats on planet earth to me, and all he's done to build Hip-Hop and people will say "Check out old-head." What kind of disrespect is that? This generation is almost like you are supposed to be embarrassed to grow and to have wisdom. Like "Oh, you old." That attitude is the same reason there is so much drama in the streets right now. You have young cats that don't care nothing about grandmas and aunties that are all caught up in that world. And you [The Furious 5] are in the f**king [Rock & Roll] Hall of Fame too. Scorpio: That's where its at. I understand that back then everybody might not know our group just by looking at us cause there wasn't that much visual. But now there is 1000 websites and TV channels its easy to know who somebody is just on sight. Hip-Hop is blazing up the clubs and I'm just like wow where did this s**t go. Its almost like they want me to play big Willie style just to come in the club and be around this music I know I had a seed in creating. And I can still make just as well. How long was the Furious Five together before you joined the group? Scorpio: From the beginning, they had maybe been together about month. At that particular time when y'all were performing, had anyone seen anything like it before? Scorpio: The Bronx knew what we was doing, but there was a time we were starting to branch out to Jersey and Virginia and stuff like that and they never knew what it was, it was the first time. I can remember when Flash made his first scratch record called "Adventures on the Wheels of Steel" and we were sending them out all around the world. Everybody we sent them to sent them back saying "something’s the matter with this record yo it keeps scratching!" (Laughs). They didn't know what the f**k it was! They heard Flash scratching and they thought really that they got a bad record, that's how new it was. So on this upcoming tour, is Flash going to come with you? Scorpio: Nah. Listen, we have so many people that contact us. The BBC contacted us and wants to give us $150,000 to do one show. A guy wants to put together a 60 day tour at $50,000 a day. And Flash don't basically want nothing to do with the Furious Five. And its not no beef, I called him personally, said lets do a Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five last reunion world tour. We could all walk away from this with a million. But he'll make money with any and everybody else but us. If you look at his last album, it got everybody under the sun from Busta to Q tip to Snoop and even Caz and this and that and not one track with the original Furious Five. I know all of them cats and respect them cats but they are not the original emcees that helped you get where you at. So if you are doing way much better than us they why does it hurt you to help us and shine a little light on us. Who was the first to rap on a beat? Scorpio: Us. Furious Five, all the way. We was the first group to put rap on rhythm. Before us it was cats like Kool Herc, he had the top emcees in the Bronx, but they emcee style, he'd be on the turntable and they would say stuff like "yes y'all you are now listening to the sounds of my man my fam DJ Kool Herc" and that was they whole style. Period.