Congratulations to the new DMC DJ champion of the USA DJ Slyce who took the title hands down (once again) last Saturday night at the Knitting Factory in New York and consequently will travel to the UK later this month for the 2008 DMC World Championship finals September 26th/27th. It was a kind of deja vu for DJ Slyce who also won the US DMC title eleven years ago (see video clip of that legendary 1997 DMC routine below). "Anyone who said hip hop was dead has not been to a recent hip-hop DJ battle and with the return of DMC to the Mecca I can assure you the DJ element of our culture is alive and kicking some serious ass! An historical night to say the least and not because DMC was back in New York, not because it was the first time a father and son competed-- it was having such a variety of past and future legends share the stage and tear the decks up," said Washington DC (formerly of the SF Bay Area) DJ Dust One, who drove the four plus hours to NYC just to attend the event last weekend.
Dust One stressed to me how blown away he was by both seeing Grand Wizzard Theodore (creator of the scratch) and to getting to talk to him. "I asked him if it must feel great to watch what he created develop into such an art form. He smiled and proudly answered, 'I created monsters,'" related Dust One, adding that, "DJ Slyce stole the show and will represent the United States with the utmost showmanship and [it] would not surprise me if he took the world title back home. His set was flawless and the creativity took it to another level.Competition was definitely tough, but DJ Slyce showed us he is the best! Much respect to all the competitors, the judges and to Christie Z for coordinating such a great show!"
DMC Events Coordinator Christie Z Pabon is a the tireless ambassador of turntablism as well as the other elements of hip-hop. She had not organized a DMC battle for several years, instead focusing more on her own hip-hop dedicated organization, Tools of War. Pabon was perhaps the single reason why this year's US DMC battles seemed to bring the battle back on track after years of people complaining of it slipping. I talked with Christie Z, who organized the DMC battles from 1998 to 2000 and who likely will stay on board for upcoming years' DMCs, about how she felt about last weekend's event in NYC:
"I am very happy with the way the US Finals went, on this, my first year back since completing the 2000 season. The club's capacity was 400 and almost 300 people bought tickets! Lots of women came to the battle, which was a welcome change -- and the male DJs were happy about it," she said, continuing, "with former champs re-entering and winning, along with a 7 year old battling, there's a lot of hope on many sides! Maybe the scene didn't die, it just needed to be dusted off and polished. A lot of the judges from the other night remarked that they were very inspired after the show. I hear that some other young but retired djs might be entering DMC next year!! Slyce won easily and I think he has a great chance later this month at the World Finals."