Today I invite you to join me and others in celebrating the year 1988: a time widely considered to be the peak of the so-called "golden era" in hip-hop's relatively short history. In addition to this Amoeblog on 1988 I have also written another blog today on the same subject on WFMU's blog -- the website of the radio station where I do a weekly show entitled "Put The Needle On The Record." And coincidentally, today's (Friday May 9th) program will be titled "1988" and will celebrate the same topic with lots of music from that year being played plus lots of discussion about that era in hip hop history.
It airs 3PM to 6PM (noon - 3PM PST) on 91.1FM and can be heard, either live or in later archives, online here. Joining me in the studio will be the hip-hop authors Michael A Gonzales and Marcus Reeves who have also penned blogs on 1988. Read Michael's 1988 blog on his Blackadelicpop blog and another collaborator Miles Marshell Lewis' 1988 blog and scroll down to the end of this Amoeblog for links to other bloggers' 1988 essays. These will include many of the other scheduled participants in today's radio show including Bill Adler, Lisa Cortes, Todd Craig, Serena Kim, and Steve Fleming.
For this Amoeblog on 1988 I want to make note of some of the many releases that dropped that year, mention some noteworthy events, plus include some hip-hop videos from that year. For me personally 1988 was a great year. I was a DJ on three Bay Area radio stations including KALX, where I played hip-hop and had just begun my writing career for a San Francisco newspaper. That same year I met the guys who had started a promising new magazine called The Source and by the following year I would be writing for their new hip-hop mag about Bay Area rap. And there was lots of exciting Bay Area rap being released back in '88 -- mostly independently released cassettes and 12" singles -- including San Francisco's All Ready Fresh "2" who dropped their single "Sucker Butts," SF's Super Macks, who released the super hero themed single "Super Mack's In Effect," and Milpitas' Chris & Ray (neighbors of a young Peanut Butter Wolf) released their single "U Don't Walk U Run." There was also San Francisco's Thermo feat. The Waimea Bass, who released "Chillin' At Ocean Beach," Digital Underground, who dropped their first single "Your Life's A Cartoon"/"Underwater Rimes" on TNT/Macola, and the Vallejo group MVP (later to morph into The Click) who released an EP on Rushforce Records.