Far be it for me, a mere Canadian with a music blog, to comment on something like the whole rancorous American health care debate, which is completely none of my business. But, I have to say, when I read things like this story about the legendary DJ Kool Herc‘s treatment for kidney stones leading to a “financial crisis” because he doesn’t have health insurance, I have to shake my head in wonder. You can be on whatever side of this whole health care debate that you wish, but it seems to me you’d have to be crazy to think it’s acceptable for a man to go broke because he has kidney stones that cause him unbearable pain.
On a more upbeat note, Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop author Jeff Chang has helped setup a donation site to help collect donations for Herc, and along with the those in the general public wish to help out, I certainly hope there have already been donations from many of hip hop’s mega-rich. It’s certainly not anyone’s obligation to help Herc with his medical bills, but really, if rap has made you rich, and you can’t spare some cash for the person who has the most legit claim of anyone to have created the medium that made you, there’s something wrong there.
Anyhoo, that came across a little rant-ier than I was intending, but spare a thought (and perhaps a few dollars) for Kool Herc today. Here’s a few Herc-related songs starting with a couple of (really) old-school flavoured jams from Busy Bee and Kool Moe Dee going in over one of the breaks Herc made famous: The Incredible Bongo Band’s Apache. Also seems fitting to group those two together, as they had one of the more celebrated MC battles in hip hop history. To finish we’ll go with a couple of tracks from Public Enemy DJ Terminator X’s solo project Terminator X & Godfathers Of Threatt, as this is pretty much the only album I could find with Herc on it. Enjoy.
MP3:: Busy Bee – Old School