SummerStage: EPMD and Funkmaster Flex

Thursday July 15 7:00 PM

Queensbridge Park
Queens, NY

Erick Sermon and Parrish Smith of EPMD are famed as one of the breakthrough bands of the 1980’s NYC hip hop revolution.

Once described as “the rap equivalent of a rock & roll garage band,” EPMD (“Erick and Parrish Making Dollars”) are famed as one of the breakthrough bands of 1980s hip hop. Erick Sermon and Parrish Smith grew up together on Long Island, home to rappers Eric B. and Rakim, De La Soul, and Public Enemy’s Flavor Flav. In 1987, while on a college break, Smith recorded with Sermon the duo’s raps, which they had first performed together the previous year. EPMD immediately released the songs as a 12-inch single which sold 500,000 copies. Within six weeks of its release, their first full length LP, Strictly Business, had topped the R&B album chart and gone gold. Later hits included “You Gots to Chill,” “Crossover” and “Strictly Business.”

DJ Funkmaster Flex sets trends. His name is known around the world and for more than a decade Funkmaster Flex has reigned as America’s number one music radio personality, reaching more than two million listeners a week from his show on Hot 97. When he’s on the air, an estimated 10% of everybody tuned into a radio in the metropolitan New York area is listening to him. Flex was recently named America’s best DJ for 2009 by The Urban Music Awards. In addition to his on-air work, Flex also does prominent voiceover work for videogames and has hosted television programs for ESPN, MTV and Spike TV.