The year was 1984. I can’t remember the month, but this is probably because I was only eight years old. I was “white trash” from Fort Lauderdale, living right up the block from where Hard Rock Casino is now. Anyways, I was into music big time: Van Halen, 80’s radio pop…everything. Hip hop was my favorite though. The dreams of shouldering my own ghetto blaster while struttin’ up the block constantly ran through my head like sugar plum fairies…or something like that, I think. The point is, hip hop was king. It’s kinda funny how I fell into hip hop music because I literally FELL into hip hop music.
You see, my boy Mike D. (who today is a very well-to-do ad exec in L.A.) was a neighborhood kid who I came across one day while I was walking around. I was wearing a periwinkle blue MOTHER F’N DONKEY KONG t-Shirt, and I thought I was soooooo cool. Donkey Kong had just come out, so if you were into video games (and who wasn’t) it showed you were down. Well, I’m sporting this shirt, and Mike says if I let him push me down in the pile of dog sh*t in the grass, he would give me a FREE GAME of Donkey Kong! It was out on Atari …I already had it. But he said, no…
THE STAND UP ARCADE STYLE GAME…
IN HIS HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I let him push me in that pile of sh*t THREE TIMES for THREE FREE GAMES, only to find out he was full of BS. He never had the game at all. Regardless of this
treachery, he became my best friend after that, and he was the reason I got into hip hop. I followed him and all he did.
I knew Run DMC’s music when they were comin’ up…I was already schooled way before “My Adidas” and “Walk this Way”, which they recorded with Aerosmith. I had their first tape with Sucker M.C.s when it dropped. Since I had family in New York, anything in hip hop I wanted, I could score, as all the greats came out of NYC.
In 1984, the New York City Fresh Festival was doing a tour and was coming to Lockhart Stadium in Ft. Laudy. This was THE BIGGEST RAP CONCERT OF ALL TIIIIIME!!! On the bill…from what my cloudy kush brain can remember was…Run DMC, The Fat Boys, Whodini, UTFO, SugarHill Gang, Grand Masterflash & Furious Five, Boogaloo Shrimp & Shabba Doo from the Breakin’ Movie (YES I know Beat Street was better…we all know that), The NYC Breakers and the Rock Steady Crew.
Mike and I somehow convinced my aunt (an overweight, white Jewish lady with curly brown hair) to chaperone us at this concert!! LOL. My drunk father drops us all off at Lockhart at like 7 pm. It was a lotta sights and a lotta people for me to take in, seeing as how it was my first concert and all. In fact, it was my first anything with this many people! There were a whole lotta black folks, a whole lotta Latinos, but white folk, not so much…LOL . Now, I’m definitely no racist; this is merely an observation. In fact, I actually loved it! The gamut of attendees spanned the entire spectrum of hip hop followers: b boys, pimps, drug dealers, hot girls and smokin’ ladies, and then there were just plain old kids like me.
The concert started. It was general admission seating, and we weren’t that close to the stage where everyone converged to stare up in awe at their idols. My aunt insisted we go in the outer bleacher area to be “away from the action”. Either way, I had the greatest time of my life up to that point. To this daythe experience remains a Top Ten . I think a good reason for that is that the entire place smelled like weed. During the whole show, Mike and I would look at each other when the joint was nearby and laugh cuz my aunt would keep asking us if we smelled it. Whodini did “Friends”, the Breakers did their thing, and Run DMC, the headliners of the show, absolutely killed it that night.
I don’t go around making too many claims in life, but I can say this, I was one of the youngest white boys in that entire place of thousands that night; it was a sick show and an unforgettable experience. With the way Hip Hop has changed society, musical tastes, and even world cultures…….That’s gotta f’’n mean sumthin!!!!