Afrika Bambaataa is the influential pioneering DJ credited for the early development of Hip Hop in his hometown of the Bronx in New York. His style, rhythmic understanding and use of little known recordings helped establish him as “the Father of Electro Sound.” Afrika Bambaataa began playing his records in the park and mixed the sounds together such as the way Kool Herc was mixing. As the parties and the culture of Hip Hop grew, Afrika Bambaataa began adding spiritual messages of peace and unity, which today is a key element in his message to others in action, words and music.

Afrika Bambaataa is one of the reasons why I personally love hip-hop and beat making. Interestingly enough, the “Electro Sound” that he fathered put to use some of the most classic and highly regarded electronic musical equipment ever. According to SOS Magazine Afrika Bambaataa & The SoulSonic Force’s 1982 single ‘Planet Rock’ was “the first hip-hop/R&B track to utilize a Roland TR808 drum machine.”

For the next 10 weeks, will present weekly episodes of ‘NAMM Oral History’, courtesy of NAMM. Each new episode will feature a pioneering Hip-Hop DJ giving an oral account of Hip-Hop History from the DJ perspective. Stay tuned to for an exciting series of ‘NAMM Oral History’ videos.

For more NAMM Oral Histories recorded from the music instrument and product industry please visit


No more articles