Saturday, October 1, 2011

Sylvia Robinson aka Mother of Hip-Hop dies

Sylvia Robinson, known to many as the mother of hip-hop, has died aged 75.

The former soul singer set up trail-blazing record label Sugar Hill Records in 1979 with her husband Joe.

She produced hip-hop's first commercially successful single, Rapper's Delight, and co-wrote Grandmaster and Melle Mel's anti-drugs anthem White Lines (Don't Do It).

Robinson died of congestive heart failure in New Jersey, said her publicist Greg Walker.

Early success

Born Sylvia Vanterpool in New York, she had a long career in the music industry before the arrival of rap.

She scored several novelty hits in her teens as Little Sylvia, but scored a huge hit with Love Is Strange in 1957, recorded with her guitar teacher McHouston "Mickey" Baker.

As a solo artist, she had a hit in 1973 with the sexually suggestive Pillow Talk, an early prototype of disco music, and a direct influence on Donna Summer's heavy-breathing hit Love To Love You Baby.

But it was 1979 when she first experienced rap and latched on to its potential. read more

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