Funkmaster Flex On Celebrity DJs & 20 Years Of Hip-Hop [EXCLUSIVE]

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This year marks the 20th anniversary of a lot of great albums like Biggie’s “Ready To Die,” Nas’ “Illmatic” and Outkast’s “SouthernplayalisticCadillacMusic.” In your opinion, what was it about that year that made 1994 so special?

We always talk about the music of that time being the golden era. But what was driving that golden era was things like BET, MTV, I think The Box was still around back then, when you could pay and order videos over the phone.  I think commercial radio had just adopted playing Hip-Hop. So there was such a wide outlet for the music to get to the ears. [But] it was a starving time too, because no disrespect, but we came out of the era where Rakim and Kane and a couple people weren’t making… their careers were slowing down a bit you know? Times were changing so it was a time when everybody was looking for new music. Combined with the swag of what was going on… it was good, it was a good time.

I guess it didn’t hurt that in 1994, there was so much good music to push.

You know what’s so funny about it man? There’s not really a bad album in that group man. Those were good albums, and it’s been 20 years already. Man I feel blessed to just still be here. I think it’s great and I think it’s right that we reflect on those albums, too… a lot of those artists are still touring and recording and making money so that’s good man, nobody is mad at that. I think it was a great era. I know a lot of people like to use the term “Golden Age.” I think it was good time for music. But I think all the different eras were good times for music, too. When it moved over to the west, when it moved over to the south, it was all still good times.

I agree, but if that’s the case, why do you think there’s so much debate over whether or not the ’90s should be called the Golden Age?

I’m gonna tell you something, I saw something online from Joe Ski Love, he had a big record in the ’80s, (“Pee-Wee’s Dance“) and he said he was a little disappointed because Hip-Hop is what it is to you. Hip-Hop really is what it is to the individual person, that’s why there’s always been gimmick records from day one, hardcore rap and then commercial. So it’s what it is to you and sometimes I lose track of that myself. Can’t be mad man, it is what it is. 

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