Little Known Black Music History Fact: Beat Street

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The 1984 film “Beat Street” by Steven Hager was the first American film featuring two soundtracks. The film, which was originally titled “Looking for the Perfect Beat” featured popular rap groups of the 1980’s like the Rock Steady Crew, Afrika Bambaataa & the Soul Sonic Force, the Treacherous Three (featuring Kool Moe Dee), Grandmaster Melle Mel and the Furious Five and Doug E. Fresh. Other appearances were made by the famous “Father of Hip Hop,” DJ Kool Herc and actors Rae Dawn Chong and Kadeem Hardison, though the young Hardison’s scenes were cut during production.

“Beat Street” was patterned after the first hip-hop motion picture, “Wild Style” by Charlie Ahearn. The film featured prominent rap figures such as Fab Five Freddy, Lee Quinones, Lady Pink, the Rock Steady Crew, The Cold Crush Brothers, and Grandmaster Flash.

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