Culture

Hiphop Leader Guru aka Gang Starr Is Gone

Monday • May 17, 2010 • BY Greg-Simms
Hiphop Leader Guru aka Gang Starr Is Gone

This past April 19th, Guru aka Gang Starr passed away. It was hard news to hear, especially for the hip-hop nation. There had been the unfortunate reports of a stroke that Guru suffered this past March, as well there was rumor and speculation surrounding the health of the rap icon. But, when Guru (government name Keith Elam) had his death confirmed by the media, it was a shock to all of us.

The death of Guru has also been shrouded in controversy. Among rumors that his “collaborator” for a number of years before he died, Solar, has seemed…shady to say the least, there was also the issue of the infamous letter that Guru supposedly wrote before he died, where he took the time to slam DJ Premier (Guru’s DJ/Partner during the Gang Starr era) in detail. There’s been accusations that Solar had/has kept Guru’s family from not only contact with Guru’s estate, but his legacy. We’ll have to stay tuned…

But, what we should remember is all the good shit. We should remember that Guru had one of the best voices in hip-hop history. He was one of the few Emcees where in a few seconds you knew it was him on the MIC. We should remember that Gang Starr and Premier were one of the best Emcee/DJ pairings in Hip-Hop history. We should remember that of all of the legends that rocked on Preme’s beats (Nas, Biggie, etc.), Guru was right up there with the best of them. We should remember Jazzamatazz as a land mark pairing of Hip-Hop and Jazz, and that it was groundbreaking. We should also remember an Emcee who refused to go pop, leader to the hip-hop movement. He was one of the few Emcees who was born within the boom-bap era and evolved into the new millennium of hip-hop music.

Let’s (Hip-Hop Global) not remember all of the hazy misinformation that’s surrounded his death, the messy gossip. The biggest thing of all, keeping it 100, is to remember that this man, who was a legend, dope Emcee, and trailblazer, was something else very important… something special!

He was one of us… one of the first interviews we did on Big Noise Radio was with Guru and Solar in 2007 during their collaborated at Seven Grand Records located in New York birthplace of the hip-hop movement. If you want to catch up on Guru’s work check out the double CD set “Full Clip: A Decade Of Gang Starr” or go to the Seven Grand Records website to peep his latest work.

Listen to the Big Noise Radio broadcast anytime! We stream the BEST in underground hip-hop 24/7 365.

Article: Greg Simms Jr
Editor: Noiseman
Image: Internet