turntablist Tag

Kindred Journey 9 – Invisible Skratch Piklz

The “Invisible Skratch Piklz” are DJ D-Styles, DJ Mix Master Mike, DJ Shortkut, DJ Apollo, and DJ Qbert. There are more members, but I’m listing the ones I’ve seen perform together mostly as a crew or band. I cant remember the first time I heard of ISP, but I knew who DJ Apollo and DJ Qbert were when I was entering high school. They were famous in the Bay for mix-tapes and ripping shit up in battles like the DMC, ITF, New Music seminar, and more. Later, when I got into bedroom DJing and collecting I caught word of battling, the infamous X-Men vs ISP battle at Rock Steady’s anniversary, and a re-emerging culture. As I was getting into scratching, so was the whole Bay! Many continue to scratch , rock parties, weddings, your corporate event, classroom, or the lunch hour on your local radio station. 
It is important to note that this crew made history because of millions of hours of practice, performance, and and building community with so many other DJs. They innovated so many aspects of performing, equipment, music, and learning because they shared their knowledge. Before people were really using the internet crews like ISP, Beat Junkies, and the X-Men were making VHS tapes with instructions.  I’m sure many entered the class just by listening to them. They’re still rocking, still teaching, still touring, and when many left the underground culture of “turntablism” they kept going,; returning to party rocking roots and expanding to other crews and opportunities. ISP, a mostly Filipino American group is a pillar in the hip hop community and an timeless part of the Bay/LA music scene and Asian American history as a whole. Salute! 
Oh and if you’re looking for that scratching itch, look up “Skratch Pad”!
Sources: Memory, Life, Experience

Roc Raida-Black is Beautiful 12

I met Grandmaster Roc Raida while living in Brooklyn. I got to meet some inspiring folks who I’d been following for years. So many I didn’t get to meet. I contacted Raida and volunteered to do some artwork for his new Dj Battle called “Gong”. We spoke over the phone, I showed him what I was working on which he dug, I brought it to the Knitting Factory in Manhattan and got a front row seat to draw the djs while they competed. It was an amazing battle and I was proud that a Bay Area veteran “DJ Mistah B” was in the house representing. Roc, is one of the pioneering members of the legendary X-Men/ X-ecutioners DJ crew. They represent a long line of brothers in NYC rippin shit on the turntables whether they were scratching, making mixtapes, on the radio, or party rocking. Roc and his crew did all of that. Roc Raida was an incredibly skilled Dj who won the 1995 World DMC championship after placing or winning so many other battles. Those folks who were into DJ culture knew of the Invisible Skratch Piklz(SF) vs The X-Men (NYC), and knew of Raida’s rep for battling. On stage he was all business, serious as fuck. But in person he was all smiles, very kind and welcoming. Roc put out countless LPs on his own and with the crew. He DJ’d for MF Grimm and Immortal Technique I believe. He was the judge for countless battles, and he also produced tracks for many hip hop legends. He not only gave do respect to his elders, but he was putting in work for the next generation of battle djs. Known for his body tricks, I wanted to show him in one of his infamous behind the back crossfader moves. His presence is greatly missed and I hope to see more about his life’s story. Respect to the X-ecutioners and the DJs that have paid tribute to him! RIP Roc Raida (1972-2009)