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  Gary Byrd
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Click below for a Gary Byrd sample:

Soul Travellin'

 

 
New York DJ Gary Byrd impacted the community beyond providing a socially conscious viewpoint in his programming choices.  He also stepped up to the plate and recorded songs that affirmed black identity.  He formed a friendship with Stevie Wonder, receiving writing credits for "Black Man" and "Village Ghetto Land" on Wonder's Songs In The Key Of Life.  In 1983 he recorded the proto-rap "The Crown," which had black history as its theme. 

Gary Byrd's Deepest Grooves

Presenting the Gary Byrd Experience (RCA, 1972)

"Soul Travellin'" (RCA, 1973)
Its intro is famous as a sample and the song was featured on the Brainfreeze session by Cut Chemist and DJ Shadow.

"The Crown" (Wondirection, 1983)
This is possibly the only release from Wonder's short-lived label.  The subject matter reveals Byrd's early recognition of rap as a teaching vehicle of culture to young people. 

Copyright 2001 B.Graff.  All rights reserved.

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