The world moves forward at a pretty good clip these days, presumably faster than it’s done in the past since it keeps outpacing the past that it seems to be leaving behind. But for fellows like Kurtis Blow this doesn’t seem to be a deterrent when it comes to reminding people why the past is still important. The rapper turned minister is still one of those that many people revere and remember for his many contributions to the music scene as well as to the lives of those he’s touched throughout his long career. While some folks might not know or even care about what happened in the past (more’s the pity) those that remember where rap music truly came from are those that might run across Blow’s name and come to realize why thanking him instead of forgetting about him is a much wiser decision. After all, you don’t get to the present or the future without both eventually becoming the past.
Here are a few things about Kurtis you might not have known.
10. He was the first rapper to be signed by a major label.
In 1979 he was signed to Mercury and this marked the first time that rap music had been taken from the underground to be presented to the public in a way that was able to reach as many people as possible. While some might want to argue the point this was still a historic moment in the history of rap and of music and it’s something that people might be better off recognizing.
9. In 2009 he became an ordained minister.
He didn’t give up being a rapper, but he did decide to dedicate his life to a higher power and something that might have felt like his calling. Just because a person picks up the mic and spits some lyrics doesn’t mean they’re godless or otherwise incapable of teaching a message to their followers. In fact he uses his rap in a positive way to guide and educate others in a way that fits with his faith and his ability.
8. His net worth is around $5 million.
This might seem kind of low considering that he’s one of those that helped rap to achieve the status it has now, but it’s still a good number since he’s still relevant in many circles and is able to make the claim that he did in fact help the genre break out of the underground and become a known commodity. Plus, he’s been able to make some good decisions along the way.
7. He used to use a fake ID to get into clubs to listen to various DJ’s.
It’s not much of a surprise to find this out since back in the day, even now in fact, some kids will do whatever it takes to get to where they want to go and see just who they want to see in order to find their inspiration and perhaps even have a good time while they’re doing it. It’s a good thing that he did too since obviously those he watched inspired him enough to become someone that people eventually looked up to.
6. Kurtis is a very educated man.
One of the stereotypes that seems to hang around is that a lot of people, rappers in this case, earn their education on the streets instead of in the classroom, and that’s not always the case. Kurtis is a college-educated man and has accumulated a great deal of knowledge throughout his life that he gladly shares with others.
5. He’s in his late 50s at this time.
He’s not a young man anymore but it doesn’t seem to stop him from enjoying his life and doing what he’s passionate about, which in fact is one of the main points of life if you ask just about anyone.
4. Kurtis had to receive emergency heart surgery not that long ago.
Keyaira Boone from Essence and a few others reported recently that Kurtis had to undergo heart surgery despite the fact that he’d gone under the knife not that long ago. As far as anyone can tell he seems to have pulled through just fine.
3. He’s still been doing concerts in recent years.
Before you wonder how someone in their late 50s could still be doing this keep in mind that a lot of artists are still out there doing what they love and some of them are even older. It’s all a matter of how well you take care of yourself throughout your life and how you deal with any unforeseen problems that come along.
2. It would seem that he’s a very understanding and forgiving person.
Quite honestly it does seem as though Kurtis is willing to stop and talk with people that he sees as offensive or controversial rather than calling them out or trying to add to the tumult. He’s a very reasonable and ordered man that wants to discuss a problem rather than make it worse.
1. He’s one of the pioneers of rap.
This isn’t something to be taken for granted since without those people that got on the mic and started laying it down back in the day there wouldn’t be much of a platform for those that take advantage of it now.
Respect the past as it’s what the present and future used to be.