The Sugar Hill Gang and their influence on hip hop

The Sugarhill Gang was a multi-platinum selling trio that helped to popularize Hip-Hop as a new genre of music.  

The group’s members are from Englewood, New Jersey and comprised of Wonder Mike, Big Bank Hank, and Master Gee. 

Around this time, underground Hip Hop was becoming popular in New York 

Record tycoon Joe Robinson met the three of them at a block party they were performing at and wanted to sign them.  

Joe Robinson and his wife, producer Sylvia Robinson signed them to their label, Sugarhill Records, and they were given the stage name “Sugar Hill Gang”. 

Shortly after being signed, they recorded their hit single “Rapper’s Delight” which skyrocketed their stardom. 

Rapper’s Delight was ranked in the top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was the first rap single to do so.  

Unfortunately, in 1979, Grandmaster Caz from Chic Records filed a lawsuit against the group because he did not receive any royalties for being the original writer of the song. 

Despite their chart-topping success with Rapper’s Delight, the group unfortunately became a one-hit wonder and did not reach the top of the charts again. They would eventually disband in 1985.

Sadly, in November of 2014, Big Bank Hank died of Cancer.  

The living members of The Sugarhill Gang continue to go on tour to this day.  

They went on a World Tour in 2016, and on another one in 2019 to celebrate the 40thAnniversary of Rapper’s Delight.

Additionally in 2019 they performed Rapper’s Delight on Jimmy Kimmel Live! 

Despite becoming a one hit wonder, the Sugar Hill Gang left a lasting influence on hip-hop, and Rapper’s Delight even made Rolling Stone Magazine’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time list.  

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