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Kurtis Blow Biography

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Birth Name: Kurtis Walker
Born: 1959/08/09
Birth Place: St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Years Active: 1979-present
Genres: Hip Hop, Boogie

Kurt Walker (born August 9, 1959), professionally known by his stage name Kurtis Blow, is an American rapper and record producer. In addition to his solo rap career, Blow has collaborated with The Fat Boys and Run DMC, and produced tracks for Lovebug Starski, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Full Force, Russell Simmons and Wyclef Jean.

In 1979, at the age of 20, Blow was the first rap artist to be signed to a major label, Mercury Records. “The Breaks,” a single from his self-titled 1980 debut album, became the first certified gold record rap song. Over the next decade, Blow released ten albums, landing hits such as, “8 Million Stories,” “AJ Scratch,” “Basketball,” and “If I Ruled the World,” which became a Top 5 hit Billboard's R&B Singles Chart.

As Blow’s music career took off, he tried his hand at acting with performances in “Cry of the City” and “Krush Groove,” which lead to producing television and radio shows, such Power 106’s, “The Old School Show”' on Sunday nights, and Sirius Satellite Radio’s “Classic Old School Hip Hop” station.

As the 1980s wound down and the 1990s emerged, Blow became more active in the cause against racism and was an active participant in the Artists Against Apartheid record “Sun City.” Around this time, Blow began to embrace his new found faith in Christianity and worked with Rev. Jesse Jackson's Operation Push and the Rainbow Coalition in Chicago, and Rev. Al Sharpton's Action Network in New York City.

Blow’s gospel albums began with the release of “Kurtis Blow Presents: Hip Hop Ministry” in 2007 via EMI Records, “Just Do It” followed in 2008 and “Father, Son, and Holy Ghost” emerged in 2009. 2009 saw Blow become ordained as a minister and begin teaching ministry classes as the founder of The Hip-Hop Church.