I recently paid one of my infrequent trips to the Oxfam shop in Dalston to offload some books and music and buy a load more in its place. You can't get to look at the cassettes what with the other feller hogging them, but there are normally some interesting CDs going from 49p upwards.
One that I picked on this visit was a promo copy of "Sugarhill Club Classics Volume 2 Disc 2" (there was no sign of Disc 1, or of Volume 1 for that matter). Very good it is too. I am not really much of a rap and hip-hop fan, but I do like some of those early records which were really pretty much straight funk tracks with people chatting away over the top.
Here are three selections from Disc 2. I would particularly draw your attention to "Ooh Baby", which features an early example of the vocoder voice and asks the not unreasonable question, "Why should we let you touch our pants?" (If you have an answer to that please don't put it in the comment box - we are not that sort of blog).
"Showdown" - Furious Five Meets The Sugarhill Gang
"Super-Wolf Can Do It" - Super-Wolf
"Ooh Baby" - West Street Mob
This is where it all started.
And this is where it reached its peak. Its been downhill ever since in my opinion.