Grand Rapids, MI Hip Hop History

This is living online documentation of Grand Rapids, MI Hip Hop history.  Historical content will be added as it is shared with


History of Grand Rapids Hip Hop pt. 2


All the rich characters, events and music that helped shape what became and is becoming Grand Rapids HipHop.  May 15th, 2017 include some of the 2nd/3rd generation hiphoppas on a panel which includes artists that were on the fringe of the 2nd generation 86/87 of GR Hiphop and those who kicked in the door on the 3rd generation 96/97 of GR HipHop.


This series, brought to you by Wealthy Theatre, The Wege Foundation, Grand Rapids HipHop Coalition and The Love Movement Inc.(Official HipHop Non Profit), will be ongoing, generation by generation as we are filming each episode for an official History of Grand Rapids HipHop documentary.


Panelists include:
James (Jumbo) Owens
Troy (Ceaser) Braden
Tychuis (Shorty TY) Martin
Will (Raw G) Grandson
Will (DJ Rush Da Gullitine) Blackmon
Jimaine (SixMan) Wilson
Charles (Pofani) Ambrose,
Maurice (Izy Dope) Scott

With a special keynote address from Minister Server.


May 15th, 2017

Video Production by
Wealthy Theatre & GRTV

1990s - Albums & Singles (Tapes/CDs)

1992 C.O.D - kill-or-be-killed.jpeg

1992 (Tape - Album) C.O.D. - Kill or Be Killed
Smoove Records 

1993 Mac Ten - the-whole-ten-yards.jpeg

1993 (Tape - Album) Mac Ten - The Whole Ten Yards
Noisy Joint Productions

1994 New Concept - disturbing-the-peace

1993 (Tape - Maxi Single) New Concept - Disturbing the Peace -
Keylow Jam Records


1994 Rukus nowadays thangs ain't da same
1994 Rukus - nowadays thangs ain't da sa

1994 (Tape - Album) Rukus - Nowadays (Thangs Ain't Da Same)
Dog Records

1994 New Concept - papa-got-big-nuts 1.j

1994 (Tape - Single) New Concept - Papa Got Big Nuts
Keylow Jam Records

1996 Jekyll Hyde & The Darkside - born-d

1996 (Tape - Album) Jekyll & Hyde & The Darkside - Born Dead
Darkside Entertainment

1996 Mario - whats the solution MI front

1996 (Tape - Album) Mario - What's the Solution?
Up & Coming Records


1998 (CD - Album) La The Darkman - Heist of the Century
Black Tools

1999 Nappy Head Assasins - aim-4-da-sky

1999 (CD - Album) Nappy Head Assasins - Aim 4 Da Sky
KJ Records

1999 Mario - Had To Be Cold IL front (CD

1999 (CD - Album) Mario - Had to Be Cold
Up & Coming Records

Sixman-Who Am I maxisingle.jpeg

1999 (Maxi Single - CD) Sixman - Who Am I
KJ Records

Recap Email Conversation with DJ Sham-Rock (5/12/21)

dj sham rock ry bread ryhmes the ebony t

DJ Sham-Rock, Ry Bread, & Rhymes The Ebony
at Ottawa Hills High School circa 1992-1993

A Short History of TS Dance & The Ottawa Hills Talent Show
By DJ Sham-Rock 

TS DANCE started blowing up before I got to Ottawa so I guess it starts way before they (my brother) were in high school.  Back at Dickinson Elementary, after school in the cafe gymatorium, there would be small get togethers.  These were little dance parties that my brother’s class would hold. Just a boom box and some tapes and there it was. These get togethers would happen either there or in our basement. Our basement was like a neighborhood and athletic celebration hub for a while. My dad was a coach so athletes were always at our house.  My sister was the captain of the volleyball ball team so even more during that time.  But for my brothers age group, if it wasn’t about Atari , it was a dance party.  Full circle along the wall around the entire basement.  We used my dad's old system to throw down. This is the same system I used to learn to deejay and scratch on.  Electric Kingdom, Shackles On My Feet, Play at your Own Risk, etc...

So you know, people would get in that circle and it was like a dance off kind of thing.  It was serious business, and my brother was all always dancing and things just got more and more serious as he went to high school.  Styles changed.  The patent leather shoes with the polkadots and stuff, merry go round, etc...  But they were doing a lot of scoob and scrap lover type stuff, more acrobatic style hip-hop dance and that was in during that time.  Sometimes I’d be at some of those practices and it was such a major event.  Man, they practiced hard.  I used to try and get on with my mixes and everything but they were like “naw, not ready yet.”  Omar Griffin (O the Composer) did the mixes most time I believe.  He would later be a mentor of mine.  Back in the day, Omar and his brother Will Blackmon (Rush the Guillotine) would be hired to DJ the parties at the O and were always killin’ it.  So getting back on track, TS Dance would perform during school events.  As a matter of fact, my old school friend Alexis Ader was a TS dancer for a second as well.  She was white and that was rare for a caucasian to make it into that group.  So TS did pep rallies and whatever.  But the real deal was the talent show at Ottawa Hills.  Of course they would perform there too and kill it. The Ottawa Hills talent show was also an opportunity for anyone else in the city to rock.  It was city wide.  

That’s how I started, being on stage with Omar and his group Double MS (Ministers of a Mad Society). Ryan (Ry Bread) and Terrell (Rhymes The Ebony) started with them as well.  Truthfully, I came in late.  I was rolling with Colice Usser (SP?) who rolled with Ontario Noel and Derrick Williams (DJ Brown Hornet) and they rolled with Vito from EURO-K.  I eventually started rolling with Brown Hornet and DJ Shonski (EURO-K's DJ).  I remember when Colice had to battle two emcees at lunch time: Hide and Seek (Ryan and Terrell).  I assume Ryan was Seek, because he wore glasses and kind of looked like MC Serch from 3rd Bass.  I never found out which was which.
Anyway, not too much longer after the battle, Colice went to a different school so it was just me.  But then Ryan moved around the corner from us.  That pretty much began the movement with us.  

Do you have Grand Rapids Hip Hop history to share from the 80s-90s?  Please hit us up on the contact page!