Obit of the Day: DJ E-Z Rock
Rodney Bryce (DJ E-Z Rock) and Rob Base expanded the crossover appeal of hip-hop tremendously with the 1988 release of “It Takes Two” which hit #36 on the Billboard 100 and #3 on the magazine’s dance charts. The album, also titled It Takes Two, would go multi-platinum selling over seven million copies. (It peaked at #31 on Billboard's album charts which was considered impressive for a hip-hop album at the time.) The folow-up to “It Takes Two” was ”Joy and Pain,” another hit for the artists.
The song samples Lyn Collins’ 1972 song “Think (About It)” with the omnipresent “Woo! Yeah!” and The Galactic Force Band which provides the song’s introduction from their song “Space Dust.” Years later “It Takes Two” became a sample favorite used by myriad artists including Snoop Dogg, DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince, BoA, Limp Bizkit, and Manxsta.
After It Takes Two, the duo split for six years reuniting for 1994’s Break of Dawn which could not match the critical or popular success of their first album.
"It Takes Two" was ranked as the 15th best hip-hop song of all time by Questlove in his 2012 Rolling Stone ranking. VH-1 also had it in the top 50 of all time.
DJ E-Z Rock died unexpectedly on April 27, 2014 at the age of 46.
(“It Takes Two” and Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap are copyright 2012 Sony Music Entertainment)
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Chris Kelly - One-half of the duo Kriss Kross
Scott Kalvert - Music video director for Fresh Prince and Salt ‘N Pepa
Sylvia Robinson - Producer of “Rapper’s Delight”