Hip-Hop Pioneer DJ Lovebug Starski Dies at 57

February 11, 2018 Updated: February 11, 2018

A famed New York DJ, Lovebug Starski, has died at 57, according to reports over the weekend.

Starski, born Kevin Smith, died of a heart attack in Las Vegas, NPR reported.

Starski is credited with helping create the phrase “hip-hop” during the late 1970s.

The DJ as well as Keith Cowboy of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five began a call-and-response: “I’d say the ‘hip,’ he’d say the ‘hop.’ And then he stopped doing it, and I kept doing it,” NPR reported.

According to Chuck D, the rapper from Public Enemy, “Lovebug Starski was A DJ, MC, and innovator. A pioneer who excelled before and after the recording line of ’79, the year when rap records began. He was the first double trouble threat in Hip Hop and rap music. He DJ’ed for the great MCs and MC’ed with the great DJs. Besides Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Lovebug Starski was one of the few that took his legendary street records status into the recording world.”

He was still performing over the past decade, including a show with KRS-One in Las Vegas last week, Pitchfork reported.


Recommended Video: