DJ Red Alert Goes Berserk Full 3 Hour Show – 98.7 Kiss FM April 1989

DJ Red Alert - ZULU

This is an extremely rare full 3 Hour DJ Red Alert Goes Berserk show from 25 years ago this week, one of the legendary Saturday night mastermixes on 98.7 Kiss FM from April 1989. Its Kool DJ Red Alert with co-presenters Diane King and Jeff Foxx. When the pioneers talk about the golden area of Rap on the radio, Mr Magic and Kool DJ Red Alert are arguably the first names on peoples lips. Take a nostalgic aural trip back a quarter of a century, to one of the most iconic DJs and shows in the ancestry of Hip-Hop and Rap on the airwaves.

DJ Red Alert - WRKS Kiss FM 22 April 1989 Tape 1

DJ Red Alert - WRKS Kiss FM 22 April 1989 Tape 2

As well as archetypal Rap classics from the Jungle Brothers, the Juice Crew, MC Sugar Ray & Stranger D, Chubb Rock and alot more great music, keep an ear out for the plentiful Kiss FM & Red Alert ‘station identification’ drops from Chris Rock, Super DJ Clark Kent, the Shirt Kings, the Violators crew and Black Rock N Ron. And ads for Coors Light, White Castle as well as a McDonalds Scrabble Competition, who knew the two would go hand in hand ?!  Harlems own led the way with an animated on-air persona and an added authenticity and passion to play the sound of an aspirational late-80s New York. The Propmaster gave dozens of the artists we know today a first rung on the ladder. On this tape, Q-Tip appears alongside Reds nephews Mike Gee & Afrika and cousin Sammy B on the JBs ‘In Time’. Putting people on was a standard, but not restricted to his family.

Apologies in advance, both tapes have been remastered and compressed to sound punchier, but they are 25 years old and both were a bit wacky in terms of quality to begin with. There are accidental record button moments, the bugged out sounds of the tape chewing, more than once, but thankfully it all sounds exactly the same way it did 25 years ago. Make a statement and play this out the window on a sunny afternoon, alternatively, play it at any club, disco, lounge, house basement or block party, car stereo, stoop, or at any other social gathering.

Nerd-note: Red Alert talks about clubbing in London with the Jungle Brothers, 45 King, Shante, Kane and others over the Easter period in the weeks previous to this broadcast. Evidently, this was the period when the JBs and others were doing shows in the UK, and when Simon Harris presented and recorded the Hustlers Convention LP with DJ Mark the 45 King etc.

Huge props to the Propmaster.

Photos and cutting from a Hannah Ford interview and article in Soul Underground magazine from the same month.

Photo Courtesy of Oliver Lim ©

Red Alert - Soul Underground Article

Kool DJ Red Alert WRKS Kiss FM – August 1989

It’s Summer 1989 in New York City, it’s hot, Propmaster Kool DJ Red Alert is rockin’ the red shorts and he could probably do with some Juicy Fruit. Boogie Down Productions’ D-Nice is manning the request line, while Ms Melodie [R.I.P.] is hanging out in the studio along with Jeff Foxx who takes care of presentation duties.

Red tears up classic after classic, and drops some truly iconic WRKS IDs and promos: Mike Tyson, Shirt Kings, Gods favourite DJ Clark Kent, the Bizzie Boys and more. Note just how tight Red Alert is on the 2s and 1s, and keep an ear out for the airplane effect. All the ads on the tape have been preserved, for good reason. Full TL on the Soundcloud.

Red Alert Soul Underground April 1989 - article2

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Billy Dee Williams – Colt 45 ads

Colt 45, the official Malt Liquor of intercourse, heavily advertised in the black community during the 80s, and of course, they had to balance the lascivious tone of the ads with a lascivious look for the brand. That look belonged to Mr Horizontal, Billy Dee ‘Being sexy is an all day job’ Williams.

This 1st ad features Wimbledons own Slick Rick.

Until I was a bit older, I had no clue that Billy Dee Williams was the dude that played that guy in that film. It was 7 or 8 years after I watched Empire Strikes Back in the cinema that I heard those same deep silky tones slotted in-between tracks by Kings of Pressure and MC Mitchski, on a DJ Red Alert show taped off WBLS [I’d been hearing him on these oh-so schmoove voice-overs in ads on tapes I’d been trading via magazine articles in British music publications – I had pen-pals, what].

William December Williams has sustained the smoove-ness [Yes, the D. stands for December], voicing eps of Robot Chicken, the Cleveland Show and it seems that the marketing team at the G. Heileman Brewing Company were onto something, as the legend of Billy Dee and his smooth ways are still evident today. He’s been honoured on remixes and record sleeves by P.U.T.S., he’s had kids instagram their Colt45 themed ink and there are rumours that Billy will make a cameo in the Disney Star Wars movie in 2015.

Williams played the role perfectly in those old ads alongside a number of guests spots, both on radio and on TV.

Interviewer: Where did you get the concept to make the record Catch the Beat?
T-Ski Valley: Colt 45 Beer!

Do say: The Dynamite Taste/ Works Every Time…
Dont say: You heard the new Afroman album ?

Stretch Armstrong block party – 1999

Well, he played in the street, and with percussional assistance.

As well as watchin Stretch Armstrong DJ with his hands in his pockets, watch out for Red Alert and a fresh-faced Funkmaster Flex on the talking head duties, in this short clip from Yo! MTV Raps DJ themed Day from 1999. Told you this shit would be random.