Although I may listen to a wide variety of music, hip-hop is always on heavy rotation. Back in the early ’80s, my brother and I made “pause tapes” before we knew there was a name for them—I’m pretty sure we thought we invented the technique. I never stopped finding ways to manipulate songs, I produced rap music with my friends and learned everything I could about sampling, beat production and recording.
Rob Borman, TS3, Pumice T, Jon Salemi, and Pete (from left to right)
When I was attending Buffalo State College, I got my FCC license and entered the world of radio broadcasting at WBNY 91.3FM. After a short stint on Sunday mornings from 6 to 9 A.M., I was given the opportunity to join the “Dance” shows on Sunday nights. My show, “Pumice T and his Famous Hot Nuts,” broke pretty much every rule the station had. No unauthorized guests in the studio? Ooops. I had at least 2 friends co-hosting with me every week. No callers allowed on-air? Sorry, I did that, too. No profanity? I’m pretty lucky no one from the FCC was tuning in to what was then a mono 100-watt broadcast, because rap artists tend to drop a few F-bombs. Not allowed to do the show unless you’re a student? Even after I left Buffalo State, I did the show for another two or three months before the program director called me and put an end to it. She asked me why I was still doing the show. “Because it’s fun,” I replied.
As much as I enjoyed playing music, it was the on-air conversations that I truly loved. Almost 20 years later, I’ve decided to get back into broadcasting, but thanks to technology, I no longer need that FCC license. “The Hip-Hop Talk Show” premiered January 5, 2011, with what will be a weekly podcast about hip-hop. Keep in mind, hip-hop is not to be confused with “rap music.” Hip-hop is composed of four elements: MCing; DJing; B-boying (breakdancing); and Graffiti Writing.
MC Serch (left), Frank Azzarelli (right)
In order to do the show “right,” I needed to re-assemble a strong group of co-hosts. I’ve known DJ Heat
and Jeff for over ten years, and I knew they both not only kept up with what’s current, but also what’s to come in the music industry. Frank was a regular guest on the Hot Nuts show after bringing us free food one night. We used to refer to him as “MC Serch
,” due to his uncanny resemblance to the 3rd Bass MC.
DJ Heat and Jeff hadn’t even met Frank until a week before recording our test run. I had them over to my house to see how the group would gel, and not surprisingly, it was as if we’d all been friends forever—and the rest is history.
You can listen to the Hip-Hop Talk Show on our website, and the podcast will be on iTunes as soon as Apple approves it.