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Hip-hop turns 50: Concert at Bridgeport's McLevy Park celebrates hip-hop culture

Organizers tell News 12 that hip-hop is more than just a style of music – it represents life, art and culture in the city.

Tom Krosnowski

Sep 3, 2023, 4:55 PM

Updated 294 days ago


Fifty years ago, hip-hop was born in the Bronx. It didn’t take long to spread to Bridgeport where, a half-century later, the community celebrated its roots.
“Today is for the City of Bridgeport,” Bridgeport-based DJ White Flash said. “There's a lot of rich history. But we have our own history also. It trickled up on Metro-North. And hip-hop got off in Stamford, Bridgeport, New Haven.”
“Bridgeport is doing its share, adding to the culture and representing the whole of Connecticut very well,” Bridgeport-based DJ Tony Crush said. 
Sunday at McLevy Park served as a who’s who in local hip-hop history, including Tony Crush of the Cold Crush Brothers and a performance from The Skinny Boys. Bridgeport-based civil rights activist Louis Reed also received a Key to the City.
These artists say hip-hop is more than just music. In fact, there are five pillars.
“The DJ, the MC, the graffiti writer, the breakdancer and the fifth element - knowledge,” DJ Tony Crush said. “The biggest part of hip-hop culture is teaching.”
“It was never meant for anything negative,” organizer Anthony Marshall said. “It was always meant to teach you the positive. Hip-hop teaches about education, it teaches about entrepreneurship, it helps you with the justice system and things of that nature.”
“I want you to respect my mother like I will respect your mother. I want you to respect hip-hop as I respect hip-hop,” DJ Tony Crush said. “It’s that easy.”
“I always want to make sure our youth has a positive lifestyle and continue to keep them here on this Earth, and not six feet under,” Marshall said.

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