Grandmaster Caz
Grandmaster Caz is one of the most memorable pioneers in hip-hop history. He was the first simultaneous DJ and MC in hip-hop history. He was known to be one of the first freestylists by spitting spontaneous rhymes at house parties, hence his nickname “The Live Rhyme Master”. After ghostwriting part of hip-hops most memorable song “Rappers Delight” by Sugar Hill Gang (and receiving no credit for it), Caz joined the legendary Cold Crush Brothers. We caught up with Caz at the Charlie Mack Celebrity Weekend in Philly as he filled us in with his latest endeavors.
Interview by Rob Schwartz

WHO?MAG: How do you feel about hip-hop right now verse how it was back in the day?
Grandmaster Caz: Hip-hop is the same as it was back in the day. What it is, is that what they call hip-hop isn’t really hip-hop. What you have is the rap industry and the rap business that is the business of selling rap music. That is only one element of hip-hop. The culture of hip-hop is alive and well throughout the nation and other parts of the world. Hip-hop is cool, it’s free, and it’s b-boys, it’s graffiti, and it’s turntablists. Then you have the rap industry which just selling rap. That’s a 30 billion dollar industry itself. It has its own problems because it doesn’t run on morals or on ethics. It’s just money driven. The culture of hip-hop is alive and well.

WHO?MAG: If you could change one thing about hip-hop right now, what would that be?
Grandmaster Caz: I would change the whole mentality of the “out with the old, in with the new”. This is a mentality that the younger generation has with their attitude about hip-hop, hip-hop artists, and hip-hop music. Hip-hop is an art form. The originators of the art form are still around and should be heralded for still being around. So if I could change anything, that would be to change the attitude of how people see hip-hop artists.

WHO?MAG: So I see you have your crew with you today at this event. Who do you have here behind you?
Grandmaster Caz: Oh, this is my staff. I have GMC Entertainment. This is my road manager Easy T and my assistant Puerto Rico, and my DJ, DJ Holiday. We just roll and come out to support.

WHO?MAG: I noticed you got these dope shirts on. Can you tell us about your clothing line Sedgwick & Cedar.
Grandmaster Caz: Sedgwick & Cedar is pretty much based of off where hip-hop started from in the Bronx on Sedgwick Avenue That is where the first hip-hop jam, outdoor hip-hop jam, was given out in Cedar Park. Hence the name Sedgwick and Cedar. Our gear consists of flyer t-shirts, original flyers from all the parties from back in the days, photo tees of the pioneers of hip-hop including myself, DJ Cool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, Melle Mel, Grand Wizard Theodore, Shy Rock, the first lady of hip-hop. We’re going forward with that.

WHO?MAG: I think I want to get one of those shirts.. Where can I go to get one?
Grandmaster Caz: You can go to so you can check out all of the clothing that we have. Plus we are in stores. We’re in a variety of the urban stores around the city. Either way, you can check on us and see what’s happening with Sedgwick & Cedar.

WHO?MAG: What’s next for Grandmaster Caz?
Grandmaster Caz: Just pushing the clothes line. Also, I am getting ready to do an album and a book. I try to stay busy and keep it moving. Plus I keep performing and give speeches at colleges around the country.