6 essential music icons to celebrate Black History Month

February is Black History Month, so while just the tip of the iceberg, we asked some or our programmers to name just one of the most influential black musicians on their channels. Here’s what they picked.

Backspin (Ch. 43) : Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five – The Message
Chuck D said it best: “The Message was a total knock out of the park. It was the first dominant rap group with the most dominant MC saying something that meant something.”

Shade 45 (Ch. 45): Kendrick Lamar
“I would say the biggest impact would have been made by Kendrick Lamar. His message in his lyrics will stand the test of time and are a breath of fresh air.” – Urban Programming Director, Ronnie Triana

The Heat (Ch. 46): Kendrick Lamar  – Alright
“Hip-hop doesn’t have many anthems these days that speak to the current challenging climate of our culture, while at the same time, expressing incredible optimism in the face of such adversity.  Alight is that anthem.” – Dion Summers, VP Urban Programming, Music Programming

SiriusXM FLY (Ch. 47): Dr. Dre
“His return this year with his Compton album and the N.W.A. biopic would tell us that he is still a dominant figure in Hip Hop music. Plus, his birthday is this month so HBD Dr. Dre.” – Urban Programming Director, Ronnie Triana

Heart & Soul (CH. 48): Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds – We’ve Got Love 
“Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, and his latest hit, We’ve Got Love, possess a soulful sophistication. This song is as timeless as Babyface himself. Additionally, Babyface has produced and written hit music for many of the artists played on Heart & Soul, including Toni Braxton, Bobby Brown, Boyz II Men, Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson, Aretha Franklin, Beyoncé, After 7 and many more.” – Senior Director, Music Programming, B.J. Stone

BB King’s Bluesville (Ch. 70): B.B. King – The Thrill Is Gone
“The blues was bleeding the same blood as me.” – B.B. King

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