25

FRIDAY

Though the mainstream media would have you believe otherwise, hiphop didn’t start 20 years ago. It started nearly 30 years ago, when Kool DJ Herc engineered the two-turntable/mixer system and started spinning breakbeats at Bronx basement parties. In 1973, Afrika Bambaataa—founder of the arts collective Zulu Nation—heard Kool Herc and began spinning in his style. With his group Soulsonic Force, Bambaataa released several albums, including 1982’s Planet Rock, which went gold, and has since become influential not just in hiphop circles but as a precursor to electronica. Commonly known as the “Godfather of Hiphop,” Bambaataa is also responsible for the music’s christening. And, though his artistic influence cannot be denied, it’s his role in preserving the culture that has been most important. He spins tonight with Dave Ralph, Luke Slater, D-Bridge, John Tab, and Alex Whalen at 10 p.m. at Nation, 1015 Half St. SE. $15 ($20 after 11 p.m.). (202) 554-1500. (Maori Karmael Holmes)