A mass of Hip-Hop lovers stood as kisses from the wind hugged Harlem, Friday, April 30, 2021. Adieu Robert “Black Rob” Ross. The line wrapped around Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard and 128th Street. Veterans of Hip-Hop poured into the Metropolitan Baptist Church located at 151 West 128th Street. A celebration of Robert Ross who’s emcee names were Bacardi Rob and Black Rob. Black Rob is acknowledged for his kindness nevertheless his paramount street anthem “Whoa” may have been the essential reason why any person braved the New York gust to see him one more time.
Robert was for the children and known to speak at youth centers and schools country wide. Catching the attention of at risk youth was his joy. Interrupting generational trauma was the intention.
Despite his health issues he soared as a rapper by collaborating with groups like the Schizophrenics and Bad Boy Entertainment. Coming on the scene in 1996 with his mic in his hand Black Rob appeared on many remix’s 112’s “Come See Me,” Total’s “What about Us,” Faith Evans’ “Love Like This,” and “24 Hours to Live” with Mase, Lox and DMX.
DMX, born Earl Simmons, celebration of life was held four days ago on Monday, April 26, 2021. Black Rob took time from his hospital bed to bid peace to DMX via social media.
“Whoa!” was released in early 2000 peaking at 43 of the Billboard Hot 100. It reached the top 10 on both the R&B and Rap charts. A certified street anthem that became the #1 Hip Hop song in the country. Black Rob was the first Rap Artist from Spanish Harlem to go Platinum.
[All pictures by Cynthia Turnquest-Jones for Black Westchester]
Kool DJ Red Alert, Comedian Smokie and AB Butler sat as “Blessed Assurance” filled the air. We spoke about this being poetry month which was inspired because of the successful celebrations of Black History month in February. I found it intriguing that Black Rob, DMX, and Shock G all three middle-aged rappers, bid peace to their mics during this dynamic month. Poetry Month.
Black Rob is a true lyricist, yet a poet in our hearts who made millions of people all over the cosmos, feel good and dance. Adieu.