Q102 Hip-Hop Review

WIOQ (102.1 FM)
Philadelphia, PA, USA

Philadelphia’s Q102 was Power 99’s main competition during the early 90s in the urban contemporary market. While Power 99 tried to distance itself from hip-hop during that time with their infamous “No Rap Workday,” Q102 embraced hip-hop a little more fully. Don’t get me wrong – they still played their fair share of crappy R&B, but at least they had a show featuring Zulu the One Man Gang (now known as Zxulu) and Jay-Ski, the Maestro of Funk. The show was titled “The Q102 Hip-Hop Review” and aired on Sunday nights from 6-8pm.

A quick personal interjection here. Jay-Ski was actually one of the first people I ever talked to online about hip-hop. Back in 1988, when I was in 7th grade, I remember talking with him via an old school BBS. Crazy. I eventually met him in person a number of years later at Sound Express in Willingboro. Zulu, on the other hand, I have a slightly different connection to. On Easter Sunday of 1994, I went to a teen club in Marlton, New Jersey to see Doug E. Fresh perform. Thing is, Doug E. never showed up. Zulu was the MC of the show and was talking up an open mic competition that was going on when all of a sudden, the crowd erupted into a riot. I remember Zulu trying to calm everyone down, but the place went nuts. I got clocked in the head with a chair and the two or three security people working that night were completely bloodied. Easily the most insane night of my life. The club never opened back up after that.

Though the show doesn’t feature any really spectacular rarities, there is a goofy Zulu skit worth checking (12 minutes in) and a short dis aimed at Power 99 (19:13 in):

Well chiggedy checks it, Q102 wrecks it, yes, every hour,
You didn’t pay the bills so we’re shutting down your power,

You down with hip-hop? Check what you sayin’.
You’ve got a “No Rap Workday,” stop perpetratin’.

At 26:24 is the “Street Sound Showdown,” a one-on-one battle of songs from local artists. This time around: “Blow My Mind” by Lady Fresh (kind of wack) versus “Keep It Goin'” by Tucannon (sp?), who sounds an awful lot like Shä-Key (now going by Hanifah Walidah). Same person, perhaps?