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Best of Sugar Hill Records, a highlights package drawn from last year's The Sugar Hill Records Story boxed set, proves this point many times over. There are works of genius here--particularly "The Message" and "White Lines (Don't Do It)," both courtesy of Grand Master Flash & the Furious Five--but just as crucial are good-timey epics such as the Sugarhill Gang's "Rapper's Delight" and "8th Wonder"; Funky 4 + 1's "That's the Joint"; West Side Mob's "Break Dance--Electric Boogie"; Treacherous Three's "Whip It"; and so on. The cuts succeed in large part because they're generally so unsophisticated and naive. The men and women making them had no idea that such music could make them unfathomably wealthy; they were more concerned with how it made them feel. And all these years later, it still feels good.

--Michael Roberts

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