A year has passed but it’s still hard to believe that the Hip Hop icon known as GURU (Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal) is gone. Keith Edward Elam better known as GURU, was born on July 17, 1961 and left this Earth on April 19, 2010.
When my friends and I first heard GURU rap on the 1989 track “Manifest” and Primo’s production, we were like “What The F***?!” Where did these cats come from?! This is the sh*t!” I didn’t think I would ever stop playing that song. Over the years the GURU & Primo, better known as Gang Starr put out so many good songs, that it’s impossible for me to pick a favorite.
While GURU was mainly known as 1/2 half of the mighty Hip Hop duo Gang Starr, he was also responsible for introducing many youth (as well as many adults) to the world of Jazz through his Jazzmatazz projects. Collaborations with Jazz greats such as Donald Byrd, Kenny Garrett, Ramsey Lewis and many others (the list is too long for me to name everyone) proved that he was respected outside of the world of Hip Hop. The fusion of Hip Hop and Jazz on this project also showed many people how well the two art forms go together.
I’m going to leave you with a couple of tracks featuring GURU.
Gang Starr – Mass Appeal
GURU – Lougin’ (From Jazzmatazz I)
GURU, Rest in Peace.