[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9EB5U155mM[/youtube]

Whodini is a hip hop group that was formed in 1981. The Brooklyn, New York-based trio consisted of vocalist and main lyricist Jalil Hutchins; co-vocalist John Fletcher, aka Ecstasy (who wore a Zorro-style hat as his trademark); and turntable artist DJ Drew Carter, aka Grandmaster Dee.

Whodini was among the first hip hop groups to cultivate a high-profile national following for hip hop music and made significant inroads on urban radio. They were contemporaries of other hip hop groups such as the Fat Boys, Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five, Afrika Bambaataa and Warp 9. The group was managed by Russell Simmons, brother of Joseph “Run” Simmons of Run-D.M.C. The group signed with London-based independent record label Jive Records in 1982; they enjoyed a string of hits for several years, mostly charting on urban and R&B radio stations. The bulk of production on their releases was done by Larry Smith, a bass player who also handled much of Run-D.M.C.’s early work.

In 1983, the group recorded the self titled album Whodini, and its first single “Haunted House of Rock” was a Halloween-themed number that even today is still played in some clubs. Synthpop and Electro pioneer Thomas Dolby helped produce another of its singles, “Mr Magic’s Wand”, which was originally conceived as an advertisement for prominent radio jock Mr. Magic, who worked for New York’s WBLS radio. “Magic’s Wand” also has the distinction of being one of Whodini’s most-sampled songs.

Unsung: Whodini Story

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