In a land before time, a land before Serato, Shazam and SoundCloud, the DJ was by necessity equal parts party rocker, organizer, collector and discreet record sleuth. This land was The Bronx in the ‘70’s and Louis Flores aka Breakbeat Lou was one of the lucky few blessed by natural selection to come of age during the gilded age of Bronx River park jams, when DJ’s would soak 12”s and peel off labels to keep you guessing. The era that birthed the concept of a breakbeat, one of the integral building blocks of hip-hop culture and rap music.
Along with Lenny Roberts, Breakbeat Lou created Ultimate Breaks and Beats, a 25 volume series of seminal breakbeat records that helped mark the transition from Hip-Hop’s infancy in the 70’s and early 80’s into its golden age, the mid 80’s and early 90’s. Time is quicksilver in a burgeoning culture and even by the 80’s there began to be a knowledge gap between the foundation beats of cats from the 70’s like Bambaata and Kool Herc and the new crop of DJs emerging. UBB was initially meant as a reminder of the foundation for newer DJs and heads but quickly became fodder for the next permutation of the culture’s music. The early 90’s classics were wrought with pieces lifted from various volumes of Lou’s edits of classic funk, soul and rock records. Even in the modern age the UBB shadow looms; Scoop DeVille’s West Coast monster “I Wanna Rock” beat sampled Rob Base & DJ EZ Rock’s “It Takes Two” who in turn would have been unable to create their classic without Lou’s edit of Lyn Collins “Think (About It).”