Photo of hip hoppers

DJ Pos 2, Philly Phill, Metro, Bru Lei, Dominique La Rue and Copywrite

paying tribute to Daymon Dodson, Camu Tao and PRZM

Photo by Wes Flexner

“88 Like We Bringing the Rooftop Back.”- Iggy Azealia or Nas

“I didn’t meet Rakim til later with Scott/I remember we were jammin’ at the Rooftop.” - Krs-One

Columbus Hip Hop holds a special regard for Bernie's Distillery similar to how people in New York discuss LQ or the Rooftop or L.A people speak on the Good Life. The talent nurtured at the Short North Record Store Groove Shack in the mid-90’s called the grimy dive-bar home when MHz, Weightless, S.A. Smash and J. Rawls rose to worldwide prominence.

  Bernie’s was a home that had character to hold up to the talent-level thanks to a crew of deejays (the Fonosluts) and the location’s campus slum punk rock nature. (The Fonosluts were Detroit transplant DJ PRZM, DJ Lo-zone, DJ Pos 2 and host So What?)

  This month presented itself to reflect on the weekly Fonosluts Hip Hop event that existed from ‘99-2005.

  First off because Bernie's is set for not-to-exist after December 31, 2015.

  Secondly, it was the last Daymon Day in this form.

  Daymon Day is an event that took it’s moniker after the Fonosluts Hip Hop night’s host Daymon Dodson.

  Daymon hosted under the name So What. And he prototyped the Based God/ Riff Raff sort of meme/comedy rapper under the name Racist Joe during the message board era.

  Daymon Dodson died in 2006 which resulted in a New Orleans style funeral parade, murals and concerts. Daymon rocked an iconic 'fro, and “larger than life” personality, so he was the guy who, regardless of what you were into, made you feel either welcome or at least absorbed into his personality. If you’ve been to the Carabar: It’s Daymon’s image and name painted on the roof.

  The Alpha Male of the Fonosluts Hip Hop night, DJ Przm of Spitball, died in 2007. The absurdly-talented Camu Tao of S.A. Smash and MHz passed in 2008. These three deaths solidified the need for Daymon Day.

  DJ Pos 2 of the Fonosluts/Spitball is the important mention for the rest of this entry. Pos put together the last Fonoslut Hip Hop night at Bernie's on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend. It was in the midst of Femme Fest, and the Fashion Meets Music Festival so it kinda fell under the radar. This does not mean it was depressing or whack. It resembled what Bernie's looked like when Blueprint, Illogic and RJD2 were on tour. Or when Camu and Copywrite moved to New York. Or just a normal night. There are 52 Sunday weeks in a year.

  You had 25-40 people nodding their heads and singing along to Hip Hop classics while Pos and fellow Fonoslut DJ Lo-Zone. There were boys quietly getting busy on the floor. A couple of graffiti writers lurked in the back. The evening ended with a rhyme cypher featuring Tao G’s Metro, the Catalyst and some dude who looked and sounded like if Future was straight up rapping.

  DJ Pos 2 also put together a Daymon Day Stage at the Independent’s Fest. This resembled what Bernie's looked like when there was a show, or people were not on tour. Pos organized the event in sequence with people that were close to Daymon, Przm and Camu rocking segments.

  It set off with Trek Manifest of the Exec Gang rapping for the Daymon Dodson Portion.

Daymon was Manifest’s mentor when he was in a crew called Basic Element in High School. Basic Element was Trek and Fly Union. Basically Trek rapped “Average” which samples Biggie saying “Neva Lose” while young kids attempted break dancing. BSA/PBJ/IOK dudes and more painted wood panels. Trek is somewhat in the vein of a Big Sean, Drake or J-Cole style of dude.

  Spitball performed a reunion next. Spitball was Przm’s group consisting of Ecylpse, Bru Lei and Przm on rhyme and production duties. Spitball was raw and gritty late 90’s hardcore Hip Hop that possessed a sense of humor and perfected aesthetic. Bru Lei of Spitball lives in Sacramento these days and works with people like Cappadonna. Some highlights included “Rockin’ It” and the Copywrite aided “Times Up.”

  Pos segued this into the Camu Tao tribute by playing the instrumental of Przm produced Camu hit “Hold the Floor.” after Flip the Early Riser rocked, Pos let the “Hold the Floor” instrumental play while Copywrite, Keith Metro, Spitball, Dominique LaRue, Nes Wordz and others ripped.

Then Pos 2 brought “Hold the Floor” back to lead a sing-a-long.
  (An illness in my family has moved my duties away from Hip Hop to responsibilities, so I really didn’t get to see the rest of the Independent’s Fest.)




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