For episode 53 of HB•R, the legendary duo of Stretch Armstrong and Bobbito Gracia stop by the HYPEBEAST office to school us on the music industry, sneaker culture, the art of interviewing and so much more.
If you’re unfamiliar with Stretch & Bobbito and their enormous impact on ’90s hip-hop, then please, find some time to watch their 2015 documentary, Stretch and Bobbito: Radio That Changed Lives, currently on Netflix and Showtime. The two are internationally renowned for hosting the premier hip-hop radio show of the ’90s, where just about ever rapper from the Tri-State area first appeared on the open airwaves. Be it JAY-Z, Nas, Notorious B.I.G., Mobb Deep, Wu-Tang Clan, Busta Rhymes, Fugees, and so on and so forth, they all owe a sliver of their success to these two pioneers.
Despite the immense about of gratitude they have for their time together in the ’90s, Stretch and Kool Love Bob don’t want to be pigeonholed into that era or genre of music, and rightfully so. Stretch is still a world-traveling DJ and recent author of No Sleep: NYC Nightlife Flyers 1988-1999; while Bob too is an author, as well as a filmmaker (2012’s Doin’ It in the Park: Pick-Up Basketball, NYC and 2018’s Rock Rubber 45s), a writer, a hooper and as many of you should already know, one of our favorite sneakerhead historians, one who has collaborated with the likes of Pro-Keds, PUMA and Nike. But, as their appearance here should suggest, the two are still good friends and better collaborators: their show on NPR, What’s Good with Stretch & Bobbito, just kicked off it’s second season, having already delivered insightful and downright hilarious episodes with fellow legends Erykah Badu and Lenny Kravitz.
With all that said, we had quite a bit to talk about in this 45-minute episode, including: what would they be doing if they never met, the gift and curse of their first show, bringing some swag to NPR, the de-new-york-ifiction of NYC’s club scene, PUMA returning to the performance basketball market, and so much more.
Enjoy the episode, then head over to NPR to listen to What’s Good with Stretch & Bobbito, where new episodes drop every Wednesday. Also, be sure to like and subscribe to HYPEBEAST Radio and HB•R on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, Stitcher, Overcast or wherever else podcasts are found, and please, don’t forget to leave a review.