THE GOLDEN B. BOY
WRITTEN BY: RENARD MIMS
Renard Mims a.k.a Ramel, Born and raised in the South Bronx 1970 began his career in Hip Hop at the young age of 7, rapping, dancing and a fair share of graffiti with the House Gang Crew, watching them spin records in front of my house 1492 Watson Avenue. Before then my mom Ouida L. Johnson was a proud member of the DOO WOP/R&B group the Cinnamons and my father Donald Mims was a all around entertainer who sang classical songs cover songs like Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Junior, Barber Streisand and more he was from South Carolina so when he came to the Bronx in search of more he kind of already had a plan and then came my brother Lerone who is now 42 years old and then me and after that my sister Alnisa who is 37. This experience remained with me through my adolescent years and became an inspiration for me to own the right to say I AM HIP HOP and the pursuits to being a all American B. Boy that not only recognizes also knows every element of Hip Hop culture and what each element represents why and how it has a different effect towards people who either are a part of hip hop or just a bystander who wish they were hip hop or wanted to be down. Since little my dreams were not to just become Hip Hop but to be an educator/Scientist for The culture, for there was already Kool Herc founding father of Hip Hop and Africa Bambaataa leader of the Zulu Nation and organizer for Hip Hop culture, so taken his place was not the mission plus I was too little to even try but to follow in his footsteps was the plan. His teachings were not to hurt people but to love and honor your brother and sister he also taught to fight for what is right to protect yourself and your neighborhood and the people that lived in it and over all to be more than what society had planned out for any urban kid who lived in the ghetto under the conditions we lived in which was straight up poverty, burn down houses, drug infested areas filled with toxic waste all over the borough of the Bronx, vacant lots that were use as garbage dumps that we had to continuously endure everyday every night for months.
In elementary and Junior High School, I taught myself how to break dance and Electric Boogie by watching others and utilizing their techniques into my own style of course watching a little karate helped a lot you know Bruce Lee back then was the man in every ones eye as well as miming TV shows like Sesame Street The Dean Martin Show The Flip Wilson Show, Land of the lost, Soul Train, American Band Stand an Midnight Special were shows I got a chance to see while growing up. One day in front of my apartment on Watson avenue I asked the guys who were DJ in front of my window to get on the microphone and they said little man what you got to say and when I grab the microphone they all stood in shock because I was this short kid that had a man voice they all called me an old soul, so everybody gather around and was like who is that on the microphone and they said “that is Shorty right here’ and they was like he’s fresh! Which is another word used for good Go Shorty, rock that microphone they chanted and from that day on there I became Shorty Rock because the old name they gave me in the neighborhood was SUPERMAN because I break dance so fast .
I grew up around Bronx River, Watson avenue, Elder and Boynton avenue, were there was always different DJ’s around it was like everyone had a DJ set in their house, I remember Rudy who I used to hang out with, little Rich he was the neighborhood terror but he knew how to rhyme real good plus he was short like me so me and my brother use to go and hang out with them and plus Rudy and Gee Man knew everybody and my uncles were already part all the organization throughout the Bronx neighborhoods and my dad who knew a lot of other people during that time period. So being around Kool Herc and Bambaataa was like being with your family so that’s why I was always at every jam well back in the days that’s what we called block parties, jams in the park or outside or the P. A. L. My family came from Bronx River projects.
My grandmother was there when the white folks were still living there way before the Cross Bronx Expressway was built, large groups of blacks and Hispanics moved into Bronx river projects and then we moved to Watson and stood there until I was thirteen years old because once I hit fourteen I was already going on tour and we had moved across the Benjamin Whitlock bridge around Longfellow avenue where I received a whole different view of how blacks and Spanish would live together you know when you are viewing different culture of people like Puerto Ricans and how they live amongst each other you see and get that real sense of what it means to be together as a family or a unit or even a community. WOW! Just to think as soon as we moved around Longfellow me and my brother quickly became the center of attention because we already knew how to MC/Rapp dance I mean everything so the Latinos on our block were just starting to experience this thing called Hip Hop but they were really good for to me they were the first Spanish Rapp group and they were called The Magic Force and they was great Moncho D, Wiz Kid, Mello Dee and a female MC Tiny tee and they all were Spanish and they rocked so when me and my brother approach them to show them what we got they were like Yo! Put them down and we received automatic acceptance from the Latino group were most blacks couldn’t hang out with them yet alone be in there house drinking coffee the love was automatic and that felt great so every block neighborhood we were introduce to from the Ching Ga Lings to the savage skulls and nomads to the wolf pack around Hunts Point we already knew th Black Spades because of our Uncles, Bambaataa and Cowboy from the Furious 5 affiliation so meeting these people were the icing on the cake so me and my brother rocked at the party’s dong rap routines dancing and from there Hip Hop and me started to manifest itself into what I am today. You know I can remember when me and my brother would go downtown and dance for money all over the place Central park, 42nd street, Battery Park, South Street Sea Port, Staten Island ferry but our main location was Wall street or Fulton Street for some reason the crowd down there were more happy to see us plus the money we would get from down there was a whole lot more than any other spot we entertain them we put on a show like never before.
my mom use to work at The Erving Trust Bank right down the block so she always would look at us doing our thing during lunch time I remember one time my dad was watching from a far but he never said anything so we kept doing what we knew best and that was Hip Hop representing the elements of our culture besides it kept me out of trouble yea I was a firecracker always into something today they call it A.D.D but back then I was extremely bored and coming from the environment that was living in there wasn’t much to do so stealing or beating up kids wasn’t always fun writing on the trains were but you had to wait until it was very late I’m talking like we would meet up around seven or eight o’clock then go to 149 street to meet up with the rest of the writers there it was called the bench and from there some would split up to go bombing on the walls some would go to the train yard to a big graffiti piece or a burner on the train and that’s what we did so going downtown was an adventure for me plus I was doing something I truly loved to do and that was getting attention that’s all any kid really wants any way is someone to notice them for the good that they do or just to say Hey! Does anyone know that I exist?
One day around my neighborhood around Aldus avenue they were throwing a jam and me and my brother went since it was right up the block and there we seen more black kids like us but they also knew how to dance not like us but they had a style that was worth observing and that’s how I meet SPUD neck he was the light skin boy in Wild Style the first Hip hop documentary so while me and brother were rocking the crowd dancing I wanted to rhyme so I ask DJ Kenny can I get on plus all the Spanish brothers from the rap group the Magic Force were there so I had to get on to represent Longfellow while rhyming at the jam in the P.S. 75 play ground better known as Lyons park named after the Borough President, I was approached by three emcees and asked to join forces with them. The group named the fortunate Four and won several rap competitions in New York City in the early 1980's.
The group went on to tour the Tri-State area. Break dancing with well known crew such as Rock Steady and NYC Breakers which helped provide the inspiration for the founding and development of my own crew The Supreme Rockers Due to our fame, the Supreme Rockers were approached by Avon Publishing who offered to sponsor a book on break dancing, which they titled 'Mr. Fresh & The Supreme Rockers Show You How To Do It" featuring the members of the crew King Tut, Shaft, Kid Loose and Ramel (A.KA. Mr. Nice) The book, published in 1997, sold 1.5 million copies and represents the first book published on the art of break dancing.
Founder and choreographer of the play HAIR which was the first nude play based on the hippy movement and more. Julie went onto challenge herself by doing something she never done before and that was work with street dancers well that’s what they called us before the word break dancers came along but we were B. Boys who were not trained professionally so the New York Express was created we were a group of B . Boys & B. Girls/break dancers for this year long tour which kicked off in 1984, and me the Supreme Rocker crew danced with NY Express from 1984- 1990 touring across the US with the Spoleto Festival to Italy, Viareggio, Florence, Australia, Brazil, While we were in Brazil, the NY Express dance company was given a sponsorship front Brazilian Designer Robert Comstock I mean this play based on The City and On the Move used all of our talents when it came to hip Hop from rapping to dancing acting like animals and so much more it was a great experience to be a part of something even greater than I ever thought but once I figure it out my mission had already started without me paying close attention to it to be a part of the Spoleto festival is a honor and to be used to help hip Hop culture gain acceptance all over the world is a greater honor for no other dance company had that opportunity don’t get me wrong Rocksteady crew was doing their thing but never in China for we were the ones to introduce Hip Hop Culture to China Beijing, Nanjing, Wu Hung, Shang Hi & Japan in TOKYO.
Upon my returning from the European Tour, I decided to explore my theatrical side playing bit parts on The Guiding Light, The Bill Cosby Show and later, in 1998's "Belly; and appeared dancing in music videos for KRSONE, Eric B. and Rakim, Salt and Pepa' and more.. After the release of my single called “Co Get Wild" on Rooftop Records (Distributed by Profile), I began to tour the NYC area with my friend who just happens to be a DJ, Eddie B. Swift. Together the pair opened for A Tribe Called Quest, Lords of the Underground, and Leaders of the New School, as well as performing at the Sound Factory, the now defunct Home Bass, and at Kool Mike Ski's birthday party at Rhythm Factory. His performance led to an invitation to compete in an upcoming emcee battle at the club, winning over King Sun. In April of 1994, as I continued on I won a rap contest sponsored by Hot 97's Mic Check show which was hosted by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Hip Hop group the furious 5, as I was blazing all of the other emcees in the battle, including the Full Eclipse Crew-- Big Moon, now known as Big Pun, Cuban links Triple SES and MC Severe.
After taking a short break, I am back with bright plans for the future intending both to write books, songs for other artists and to start an educational organization and a Hip Hop Wax Cultural Museum Center to help in lighten all walks of life about Hip Hop with the unique mission of signing up children kids adults artists with a commitment to innovation whether it be Education, Poetry, Rhythm and Blues, Hip Hop or any type of music so look me up sometime as I leave you with a glimpse of my life and my mission.