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Photo of Kurtis BLOW

Source: Nicky J. Sims / Getty

Kurtis Blow releases his Self-Titled debut album on Mercury Records on this day in 1980.

The album includes one of hip-hop’s first smash hits, “The Breaks”, which has been sampled by dozens of rap artists over the years.

Blow was a trailblazer for rap acts to come as he was the first hip-hop artist to be signed to a major label.