Today on Jean-Michel Basquiat's birthday we celebrate with his cover work for "Beat Bop. Test Pressing, Version One, Volume One."
"Beat Bop" is an early rap single by Rammellzee and K-Rob, originally released in 1983 in a limited run of 500 copies by record label Tartown. Initially distributed merely as a test pressing, it is notable for being featured in the hip-hop documentary film Style Wars. The track has been cited as having an influence on artists such as Beastie Boys and many experimental hip hop artists due to its chaotic, abstract sound. Due to the rarity of its original pressing, it has been called the Holy Grail of rap records.
The jacket and label feature Basquiat's simplicity, symbolism, and use of text found in his smaller works.