Giant Step teamed up with W Hotels for a very special edition of “Gangs of New York” featuring Afrika Bambaataa vs. Arthur Baker last night, playing together for the very first time! If you are not familiar with Arthur, he produced the Afrika Bambaataa & Soul Sonic Force classic “Planet Rock.”…and if you don’t know who Afrika Bambaataa is or “Planet Rock” then go look it up and come back. It was a real New York music moment, and great to see some old familiar faces while checking out these two legends. I met Arthur back in the heat of the old Giant Step parties through Maurice Bernstein (founder of Giant Step). Maurice has always been in touch with the key figures in NY’s underground music scene, connecting and supporting the players who embody the soul, jazz and groove of our music history while at the same time keeping his finger on the pulse of what’s new, next and hot. Back in the day when I was the house drummer at the Giant Step parties Maurice played a vital role in getting my first single “Satsuki” out on 8Balll Records under the Giant Step NYC name, which in turn lead to me working with Jazzy Nice and Danny Taneglia who both did remixes of the single. Eventually, Maurice and Giant Step also helped sign two bands I was in (Repercussions and Giant Step) get signed to Warner Bros. Not to mention all the incredible people that came and sat in with us at Giant Step like Grand Master Caz, Rahzel, Brandford Marsalis, Pharcyde, Steve Toure, Poucho, Potato Valdez, Michael Franti, Guru…I’m leaving so many out. I’ll have to get a more complete list and come back to this.