Born Curtis R. Brown on April 18, 1960, in the Bronx NY, Grandmaster Caz got his start in Hip-Hop in 1974. Originally known as DJ Casanova Fly, he teamed up with his high school friend Louie Lou aka DJ Disco Wiz and began his storied journey through the annals of Hip-Hop history.
Caz and Wiz were in a Bronx park having DJ battle in the summer of 1977 during the NYC Blackout! In 1978 Caz would pen the lyrics that would eventually be used in Rap music's first hit song "Rapper's Delight" by the Sugarhill Gang, inadvertently making Caz "Hip-Hop's first ghostwriter.” In 1980 Caz became Captain of the legendary Coldcrush Brothers and they proceeded to become one of the most influential groups in Hip-Hop history. Everyone from Run DMC to Big Daddy Kane, Will Smith, Rakim, Tupac, Nas, Biggie, Wu Tang, Freddie Foxx, Jay-Z, and more credit Caz and his Coldcrush Brothers as early influences and some have made their declarations on record.
"I'm overchargin ni**as for what they did to the Coldcrush" – Izzo lyrics by Jay-Z
"I remember Mr. Magic, Flash, Grandmaster Caz" – Tupac Shakur
"Aint Nothin Like The Old School" – Tupac Shakur
"Shout out to Grandmaster Flash and to Caz...." – Jay-Z on "I Do It for Hip-Hop" by Ludacris featuring Nas, Jay-Z
Dedication from Will Smith aka The Fresh Prince on "Live at Union Square"
Caz’s Coldcrush Brothers recorded the “Weekend in 1981” single on Elite Records, then proceeded to make their film debut in the Hip-Hop movie Wildstyle. They traveled to Japan and introduced Hip-Hop to a whole new audience. Caz recorded a few singles with the group on the Tuff City label as well as solo singles and eventually the album "The Grandest of Them All."
Since the resurgence and interest in the early days of Hip-Hop, Caz has been a frequent panelist, speaker, historian, and ambassador for the culture and an example of steadfastness and longevity. He has continued to re-invent himself and remain current in skill, know how, and old school swagger and was featured on Grammy winning artists’ Macklemore and Lewis's first single on their 2016 Album. The song Downtown went platinum and the video featuring Caz, Melle Mel, and Kool Mo Dee won a European MTV Video Award.
For 18 years Caz has been taking tourists from around the world on his Hush Hip-Hop sightseeing Tours of NYC and is Host of the Tools of War Summer Park Jams. Caz is in constant demand for interviews from media outlets around the world and collaborations from artists. Caz published a book of his lyrics aptly titled "Written" and appeared in rapper/actor Ice T's directorial film debut "Something From Nothing, The Art Of Rap," which debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012. Caz is prominently featured in the Netflix Documentary "Hip Hop Evolution" and his Casanova Fly persona is featured in Netflix series "The Get Down." He's been voted #11 of the 50 Greatest MC's by Blaze magazine, 6th Greatest of all time by Kool Moe Dee in his book "There's a God on the Mic," and voted #1 of the great MC’s starting from 1979 by Complex Magazine. Caz is widely regarded as one of the best mf'rs to ever do this sh*t. (Ice T, The Art of Rap!)
Caz has been recognized and acknowledged by the Hip-Hop community and industry for his many contributions to the culture. He is a member of the DMC Technics DJ Hall of Fame, The Zulu Nation Hall of Fame, and The Bronx Walk of Fame with Proclamations from The UN, Brooklyn Councilwoman's Office, The Brooklyn Borough President, The NYC Council, The Bronx Chamber of Commerce, and two Bronx Borough Presidents Adolfo Carrion and current BP Ruben Diaz Jr. Grandmaster Caz also serves on the board of The Bronx Music Heritage Center, The Windows of Hip-Hop Advisory Council, and The Kennedy Center's Hip Hop Council and Advisory Board and hosts a show on LL Cool J’s Rock the Bells Radio Platform as one of its icons. His name is synonymous with the words Hip-Hop and Legendary!