Sylvia Vanterpool Robinson, 75, often credited as the Mother of Hip-Hop, died today at 6:28 a.m. EST from congestive heart failure.
Sylvia is revered in the rap community as the producer who took Chic’s sample of “Good Times” and with the help of the Sugar Hill Gang, turned it into “Rapper’s Delight,” the first hip-hop record to go mainstream.
Sylvia had been ill for approximately five months before passing this morning at Meadowlands Hospital in Secaucus, New Jersey, family spokesman Greg Walker told Sister 2 Sister.
Along with producing “Rapper’s Delight,” Sylvia also produced “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five. She didn’t just work behind the scenes, though. Sylvia was half of the duo Mickey & Sylvia.
“Pillow Talk” and “Love is Strange” are two of Sylvia’s most popular songs.
In addition to her professional accomplishments, Sylvia, who was married to the late Joseph Robinson Sr., was mother to three sons, Joseph Robinson Jr., Leland Robinson and Rhondo Robinson.
Watch Sylvia perform on "Soul Train."
—Tracy L. Scott