Miami Bass: An Abbreviated History, According to Joe Stone

Luke Skyywalker, AKA Luther "Uncle Luke" Campbell.

Bass parties were invented when people started stretching animal skins, beating them with sticks, and dancing around the fire back in the Flintstones days.

In Miami during the 1980s, that beat became electronic and it was called bass music. The style has spawned global phenomenons, like Gucci Crew's Cabbage Patch dance and Uncle Luke's "Go, it's your birthday!" chant

And here is a brief history, according to Joe Stone, an engineer/producer/artist/label guy who helped make it happen.

See also: Miami Bass' Ten Best Producers and Musicians

"Let's break it on down," Joe says.

"My history is this: I was working out of Henry Stone's studio with Amos Larkins and Luke Skkywalker, and Sam Latimore, and I was distributing records made by Billy Hines and MC A.D.E., and then we had Gucci Crew II join the label, and so there was this whole scene of new music being recorded with 808 drums.

"I remember being in the studio, fiddling wth the DBX-160 and DBX-165 compressors, and getting the 808 bass to hum. The kids in the studio, when they heard the bass drum humming, they went crazy. They were all jumping around, so we started making records with it.

"Luke would spin these records at the Pac Jam in Liberty City, and Cookie on the Disco would play them on WEDR. And the kids from Liberty City were going crazy over these records like the Krush 2's 'Ghetto Jump' and the 'Cabbage Patch' from Gucci Crew II, and then it started to evolve."

"I remember going to a music seminar in New York with these bass records from Miami and these elitist rappers from New York were looking down on us with our 'bullshit bass records.'

"And I would say, 'Bullshit? This bullshit sells like crazy on brand new artists.'

"The next year, all the New Yorkers were putting bass in their records. At the same time, in parts of California and Texas they were getting into the same thing."

See also: Miami Booty Bass: Ten Best Acts of All Time

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Familia Ramirez
Familia Ramirez

Many unsung heroes ib Miami/Bass musical history. But let's not forget the bass sound wasn't exclusive to tge region. Original Concept a group out of NYC...actually had a song called "Pump that Bass" along with knowledge me,Can you feel it etc all had the bass sound at a slower tempo. Most of Def Jams early recordings had heavy 808 bass sound. Together forever Run DMC,Slow and Low,Low Rider Beastie Boys on and on. Not to mention "It's yours" T La Rock. All these records were in heavy rotation in Miami. As well as the foundation of bass,edm,freestyle and electro funk Planet Rock by Soul Sonic Force/Afrika Baambataa. All these records inspired many of the bass/dance records that followed.


 Okay...those of you in dreamland want to know the truth about how Miami Bass got started? Check the article called "Amos Larkins II on Miami Bass, "Ghetto Jump," and Who Left Luke's Name Off the Sunnyview Label". Amos is my brother and I saw a lot of the magic happen myself. I lived some of it as well.  I know Joe Stone and he wasn't there like that. Hell...I remember once when the song "Ghetto Jump" was so big, Rhythm 98 was doing a live broadcast from the club called "Manhattans" in South Miami. Amos told me that Sam and his partner (the group Krush 2) were M.I.A. If they didn't perform it could ruin the record. He asked me if I could find a friend and be "Krush 2" for an evening. I didn't want to but, that was my brother and he needed me. So I got a friend of my by the name of Eddie (forgive me for forgetting your last name man...) and we only had two hours to practice and get to the club and be ready to perform. Mohammad was the house DJ at Manhattans. I use to Lock and Pop in the clubs and was known for that. They didn't know me for being a rapper.  But I did it that night. I remember that after the second verse Eddie and I both forgot the words. So we just winged it. The crowd ate it up and we got off without a hitch. Mohammad was like “Man…I didn’t know you were a rapper”. Well…I wasn’t. But, I was defiantly a performer. I don't ever remember Joe in the clubs promoting any of the Bass stuff. I remember them giving Luke his credit on the Nezz label and not on the Sunnyview label when Ghetto Jump went national. Make no mistake people...Miami Bass was created in "MIAMI" and Amos was the instrument. I know...I WAS THERE!!!



Wow what a great story. Sounds like that guy Mohamed must have given a lot of great Artists a mainstream platform where they could perform and be seen.. I would someday like to grow up and be just like him 

Ironically your story is one of many...

I put Naughty By Nature, The Fushnicks, Leaders of the New School ( Before Busta Rhymes went Solo) as well as The  2 Live Crew onstage, when Luke was just their agent ! He eventually signed them and became their front man.  The rest is history!

Then when the owners Hugh Pringle and Joel Magazine would not sell me Club Manhattan '


I went underground to The Beat Club for teens and created a new Bboy- B Girl  Friday night before the term Hip Hop became popular.

We put Run DMC ,T- La Rock, The Real Roxanne, Shannon, The Fat Boys, Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam, Expose and Madonna onstage when they each only had one record out.

My next venue's include all ages Club Skylite Express, The Powerdome and R&B Club Stardome as well as Amnesia and Club 1235 South Beach aka Mansion just to name a few.

I continued breaking new acts such as LL Cool J, R Kelly & Public Announcement,  Howard Hewitt, Surface, El Debarge, The Cover Girls, TKA ( India sang background ) Tony Moran ( Anastasia was his backup dancer) Sylvester  (Martha Wash sang bacground 2 Tons of fun ) Brenda K Star ( Mariah Carey did backgrounds ) Tone Loc, Public Enemy, Backstreet Boys  and Jermaine Dupri with his first act Silk X Leather.

The list of acts that I broke both in the clubs and on the radio is too long to mention during and after that time in Miami and eventually in Los Angeles. .. I will just leave it at that...

History may be manipulated or re- written to fit into what is convenient for those trying to alter it. 

However  it can never be changed because there will always be those who were spectators as well as those who were creating it.

One thing is undeniable... Those who were there will always share a common denominator. 

We never thought that we were in the process of being a part of history or making history.

We were too busy LIVING IT !

This is something that no journalist or historian can replicate or take away from us...



Mohamed Moretta

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