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DJ Kay Slay’s Public Memorial To Be Held at The Apollo Theater in Harlem

DJ Kay Slay’s Public Memorial To Be Held at The Apollo Theater in Harlem

The memorial of Hip-Hop legend, DJ Kay Slay, will be held on Sunday, April 24 at the Apollo Theater. Kay Slay, formally known as Keith Grayson, passed away on Sunday due to a lengthy battle with Covid-19. The service will be open to the public, beginning at 10 a.m. and ending at noon. Following the ceremony will be a car procession and horse & carriage march down 125th Street in Harlem. 

Kay Slay’s obituary highlights his rise to fame and his passions as a graffiti artist, renowned DJ, and presence on New York City radio. He was one of Hip-Hop’s most influential and respected creatives. 

“Keith Grayson, P.K.A. DJ Kay Slay, was born August 14, 1966, in New York City and raised in East Harlem,” reads the obituary. “As a child, he was drawn to disco, dancing the Hustle; when early Hip Hop DJs began turning breakbeats from those songs into proto-rap music, he traveled to the Bronx to observe and participate in the rising culture.”

“Keith would hop on the 6 train and go up to the Bronx River Center to see Afrika Bambaataa and the Zulu Nation rock. Keith took up the affiliated art forms of breakdancing and graffiti, even casually rapping with his friends, mastering every element of Hip Hop culture. Street art became his chief passion, first under the tag Spade 429 and later Dez TFA, which he shortened to Dez.”

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“Amid the city’s crackdown on graffiti. Dez took the name Kay Slay and developed a fascination with turntables. In 1989, after serving a brief stint of incarceration, Keith found solace in the Nation of Gods & Earths and fully immersed himself into his craft of performing as a DJ and releasing exclusives mixtapes.”