This week one of the members of The Furious Five blasted Grandmaster Flash by claiming that the iconic deejay never contributed to the group’s music, including their 1982 hit record, “The Message.”
The drama between the members of the Furious Five has been going on since they released that iconic “The Message” and Melle Mel spoke in an interview to offer his side of the story.
Melle Mel explained why Scorpio and himself have come forward to speak out regarding Grandmaster Flash’s contribution to the group’s music.
According to AllHipHop, “I mean it’s real simple, it’s just plain economics,” Melle Mel says. “When we started out and was in the ground Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, we all basically came up together, helped build that name and then now – the way it is right now… Flash was the first one to understand what branding was so he took that part and he set us all out. No matter what happens, if you say ‘Grandmaster Flash,’ you think of ‘Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five,’ but you never get to the ‘Furious Five’ part. With that, he does like 200 shows a year and me and [Scorpio] are lucky to do like 9 shows. But, we all based on the same group and the same music that Flash really never had a part in the music.“
“We just swept it all under the rug,” Melle Mel continues. “And he’s out there acting like he’s doing something that we never did. We bled Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. As far as the group go, I did all the heavy lifting. I wrote every song. I’m the one that worked with Quincy Jones. I was the one that worked with Chaka Khan. I was the one that worked with Harry Belafonte. Flash is sitting on the side and he’s taking all the credit. If you look at ‘The Message’ video it ain’t like there is a DJ in the video. So, the average person would come out of to see the body of work that Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five did, the average person would come to the conclusion that I was Grandmaster Flash because I was the face of the group. Somehow, he’s holding that against me like I took something away from him. I changed it to ‘Grandmaster Melle Mel’ because we’re trying to sell records. He still benefited from it. No matter what we did, it still came back to Grandmaster Flash. When I see Grandmaster Flash, he looks at me like some kind of back-up dancer… Why would he [do] that? I bled for this dude. Our names are so intertwined, if I found a cure for cancer right now, the headline would say, ‘Grandmaster Flash Finds A Cure For Cancer.’ And he knows that. That’s why we have to go through a public campaign of publicly separating ourselves, because we haven’t worked with the dude in over 15 years. He won’t come out and publicly say that. So we coming with the new campaign and the new music. Let it be known, we don’t have anything to do with each other.”
Melle Mel are seeking legal action against Grandmaster Flash.
“Yeah, because we feel we should have the right to use the name ‘Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five,’ because that’s the only way we can get work,” he says. “Nobody’s gonna book ‘The Furious Fives,’ nobody’s gonna book ‘Grandmaster’s Furious Five,’ nobody’s gonna book ‘Grandmaster Melle Mel And The Furious Five.’ They are either gonna book ‘Grandmaster Flash’ or ‘Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five.’ Even if you take away the DJ, you still should be able to work under the name of the group.”