For Women’s History Month, this post highlights another early UNSUNG female on the turntables, DJ Wanda Dee! Wanda became a DJ in her teens while attending Evander HS. Her incredible skills on the turntable is credited to nothing but hard work, perseverance and mentoring by the late, DJ Whiz Kid. (A young protege of DJ Kool Herc) I should know because in late 1981, after the demise of my male group we collaborated, performing on stage as a first ever female duo … Queen MC Debbie D and The Elegant DJ Wanda Dee (I don’t have two ‘e’s on D). While we never performed together in jams and parks, I can firmly say, when I stepped out to begin performing as the first female soloist, I needed a fierce DJ, and Wanda Dee fit the bill! First, when I showed up to her home for rehearsal, I was impressed because she had her OWN equipment: turntables, mixer, records, mic, speakers and a beatbox!
Secondly, she was never one to brag but her commitment to deejaying showed when we hit the stage! Wanda Dee’s DJ skills and techniques along with our routines, outfits, stage presence and ability to engage the crowd, in particularly as women during the early 80s in hip hop, had us in high demand! Right along with male groups who surged during this time, we too performed in popular clubs like Harlem World (https://youtu.be/jfDcf3mgbHc) and all the other hot spots throughout the TriState Area! (check dem flyers) Honorably, Wanda Dee is the FIRST female DJ in hip hop to be featured on the turntables in a motion film (Beat Street), therefore to be seen on a global scale. (I’m featured rapping with Us Girls)
Over the last 30 years, however, DJ Wanda Dee has transitioned from behind the turntable to the forefront as an MC, global entertainer, singer and recording artist! A quick Google search of her name will show and prove that Wanda Dee’s musical career is extensive. The girl is ‘bad to the bone’ but from my recollection, she’s always been that way, as a young teen from the Fordham Section of the Bronx! Women’s History Month salutes Wanda Dee as an UNSUNG DJ in early hip hop! Thanks a mil Wanda and well done! Click link above and follow DJ Wanda Dee on Facebook!