Sugar Hill Records co-owner Sylvia Robinson passes away

'Mother of hip-hop' has died aged 75

Sylvia Robinson, co-owner of Sugar Hill Records and the so-called ‘mother of hip-hip’ has died at the age of 75.

She passed away yesterday (September 29) as a result of congestive heart failure at the New Jersey Institute of Neuroscience, where she had been in a coma, reports Spin Magazine.

Robinson initially found fame as an R&B singer in the 1950s, performing as part of the duo Mickey & Sylvia and later recording solo as Sylvia. Her biggest hit was the 1970s single ‘Pillow Talk’.

She then found success as the mastermind behind the first commercially successful rap single. She brought together the three rappers known as the Sugarhill Gang and, with husband Joe Robinson, formed Sugar Hill Records to release their song ‘Rapper’s Delight’ which has since gone on to sell more than 8 million copies.

Robinson is survived by her sons Joey, Leland and Rhondo, and 10 grandchildren.