Def Jam Records co-founder Russell Simmons recently reflected on the Def Jam's take over of the music industry, starting back in the 1980s. Speaking about how he partnered up with Rick Rubin, Simmons talks about how Rubin made a name for himself first as an artist.
"Rick Rubin, I seen him at Danceteria. He was a member of the Beastie Boys. He was DJ Double-R," Simmons explained in an interview. " I met him at Danceteria because Jazzy Jay brought him to me. Jazzy Jay was on the record 'It's Yours' by T La Rock. It was the best record on the radio. We talked at Danceteria and he played me his drum machine. He had so many beats." (Def Jam 25th Anniversary)
Russell Simmons goes on to speak about how after they first met up, Rick Rubin and himself then came together to form Def Jam Recordings and history was made soon after.
"We started a record label. The record label put out [LL Cool J's] first record," Simmons explained. "The record stores didn't know what was in the box because it said Def Jam. It was a core community who went to that cool store that bought the cool records, and that record was next after 'It's Yours.' Rick owned and created that label, Def Jam, that was him." (Def Jam 25th Anniversary)
Russell Simmons – Talks First Meeting Rick Rubin