When discussing emcees (or any musician, for that matter), it's expected to talk about where they fit onto a continuum -- i.e., who their predecessors and antecedents are -- but that's a little trickier when discussing DMC. There was no father to his style, and along with the other members of Run-DMC, he is responsible for how hip-hop sounds and looks. Before Run-DMC emerged on the pop scene in 1983 with their single "It's Like That" b/w "Sucker MC's," hip-hop was still largely a live medium based in the inner city. Suburbanites Run-DMC effectively distilled the music so that those not directly involved with hip-hop culture could appreciate, if not fully understand, the music. Their music was more charismatic, more inclusive, and more rock than the few stray hip-hop singles and albums that preceded it. On such tracks as "Rock Box" and "It's Tricky," DMC's voice was the nasal counterpart to Run's deep baritone, and his flow more, though it's nearly impossible to separate one from the other, which would explain why it took DMC over two decades to release his solo debut, Checks, Thugs, and Rock N' Roll .