For about a decade, few musicians — gender be damned — could match the smarts or wit of Salt-N-Pepa. Formed in 1985, the trio busted out of Queens with the scratchin' street-funk of "Tramp" and its flipside, the sultry schoolyard-rap chant "Push It." Later came the consciousness-raising "Let's Talk About Sex" and what's perhaps Salt-N-Pepa's best-known work: 1993's Very Necessary, which contains "Whatta Man," "None of Your Business" and the almighty "Shoop." After disbanding in 2002, the act reunited five years later — and with a new album reportedly in the works, their ladies-first sentiments and strong, empowering voices will no doubt be welcomed with open arms. Also performing at the Fresh Fest are early hip-hop innovators Whodini, Doug E. Fresh, Big Daddy Kane, Slick Rick and Biz Markie.
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