On this day in music history: December 11, 1979 – “Funk You Up” by The Sequence is released. Written by Angela Brown, Cheryl Cook, Gwendolyn Chisolm and Sylvia Robinson, it is the debut single and biggest hit for the rap vocal trio from Columbia, SC. Consisting of Angie B. (Angela Brown), Cheryl The Pearl (Cheryl Cook), and Blondie (Gwendolyn Chisolm), the trio have been friends since childhood having been on the same cheer leading squad in high school. The group get their big break when The Sugarhill Gang, who are on the road promoting “Rapper’s Delight”, come to Columbia to perform at the Township Auditorium. The girls meet Sugarhill Records co-founder Sylvia Robinson back stage and audition for her, performing their original song titled “Funk You Up”. Robinson signs them immediately and put them in the studio to record the song. Making history as the first female Hip Hop group on record, the single takes off quickly, selling over a half million copies in less than a month. “Funk You Up” peaks at #15 on the R&B singles chart in the Spring of 1980. The Sequence record a nearly dozen singles (and three albums) for Sugarhill between 1979 and 1985 including the classic “Monster Jam” with labelmate Spoonie Gee, “Funky Sound (Tear The Roof Off)” (#39 R&B), “I Don’t Need Your Love (Part One)” (#40 R&B) and an updated version of their debut “Funk You Up ‘85”. Though the group breaks up in 1985, “Funk You Up” has great staying power, with one of its main hooks being interpolated in Dr. Dre’s hit “Keep Their Heads Ringin’” (#10 Pop and R&B) in 1995, by Erykah Badu on a remix of “Love Of My Life Worldwide” in 2003, performing the song with Bahamadia and Angie Stone. Angie B. rechristens herself Angie Stone and go on to have a successful career as an R&B singer in the 90’s and 2000’s. A talented lyricist, Cheryl Cook also co-writes a number of hits while at Sugarhill including The Sugarhill Gang’s “8th Wonder”, “Apache”, and co-producing the electro-funk classic “Break Dance (Electric Boogie)” for the West Street Mob. She now runs her own production company Black Bottom Entertainment, and has begun recording again. Gwendolyn Chisolm has worked for several years behind the scenes in the music industry as a personal assistant and road manager to her lifelong friend Angie Stone, and has established a nonprofit organization called Education Through Talent to assist young people looking to enter the music industry.