Special Edition NYC: DMC on the ‘80s, Hypocrisy and Being the Baddest Superhero

By Robert Tutton

Long before DMC unlaced his shell-tops and told us how to walk, before the King of Rock crowned himself with a black fedora and certainly before he became a music icon as one third of Run DMC, young Darryl McDaniels was reading comic books. He may be a hip-hop legend, but before he ever wrote a rhyme he was drawing superheroes.

It’s fitting then that DMC is now himself a superhero in the pages of Darryl Makes Comics, the indie publisher he launched over a year ago. The comics present a variation of a world we know well—the familiar aesthetic of New York City in the 1980s, chock full of tracksuited b-boys and subway cars splashed to life with wildstyle graffiti. The hero DMC stands as a sort of sentinel of the forgotten, defending the marginalized as much from crooks as from their supposed protectors.

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Darryl “DMC” McDaniels (Run-D.M.C.): “Rock Talk” Podcast Audio Interview


This article features the latest in an ongoing series of “Rock Talk” podcast audio interviews for the Rock Subculture Journal.  Today’s guest is Darryl McDaniels, best known as DMC with Run-D.M.C. (he prefers to be called “D”).  D was a featured guest at Sac-Con in Sacramento this past weekend, promoting his authentic foray into the comic book publishing world with his new independent publishing company DMC (Darryl Makes Comic) Comics and its first series, DMC, with his collaborator Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez.  I met up with D at his hotel following the concert to sit down to talk about his latest work, his past, accomplishments, and his thoughts on a variety of topics related to his life, work, and influence on pop culture.

Coincidentally, my first ever experience going to a live concert was Run-D.M.C. with Beastie Boys and Ice T at Cal Expo in 1987 (at age 14).  Some 28 years later, it was quite surreal to have an opportunity to sit down with D just a few miles from where I first saw him perform.  Raising Hell was one of my favorite albums as a teen (and remains one of my all-time favorites), and it was unlike anything I’d ever heard before.

I most recently saw D perform with his surprise appearance at LL Cool J’s “Kings of the Mic” tour at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles in 2013 – I was front row center, and captured it on video (just this week it surpassed 100,000 views on YouTube)

Run-D.M.C. have had one of the biggest impacts on pop culture of any music act to come before or since.  I think this was best appreciated and captured in the NatGeo series The 80s: The Decade That Made Us.  From music to hip hop and rap to fashion to branding to mashing up two opposing styles of music (and breaking down racial barriers), Run-D.M.C. not only shaped much of the 80s, but their influence is still felt today, like ripples from a giant stone thrown into a lake.

It was a real pleasure meeting D and spending a bit of time with him over the weekend, and he is as authentic, genuine, and humble as they come.  He was a real inspiration to me as a kid, and it is gratifying to find that the real man exceeded my expectations of what I imagined he might be like when I was a teen first listening to his amazing music.

One bit of news he shared with me outside of our interview is that he will be appearing with Marky Ramone on That Metal Show on March 10th, 2015.  He is still working on many interesting collaborations in music, with a lot of new singles in the works.

Podcast Audio Interview

The audio interview can be heard in its entirety in the player embedded below, and is also available as a free download from iTunes HERE. Run time is approximately 40 minutes.

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Run-D.M.C.’s Darryl McDaniels on Why Marvel Was Always Better Than DC Comics

For 30 years now, Run-D.M.C.’s music has been ubiquitous. As rap’s premier group of the ’80s — which saw their hits becoming staples in seemingly every coming-of-age movie — Run-D.M.C., and tracks like “It’s Tricky” and “Walk This Way,” have burrowed themselves into our brains.

With members Rev Run, 50 (née Joseph Ward Simmons), and D.M.C. (born in 1964 as Darryl Matthews McDaniels) coming together for a special concert December 19 at the Barclays Center, D.M.C.’s also making waves in the comic-book world with a new graphic novel from his own Darryl Makes Comics publishing company — the book hit store shelves last October — as well as a forthcoming album featuring some of music’s biggest, and perhaps most unexpected, names.

We spoke to D.M.C. about his historic career and new venture, as well as a certain Christmas regret from years gone by.

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DMC Saves the World

By: Savas Abadsidis

I’m the king of rock, there is none higher
Sucker MC’s should call me sire…
DMC stands for devestating mic control
You can’t touch me with a ten foot pole…
My name is Darryl, you can call him D
You can call me Darryl Mack, or you can call him DMC
People always ask, “DMC, what does it mean?”
D’s for never dirty, MC for mostly clean
Like we said before, we rock hardcore
I’m DJ Run, I can scratch. I’m DMC, I can draw”

King of Rock, RUN DMC, 1985

Written by Darryl McDaniels and Produced by Russell Simmons

With those lyrics RUN DMC went onto rule the airways for most of the 1980s, but as DMC aka Darryl McDaniels tells me, even then their handles were alter egos, with superheroes influencing them all over their records. Cut to 2014, and McDaniels was omnipresent at New York Comic Con taking photos and talking to fans about his new comic and comic book company DMC (Darryl Makes Comics). In the book, which takes place in the milieu of 1980s urban NYC, a superhero called DMC is busy trying to save the city.

For Mr. McDaniels, who conceived of the premise and worked with a team to make the project a reality, DMC is a celebration of his lifelong love of comics.

“I was a kid who had my lunch money taken away,” Mr. McDaniels said, the neighborhood bullies in Hollis, Queens, had decided he was rich because of his Catholic school uniform. “The walk home to my house was terror ridden. Spider-Man took me to a place where everything was great.” The world presented in DMC also needs a beacon of hope. It’s 1985, and New York is crime-ridden, graffiti-stained and simmering with racial tension. The hero — dressed in an Adidas tracksuit and sneakers, with brass knuckles embossed with “D.M.C.” — is doing his part to protect the powerless.

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Darryl ‘DMC’ McDaniels is doing something “way way cooler”

By Eric Renner Brown

– All too often, the cycle in which washed-up celebrities cash in with pulpy memoirs and as guests on reality TV series repeats itself. But hip-hop legend Darryl McDaniels, a founder of Run-D.M.C., is doing something way, way cooler. McDaniels has loved comics since he read them as a kid in Queens, and now he has launched Darryl Makes Comics to put his own spin on the genre.


DMC No. 1 hits shelves on Oct. 29 and follows an alternate New York reality where DMC never became a rapper. Instead, the comic’s description explains, DMC wears a tracksuit and Adidas sneakers to defend “the city’s marginalized citizens against super villain and super hero alike,” allying himself with a reporter and a band of graffiti artists. The comics will blend “traditional comic book storytelling with the pressures and anxieties of 1980’s NYC.” This week has been a great one for comic lovers.

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Darryl “DMC” McDaniels Explains Why He Got Into The Comic Book Business

By Andrew Steinbeiser

Before one of the world’s most iconic hip-hop artists even knew how to throw down a beat, he was something else entirely: A comic book geek.

Speaking with Bloomberg TV, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels of Run-DMC explained how comic book superheroes were the first passion in his life. A self-described “geeky, nerdy kid,” McDaniels said he grew up on a steady diet of Spider-Man, Batman, and other superheroes.

In fact, McDaniels attributed much of his academic success to comics. Despite his teacher’s condemnation of comics, the future-rapper used the four-color adventures as his gateway into reading and writing. Through Captain America, he learned the history of WWII. By reading Iron Man, he discovered the world of science and technology.

“My world, my total existence, was enhanced, inspired, motivated, and educated by the world of comics,” McDaniels revealed. So to all the RUN DMC fans out there, thank comic books when you get the chance.

Now, McDaniels is returning to his first love by publishing his very own line of comics, “Darryl Makes Comics” (or DMC). The series follows McDaniels in an alternate reality 1980’s New York City, where he chooses the path of a vigilante instead of a music artist.


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Run-DMC’s Darryl McDaniels launches comic book line with Latino characters, artists



Long before rapper Darryl McDaniels of Run-DMC became a hip hop star, he was just a little kid living in Hollis, Queens, whose life revolved around comic books.

Now, at 50 years old, he’s living out his dream by launching his own independent publishing house, Daryl Makes Comics.

“I didn’t want to be another rapper who was trying to capitalize on the hip hop genre just because I had a hit record,” McDaniels says. “I wanted to tackle real issues head on.”

McDaniels always questioned why hip hop didn’t have a breakthrough superhero in the comic book world. But what drew him into these fantasy worlds was how they were reflections of the times.

“Look at the X-Men and how people were scared of them because they were different; they had to deal with racism and acceptance and that was super-important,” McDaniels says.

But McDaniels, along with his partner and collaborator Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, want to take it a step further by confronting such issues as domestic violence, AIDS and homophobia.

To top it off, DMC is also introducing several Latino characters, including Leticia Quiñones, aka LAK6, a spunky, 13-year-old Puerto Rican graffiti writer who takes on villains.

Read entire article here 


Kiel Phegley, Staff Writer

While comics has seen its share of “famous fanboys” arrive from movies and TV in recent years, few media personas have been kicking around the convention scene as long as Darryl “DMC” McDaniels.

The legendary hip hop MC has been preaching his love of comics since his days as part of Run DMC, and over the past several years, he’s also been a frequent con guest and has shown up on the fringe of comics culture. Now, the musician is taking his love of the superhero genre out of the fan realm and into publishing with Darryl Makes Comics — a new comics imprint whose first series arrives this October.

Founded by DMC with Editor-in-Chief Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez and music executive/Senior Editor Rigo “Riggs” Morales, Darryl Makes Comics has been teasing its superhero series “DMC” at conventions all summer long. “DMC” the series takes the hat, shades and gold chains of the rapper’s stage persona and morphs them into an original superhero, fighting for the common good in a world inspired by the street culture of 1980s New York City. The full graphic novella #1 — which will appear at New York Comic Con and soon after in comic shops — sports a creative team that includes writer Damion Scott (“Batgirl”), consultant Ron Wimberly (“Prince of Cats”), interior artists like comics stars Felipe Smith (“All-New Ghost Rider”) and Jeff Stokely (“Six-Gun Gorilla”), animation artists like Chase Conely (“Black Dynamite”) and graffiti writers like MARE 139. And the entire package is topped off with a cover by longtime “Spider-Man” artist Sal Buscema.

CBR News spoke with E-i-C Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez and DMC the man about “DMC” the superhero. The pair describe how they wanted to avoid the pitfalls of celebrity and music comic ventures by focusing on a heroic lead in an artistically diverse world first, and how the mysterious battles experienced across the first issue’s anthology format will lead to a future universe of stories.

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Run-DMC’s rapper Darryl McDaniels launches

The newly minted comic company, Darryl Makes Comics, is ready to debut its first novel, ‘DMC’ at New York Comic Con in October. Darryl McDaniels portrays himself as a superhero instead of a rapper in the graphic novels.


Darryl McDaniels of Run-DMC is going back to his childhood passion – comic books – with Darryl Makes Comics and its first novel, “DMC,” in which he is portrayed as the superhero.

Rapper Darryl McDaniels of Run-DMC fame may be known for crushing “Sucker MCs” — but he’s unmasking himself as a comic book nerd.

Selling 25 million records is impressive enough, but McDaniels is now living out a childhood fantasy at age 50 with the launch of his own line of comic books.

The “DMC” graphic novel will hit comic stores Oct. 29.

The newly minted comic company, Darryl Makes Comics, is ready to debut its first novel, “DMC” — set in an alternate ’80s universe of the Big Apple where the Hollis, Queens, product is a superhero instead of a rapper.

It isn’t just a business venture, it’s a lifelong calling.

“I was a shy kid, so when DJ Run (aka Joseph Simmons, who along with the late Jam Master Jay formed the pioneering hip-hop group) was first putting me on these records, I went back to my comic books for confidence,” McDaniels told the Daily News.

“I would hear a beat and go, ‘OK, what would the Hulk do to this?’ It was all imagination to me.

“That’s why, if you hear my delivery,” he added, breaking into one of his signature rhymes, “‘Crash through walls/Come through floors/Bust through ceilings’ — all the dominant punching lines came from (channeling) the Hulk.”

The new DMC, who debuts at next month’s New York Comic Con, no longer has to pretend to be someone else’s superhero: His comic alter ego even rocks his signature Adidas, fedora and rope chain, only with a face mask that looks tougher than leather.

Read the entire Article here

Review: DMC #1

Chris Salce

Legendary hip-hop pioneer Darryl “DMC” McDaniels has an all-new project coming out, but this time, it’s a comic! DMC has started a publishing company called Darryl Makes Comics, and has also launched the first graphic novel called “DMC.” DMC has been a fan of comics since he was a young kid in New York, who grew up reading Marvel comic books. After he would come home from school, he would read these comics, which made him feel as if he were a superhero. Now, he is one! If you missed our interview last week, be sure to check it out here.

Here is the synopsis of DMC #1, followed by my review of the book.

It’s 1985 in New York City. Wildstyle graffiti covers subway cars as. B-boys break and spin in playgrounds and on street corners. Koch is mayor. Drugs and crime rule the streets. A terrifying plague is brewing in the shadows. And as the populace loses faith in the police, a man named Bernard Goetz is being hailed as a hero for shooting four teenagers in a subway car. In this 1985, however, the city’s brand new guardian angels wear spandex and capes, wielding their gadgets and their superpowers to clean up the City – even if their methods hurt more people than they help. There’s the deluded “graffiti king” Mr. Marx patrolling the tunnels; the dark moral crusader The Puritan who stalks the shadows of the Lower East Side; and above it all, the godlike Helios, darling of the Upper East Side and the NYPD. It seems like only some of New York’s residents are benefitting from these vigilantes’ protection. The rest whisper the name of another hero: DMC. You see, in this 1985, Darryl McDaniels (Run DMC) never rocks the mic to become one of hip-hop’s most enduring icons. Instead, he dons his tracksuit and Adidas sneakers to defend the city’s marginalized citizens against super villain and super hero alike, leaving no traces besides the imprint of his knuckle rings on his opponents’ faces. (By day, though, he teaches junior high school English.) With the help of reporter Charlie Cooper and a band of graffiti artists led by the spunky Lak6, DMC must confront the new “heroes,” and investigate whether there’s anything behind their sudden appearance.


This comic not only takes place in the mid 80’s but it also feels as a throwback to all of the 80’s comics and cartoons that were so popular when I was a kid. The book took me back to cartoons like GI Joe. “DMC” deals with issues that were around in the 80’s like aids, homophobia, domestic violence, politics, and education. Though, the cartoons of the 80’s never touched on these issues, DMC does and is not afraid to do so. This is what makes the story seem more modern, because of the fact that those same issues, sadly, are still around 30 years later. The story definitely has a lot of morals like say Superman and Captain America. I know some fans of comics think the morals part of comics are a bit cheesy. In my opinion, I think that comics should never steer away from moral issues, as long as it fits in the story. I think It gives us more of a connection to the story.

A cool part about the book is that it’s an origin story of DMC becoming a superhero but it’s done in several short stories, like chapters, that make for one whole story. In each story, the characters involved go through the different issues that I was talking about before, and while these characters are going through these issues, DMC’s story fits in perfectly and you see him grow as a hero. You see his powers develop and his costume get more advanced.

The art of the book is done by several artist whose styles actual work well together and with the story. It’s a mix of graffiti art and modern comic art. The look of the comic reminds me of something like the “Static Shock” cartoon, which aired back in 2000-2004. So if you were a fan of that animated series, you would be a fan of this as well.

I can honestly say that “DMC” #1 is nothing like any comic out there right now. Though “DMC” deals with very serious issues, it does it in a way that isn’t too serious and still has parts were it’s just more light-hearted fun. It even has some Run-DMC references that you will catch throughout the book, and who doesn’t like Run-DMC?! If you are a fan of 80’s pop culture, hip-hop, Run-DMC or just want to read something different for a change, then you’ll want to read “DMC” #1.

“DMC” #1 will be available in October. For more info, visit the official DMC site.

Yahoo Music: Why Run-DMC, Hip-Hop’s Greatest Trio, Was Almost a One-Man Show

by Billy Johnson, Jr.

Run-DMC, hip-hop’s most famous rap trio, was almost a solo act.

Darryl “DMC” McDaniels had to win the approval of the group’s manager to secure his spot, the Rock and Roll Hall of fame inductee told Yahoo Music Wednesday on the eve of the 30th anniversary of Run-DMC’s self-titled debut album.

DMC’s revelation is surprising, considering the group’s massive success. Along with Joseph “Run” Simmons and their late DJ, Jason “Jam Master Jay” Mizell, Run-DMC’s self-titled debut album broke a number of records. It is the first rap album to be certified gold, receive a Grammy nomination, and land a video (“Rock Box”) on MTV.

According to DMC, Russell Simmons, the group’s manager and Run’s elder brother, didn’t think he had the chops to cut it as a rap star.

Run fought for him to be a part of the group, and before recording their first single, “It’s Like That,” Run informed DMC of the dilemma.

“Run said, ‘D, I’m going to put you in the group. Russell don’t want you in the group. He doesn’t like your voice. He don’t think you’re an MC, but I told him if he don’t put you in the group, I was going to hold my breath until I turned blue, and I damn near died last night, so Russell said, ‘OK, he could be in the group.'”
Despite Run’s support, DMC didn’t feel secure, saying that even though his vocals were on “It’s Like That,” Russell planned to have Run perform the song as a solo artist.

DMC definitely felt pressure in the studio the night they recorded the song. “The whole session, Russell was doing this, ‘Get out of the way. D, go sit in the lounge. You only here because Joey want you here.'”

Run was determined to prove his brother wrong. The night they recorded “Sucker MCs,” Run ignored Russell’s demands that DMC get out of the control room and pushed DMC to record a verse for the song. DMC, who was still in high school, was nervous about catching Russell’s wrath and upsetting his parents for staying out too late. He wanted to go home before recording, but Run told him to stick around.

“Joe laid his three verses. I’m sitting there, saying, ‘Yo, Joe. It’s late. I need to go home.’ Joe is telling me, ‘Wait. Wait.’ He said, ‘Now, you go in there a put a verse at the end of the record.’ I’m like, ‘Joe, Russell doesn’t want me in here.’ Joe said, ‘We got to prove to Russell that you’re a MC. He thinks you can write ’cause you’re smart and he loves checking you while you’re sitting there with your 40 [ounce bottle of beer]. D, just go in there and say a rhyme.'”

DMC’s rap verse for “Sucker MCs” turned out to be like winning the golden ticket that would forever change his life.

Screen Shot 2014-04-01 at 9.35.46 AM

“When I went in the booth, I’m not even thinking about a career,” DMC said. “I got accepted to St. John’s University. My whole life, every time I would learn something, see something on TV or experience something, I would just write about it. So I had wrote this rhyme when I was graduating because I had gotten accepted to St. John’s. I went in there and said, ‘I’m DMC in the place to be. I go to St. John’s University.’ I wasn’t even at St. John’s, but I knew I was going.”

After recording his now famous verse, DMC said he solidified his position in the group. “When I walked out the booth, who’s the first person standing there, arms extended, kissing me and hugging me, and saying, ‘Oh my God, I had no idea?’ So, that’s how managers work. The whole session he’s avoiding me. ‘D, get out of here, you need to be home.’ When I kicked that rhyme, I’m telling you, for the rest of the night, Russell sat next to me with his arm around me, and everybody that entered the studio, Russell would go, ‘Go play the rhyme. Play D’s part.’

“And since that day up until the making of the first Run-DMC album when we had pitch meetings, everybody that would walk in the room at Rush Management, Russell would say, ‘D, come say the rhyme.’ From the end of ’82 to the making of the first album, I was Russell’s demo. But before I made that rhyme, Russell didn’t want to hear from me. He thought DMC, the Catholic school kid with the straight A’s didn’t have the personality to be an MC, but I changed all that with ‘Sucker MCs.'”

Today, DMC is working on a rap rock album that is a continuation of the style of Run-DMC’s rock-fused songs “Rock Box,” “King of Rock,” “Walk This Way,” “Mary Mary,” and “It’s Tricky.” He’s released two tracks, “Attention Please” and “Noise Revolution,” and is working with the likes of Sebastian Bach from Skid Row and Mick Mars of Mötley Crüe. Additionally, he is prepping the release of his graphic novel venture, Darryl Makes Comics.

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Doing Art Together Holds 29th Annual Benefit In
New York City on Monday, March 24, 2014

New York, NY (March 11, 2014) – The 29th Annual Doing Art Together Benefit – emceed by NBC’s Weekend TODAY news anchor and TODAY correspondent Jenna Wolfe, along with special guest, New York’s First Lady Chirlane McCray – will take place in New York City on March 24th, 2014 at the Mandarin Oriental. This year’s honorees are Grammy nominated artist Darryl McDaniels of iconic group, Run-DMC, along with Erin S. Gore who is Co-Head of Wells Fargo’s National Education and Nonprofit Commercial Banking team. A non-profit arts education organization, Doing Art Together has done incredible life-changing work providing hands-on programs to under-served communities, since founded in 1982.

Darryl “DMC” McDaniels is thrilled to be a part of the benefit saying, “It’s a privilege to be honored at this year’s Doing Art Together Gala but I don’t want to make this about me. This is all about DAT. I’m just representing all the incredible young people who deserve to be celebrated and honored for their great works and achievements.” The gala’s next honoree, Erin S. Gore, has been involved with DAT since 1997 and explains the importance of the organization, “The impact Doing Art Together has on children’s creative confidence and critical thinking skills is huge. Making art brings the world to a more engaged, creative place.”

The evening will include entertainment by cabaret singer Tom Postilio, an art exhibition and silent auction. The auction items include a private shopping experience with Cynthia Rowley, Broadway tickets, Jeff Koons Dom Perignon bottles, get-a-ways to upstate NY and Martha’s Vineyard, the Ultimate Silver Oak experience, a special NY Yankees package and more.

The mission of Doing Art Together (DAT) is to awaken and enrich the intellectual, social, and cultural development of under-resourced New York City children and youth, inspiring them to pursue their learning. They accomplish this by engaging youth in the visual arts, igniting the participation of their family network and building enduring partnerships with their educational community. DAT is a non-profit arts education organization that provides hands-on programs to under-served audiences, and their programs build skills that enhance the ability to learn and are easily transferred from the classroom to life. For more information, please visit

Darryl “DMC” McDaniels is a legendary music icon who first impacted the world over 25 years ago.  From the first rap group to grace the cover of Rolling Stone to the first to appear on MTV, Grammy nominated Run-DMC changed music, culture, fashion, language and made American history. 30 million record sales later, and more than ten years after the untimely death of his bandmate Jam Master Jay, DMC still continues to create, inspire and motivate and as a member of Run-DMC, was inducted into the 2009 Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. He is a published author and speaker, and the co-founder of the Felix Organization, a nonprofit that works with adoptees and foster children. Darryl recently launched a comic book company called Darryl Makes Comics, a new journey that will bridge the gap between the worlds of hip-hop and the fantastic adventures he got wrapped up in as a youth.

Erin S. Gore has been on the Doing Art Together board since 2006. Passionate about the arts and providing people with tools to live their best life, her work with DAT has helped to expand children’s critical thinking skills while also providing them life skills for success. Erin was chosen by the San Francisco Business Times last year for the “40 Under 40” Bay Area leaders list, and previously been U.C. Berkeley’s CFO. Gore joined the former Banc of America Securities in 2001, rising to co-head and managing director of its public finance education and nonprofit team. Erin joined Wells Fargo in the Fall of 2013 to Co-Head their National Education and Nonprofit Commercial Banking team in Wells Fargo Government & Institutional Banking.

PRESS CONTACT for Doing Art Together: Tamar Juda, Last Word PR,

PRESS CONTACT for Darryl “DMC” McDaniels: Tracey Miller,  TMA,

NYCC: Boom! Bap! Pow!! Comic Books & Hip Hop With DMC Panel

By Jay Deitcher


Most people know Darryl “DMC” McDaniels as the Grammy nominated MC that merged rock, pop and hip hop to become one of the most iconic rappers of all time as a member of Run DMC. McDaniels is also a hero to me because he is one of the nicest dudes on the planet. He started the nonprofit Felix Organization to help children in foster care, openly speaks on his journey to sobriety and was even invited to the White House by President Obama to talk to youth about responsibility.

McDaniels is also a total comic book head! In July, he launched Darryl Makes Comics. He is the CEO as well as its initial hero. For this exciting project, McDaniels has chosen top comic creators to be his superhero teammates. At this year’s NY Comic Con, the rapper and his collaborators held a panel on Sunday to discuss Darryl Makes Comics.

Panelists included: Publisher & CEO: Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, Editor-In-Chief & Chief Creative Officer: Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, Senior Editor: Rigo Riggs Morales, Writer: Ronald Wimberly (of Prince of Cats and Sentences fame), Penciler: Damion Scott (former Batman and Spider-Man artist) and Graffiti Artist: Carlos Mare.

Introductions quickly turned into the panelists geeking out about their love for hip hop and comic culture. One by one, the panelists paid their respects to hip hop and comics. They spoke of their hip hop heroes standing side by side with the comic characters they love: The Silver Surfer, Melle Mel, Captain America, Afrika Bambaataa, Spider-man, Kool Moe Dee, The X-Men, and the Cold Crush Brothers. McDaniels grew up a shy, straight A student who connected to Peter Parker before he traded his comic collections for a set of turn tables. He was a very shy cat, so when Run suggested McDaniels break out his rhymes from his notebook and form a group, McDaniels looked to comic book culture for inspiration. “The comic books gave me confidence, the comic books gave me an… Escape.” said McDaniels. To get the courage to rap in front of others, he would ask himself, “What would the Hulk do right now?” This was the inspiration for many of his rhymes such as “Crash through walls, cut through floors. Bust through ceilings and knock down doors.”

A recurrent theme throughout the panel was comics’ ability to educate. “Comics are a gateway drug,” according to Editor-in-Chief Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez. He discussed his own experiences using comics to motivate his mildly autistic nine year old son to read. McDaniels said “there was things I learned in comic books that I did not learn in school. Science, history…” He proudly admitted that had he not become a rapper he would have become a teacher, like to his character in the comics.

The dream team stated that one of the main reasons they were creating this comic was to inspire youth and create opportunities for kids to live out their dreams. Senior Editor Riggs Morales even offered the kiddos in the audience the opportunity to come draw for the company in 10 years! Let’s all say this in unison: Awwwwww, how sweet!

Unlike other celebrities who have tried to infiltrate the comic marketplace, McDaniels and his collaborators made it clear that they were complete comic fanboys. Their goal is to create a work of art respectful to the comic culture and the original creators such as Will Eisner, Jack Kirby, and Stan Lee. McDaniels promised he would not be the rapper dude that will “mess up another genre”. “Rappers will ruin everything,” he proclaimed. They “will come in and commercialize and it will be crappy.” First and foremost, Darryl Makes Comics is about McDaniel and his collaborators’ love of comics.

“It’s not gonna be a hip hop book,” but “it has that flavor”, promised Editor-in-Chief Edgardo. The comic takes place in 1980’s New York City. It will be filled with graffiti, B-boy, Salsa, Hip Hop, and punk culture. The Marvel universe is iconic for its NYC landscape, but the Darryl Makes Comics universe takes place in the NYC that is not often seen in comics: the Barrios, The Lower East Side (the home of Kirby), the South Bronx (the home of DJ Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaattaa, Grandmaster Flash, and KRS-One), and other underrepresented, inner-city neighborhoods. It will illustrate social problems that were relevant during the 80’s that are still relevant today, like racism, classism, and police brutality. The book will embody hip-hop culture’s political nature as well as its ability to motivate people to strive for personal betterment.


Darryl Makes Comics has been a dream of McDaniels for many years. He took his time with the project because he wanted the perfect team of creative minds to bring the universe to life. DMC is the Superman or Submariner of Darryl Makes Comics, the first superhero in a much larger universe. McDaniels wants to create a universe as vast as Marvel with heroes from all walks of life.

The Darryl Makes Comics universe promises to be a universe that is representative of the world we live in. The company will feature heroes and heroines from different backgrounds and cultures. Miranda-Rodriguez stated that “when we talk about diversity in an industry, we couldn’t, can’t wait for an industry to provide that for you.” “This is a book for everyone” said McDaniels.

The crowd erupted when he promised that in his universe “There is gonna be powerful, positive images of women. There is gonna be some incredible female superheroes, even everyday women. It will be something that young girls and older girls will be proud of, because, put it like this…if it wasn’t for women, none of us would be here right now!”

I will never forget this year’s Comics Con. This panel was one of the highlights of my experience. I am a huge fan of McDaniels. As amazing an MC as he is, I am a bigger fan of McDaniels as a person. He seems committed to everything he does. This project is the embodiment of what he stands for- education, hip hop, comics, motivating youth, celebrating diversity and above all, trying to put a positive work of art out to inspire others.

Look for the DMC graphic novel to be released in January 2014 (ask your local comic shop to pre-order it to ensure a copy). Check out the Darryl Makes Comics website here. Also, in the near future we are going to drop our interview with DMC. McDaniels and I discuss comics, diversity in comics, breaking the geek stereotype, politics, recovery, youth, hip hop and how to be a real life superhero. Be sure to check it out, baby!

Article Source: Interview: D.M.C. Of Run-D.M.C. Fame Plots Comic Book Takeover

By: Keith Murphy

Darryl “D.M.C.” McDaniels is on a mission. The member of the iconic hip-hop group Run-D.M.C. and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer is out to change the face of comic books. The man with the legendary booming vocals has collaborated on his own superhero vision titled (what else?) DMC. But don’t make the mistake of thinking this is some half-ass vanity project. D.M.C. is a serious man.

“Rappers will mess things up,” he says of his new venture, which is due out in graphic novel form in January of 2014. “I don’t want to be another rapper trying to make a buck off of comics. Or trying to do something that is trivial or corny. This is no joke.”

In this comic book, DMC is not a game-changing MC. He is an English teacher who also happens to be a powerful superhero fighting on the side of good. Fresh off of an appearance at last week’s New York’s Comic-Con, the rapper is well aware that there are few writers and artists of color in the predominantly white comic book biz. He shares a passion for expanding the worlds of Batman, Spider-Man, Superman, the Black Panther and Storm with partner Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, Editor-In-Chief of D.M.C,’s Darryl Makes Comics.

“[DMC] wants to tell stories to inspire all generations like he did with his music,” says the veteran comic book artist, who curated “Marvelous Color” for Marvel Comics’ 70th anniversary. “His passion is what inspired me to become his partner in starting our own publishing company.”

VIBE chopped it up with the legendary D.M.C. to discuss his new venture, why he believes he can compete with the likes of Marvel and DC, his plan to put on artists and writers who have been shut out from the comic book fraternity, and his vision for a world where everyone, beyond color, sex and economic background, can save the day. —Keith Murphy (@murphdogg29)

VIBE: Can you talk about your inspiration behind the DMC comic book? Writers and artists have long had to depend on Marvel and DC to deliver their vision. What pushed you to say, “Okay, let’s side step all that?”
D.M.C.: Before hip-hop came over the bridge and changed my life, I was going to Catholic school. So for me growing up, it was school and it was comic books. Going to Catholic School back in the day, I also had to deal with that bullying stuff. And comic books were kind of my release. It was that world I could go to that empowered me, made me feel good, educated me. I learned some things about World War II; I learned about economic issues and science through comic books. So me and brother we collected them, and our favorite was Marvel. We had Hulk, Spider-Man, Sub-Mariner, the Avengers, we had all these Marvel comics that we collected.

So you were a pretty hardcore collector, huh?
I really was. But what ended up happening is hip-hop happens and changes me and my brother’s life. So we did a comic book sale where we sold the majority of our comics to buy two turntables and a mixer. Before I heard people say, “Yo, Run-D.M.C., y’all dudes were like our superheroes!” It was the same thing for me when it came to Melle Mel, Kool Moe Dee, Cold Crush Brothers, Afrika Bambaataa & The Zulu Nation, and Funky Four Plus One. They were my real-life heroes. Even if you listen to my own music with Run-D.M.C., all the rhymes I’ve said were like, “Crash through walls, cut through falls, bust through ceilings and knock down doors…I’m the devastating, mic controller D.M.C.!” Every time Run would come to me and say, “D, we need to make a record,” it was easy for me because I would just imagine what the Hulk or Iron Man would do.

So of course the question is how serious is a legendary music artist known for being a member of one of hip-hop’s greatest acts about this comic book venture?
I’m very serious. This isn’t a hip-hop comic book. It’s a comic book that incorporates my culture. Given my culture, my DNA, my generation of hip-hop, it will have those themes, images and ideals. But this is not a hip-hop comic book.

Can you talk about the lead character of DMC?
Yes. The worse thing you can do when you do a “hip-hop” comic book is have everybody breakdancing, rapping and doing graffiti. But the DMC superhero isn’t a rapping superhero. In the world that we are in right now, Darryl McDaniels is the King of Rock who is a member of Run-D.M.C. But in an alternate universe Darryl McDaniels is not an MC from Run-D.M.C. The thinking is, what if he was really a superhero? So this character still has those important ideas and themes and concepts out of my music. But in the comic book, I’m an English teacher at a school, but I’m also a superhero!

Are we talking traditional comic book distribution?
That’s a great question…I’m glad you asked me that. I’m using the same distributors that distribute Marvel and DC. This isn’t a one-off. With this first issue of the DMC graphic novel and comic book series, I just happen to be the first known superhero in this universe. It’s not going to be just a series of DMC comics. I’m just the first character in this universe. There’s going to be totally different superheroes—female heroes; Latin heroes; Asian heroes; some of the characters in the Darryl Mac universe won’t even be hip-hop. This is a serious venture that we put together to stand side-by-side with Marvel and DC. The purpose for me doing this is to give every writer, artist, inker and anybody that wants to work on a comic book a chance; to show them you can have a place.

That’s something rarely seen when it comes to people of color who want to venture into comics, right?
Right. The thing with Run-D.M.C. is the same way we knocked down walls for Public Enemy, Lil Wayne and Jay-Z to do their thing, that’s what I want to do with this comic book. Kid Rock would always tell me if Run-D.M.C. and Aerosmith had a baby I’d pop out. Travis Barker told me, “Forget ‘Walk This Way.’ I heard ‘Rock Box’ and knew what I wanted to do. I was just with Dave Grohl from Nirvana and the Foo Fighters and he told me, “Man, me, Kurt [Cobain] and all of us were at those Run-D.M.C. and Public Enemy show!” So the same thing that we did with hip-hop is what I want to do with this book.

When will we see the DMC book in stores?
The first issue is going to be a full-size graphic novel coming out in January. And after the first graphic novel, the DMC comic book series begins. We will probably get up to 35 issues and then we will produce an issue featuring the next character, and so on and so forth. This is serious.

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