Stanley Kirk Burrell, born March 30, 1962, better known by his stage name MC Hammer, is an American rapper, entrepreneur, and actor. He had his greatest commercial success and popularity from the late 1980s until the mid-1990s.
Remembered for a rapid rise to fame before losing the majority of his fortune, Hammer is also known for his hit records, including “U Can’t Touch This”, flamboyant dance movements and trademark Hammer pants. Hammer’s superstar-status made him a household name and pop icon. He has sold more than 50 million records worldwide.
Burrell also became a preacher during the late 1990s, was a television show host and dance judge, is a record label CEO, and as of 2008 works as a co-creator of a dance website called DanceJam, while still performing concerts at music venues and assisting with other social media, ministry and outreach functions.
In addition, he was executive producer of his own reality show called Hammertime which aired on the A&E Network during the summer of 2009.
M.C. Hammer is considered a “forefather” and innovator of pop rap, and is the first hip hop artist to achieve diamond status for an album. Hammer was later considered a sell-out rapper due in part to over-exposure and as a result of his increasingly gritty image as the landscape of rap changed.
On October 2 (aired October 12), Hammer opened the 2010 BET Hip Hop Awards performing “2 Legit 2 Quit” in Atlanta along with Rick Ross, Diddy and DJ Khaled (performing “MC Hammer” from the Teflon Don album).
With nearly 2 million Twitter followers, his contribution to social media and as a co-founder of his own Internet businesses, Hammer has been announced as the recipient of the first Gravity Summit Social Media Marketer of the Year Award. The award was presented to him at the 3rd Annual Gravity Summit on February 22, 2011 at the UCLA Covel Commons.