Normally, when people try to act as if they're hip to the South, the first artist they say nowadays are Scarface, Outkast, UGK & Bun-B.
No disrespect because we love those dudes.
But please understand that the South has always been making noise...
a.) ...outside of Atlanta & Houston.
b.) ...well back into the early 90's.
c.) ...and music with a meaning.
One group & one album that always gets left out when mentioned in the mix of Southern pioneers is this duo. For anyone who tells you the South doesn't have lyrical abilities, please direct them to this or any of these cats albums. While the lyrics aren't groundbreaking, the delivery, and the word placement & choice combine with choice beats to make what stands as a Southern classic. "Pimps"..."Mr. Big" and "Lay It Down" from their Coming Out Hard album will still ultimately move any party in the South on any given Saturday night. Matter of fact, there's not a day, like 'Face's The Diary, when I can't put this album on, cue it to "Pimps", "Armed Robbery", or "Mr. Big" and give me day a certified ego boost and enhance my swagger.
Eightball & MJG - Coming Out Hard
Like it or dislike it, while Outkast opened the door for the South, No Limit kicked in the door, made everybody get down and take notice.
Unless you lived under a rock or were in a vegetative state, there's simply no way that you didn't jam to at least one No Limit artist or a single that laced the radio & clubs during the mid-90's. Master P picked a team of artists & created a movement unlike any other before it where artists shined alone and came together as well on each other's work to create a solid musical catalog, not Wu, Rawkus, or Bad Boy. Backed by Beats By The Pound, the label simply couldn't miss.
And while you may say, "but what about lyrics?", anyone who knows the work of the label will simply tell you to stray away from the repetitive radio playlist and check out some of their true artists who could lay bars with a ferocity unmatched. While others may posture & talk the talk, for some reason, you were lead to really believe the words of most rappers from the NO (pre-Cash Money/Lil Wayne/"we Bloods" era) because for many years, New Orleans was notoriously the murder capital of the USA. Below are several albums that prolly flew under the radar for most, but I'm wiling to bet at every Southern has at least one or more of these albums as a staple of their collection.
Mr. Serv-On - Life Insurance
I'm Bout It soundtrack
Young Bleed-My Balls and My Word
Fiend - Street Life
Mac-World War III
The only artists we neglected to show love to here are Souljah Slim (R.I.P., one of my favorites of all time). It'd take a whole post dedicated to him to give him proper shine. Even excluding his work, P created a pretty stout roster without a doubt. Other notable albums worth mentioning from the label were Master P - Ghetto Dope and Silkk The Shocker - Charge It To The Game.
And I've been struggling to find the right words to describe this dude's appeal but I simply can't. I'll try to sum it up like this....
•Originally from ATL
•Always outshines on any guest appearance you’re lucky enough to catch him on.
•Was at one time signed to Hypnotized Minds but no longer is. Still, he has a heavy independent catalog.
•An amazing flow, where he can start off slow as molasses, pick up the pace & end up as probably a worthy challenger to Twista.
•An ear for picking the right beats that are quintessential Southern “wang” and work with his flow & not against it.
For reference, check the tracks "No Remorse," "Mr. Big," "International Terrorist," & "Slang & Serve."
T-Rock-Rock Solid 4:20
The South has been constantly knocked for being not bringing style & lyrical offerings to the table. For those of you who believe that, and for fans of the South's impact on hip-hop, I'd strongly suggest giving the documetary Dirty States Of America a look.
The dvd traces the early beginnings of the Southern contributors & their influences, big-name as well as locally known artists, & regional perspectives and added flavors that each area brings, exposing the complex and unique mix of whole genres inside genres that have been created by the people of the south.. The people at Lyricist Lounge put together a dvd that entertaining, informative & truly respectable by giving the South it's chance to shine.
In Stray Shots, you'll find a sprinkling of a few more albums that were regionally strong but under the radar nationally or before the South stepped into the spotlight. Nevertheless, they're still strong albums.
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Jules Caeasar, Casey & Shorty for their contributions and to my dude Cam(need all white AF1's, even out of season? He's THAT dude) for helping with the words for this post & sharing thoughts & inspiration.
Postscript - More visitors, less comments? More contributions but even more requests? Aiyooo...I'm starting to feel like we're some backpacking, coffeeshop-performing, independent artist who gets more love overseas than we do at home! Show some fuckin love folk!
• Gene Harris - In a Special Way (Blue Note)
• Mob Style - Game Of Death or any other album
• Rahsaan Patterson - After Hours
• Julie Dexter - Conscious/Dexterity
Silk- Lose Control
Bumpy Knuckles-Industry Shakedown-Retail-2000
PW is unlvsac
Nate_Dogg-Nate_Dogg_LP w/bonus tracks -2005
Crizzo Presents - 2pac - The Leaks
Kingpin Skinny Pimp - Based On A True Story
UGK - Trill
Spice 1- Amerikkka's Nightmare
Greenwade - Nashville Underground Vol. 1
Too Short - Short Dog's In The House
DJ C-Wiz - Still Pimpin
The Wood Soundtrack
Gangsta Blac-74 Minutes of Bump
DJ Vlad and Dirty Harry - The Notorious B.I.G. - Rap Phenomenon
Sweet Thing/It's All Good
Posted by Gotty™ at 12/27/2005 09:12:00 AM