50-Plus St. Louis Hip-Hop Artists You Should Know
Dixi Freely Chances are you've never heard of this guy. I sit here smiling as I type this because this is the reason I jumped at the chance to write this weekly blog. The chance to introduce you all to new things, people, and places. Dixi Freely is not originally from St. Louis but he currently lives here. He makes music with rich southern influences and high doses of inspiration. I have seldom met a person with such a positive good spirited aura. You don't run across these kind of people in the music business. Check out his video's on YouTube become a fan today. He has a hands-on, do-it-yourself demeanor, and if he works hard enough I can see him occupying the same lane as the likes of Big Krit.
County Brown Living legend. Before I really hoped off the porch into the local scene this guy was here and already established. Years later I myself am established and he is still here. County Brown has broke artist, dropped classic mixtapes, classic singles, launched full fledge indie movements. He has produced insane soundscapes for his self and other artists. He is a DJ, rapper, promoter, record label CEO, etc. I view this cat as the underground version of Master P. If there is an opportunity to create an opportunity then he goes for it. His twitter rants drop knowledge like none other. His label also introduced me to one of my favorite local rappers, ILL Spitta.
C-Dell a.k.a. Odd Blazing When your first two shows ever in life are opening for 2Chainz at the Ambassador in front of a capacity crowd and Super Jam 2012 maybe you're doing something right. This kid has as ridiculous unnatural freestyle ability. His stage show is over flowing with energy and proper presentation. At this very moment his buzz is building more steam, and he is slated to make his run for the summer. He can enter the studio with zero idea's on paper and freestyle an entire record in a very cohesive and well put together manor. He has nothing but pure natural talent in his veins. All the while being backed by the production of Dove Award Nominee Deshaddow. He's still in high school so there is absolutely maximum room for growth here.
12 to 6 Movement This group recently dropped a feature-heavy album and has tore up stages all over the town for many years now.One liveliest most unpredictable groups in the city. Be sure to keep an open for them as they make future moves. Their latest project titled Titties Out is available now -- my favorite track is the joint featuring Joe Budden.
Ruka Puff Once again a living legend, as I can not think of one indie artist that has walked the path of Ruka Puff. In St. Louis, many people believe Ruka is our town's godfather of crunk music. He currently has a rock band by the name of "Toilet Water" and can be seen doing shows throughout the Midwestern region without fail. He is hands-down one of the absolute hardest working artists to ever walk the pavement of the 314. He has dropped mixtapes, full-length albums, and well-known singles. He is not afraid to be himself and has one of the best stage shows you will ever witness. You cannot mention St. Louis hip-hop without mentioning him. One time for my homie Bigga Brown, a devoted and talented member of Ruka's Black 300 crew. Bigga's buzz is stockpiling on the regular as he proves to the city that he has no intent on living in the ever so larger than life shadow of Ruka Puff. The Black 300 is a legendary St. Louis rap click.
Laudie It's truly only a matter of time for Laudie, and thats how I honestly feel. He is a genius rapper/producer and has worked with some of southern hip-hop's most iconic figures. Laudies current single features Rick Ross and is gaining constant traction. In St. Louis he has pretty much created his own genre of hard-hitting club anthems and radio bangers. As a rapper he is only one hit away as this is revealed with his newly released record with Future. Once the stars align and the planets synchronize at the right time it's a given we all know Laudie is out of here.He is currently working with the likes of Luey V, Rockwell Knuckles and many more.
Luey V Coming from Missouri and managing to get national attention is not a easy task. Luey V. has a classic St. Louis record that managed to do just that. We've all danced blindly to his hit "Do Your Own Dance." He's dropped buzz-heavy mixtapes and is a staple in the St. Louis scene. A few years ago at SXSW in Austin Texas Mistah Fab from Oakland California, spotted my St. Louis hat and asked me if I knew Luey V. He is currently working with Laudie and will surely keep delivering quality tunes on all levels.
Keem (Formerly known as Hakeem the Dream) Keem has one of the most classic St. Louis singles of all times. The DJ's play "Thick Wit It" as if it was released yesterday and the crowds still go bananas as if they've never heard it. This record gets the same amount of love as any classic Nelly record does in St. Louis. Keem doesn't get the credit he deserves as a lyricist and it is a shame because he can wholeheartedly go bar for bar with the best of them. Keem has worked with legendary producer Zaytoven (Gucci Mane's go to producer) and has established a fan base in Atlanta on his own accord. His new project, "Made In America" is slated to be released soon and will surely turn heads. He is an icon in this city, and I think most people are guilty of sleeping on his overall talent.
Ducky Hines The Cheers theme music should follow Duck whenever he appears at a hip-hop event. I think everyone knows this dude and he's always in a positive mood. His last mixtape was backed by DJ Shad and managed to garner him some solid attention. He's an overall nice guy from Dellwood but his flow pattern sounds like he's from Queensbridge. He has more work to do if he hopes to become the icon he is destined to be. Keep your eyes and ears open because I am 100% sure he will be here for a while. His Team Voltron crew member Zone Corleone is waiting in the wings for the take over.
Lyfestile I've learned a thing or two from this guy and I've also witnessed him destroy ciphers and live stage shows. If Nato Caliph is Rakim then Lyfe is definitely symbolically equal to KRS-1. He is known for speaking boldly about the state of hip-hop in our city. He is very involved in Slum Fest and is a strong advocate for activism amongst of the artistic community. On some level he's an icon but he's possibly too humble to embrace such a title.
Katt Davis God Bless the Dead. Katt is undoubtedly the best St. Louis rapper of all time. This is solely my opinion and there are a few people high on the food chain of opinions that believe the same exact thing. His untimely demise took him away from us far too soon. His talent still manages to continue shining through the likes of people like his brother Jia Davis and Space. The truth needs no explanation I could write an entire blog about Bits N Pieces. I believe Katt is the GOAT.
Spaide Ripper His first mixtape is a classic on the lyrical end of things. He has also released a classic single "Always." He has records that will always be played in St. Louis and his name is forever being mentioned in barbershop convo's on the West Side.Spaide has worked with the likes of 8ball & MJG and is probably somewhere out of town at this very moment on his indie grind promoting his music.
Playboy Ro Let's talk about classic classic classic singles! "Hey Nicki" or "Hennessy No Ice." Ro is a former of the crew "Out The Blue" and we all know these guys are for this legendary song. Ro is still active and doing his thing, so I advise you to follow him on twitter and get familiar with his new material. I'm sure he appreciates the love this record received and still receives but who doesn't want to introduce his fanbase to new material. As a rapper it's my goal to make something as timeless as "Hennesy No Ice."