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The rap on Memphis rap


Yet, the shadow Triple Six casts doesn't eclipse what other artists are doing locally. Everyone agrees the Bluff City rap scene - from the sleek gangsta stylings of Yo Gotti to the hip-hop creativity of Kavious - is healthy.

MEMPHIS, TN (The Commercial Appeal) July 13, 2003 - One group dominates the local scene, but some see city becoming a major player Memphis is a Three 6 Mafia town.

In the realm of rap, no one sells more records or has more exposure locally than this group, which has been setting trends since the mid-'90s.

Their new album, "Da Unbreakables," sold almost 100,000 copies its first week out.. where it outsold releases by Metallica, Radiohead and rap's current don, 50 Cent...

"Nobody else has really done that out of here," said local producer/engineer/musician Niko Lyras, who has worked with Three 6 Mafia and others.

Yet, the shadow Triple Six casts doesn't eclipse what other artists are doing locally. Everyone agrees the Bluff City rap scene - from the sleek gangsta stylings of Yo Gotti to the hip-hop creativity of Kavious - is healthy.

Healthy to the tune of thousands of records annually, according to Johnny Phillips, executive at locally based Select-O-Hits, one of the country's largest independent rec ord distributors.

"What's selling is the gangsta rap," said Phillips, who adds that records by Lil Wyte and T-Rock (both produced by Three 6 leaders DJ Paul and Juicy "J") have done well so far this year as has work by hardcore institution DJ Squeeky.

"Memphis is a tough market to break product that's really not right down in the gangsta groove."

Some 60 to 70 local new rap releases are handled each year by Select-O-Hits in addition to popular catalog items. And plenty of non-SOH releases come out as well.

Hundreds of rap artists work in the area, according to Hosea Mays Jr., a k a M Town Luv, the founder and director of music Web site www .memphisrap.com.

"There's a lot of talent out here that Memphis itself doesn't even know about,"..

Read Full Article - By Bill Ellis: On GoMemphis.com

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