The south shall rise again. This phrase holds true to the south and its involvement in hip-hop. When hip-hop first began in the late 1970's it was the voice of the east coast but that was not the only place that felt the impact of the culture. Years have past and the South has now taken its place as being a major influence in the music industry. With that influence comes some major players that have assisted in placing this region in the position that it is now in. Those players have pushed along not only their careers but also many others. At the top of the south lives the King and it is debated who is the King(s) of the South.
Many are called but only a few are chosen, that is how many of the best in the rap game feel in the South. UGK has made hits for years, but until recent years, they have not received the love that they deserved. Another major player has to be Lil' Jon the man behind crunk. Lil' Jon has made the music that the South is known for, Crunk music. People label that sound to the South, but Memphis Greats, 3-6 Mafia have made crunk music for years. It was not until Atlanta picked up the ball that the rest of the country really took notice to the South. With everything there are two sides, the South has more than just crunk music. On the other side lives two of the south's more noticeable figures.
Those two men are Lil' Wayne, and T.I., both of them give the South a new sound, something more than just crunk music. They allow the country to see that southern rappers have great lyrics, and can make music for everyone. With the success of both Lil' Wayne and T.I. comes the debate of who is the King of the South. On one hand Lil' Wayne has been in the music industry since he was a young teen, while T.I. took a much harder road to get to the place he is now. Therefore, who is the King of the South? MemphisRap.com conducted a survey asking this question in 2004 and 3-6 Mafia received 48% of the votes. T.I. was second with 13%, Lil' Jon had 5% and Cash Money received 2%. That was two years ago and things have changed, the debate will continue but their music will give you the answer.