Hey Young World! The Paragon Project by Delayne Whiteside


Have you ever been to a high school talent show and as the performers did their thing,  you knew that the potential was there in each and every kid, but the talent still needed to develop? Or let’s say you went to a high school musical and you were able to distinguish the high schoolers that took their craft seriously as opposed to the ones that needed that drama credit to graduate? Well that wasn’t the case when it came to the students of Fort Hayes Metropolitan Education Center last Friday. This vocational school in Columbus, Ohio offers career study in business and health, however the school is mostly known for it’s Performing & Visual arts. On Friday Jan. 5 2018 I was invited by The Maroon Arts Group to come check out the cd release for The Paragon Project. The students were chosen based on their talent and skill to contribute to this project. TPP is the  brainchild of Dr. Tony Anderson, that happens to be the assistant principal of Fort Hayes. Dr. Anderson is a part of the growing number of professionals that have played a major part in the Hip Hop industry in their younger years, and are now making contributions in education with the experience of their former music backgrounds. Anderson spent years on the management side and the production team of Hip Hop band The Roots before they went to late night television with Jimmy Fallon. He also received direct tutelage from the late Rich Nichols, (official manager of the The Roots.) Jason Rawls better known as J. Rawls, producer for hip hop greats such as Mos Def & Talib Kweli, is another hip hop icon of Columbus Ohio that just received his doctorate last year, and he has plans in the future of opening a grade school with a hip hop based curriculum. Kudos to them!

Anyway, getting back to the experience. Upon entering the auditorium of the Columbus Performing Arts Center on Franklin Ave., I was amazed at the turnout. There were people willing to stand in the aisles because the place was packed. “We were blown away by the turnout, I mean, we did all the due diligence in terms of marketing, but nothing prepared us for the wall to wall standing room turnout, the kids were definitely moved by it.” says Dr. Anderson. I walked in on a cover performance sung by MyKesha Corbin “Love On The Brain” originally performed by pop artist Rihanna. The crowd roared with excitement as the student body, that took up the first three rows, cheered her on. The next performance returned me into the b-boy of yesteryear. TPP did a cover of “Ain’t Nobody” by Chaka Khan and I commenced to pop locking right there in the rows. From there, the audience and I had one thing in common…we knew these kids were special and that was just the warm-up.

After a brief intermission filled with networking and fine cuisine provided by Willowbeez SoulVeg vegan eatery, the students took to the stage to present their original music. Mind you, being in this business for 21 years, I can usually tell the difference between locally recorded music and industry production. I was astonished. Every track I heard felt like it belonged on the radio or in a motion picture score. What was more intriguing was the videos that told the stories behind the songs. Each student received a chance to interpret the song for the listening audience. One particular song resonated with me. Get Back To Me by Abby Deneke is on constant repeat in my playlist. Not only is the song remarkably written, the production and arrangement would give SZA or Kehlani a run for their money. The song talks about making a decision to separate yourself from something or someone you love to regain yourself and your focus back. “Sometimes we love something too much and we end up losing ourselves. I wrote this song based on something personal I was dealing with, and creating it served as a bit of therapy for me” says Deneke. The next song I enjoyed off of the cd was “We Go High”. It’s a fun song with a house tempo by Pia Monagan. The songs takes it’s cues from the Michelle Obama speech during the 2016 presidential campaign. Monagan cleverly infused Obama’s speech into her song. “We really invested in breakout sessions and presented round table discussions to get the kids to open up and be themselves. That allowed them to move freely in their craft.” says Dr. Anderson 

DJ Mr. King from Power 107.5fm (WCKX) hosted the evening and was quite supportive of the youth. “I wanted to come from behind that curtain and start dancing with them” say King. One parent said “Their level of talent is unbelievable. While some children are thinking about new outfits or the next party, these kids work tirelessly to hone their skill and continue to advance. If they stick with it, their dedication will take them far.”

The Paragon Project project is being well received by a number of media outlets around Central Ohio and across the nation. Dr. Tony Anderson is dedicated to seeing his students learn not only their craft, but the music business as well. He says in closing “Rich Nichols (RIP) manager of The Roots was my mentor. He was so wise, not only about the business, but his philosophies dealing with life were awesome. He taught me things no book can teach you about this industry. Little pieces of information he dropped on me I still use to this day. I’m  just looking to impart that same wisdom into my kids. I’m very proud at what they have accomplished” 

The Paragon Project is a great musical investment. It is now available on all streaming sites. And for all you  music snobs, it will be a great way to brag, knowing you may have a piece of artistry before any of these artists actually become rich and famous.





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I had the opportunity of speaking with the owner of SOM to ask a few questions about who they are and what they are up to and found out some great information from owner DJ Nia Boom. Find out what she had to say!


Ms. Wells: Thank you for taking the time out to speak with me today! Let’s jump right into this. What does SOM stand for and how long has it been up and operating?


DJ Nia Boom: SOM stands for Straight Official Magazine.  We are a digital magazine dedicated to celebrating the lifestyle and culture of Hip-Hop.  The magazine was established in 2013 but as of July 2016 has undergone a revamp. The site and content have been updated and we are continuing to evolve!


Ms. Wells: So you guys have been in the game for a while. What is the mission of the magazine? What type of message do you want it to provide to your readers?


DJ Nia Boom: Our mission is to provide a platform that informs, entertains, educates, and inspires. We want our readers to be able to not only enjoy our efforts but feel supported by them as well.  We aim to support indie and major artists alike, merchants and independent resources. We encourage our users to engage with our unique stories and join in the discussions that affect our communities.


Ms. Wells:  So SOM is deeper than just a musical platform.  It is one that truly breaks down to provide readers a place that they can learn, interact, and become a part of.  You show that in the diversity that you use with your writers and staff.  What drew you to their uniqueness and what are some of the areas that your team is located in?


DJ Nia Boom: We have a very diverse team.  Our writers and staff are from all over the country and posses diverse skill sets which is a plus for our content as we are able to cover stories you won’t see in other publications. From Houston to Ohio, New York to Atlanta, Tennessee to Florida and even Chitown…..our writers provide a variety of content that will no doubt keep you entertained.


Ms. Wells: It’s dope that the publication has been able to create a platform that covers what’s going on around the world.  It is definitely the 2018 version of The Source Magazine.  You’ve tapped into a virtual way to connect people to help educated and create a dialog about what is going on our around us. Thank you for taking a little time out to answer a few questions for me to help the reader better understand Just Who SOM Is.

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[Web Series] DJ Samore Top 20 of 2017 Wrap Up

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The DJ Samore Top 5 Web series, countdown the top 5 records that hit on mainstream radio weekly on the Innovative Black Station Network. So with the wrap up of 2017, she puts together her top 20 records of 2017, and recaps music and current events of 2017. Each episode features music industry players from artist, songwriters, producers, og djs , business people of 2017. Check out the 4 part series right here.

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Let’s Talk About Haven: Soul Singer Renee Dion speaks to DJ Layne Luv

Haven Renee

How do you really interpret being a fan of an artist you know personally? And how does one explain that fanship when you are involved in the inner circle of the artist movement within that city? Can one speak objectively without bias? I’ll try my best. I came to know of this female sultry soul singer by way of a poet I used to date. From her introduction, I grew to know of all of the players within that artsy scene from Wali Crowder (poet), to B Jazz and The Liquid Crystal Project to DJ Krate Digga (eclectic DJ) to Lawrence Lemon (dancer extraordinaire). But around 2011, Columbus Ohio was buzzing by the release of Eric Roberson’s Mr. Nice Guy. Of course the city of Columbus has an adoration for the grammy-nominated singer, but the talk was more that of his generosity, almost an ode if you will, to the place that continues to give him so much love. Roberson included most of the artist aforementioned on his project, and from there I started to hear more and more about the songstress they call Renee Dion who was also a feature on Mr. Nice Guy.

With each project released, with each live performance, I became more of a supporter of Dion’s movement. Even witnessing her sing the national anthem for our 44th president Barack Obama was nothing short of amazing. In 2014, she dropped her project Moonlight off at my radio show, and my crew at the time and I were blown away at the maturity of her sound. We played every track for the entire show. By that time Dion was gaining momentum on the music scene….then all of the sudden “POOF” she disappeared. For a year and a half I would see her appear at a few music events around town or see her with her students from my window at that bank I was working at. (she was a school teacher at a school next door). But still no spark of music until around the end of October 2017. I started hearing from her chief supporter (her husband) she had a project coming out. He showed up at the club passing out her project to all the DJ’s but I was on the set and by the time I got done, the project was sold out. I ended up having to wait for the release date to hear it, and believe you me it was worth the wait. Haven put me in a trance from the first track I played.

I’m the type of person that believes everyone has a path and I follow good energy, so when I heard that my long time friend Jonathan Baker helped out on a lot of the arrangements for Haven, it made perfect sense why I was drawn to this project. Baker is an extremely talented genuine guy. I also felt that Dion was coming from a personal place. She’s a private person, but if you follow her life on social media and in real life…you know she’s in love and she’s been in love for quite some time. A story that is very rare in this day and age. Dion and her husband Artist Eric Jefferson don’t do it for the vine either, their love story is real. Those that listen to Haven can feel that story in the songs. So if you are in love, looking to be in love , or you just simply have questions about it…you can use Haven as to what that looks like.

I caught up with the songstress and I wanted her to break down some key elements of this masterpiece. Without further adieu …..Renee Dion…..

SO: Hey Renee, considering I just interviewed a musician you know well Ill Poetic and him taking 10 years to finish his project, and knowing it took you a few years to complete Haven, explain how difficult the process is to bring about a project with the musicality both of your projects possess.

RD: Oooh wee! (laughs to self) well after Moonlight I sort of hit a brick wall and I had to ask myself the question all artist get to a point of asking. Do I want to keep doing this, or do I want to let this go and just stop? I then made a decision, and with my mouth I told my husband…”I’m done with music” and from there was an almost immediate shift in my life from health problems to personal relationships.. things were just off. Speaking to that, I learned that when we abandon our purpose and what God has given us to do, things will shift and things can change until we find that path again. So as I stated, I was going to walk away but something kept bringing me back to it, and more and more I began to  find inspiration. I was finding inspiration everywhere, from listening to my best friend T. Wong evolve to lyrics just coming to me out of no where…and I started thinking to myself like “Are we done?” So my husband and I turned one of our bedrooms into a recording studio and I began to tinker around, and from that, the creativity started flowing …like if you ever saw the movie with Bruce Leroy …I had the glow (we both crack up) but when I started to show these songs to Jonathan (Baker) …first of all this man is truly talented, but I truly love his musicianship, so when he began to add his musical flavor, that’s when Haven started coming to life.

SO: If I could give this album a positive critique, you sound the most confident on this album than your previous projects. Songs like Uno (I really like that song btw) have your signature sound, but you can also hear growth and confidence in these songs. What made the difference on you taking risk vocally on this project?

RD:  I would say, when you take ownership and responsibility from other people’s hands, no slight to any other producer I’ve worked with…but once I had to sit in this studio and hammer out these songs myself, and I had to figure out production nuances and truly trust myself to express what was coming from my heart, I would say the confidence to elevate happened organically from those experiences. If you really want to know who Renee Dion is…Listen to Haven. 

SO: Considering we’re saying goodbye to 2017…We had a number of bare-your-soul albums from music’s royal family The Carters. 4:44 setting the tone for truth in music. Listening to Haven you can hear these songs coming from a real place. Did your husband inspire those songs?

RD: Well, honestly speaking the entire album is about him. But it’s also about me, my relationship with God and my relationship with people. When it comes to my music, I’m attracted to really beautiful sounds, so sometimes the music can stand on it’s own and overshadow the lyrics based on the sounds I prefer. However on this project, if you stripped the production and listened to just the words, you’ll hear my vulnerability, my fears, my questions and me dealing with myself. I’m still continuing to learn how to be a wife, and my husband is still learning to be patient with me as I find my way, as I am with him and these thoughts are what come out in the music. Life is about continual self discovery.

SO: It seems like your songs speak to women in love or looking for love. In a time where trust in relationships is a rarity and often times scary, what would you say to those women looking for love in 2018?

RD: Wow that’s a deep question and loaded hahaha but I’ll try to answer. I’ll say this to my single women waiting for love. Don’t lose your affection, don’t lose your vulnerability by being guarded. What do they say, “you can’t receive a blessing with a closed fist”, so you have to remain open to love no matter how great the potential of you being hurt again. With each experience there is a lesson until you reach the destiny God has called you to reach. The problem lies for most people is that they look to all sorts of media like Facebook and Instagram and the wrong outlets for guides to relationships. However that is so far from the truth of what love really is.

Listen, people look at my husband and I funny because wherever they see me they see him and vice versa. If he has a showing I’m right there, if  I have a singing engagement he’s right there as my No. 1 supporter. And it’s not based on a level of insecurity. Our presence is a sense of protection in this crazy world. Furthermore, we enjoy each others company. I sometimes go to events and there are married women and men showing up to events by themselves and wonder why they get involved in single activities. Don’t get me wrong our marriage is still work but it’s less work when you work at it and stay in tune with your significant other. Recognizing and dealing with things when things are off are another way to build strong relationships. But people have to be willing to let go of pride and ego to accomplish that. Communication is Everything. Eric is my husband and I protect him and his art just like he does for me…that’s the best advice I can give Layne.

SO: Where can people purchase your music and what events do you have going on right now?

RD: So they can purchase the music on iTunes and we just did Healing Haven and The Black Infinity a few days ago but those events and more are the many things to come in 2018. Just follow me on Instagram and Twitter under @ReneeDionMusic and please visit my web page

SO: Thank you so much for spending the day with us. Haven is definitely a instant soul classic.





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[MUSIC NEWS] Offset Receives $70,000 Ric Flair Chain for His Birthday


Offset’s extravagant birthday gifts continue to roll in. Quality Control CEO Pierre “Pee” Thomas gifted the newly minted 26-year-old a $70,000 chain made in the image of Ric Flair.

According to the folks at TMZ, Naitch Jewelry, which was created by Wafi Lalani at Jewelry Unlimited in ATL, put together the ultra-flossy chain and pendant. The chain itself is comprised of 27 carats. An additional 25 carats were embedded into the Ric Flair pendant. The pendant was modeled after an image of Flair rocking his signature caped-wrestling costume.

Not too surprisingly, Flair, who’s long been admired by the rap world, loved Offset’s new jewels. “Thank You For All The Respect @offsetyrn You Are Stylin’ And Profilin’ Sir! WOOOOO! Ric Flair Drip! 😎,” the famed wrestler wrote in an Instagram post to Offset, who references him on his Metro Boomin-produced track, “Ric Flair Drop.”

News of Offset’s new Ric Flair chain comes just a couple days after it was revealed that the rapper had received a Rolls-Royce Wraith from his fiancee Cardi B. Clearly, Offset’s living his best life. Salute. Now, hopefully he can gift us Culture 2 and a solo album.

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[Music News] Gun Used in Tupac Shakur Murder Has Gone Missing


Even though Tupac Shakur‘s murder remains unsolved, the weapon reportedly used to kill the late rapper was previously found back in 1998. However, according to TMZ, the location of the handgun used to fatally shoot the hip-hop icon is currently unknown.

Producers of the A&E docu-series, Who Killed Tupac?, discovered the police documents that detail a .40 caliber Glock being discovered in a citizen’s backyard nearly 20 years ago. The Compton Police Department booked the weapon as found property on May 30 of that same year. When L.A. County Sheriff’s Dept. took over Compton’s law enforcement in 2000, the handgun was part of 3,800 confiscated firearms that were transferred to them.

In 2006, Deputy T. Brennan recognized the address where the weapon had been discovered from the documents, which was reportedly the home of the girlfriend of a Crip member who had previous issues with Tupac. That same year, the department ordered testing of the handgun, which came up as a match for the same weapon that was used to tragically kill the rapper in 1996.

Fast forward to today, and law enforcement members are now unaware of the location of the handgun.

A&E premiered Who Killed Tupac? back in November, and is still unveiling facts about the death of the late hip-hop star. Be sure to tune in.

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[Music News] NYPD Lieutenant Reveals Chinx Was Murdered Over a Six-Year Grudge


Chinx’s 2015 murder devastated the family, friends and fans of a Far Rockaway rapper on his way to music superstardom, leaving countless questions unanswered. After an investigation that spanned more than two years, police arrested two suspects yesterday (Dec. 14) and have settled on a motive, claiming the killing stems from a conflict that dates back nearly a decade, an NYPD official tells XXL exclusively.

According to Lt. Richard Rudolph, Commanding Officer of the Queens South Homicide Squad, Quincy Homere, 32, and Jamar Hill, 26, “hunted” and killed the budding rap star due to a clash that took place while Chinx (born Lionel Pickens Jr.) was incarcerated. According to Rudolph, Chinx and Homere—an aspiring rapper himself who went by the name Qwality—fought each other on Sept. 27, 2009, while both were housed on Rikers Island.

“We’re not exactly sure what the fight was about but our perpetrator Quincy probably got the worst of it and he wanted to get back at Chinx,” Rudolph tells XXL. Chinx had previously served more than three years in jail on robbery and drug charges from June 2005 to October 2008, but was taken back into custody shortly thereafter due to a parole violation. “When he saw Chinx’s career starting to blow, he took it real personal and figured that his [own] career was going south… It just festered inside of him.”

Rudolph says the feud picked up again years later, when Homere showed up at a Chinx performance at SoundGarden Hall in Philadelphia on April 24, 2015, a night when French Montana, Uncle Murda and Neef Buck were all slated to hold court. There, the two men were involved in a verbal altercation. “[Quincy] was blacklisted from the other rap stars,” Rudolph said. “Quincy’s steaming since that concert… I think that’s when he started to feel a fire inside of him to take his revenge out on Chinx.”

Less than one month later, Homere and his friend Hill learned that Chinx would be performing at the now-defunct Red Wolf Lounge in Brooklyn on May 16, 2015, presumably thanks to a flyer that he shared via Instagram. The two followed Chinx after the show to a hookah bar, and continued to tail him as he drove Queens Boulevard. When Chinx pulled up to a red light at 84th Drive around 4 a.m., Rudolph says Homere fired a 9-mm handgun into the rapper’s Porsche, striking and killing Chinx and wounding his friend and Coke Boys affiliate Yemen Chee$e (real name Antar Alziadi).

“Jemar Hill, he took part in the whole execution of Chinx… but there is only one shooter, and that is Quincy Homere,” says Rudolph. “They were just waiting for an opportunity. So they both acted in concert to kill this kid.”

Hill and Homere have each been charged with second-degree murder, second-degree attempted murder, first-degree assault, and two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon. Homere was already in federal custody on charges of robbing a bank in November 2015. Hill was also locked up on a five-year sentence for a robbery conviction that he began serving in May. Both face 25 years to life in prison if convicted for Chinx’s murder.

The report of Homere’s arrest was first broken by Lisa Evers yesterday morning. TMZ followed shortly after with a report about Hill’s charges. Both plead not guilty to their charges yesterday at Queens Criminal Court.

“There was nothing about this investigation that was easy,” states Rudolph, who commended Det. Thomas Scalise and Det. Vincent Santangelo for their work on the case. He cites yesterday’s arrest to extensive research, interviews with Chinx’s family and affiliates, cell phone data and link analysis. “We chased literally hundreds of investigated leads and hit a lot of brick walls. But the guys just kept on digging. I take pride in my people, the job that they did, that they never quit, they never gave up when most detectives would’ve walked away from the case.”

Rudolph denied earlier police speculation that Chinx’s murder was related to his friend and music peer Stack Bundles’ shooting death in 2007.

“I’m happy for their family,” he says. “It doesn’t help that Chinx’s baby is without a father and Chinx’s mom is still without a son and Chinx’s wife is still a widow. We can only do what we can do, so I’m happy that they have some closure in this.”

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[Music News] Al Sharpton’s Letter Calling for Judge to Be Removed From Meek Mill Case


Reverend Al Sharpton has once again stepped forth to support Meek Mill, who was recently sentenced to two years in prison for violating probation charges. This time, his support comes in the form of a letter to Judge Shelia A. Woods-Skipper, who operates as the president judge of the Court of Common Pleads of Philadelphia.

In his letter, which he delivered on Friday (Dec. 15), Rev. Sharpton urges Judge Woods-Skipper to remove Judge Genece Brinkley from Meek Mill’s case because he believes she’s been “deaf to the questions raised about her potential conflicts of interest with” the MMG rapper.

Those potential conflicts of interest Rev. Sharpton speaks of likely have to do with the claims of Meek’s lawyer, who says Judge Brinkley threatened consequences if he signed with Roc Nation management instead of her friend’s label. Judge Brinkley has also been someone the FBI’s kept an eye on in the past.

Read Rev. Sharpton’s letter in its entirety below.

Dear President Judge Woods-Skipper:

I write to you as someone with deep respect for the Judicial Process and as a true believer in fairness and equality in criminal justice matters. You may have read of my recent involvement with the case matters of Robert Rihmeek Williams (professional known as “Meek Mill”). He is currently serving a probation violation and was sentenced to a term of incarceration, over the objection of both the local prosecutor and the assigned probation officer, by Judge Genece Brinkley. You may also be aware that I have publicly called for Judge Genece to be removed from Mr. Williams’ matter. This demand was generated by serious allegations of a conflict of interest with Mr. Williams.

It is generally held in all judicial circles that the administration of justice must be fair, equal and impartial. It is also generally accepted in the law, that the appearance of bias or lack of impartiality, is as serious as actual bias or lack of the ability to be fair and impartial. There have been credible allegations made concerning Judge Brinkley’s ability to be fair and impartial in the matters concerning Mr. Williams.

If you know anything about me, I don’t just speak up when someone of note or celebrity has a problem with equal justice under the law. I have tried throughout my ministry and advocacy to always be the voice for the voiceless, and an activist for the underrepresented. Moreover, as Reverend Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. held throughout his life, a threat to justice anywhere, is a threat to justice everywhere!!.

Mr. Williams, in my view, has been subjected to an injustice. Judge Brinkley has been deaf to the questions raised about her potential conflicts of interest with Mr. Williams or simply has disregarded her oath of office to carry out her duties in a manner consistent with the Code of Conduct for Judges of the Court of Common Pleas. I understand the gravity of raising such an issue concerning the conduct of a Judge. I am compelled in this matter to speak truth to power.

I believe that Judge Brinkley must be removed from the case involving Mr. Williams and a Judge assigned who can conduct and preside in a fair and impartial manner.

Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Very truly yours,

Reverend Al Sharpton
President & Founder
National Action Network

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The Spaceship Ride Wit The New ATLA..iens by DJ Layne Luv

Daz & Gipp 2gether

Ok so I’m working in my office in the official blogging headquarters of WTMH Radio/StraightOfficial Ohio/State Of Hip and I’m in one of those blah moods. All of the sudden my Telegram alerts are lighting up out of control. It’s the CEO of The Fleet DJ’s Klassik and he wants to know if I’d be available to interview Daz Dillinger of The Dogg Pound and Big Gipp of Goodie Mob. He said “Yo! I’m giving this to you because you really know how to put together great interviews…don’t let me down” But that’s not what I’m thinking… My mind automatically goes back to being in Sigonella Italy in January of 1993 and having two tapes in my walkman to get me through a Naval tour. Dr. Dre’s The Chronic and Redman’s Whut Thee Album. Then in 1995,  the month I’m released from the Navy…I’m in the post office hating life and the only two tapes that get me through are Goodie Mob’s Soul Food and D’angelo’s Brown Sugar. So to be able to talk to these guys was more than an honor…they really shaped my young adult life.

It’s 2pm Eastern time and the phone rings promptly. I look on the caller ID and immediately I see it’s a Los Angeles California number. Presumptuous I just answer..”Dat Nigga Daz!”….and in true Long Beach vernacular he replies “Whaddup homie?” I want to continue the conversation but I can’t stop smiling. This is gonna be a true “for the culture” phone call. These two were right in the middle of Hip Hop when it shifted in 1995 from East and West coast prominence to The South Uprising. But to see The South and West collaborate under one groove….DJ Layne Luv is here for this.

SO: Let’s just skip all the propers…how did y’all two muh fuchas decide to get together one day and make some music?

Bigg Gipp: Man Daz jus called me up one morning and said let’s make some music. I showed up..DJ Funky and Cool Dolla and Henry West was in there already cookin.. Then I heard the beat. I instantly loved it man. Daz made the hook…I went outside…when I come back in he had the hook and the verse laid. But I wasn’t ready. So I smoked a blunt..took it home and sat on it for a day or two…came back to the studio. Daz said you ready and I said yeah I’m ready…laid down the verse and the finished product was Type Of Girl. That was the first song we did.

SO: I’m very skeptical when veterans come back and make music because there is a dilemma of walking away from the game holding the hand in the air for The Final Shot…preserving the legacy versus coming back in a Washington Wizards Jersey. But Type Of Girl seems to fit right in with the music we are hearing today. How does feel to still be in touch with what’s going on?

Daz: I’m not gonna lie, it feels great! To still be able to do what you love and the people still respond to it with approval. We just keep thriving. As long as you have a good heart, you breathing and your health is good..from that point it’s about elevatin the game. And staying consistent. I’ve alway been able to be myself no matter where I’m at and I’m grateful for that.

SO: Man when I reminisce on how LA music make me feel and how Dungeon Family music made me feel, it just feels like a good a backyard cookout…blended with a lot of herbal essence as the elixir….does that help with the vibe of the records you all put out?

DAZ: Man we are doing just that right now as we speak (Laughter in the background from all the niggas in the studio hahaha) DJ Marijuana is IN THE HOUSE….(I can’t control my laughter at this point) Seriously it doesn’t help it or hurt it, It’s helps most rappers to relax so the thoughts and creativity and push through. You can smoke weed and still make a wack song, we just happen to be good and what we do and the weed helps with that.

SO: So Daz as good as you are a rapper, you’re also one hell of a producer and you’ve engineered some classic West Coast bangers…one of my favorites being Tupac’s “Got My Mind Made Up” two questions. Who’s producing your music now and tell our audience what it was like working under the tutelage of Dr. Dre?

DAZ: So Cool Dolla is our producer right now but we are working with anyone that got heat for real…

But when you talk about Dre and those years…whew….Man at first I was just puttin shit together that I thought sounded good. And then Dre would walk by the studio and say…I like this…or I don’t like that and I was just in there learning from him. But it all changed the day he said “Here Daz, I’ll let you use my drum machine” I don’t know what happened but from that one thing…it all changed and I created Rat A Tat Tat and all that shit…but seriously Warren G is who helped me get the most out of Dre’s drum machine. But Dre showed me how to put the beat on tracks and put stuff around it to make the beat sound fuller. Dre helped me out a lot.

SO: SO Gipp being that ATL has been a residence in the rap game for more than a decade going on two…how do you feel that your city has had such a long reign in music? It was a time that Hip Hop bounced around every ten years or so, but it seems that ATL has a stronghold on the game right now. How do you feel about that?

GIPP: It feels great, how these kids are taking the foundation that The Dungeon Family started and taking the ball and running with with. You see down south, we encourage growth, so when we see these kids creating, making their own beats and creating their own sound, that’s what keeps the music going for us…and quite frankly…as long as there is STRIP CLUBS…you always gonna hear ATL music. (A Loud laughter in the studio again) You can tell when you got a when them strippers start moving to it. Our music is a music that transcends gender or race. It’s family and it’s hood. I got nothing but respect for these young millionaires Migos, Metro Boomin, Mike Will Made It, Future, Young Thug, South Side, Colli Park they continue to push the culture by taking this music worldwide. I love it.

SO: So Gipp let me take you back to The Source Awards in 95′ . When 3 Stacks said “The South Got Something to say” Did you even guess that those words would be prophetic and set off the ATL revolution?

GIPP: Man to tell you the truth, I was on stage with him and I couldn’t hear let alone focus on what Dre was saying. We was all in fight mode. It was so rowdy and noisy in there, you could feel the tension to the point where any and everything could have jumped off… and we was ready. We was all on the defensive at that moment so I didn’t really hear what Dre said until years later when I saw the tape. But looking back, yes it was prophetic and I’m glad he said it, because the south took that baton and we never looked back.

SO: SO when can we expect the full album fellas?

DAZ: Late winter, early spring…just in time for them coasters and them honeys. ATLA baby!!!

SO: Well I thank y’all for taking time out of yall’s studio session to holler at ya boy. Much success to you both bringing the south and the west together to stir up a good pot of gumbo.

DAZ: Thank you Layne Luv and Straight Official for having us and big shout out to The Fleet DJ’s for playing our music!!! Much Respect!!! Respect The DJ!









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[MUSIC NEWS] Meek Mill Sentenced to Two to Four Years in Jail for Violating Probation


Meek Mill is going back to jail. The Philadelphia rapper was found guilty of violating his probation in court today (Nov. 6) and sentenced to two-to-four years, according to TMZ and local CBS reporter Joe Holden.

Meek caught two recent cases—an assault case at a St. Louis airport, followed by a reckless driving arrest in New York City. Meek took a sweet deal for the NYC case and had the assault case dropped, but the Philly judge nonetheless sentenced Meek to a minimum of two years in jail today for violating the probation sentence he got for a 2009 case for weapons and drugs.

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