Category Archives: WhoYouNeedToKnow

Popped Cherry Q&A W/ Shanika The Creator Of Broke2Dope

There are a lot of dope creatives coming out of the Atlanta area and one that I would like for you to get familiar with is Shanika a very immense individual who has a lot to offer, not to mention she’s the creator of Broke2Dope a blog that allows you to familiarize yourself with uprising talent. While Shanika offers a lot within the industry, I got to ask her a couple questions to help put some of you on game about time management, EPKs/Press Releases, the Atlanta music scene, and what she looks for when looking for artists.

Read our Q&A down below because she’s dropping some #FreeGame:

What’s one thing you see a lot of upcoming artists struggling with?

I think artists struggle with a sense of entitlement. They feel they should be bigger than what they are. I understand, nowadays, a lot of talent gets overlooked, but instead of saying people are  “sleep”, artists should focus on perfecting their craft, building a fan base, and making great music. Once they shift that focus and make music that they are proud of, the acknowledgement will come.

How would you describe the Atlanta music scene considering you’re actually from here?

I’m actually from Northeast Georgia, but have been influenced by the Atlanta sound for years. What’s interesting about the scene is all the many subcultures here. It’s not just trap music. You have artists who focus on conscious rap, you have the spoken word, the alternative hip-hop, and it’s all represented here. That’s what I love about Atlanta.

I see you’re very involved in a lot of things, is time management important to you?

Time management is very important. I can’t lie and say that I’ve mastered this, but I try to prioritize. I’m good with to-do lists and multitasking. I’m always checking my email and looking for ways to be more efficient. I consider it a good day when I work a little bit on everything. My main thing is being realistic with my clients and keeping a line of communication open if there are any delays. It’s also important to give yourself time to relax and do nothing and not feel guilty about it.

What do you look for in an artists?

I look of their artwork, the mixing quality of their music, and the quality of their online presence. Nothing wrong with DIY, I’m an advocate for it, but you have to make sure you’re producing quality work worth sharing. It’s a turn off to get a submission and the artwork is done poorly or it sounds like it was recorded in the living room.

How important are EPKs, and Press Releases?

If you’re an artist who takes their career seriously, EPKs and press releases are very important. They show a sense of professionalism and really help an artist to stand out. I’ve been told that the press kits I’ve done have been used in label meetings, so as you develop in your career, these publications and corporations start to require them. Think of an EPK as a resume or one-stop shop of all things that is YOU as a musician so its the perfect place to gas yourself. A press release, however, is a write up on latest records or even announcements. I recommend sending both to media outlets, labels, or booking contacts. Festivals such as A3C, SXSW, and Bonnaroo also require an EPK when submitting to perform.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be and why?

If I could change one thing, I would change the idea of having to separate female artists. When it’s positive, I love it. It’s something special about being a woman in a male-dominated industry, but when it’s a way to say “Oh, she’s pretty good to be a female”, I don’t like that. I’ve seen plenty of women rap, produce, and engineer better than their male counterparts so I’d love it if the conversation could include women more in general.

How and why did you start Broke2Dope? I really consider it an OG blog.

Thanks! I began blogging in college in 2012 as a way to focus my energy at the time. At first, I was offering college students advice on money management and pretty soon artists were sending me their music to check out. To be honest, I wanted to talk about upcycling clothing because thrifting was a big hobby of mine (that’s where the name “broke to dope” came from), but figured, why not change the whole direction of the blog to music? That would be more fun. I started asking for music submissions, interviewing artists, and hitting up events around the city. Specifically, I would reach out to popular managers and curators to keep me in the loop and the rest is kind of history.

What’s some advice you would give to upcoming artists hoping to make it big?

The best advice I can give independent artists is to build a solid team. It’s possible to do it all yourself, but it’s better when you as the artist can focus on making music and leave the dirty work to those who don’t mind being behind the scenes. You need people to tell you when your music is trash or to push you to go a little bit harder. Having a trusted team where everyone knows their position will really put you ahead of the game.

 

This is literally free game, I hope you guys soaked some of it in. Be sure to follow Shanika on twitter and Instagram @carpenika.

King Khali – Dummy Flow

SA via ATL rapper King Khali has been on my radar ever since his exceptional last effort Poor Decisions, Good Intentions(which you can read about here), and has yet to disappoint. His latest record Dummy Flow is 2 minutes worth of proof he’s hungry, determined, and can plow through anybody who get’s in his way. He’s definitely gonna be one to look out for the rest of this year into the next. Listen to Dummy Flow on Apple Music here

Lil Jay So Icy Blesses Us With “Fishscale Airlines” EP

Making his first appearance on our pages we would like for you guys to get familiar with Rap-A-Lot’s newest signee Lil Jay So Icy hailing from Houston, Texas. As he blesses the streets with his new EP titled “Fishscale Airlines” giving us 5 solid tracks featuring upcoming artist like 2wift, Roy Veye, Trevell Hudson, and 1WAYFRANK. Lil Jay picks production from Baker YungDigital Rockstar, and slopmadethebeat, making this EP a great start to get to know Lil Jay as an artist. Go ahead and stream the project down below and let us know what you think.

Under The Radar, Vol. 1

I spend way to much time just going through soundcloud and Apple Music looking for the latest releases from any and everybody, just because you never know what somebody has to offer. There’s so much new music dropping, it’s easy to just get caught up in whatever’s hot on the TL, and way too many new artists, or even established ones, drop something super hard that goes almost unnoticed.  With Under The Radar, I’m trying to give some shine to the hard shit that may not be getting the right amount of attention.

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Good Gas Vol. 1 & 2

I love producer projects. Producers are such a vital part of the game, as they have always been, and it’s really important to hear them they display their art just like any rapper. Good Gas is a type of “playlist” or compilation curated by producer FKi 1st, known by most for his work with Post Malone and Larry June(Good job 1st!). Each volume is short, like 4 songs a piece, but features names like 2 Chainz, Smooky Margiela, UnoTheActivist, and really showcases 1st’s versatility as a producer, making a club hit in Lil Nigga ft. Kash Doll and a west coast anthem in Ooh with G Perico and 03 Greedo. Check it out here.

Standout Tracks: OOH ft. G Perico & 03 Greedo, Birfday ft. Key!

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NGeeYL – Tales of YL

South Carolina’s NGeeYL has been a blip on my radar for a minute now, finding his track Front Page Gang on soundcloud. He provides a dark aggressive aesthetic to trap, his new mixtape under 300 Ent. enscapsulates that to a T while still showing his progression as an artist. Listen here.

Standout Track: Trip Gang

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Choker – Honeybloom

Choker is one of the best new artists out if we’re being honest with ourselves. His first project Peak was one of my top projects of 2017, and he’s 2 for 2 with his latest. He kind of just picks up where Frank Ocean left off, delivering a Hip-pop style that sees him raising questions on mortality, relationships, and a journey of self discovery. All self produced and engineered, he’s a multi talented kid who actually has a lot to offer, unlike some others who make the same claims(Fuck Russ). Honeybloom is packed with emotion both lyrically and sonically, and is truly a project that should not be skipped. Peep.

Standout Tracks: This whole mf slaps tbh

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Avantdale Bowling Club – Self Titled

A share from a friend that I may have missed on my own, A.B.C. is an avant garde jazz rap project that explores a mans desire to provide for himself and his family, while trying not to mull into complacency. I may be a little different than want most are used to, but its a passionate project that delivers on what it’s trying to execute, going against everything that modern rap portrays. The instrumentals are beautiful, recorded by a live jazz band which artist Tom Scott fits perfectly over as he raps about trying not to lose himself as he works to provide a better life for his family. Check it out here.

Standout Tracks: Years Gone By, F(r)iends

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Reek – Recliner

Fresh off dropping one of the best projects in the city this summer with Chapter 2wo, Reek dropped off a new loosie a couple weeks ago with production from Fritogang’s Dubb. Recliner is a smooth track that places lyricism and flow at the forefront with a soulful foundation from the beat. A lot of the lines require a double take, so don’t let this go over your head. Peep here, playarrrs.

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Jack Harlow – Loose

A cosign is a powerful thing when it comes from the right person. Signed to DJ Drama’s Generation Now imprint through Atlantic, Jack Harlow has been in my sights since his I first heard his track Dark Knight off his last project. Loose takes everything good about his last, and pushes it even further. What I like about Jack is he has good songwriting capabilities and all the features act as complements and have their own place, all the while he never compromises his bars. I mean, dude has a strong voice and can really rap. He has a seriously bright future in the game. Check out Loose here.

Standout Tracks: PICKUPTHEPHONE ft. K Camp, Sundown

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Coi Leray – Huddy

Hailing from Jersey, Benzino daughter is actually super hard. she’s got a great amount of confidence in her flow, which is rare among newer artists. A random twitter find made her an artist I really wanna follow. I’ve never experienced somebody who has rapped about taking niggas girls AND girls niggas in the same verse. Amazing. Check out the video for Huddy below.

 

Proz Taylor changes the landscape of music once again with new album, DEATHPROOF.

Proz Taylor is an multi-media artist from Long Beach, Mississippi. Last year he caught our attention with his self-produced debut album, Deadman Wonderland. It was dark and eerie ride of heavy bass filled bangers, sprinkled with little touches of pop inspired ballads. It was cool to see an artist mesh all these different sounds together to create a cohesive body of work.

Now the talented songwriter/producer has followed up with whole new presence on his DEATHPROOF record. It’s only 7 songs but it’s just enough to get the point across. Abandoning his signature dreary and pain filled bangers, Proz illustrates that the hardships on his last album has not defeated him. DEATHPROOF is a fun and feel good record with bright and uplifting production. Although he still managed to sneak a little bit of his dark side on records such as the Popped Cherry favorite “Can You Love A Deadman”. Check out Proz’s lastet project available on iTunes, Spotify, or you can check it out on Soundcloud. Be sure to also keep your eyes open for what he does next.

GhostBoy Jaysee’s “Juvenile” shows another big step in his progression

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One of the names you might skip over when discussing Central Texas’ buzzing artists is Ghostboy Jaysee. The former track athlete at Texas State comes from the East coast, but attended school in Austin before moving down I-35 to San Marcos. If you aren’t up to speed about the budding music scene in San Marcos it’s getting dangerously close to “you’re sleeping” levels. With a slew of talent from Houston, San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas all converging into such a small area mixed with producers and engineers focused on their craft, San Marcos has become the place to be, for more than just fraternizing on The Square.

Jaysee has seen what trusting the process can create. After dropping single after single the past few years, the strategy has certainly paid some dividends. His last release “Stepped in the Room” featuring GLV’s Deelow and Purp, dropped in May and has ran up 28k views on Youtube.

His first solo track with no features in awhile, the growth is evident. “Juvenile” is an ode to Jaysee’s journey. Balancing everything from sports, school, and trapping has given him a hunger for more. Produced by the talented Bott, the bass heavy anthem features simple melody, crisp bells, and rolling drums. If Jaysee wasn’t sure of his sound this is it. Paired with a clean video from Trent Owens (iamPSDNYM), the upward trend from Ghostboy Jaysee continues. Look for “Juvenile” on all streaming platforms this week and his debut project on the way soon.

Get Money Monday With Tay Money: Popped Cherry Q&A

Texas is the scene to many amazing underground artists right now, and when talking about those hot upcoming artists you know Tay Money is going to get mentioned. Many will hate and say “she’s just a white girl with a lot of tattoos” and I’m gonna say she’s way beyond that, Tay Money will out rap your favorite rapper and she’ll do it for fun too. Not too mention a lot of upcoming artists can learn from her because she’s out here putting people on game.

The first time I heard of Tay was when she first introduced herself to the world dropping “Lewis & Clarke” the real day ones know what I’m talking about. When I first saw the visual I knew she was up next. Her sparkling style, her vigorous personality, on top of her infectious flow, you can’t do nothing but respect what she has going on. You don’t really see Tay Money out here doing interviews or Q&A’s so I had to knock one out with her. Down below you can read our one and only Get Money Monday W/ Tay Money Q&A.

Check it out below:

Describe yourself with 3 words. 

FUCK IT UP!

How does it feel to be running the Texas scene right now? And who else do you think deserves to be noticed/heard?

I’m definitely blessed, can’t ask for much more. Especially with all my love for Texas, y’all goin crazy. As far as other artists, I be with this guy named guitar emoji. I consider him family except he really shittin on all of us 😂🔥

If you could work with any artists who would it be and why?

RIP BANKROLL FRESH 😔😔😔 Can’t even tell you what it was about him.

Rich The Kid, because he goofy and clean all at the same time. I be keeping up with him, I’ll give him a run for his money 😂

I want a feature from one of these Love & Hip Hop hoes so I can run they ass off the track, minus Tommie I love Tommie

Photo taken by: HRTBRK

We notice you drop your visuals first before releasing the actual song, what’s your strategy behind that?

Yoooo everybody wanna know this, so glad you asked. I intended on dropping my songs and videos all at once…. however i didn’t own my beats and when they see you up…. they do just about anything to keep you down. No shade or shade idgaf, ima big girl. Live and you learn, we owning shit round this bitch now. BUT I don’t think it’s a bad idea to direct them to just one source. Plays aren’t split up, I don’t know though everybody different. Just drop what u want and how u want…this rulebook they be preaching funny as shit.”

Where do you see yourself next year? I say next year because a lot has changed for you in just a year.

Just take me right now and multiply it by 10
Cause I’m getting hungrier day by day

Do you think it’s harder for women to make it in this industry? Why or why not?

I don’t know,  a lot of people already have their minds made up about female rappers. They always comparing us to each other but I don’t sound like nobody so shit irrelevant. If they can take it from me, they can have it

Did you see yourself quitting your job doing what your doing today?

I dreamed about that shit, I believed it would happen. I just didn’t know how it was gone happen I had a job since I was able to work. Shout out to my mama for raising me right
helped me understand the value of a dollar

Photo taken by: HRTBRK

Trappers Delight hit 1 Million views, how did that make you and those around you feel?

Trappers delight ain’t even all that to me but ohhhh how I love it… 😂💓💓🔥🔥
I shot 3 videos before I dropped it, I was in a rush I was still working my job & time was slipping right by me. Look @ god

What advice do you have to give those who are worried about you?

Lol you either got it or you don’t sis

So you had a sold out show in Austin,  your video hit 1 Million views, and you’re traveling coast to coast, what should we expect next from Tay Money?

I’m in the middle of a crazy ass video
My project is done
My chain on the way
Some nice lil features 😂💓
1 MILL DOLLAS NEXT

Wanna give a special shout out to anyone?

S/o my day to day team, DanceDailey, Guitaremoji, Rumplepak, Popped Cherry, Shawn Cotton, Goldiss, my dad, my mom, GOD

& s/o all dem fuckboys for my glow up

OVER & OUT 2 DA BANK
ILY

Popped Cherry Q&A With Lil Turbo

  • South Carolina has been booming out a lot of upcoming rappers, but none compare to Lil Turbo. His contagious flow makes you an instant supporter, and not too mention he produces too. A man of many talents, he’s definitely nothing to question when it comes to this music. His music, and visuals are nothing to sleep on.  Averaging over 1,000 streams on every one of his songs let’s you know that he’s not out here playing. Now it’s my job to make sure that you guys know who Lil Turbo is.

I got to do a quick Q&A with him check it out down below:

Who is Lil Turbo?

I’m your next fav artist/producer

Who inspired you to start rapping?

Honestly my ogs, ever since I was a lil nigga I use to just hang around them and hear them freestyling and shit, then after a while I started taking that shit a step further.

What other artists would you like to work with coming from the underground?

Nobody in specific at the moment but everyone out there who’s working.

Who do you make music for?

I make music for myself first, and it relates to the listeners/fans. But this shit is for the niggas who wake up thinking about a bag, real finessers, and anybody who fucks with me. I might have some fans who on some complete different shit but just rock with me!

What do you have to say to the people who are sleeping on you?

wake up right now before yo ass is regretting.

Where should we see you in 1 year?

Wherever God wants me to be. I wanna be making a complete living off my music though forsure.

2 facts nobody knows about you?

I’m 6’2 and I can play damn near every sport lmfao.

 

Be sure to stream his most recent project Turbo Tax too:

Hosted By DJ Nick Marino: BIGBABYGUCCI – Private Dancer (Prod. Harold Harper)

BIGBABYGUCCI has been putting in all the work lately because he’s been delivering nothing but bangers. I still feel like people are sleeping though, without a doubt BIGBABYGUCCI delivers infectious music. Just recently DJ Nick Marino exclusively dropped a brand new track titled “Private Dancer” and Harold Harper did his thing with the production. Anxious to see who Gucci is going to grab to bring this track to life like he always does, I’m ready for the visual. Go ahead and stream the track down below and tell us what you think.

Surgical Summer: The Resurgence of San Antonio

I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, this modern era of hip hop exists as a renaissance, both culturally and sonically. Just this summer alone, we got release every almost every Major G.O.O.D. Music artist( they went 1 for 5, but that’s none of my business), Drake dropped a double album, Rocky dr(fl)opped, AND we finally got Astroworld, plus a ton of other quality projects. This shit crazy honestly. What’s gone almost unnoticed though, surprising most who bothered to pay attention, is a slew of high level projects coming out of San Antonio’s rap scene.

Anyone who’s really from San Antonio know shit been super trash outta there for a while, with the city of Carmen Calls and Chingo Bling remixes most major offerings for a minute being King Kyle Lee verses about the spurs and a nigga rappin bout snapbacks (Is AJ Herns alive?). While things and been on the uprise for a couple years now, except for the worst cypher in the history of rap(seriously, who set that shit up? I just wanna talk, fam), this summer is where it all came to a head, giving us top notch projects from AJ Bray, King Khali, Fritogang, and Reek & Sage all in close proximity. Things are changing, and SA could finally be on its way to make its mark in history the same way Houston did back in the day.

AJ BrayEnigma

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Enigma proved to be AJs best project yet, not just in quality, but in impact. He made a lot of waves with his FrFr video, creatively shot like a Genius lyric breakdown, catching the eye of a lot of major outlets, and provided some of his most energetic and tenacious songs to date, signaling a new livelihood and hunger. He’s beginning to embody a mix of trap and lyricism that melds so well together that you can’t tell the two styles apart, which is, in my opinion, how it’s supposed to be. At its purest level, the energy and aggression that AJ put into this project shows a true progression in artistry.

King KhaliPoor Decisions, Good Intentions

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I’m not gonna lie, this project caught me by complete surprise. I was unfamiliar outside of his name being brought up in some convos I’ve had, but when I finally decided to listen, I was honestly taken aback by how nice dude is on the mic. A lot of confident flows, heavy punches, and good storytelling, really showing that he takes his craft serious, which I appreciate cuz it seems rare these days. On top of all that, he fits the pocket perfectly, never seeming off kilter on any of the beats and emulating all the emotions that his word convey. PDGI is a strong, introspective look at street life and the balance between keeping it real and keeping your composure, which is something the city really needed. Plus he topped it all off by going 2-0 in a beef, so bonus points.

Fritogang – “ARE YOU EVEN LISTENING?”

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This one was probably one of the most anticipated just because of the amount of notoriety these guys have in the city. They’ve been operating in the scene for years throwing events and having one off performances(one had Texas State University going crazy), but this is the first major project from them as far as I know. They’ve been major proponents of developing their vintage throwback aesthetic, which is shown in their appearance as well as their music. Smooth sampling and production places you way back in the day, in the age of cookouts, house parties, and spike lee movies, bringing a different aura to the current climate of hip hop that’s reminiscent of the golden era with a pinch of modern flavor. It’s all smooth lyrics and flows from multiple members, most songs inspired greatly by 90s R&B, with some crooning that makes you feel like times were simpler, and you just got out of school in time to watch Moesha. To have something like this come straight out of central Texas really blindsides you, in a good way.

Reek & Sage – Chapter 2WO

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For me, quality of music doesn’t always originate from the words you say or the hardest production, but the amount of passion you invest in it. Start to finish, this is a passion project by definition. One of the strongest pens in the city, Reek displays not only his ability as a lyricist, but a degree of emotional vulnerability and pairs perfectly with Sages production, almost to the point where I don’t want to hear anything else. It’s a introspective yet relatable look at who Reek is, his life, his experiences, every sincere moment he’s gone through expressed in a way where you’ve felt like you’ve gone through it as well. Sage really shine too, his unique not quite lofi style is something that is truly his alone, a sound I’ve never heard from anyone else, with the two of them together making shit like the wonder twins. This isn’t even just the best out of the city, I could truly see this making some best of the year lists from those in the know.

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With these four dropping just this summer, like weeks apart, I’m really excited for the future SA holds. They really showcase the diversity of artists around, none of these guys even sound similar, and have paved their own way with their own sound. There’s so many other unique artists in the city as well, Clee, 80sBlond, and Proz Taylor, just to name a few, who are really showing that there’s much to the city that gets overlooked. the past. If the pace continues, the city is EASILY the next to cause a major shift in the culture, and all I can say is, it’s about time.