The 1st Annual DrJays.com Live Hip-Hop Honors
Last night Brooklyn, New York was treated to a smorgasboard of epic hip-hop proportions as VH1 and the Brooklyn Academy of Music collaborated to celebrate the life and legacy of Def Jam for the 6th Annual Hip-Hop Honors.
While the focus was on the house that Russell and Rick built, we here at DrJays.com Live wanted to give a nod to a few folks who will inspire the next generation of entertainers.
Def Jam has been around 25 years. Hell, that’s my entire life, right there. If you think about the dominance of the popular East Coast label, you cannot deny its place in history as hip-hop’s Motown.
While the faces have changed on the roster and the bosses have moved on for greener pastures (I see you, Hov!), Def Jam will always be the bridge from which hip-hop gets from the streets to the mainstream.
But as we’ve seen with some of the label’s best and brightest (Ja, Jay, DMX), the new kings and queens of the genre are the ones who are taking the game into the future and DrJays.com Live wants to salute these men and lady of the new generation in their continuing efforts of keeping hip-hop alive and well in the 21st Century.
Wale needs to just hurry up and release that Attention: Deficit album before fickle fans catch A.D.D. of their own. Olubowale Victor Folarin gained prominence when his song “Dig Dug” caught fire in Washington D.C.
Since then, you can’t deny the Nigerian wunderkinds presence in rap. From his five widely recognized mixtapes to his partnerships with Mark Ronson, Nike and Roc Nation, Wale is indeed a force that will finally get a chance to spread its wings come this November.
Alicia Keys may be an industry veteran by most standards, but she is truly a voice of a new generation. Picking up the baton where Lauryn Hill left off, Keys love affair with hip-hop is well documented.
From sampling Ol’ Dirty Bastard on “Girlfriend” on her debut album to her most recent endeavor with Jay-Z, you don’t have to look no further than Ms. Keys when it comes to strengthening the women’s movement within hip-hop.
Hey, hey, hey… hate if you want, but DeAndre will soon have his way in hip-hop, no if’s and’s or but’s about it. The teen sensation came into the game with the founding blocks of the culture as his stepping stone into the business.
Don’t know what those are, haters? Well too bad, I’m not spelling ‘em out for ya.
Soulja Boy may have had his start as a “ringtone rapper,” but with rappers 50 Cent and Kanye West backing him up, the Chicago-born, Atlanta-raised rapper may have another trick up his sleeve for audiences to enjoy.
Clifford Harris has had a year full of ups and down. While currently spending some time in the bing, T.I.’s name still carries a lot of weight. Although Jay is rap’s ever looming presence, T.I. is certainly the King of the South.
His presence is definitely missed, and as the aforementioned Jay looks for a new challenge to conquer, T.I. can surely be the heir of the throne with his strong penchant for penning hits.
2009′s rookie of the year gave the ailing rap business its pulse back. With his critically acclaimed mixtape So Far Gone, Drake’s name circulated through the industry like a good bag of dope.
Getting fans, critics and haters high on the hype… all without a deal. Now that the former Degrassi alum is hitting up cities on the America’s Most Wanted tour, in videos with Eminem and seemingly has the talent to fuel rap into the 22nd Century. Hate it or love it, but if you can’t accept the changing of the guard, then that’s on you.
…There you have it! DrJays.com Live’s 1st Annual Hip-Hop Honors! Feel free to add who you’d put on the list in the comment section below!