nominees PATIENTLY WAITING GEORGIA Citty (Atlanta, GA)
Even with a Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam deal, you can still find the Cookieman in the streets and the hole-in-the-wall clubs that made him hot.
Da BackWudz (Atlanta, GA)
They waited for quite a while, and their patience finally paid off this year when they linked up with Dallas Austin.
Lil Weavah (Atlanta, GA)
Weavah’s widely respected independent hustle extends from the internet to Soundscan.
Slick Pulla (Atlanta, GA)
Young Jeezy’s smooth-talking CTE sidekick’s rap skills have improved rapidly - Pulla represents the trap with lyrics and clever wordplay.
Yola (Atlanta, GA)
With “Ain’t Gon’ Let Up” currently the most requested song on Atlanta radio stations, the future is bright for Yola.
Young Dro (Atlanta, GA)
After stints with various Atlanta collectives, Dro finally found a home with Grand Hustle and landed a hit with “Shoulder Lean.”
uilt on the blueprints of more recent breakthrough artists like Ludacris, T.I. and Young Jeezy, 2006 saw a new crop of Georgia artists make their presence felt. And with crunk fading into its last stages in popularity and snap music reaching its apex and eventual fall, it was prime time for lyricists to come back to the forefront.
Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam signee Citty proved that he was indeed a soldier ready to go for his in the war that is the rap game. The former Marine and Field Mob protégé toured every nook and cranny that had a microphone, creating his buzz from the ground up. His underground single “Da Cookieman” showed that there are more hustles than selling dope and pimping women. Then songs like “That’s Gangsta” proved that you can get a crowd amped without brandishing weapons in every line. Another group that gave us plenty of alternatives were the Da Backwudz, reminding people of Outkast, but yet showing that Southern Hip Hop’s future is in good hands. Hell, the simple existence of their debut Wood Work is historic in the fact that it made Dallas Austin resurrect Rowdy Records just for them. You can’t mention the new talent coming from the Peach state without talking about Lil Weavah either. Correction, you can’t mention mixtape grind without talking about Lil Weavah. True to the underground, this Southwest Atlanta bred artist has his name on the minds of everyone in the country with no radio support, although an appearance on ESPN’s Cold Pizza and mention on MTV.com definitely helped. Appearing on 200 mixtapes since last year and getting massive support from overseas is evidence that Weavah won’t be patiently waiting for too much longer. Even though Slick Pulla hasn’t been on a bunch of mixtapes, his appearances on Young Jeezy’s have given him a muchdeserved spotlight. Him bringing wordplay and wit to the much talked about “trap life” shows that there is more than one way to skin a cat. Now, with his debut album The Trapublican slated to release later this year, Slick is bound to pull a lot of attention his way. Keeping in tune with that, Yola Da Great has been able to motivate thugs in his own way as well. His infectious single “Ain’t Gon’ Let Up” has been killing Atlanta radio for months and his grind was rewarded with a deal through Grand Hustle/Atlantic Records. As your reading this article, odds are you’ve heard Young Dro’s “Shoulder Lean” at least twice today. Already a name in the streets through regional hits like “Yes Sir” back in 2002, he eventually signed with Grand Hustle this year and plans to burn the scene with his debut Best Thang Smokin. If these six artists are an indication of what Georgia has to offer for the future, your best bet is to hop on the bandwagon right now. - Cedric Boothe
ozone 19 awards
Ozone Awards 2006 special edition