The sounds of Atlanta
Atlanta has quickly become the hub for all things entertainment. From music festivals like One Music Fest to movies and TV shows from the newly erected Tyler Perry Studios, the reach of Georgia-centric entertainment is felt not only stateside, but around the world. This especially rings true when it comes to music. Not only is Atlanta home to some of the best and brightest musical talent, but it also opens its arms to equally bright and shining talent from other cities across the map. Let’s take a look at who’s big and who’s ne[x]t in music.
- “Ric Flair Drip” w/ Offset and Metro Boomin–334 million views
- “Bank Account”–285 million views
- “No Heart” w/ Metro Boomin–221 million views
One of the biggest names in rap music today, 21 Savage—born Shéyaa Bin Abraham-Joseph in London, England—has called Georgia his home since the tender age of 7, though his maturing process in DeKalb County was any and everything but. Fast forward and 21 Savage has made a name for himself in multiple avenues. He’s used his past experiences to pen gripping tales, which have catapulted his music to the heights of success: his debut album Issa Album peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard charts, and his sophomore effort I Am > I Was earned the coveted No. 1 spot.
In addition, 21 Savage leveraged the success of his first hit single from Issa Album, entitled “Bank Account,” and launched his Bank Account Campaign. The Bank Account Campaign provides resources to teach financial literacy to students across the country. The influential artist has been quoted by Billboard.com, saying that he “…knew almost nothing about bank accounts” while growing up. He followed up with, “As I have gotten smarter about financial management, I realize how empowering it is to control your money rather than be controlled by it,” and, “I want to help kids with a background similar to mine get smart about their money.”
- “Flossin”–2 million views
- “Gucci Pajamas” ft. Chance the Rapper and Charlie Wilson–1.3 million views
- “Scammin”–529,000 views
When Akeem Hayes landed on the music scene in December of 2017 under the stage name Guapdad 4000 with his introductory mixtape, Scamboy Color, some people, including myself, thought, “Who?!” But the talented young artist from Oakland, CA was not only able to stand out thanks to his unique name—he also managed to turn the casual listener into a fan with his equally unique and authentic sound.
With a penchant for designer labels (just look at his current album Dior Deposits with titles “Gucci Pajamas” and “Prada Process”), the rapper and sometimes crooner has the talent and charm to marry throwback R&B with present-day hip-hop. His new single “Gucci Pajamas” features both soul singer Charlie Wilson (“There Goes My Baby,” “Charlie, Last Name Wilson”) and everyone’s hip-hop favorite: Chance the Rapper (“Cocoa Butter Kisses,” “No Problems”). When asked on Revolt.tv to comment on his sound, Guapdad 4000 said, “I’m a bit more eclectic. My music ranges from however melodic I want it to be. The good thing about my sound is that I’m constant.”
On the horizon…
That Girl Lay Lay
- “Mama”–16 million views
- “Supersize XL”–14 million views
- “Go Lay Lay Go”–6.1 million views
After getting her start by rapping age-appropriate freestyles like her viral hit “Taste,” 12-year-old Alaya High, aka That Girl Lay Lay, has impressed most by becoming the little girl from Houston with the BIG—some might even say “Texas-sized”—YouTube numbers. That Girl Lay Lay is the youngest female rapper ever signed to a major label, and when asked about her freestyling capabilities during her television debut on Ellen, she responded, “I’m still practicing, getting better at it. You just do what you do…”