Boosie BadAzz – until recently known worldwide as Lil’ Boosie – is among the most celebrated rappers of his generation. The Baton Rouge native first lit up the hip hop underground at just 17 and soon teamed with the renowned label Trill Entertainment to unleash a series of undisputed classics, including 2003’s “GHETTO STORIES” and 2004’s “GANGSTA MUSIK” (both with longtime collaborator Webbie), and 2009’s top 10 breakthrough, “SUPERBAD: THE RETURN OF BOOSIE BADAZZ.” His fifth and most recent solo album, 2010’s “INCARCERATED,” was recorded and released while serving a 96-month prison sentence at Angola Louisiana State Penitentiary. The album earned widespread acclaim, with SPIN hailing it as “an enormously heartfelt album that makes his legal plight even more of a feel-bad story.”
Released in March 2014 after serving a reduced sentence of 52 months, Boosie made his first public statements at the #BOOSIESPEAKS press conference, streamed live from New Orleans to his global fan following. The event proved one of the largest urban streams in Atlantic Records history with 40K people logged on and 177K overall viewers.
Since then, Boosie has been among this year’s most active and in demand rappers, with appearances on such tracks as 2 Chainz “Wuda Cuda Shuda (Feat. Lil Boosie),” Dorrough Music’s “Beat Up The Block (Feat. Lil Boosie),” DJ Mustard’s “Face Down (Feat. Lil Wayne, Big Sean, YG & Lil Boosie),” Jeezy’s “Beez Like (Feat. Lil Boosie),” and T.I.’s “Jet Fuel (Feat. Boosie Badazz).”
Maybe it’s because this honey-complexioned heartthrob makes the young ladies swoon with bedroom ballads like platinum single “Shawty” and certified gold singles “Bust It Baby Part 2” and the Akon-assisted “Hypnotized.” Or it could be the way the streets respect this hard-edged hustler for crude but honest depictions of life in the belly of the beast on cuts like “Bid Long” and “100 Years.” Or perhaps it’s how the Fort Myers, FL native bears his soul onto heartfelt tracks like emotional testaments “Somebody (Loves You)” and “Family Straight.”
Whatever the reason behind his many musical accomplishments, Plies has done something that only a small handful of rappers could ever accomplish. In just a few short years, he has won over just as many starry-eyed teenagers and hardcore thugs as he has bleeding hearts and R&B fans alike.
Scheduled to be released on June 8th, his fourth album in three years, Goon Affiliated, one of the realest rappers to breathe on a microphone sticks to the same straightforward style that has garnered him across-the-board success.
Proof positive of his uncommon achievements of winning the respect of the hard rocks and admiration of the ladies is the R&B-tinged serenading single “She Got It Made.” He pours his unmistakable moan over airy synthesizers, mid-tempo production and a catchy hook to spoil his main squeeze with designer gear, extravagant homes and cars and trips from Maine to Spain.
And on the slowed-down tempo of “Look Like,” Plies for the first time invites other rappers to feature on a track. He shines like a diamond with Bedrock-sized stones around his neck beside Young Jeezy and Fabolous. Pushing rhymes like weight, they serve uncut rawness sprinkled over guttural Sunday morning organs, old school 808 claps and high-pitched piano chords.
“I never got pigeonholed when I came in the game. I was always accepted through different avenues,” Plies explains. “I can be creative and articulate. I can tell you about everything going on in the streets. I can make a record to have your significant other singing seven days a week. And I can touch you on an emotional side. I just do all four of those things through my own life.”
Deriving his on-stage moniker from hometown slang which refers to big money drug dealers, Plies grew up in the small East Dunbar community. Realizing early on that the street life only resulted in a dead end road to hell or jail, he joined his older brother in running independent label Big Gates Records after graduation from Fort Myers High School.
Although Plies never intended on being a rapper, he recorded the chorus to indie single “Tell Dem Krackers Dat” after the original artist couldn't say it correctly. His brother encouraged him to continue rapping and before he knew it, “Tell Dem Krackers Dat” had won regional fame and fell into the lap of executives at Miami-based independent powerhouse label Slip N' Slide Records.
SNS released Plies’ debut single “Got 'Em Hatin” under a joint venture and the song caught on like wildfire. Plies released his RIAA gold debut album The Real Testament in 2007 and returned a mere 10 months later with his sophomore release The Definition of Real.
Thanks to the success of his Ne-Yo-assisted #1 single “Bust It Baby Part 2,” Plies once again struck gold. Just six short months later, Plies came back again with album number three- Da REAList. And now for his fourth album, Goon Affiliated, Plies brings the same reckless, uncompromising ghetto grit that we all just can’t seem to get enough of.
“Goon is a term that exemplifies a person that’s principle driven. Values are definitely a big part of their character,” says Plies. “It’s a person that comes from little of nothing but willing to stand on those principles and let those principles be nonnegotiable.
He continues, “A lot of times people don’t think you can have a nine to five, go to college, be athletic or be a goon and possibly be living in suburban America. A goon is a person that believes in what they believe in but willing to take drastic measures and stand firm on what they believe in.”
And that is exactly what Plies has done throughout his career. He has never been bent, broken or conformed to what the rest of the music industry was doing. When everybody else is going left, Plies chooses to take the high road and blaze his own paths.
Take, for example, the vivid description he divulges about the horrors of being hooked on ecstasy, Xanax and Oxycontin on digital bonus track “Chirpin.” From insomnia to paranoia to numbness and uncontrollable sweats, Plies pulls no punches. Nothing is sugar coated for the weak at heart.
“Substance will always outlast that big record on the radio,” he contends. “I got songs on my albums that have never hit radio. But I can perform those records anywhere in the country and the response is just as big as the number one records.”
On “Gotta Get My Niggas Out,” he sends a kite to his people on lock down to keep their heads up. He even encourages others to reach out to their loved ones behind the fence as well.
“You got some people that probably ain’t wrote their people that’s been locked up in five, six, seven, eight years,” says Plies. “Records like that challenge you to regain those connections and those ties again. A lot of artists don’t do that. Anytime you make millions of dollars, problems are the last thing that a lot of people want to pay attention to.”
Even though he moves mountains when discussing the dramas of life, Plies isn’t only about hard times and the struggle. The digital bonus track “Medicine” featuring sultry songbird Keri Hilson is so hot that it recently became one of the most added in urban radio. And with good reason Atop a mid-tempo Polow Da Don-produced gem accented by butter soft chimes and trunk-rattling 808s, he numbs the ladies all over like Novocain.
But perhaps Plies is at his most dangerous when on tracks like the braggadocios “Awesome” as he spews confident raps over hard-driving kick drums competing with menacing strings and jumping horns.
“It’s important for me to give the audience me. We wanted to make sure coming into the music industry that we stood for what we believed in. Regardless of the amount of money that was on the table, we said that we weren’t going to turn into music whores. We’d rather walk away from the game,” says Plies. “I’d probably be bigger as an artist doing things that I don’t believe in. But I’m one of the few artists that came in this game and still stand on the same principles, values and morals that I do going into my fourth album.”
Backed by the production prowess of such heavy hitters as Justice League, Zaytoven, JR Rotem, and his own in-house production team World Music Group, Goon Affiliated is as much musically satisfying as it is lyrical. Plies has never let us down with the realness- no matter how bitter-sweet the truth may be.
The pioneering Southern hip-hop group, Goodie Mob, is one of the most celebrated rap acts to come out of the hip-hop hotbed of Atlanta, GA. Formed in 1991, Goodie Mob’s original and current group members include CeeLo Green, Big Gipp, Khujo, and T-Mo, who all grew up together in Atlanta alongside the rest of the Dungeon Family - the musical collective of Southern rappers which includes Andre 3000 and Big Boi of Outkast, Goodie Mob, Organized Noise, and Parental Advisory. After officially joining forces in the early 90s, Goodie Mob put out their debut album Soul Food in 1995, which was certified gold in the US and is recognized as the album that put Atlanta’s rap scene on the map. It was also on their debut album that the phrase “Dirty South” was actually coined and the group also showed fans that they were different by rapping about heavy social and political issues such as racism, discrimination, geo-politics, and gentrification. After the success of Soul Food, Goodie Mob then later released two more albums, Still Standing (1998), and World Party (1999), which were both also certified gold in the US.
Now after 14 years, Goodie Mob is back in the studio finishing a new album entitled, Age Against the Machine, which will be released on August 27th, 2013. The first single off the forthcoming album is entitled “Special Education” featuring Janelle Monae, available on iTunes June 18th, and the new album will also feature fellow-Atlanta native T.I.
The last time fans heard from Goodie Mob was the release of their one-off single “Fight To Win”, which hit iTunes over the summer of 2012 and is an anthem of liberation, motivation and determination to always fight to win in life (a motto that the Goodie Mob lives by). Goodie Mob premiered “Fight To Win” on NBC’s hit show The Voice with an explosive performance in April 2012. Goodie Mob was also invited to perform the new single at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards, as a tribute to The Beastie Boys and the late Adam “MCA” Yauch. Additionally, basketball fans will recognize “Fight To Win” as the Official 2012 NBA Playoffs theme song, and the track was also featured in the campaign to release the Samsung Galaxy SIII.
In February 2013, Goodie Mob surprised their fans by taking the stage during CeeLo’s Las Vegas residency show “CeeLo Green is Loberace” which is live at Planet Hollywood until April 13th, 2013 and is rumored to return for a second run later in the year. The southern rappers will also appear in an upcoming television commercial campaign for the Las Vegas Tourism Board and additionally have a reality TV show in development.
Critically acclaimed and commercially successful, Goodie Mob has built a strong and loyal fan-base and is eager to reintroduce themselves with the release of Age Against the Machine. Goodie Mob is back!
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