It seems like nowadays in hip hop music all you need is one hit and you are on top. The content of the song doesn’t seem to matter only the catchy beat and video — a trend that has labels scrambling to catch the latest trends before they seem to fade.
Example one is “All Gold Everything”, by Trinidad James, which came out in 2012. James’ catchy lyrics and his video had everyone either wearing gold or wanting gold. Even the outfit he wore in his video – the cheetah print silk shirt, red pants and red bandana – became a popular Halloween costume. By July 2013 his music video had over 14 million views on YouTube. The crazy part is, Trinidad James hasn’t been making (much) music nowadays – and has since been dropped from his lucrative label deal; however, due to that one hit song, he’ll be set for a long time.
Chicago has some of the greatest urban artists of all time. Kanye West, Common, John Legend and many others. One recent artist from Chicago that surprised the world was Chief Keef. “I Don’t Like”, was his debut single off the mixtape “Back from the Dead.” That mixtape was downloaded over 683,000 times on DatPiff and certified double platinum by last month. Even Lady Gaga is a fan of Keef – she tweeted about her love for his mixtape and put a video up on Instagram of her listening to his songs.
Chief Keef had people like Kanye West, Pusha T, Big Sean & Jadakiss on his official remix. He was signed to Interscope; however, because of controversy that ranged from legal drama to receiving oral sex on Instagram (among other things), he was recently dropped from the label.
Two (newer) artists that have taken the music game by storm this year are Dej Loaf and Bobby Schmurda.
Coming from Detroit, Dej Loaf’s music video for her hit single, “Try Me”, has more than 5 million views on YouTube. The song came out in September of this year and she has already performed with the likes of T.I. and signed to Columbia records. The video is a very regular video, showing the young artist her in what seems to be her hood. The lyrics from the chorus: “Let a nigga try me, try me/I’m a get his whole mothafuckin’ family/And I ain’t playin wit nobody/Fuck around and I’m a catch a body.” With the beat being so catchy, the lyrics don’t seem to come off as grimy as they actually are. Dej Loaf said it herself, “I didn’t think the song was going to be this big.” Look at her now.
The second artist that came out talking about catching bodies, had the dance of the year. Brooklyn’s own, Bobby Schmurda, took over with his famous two step move. It all started with, the snippet of his song, “Hot N*gga”, which took over Instagram. “Bitch caught a body bout a week ago,” he said before throwing his cap in the air leaving the Internet to debate “where did it land?” After that he did a little dance that made everyone from babies to grandparents want to learn.
He became a celebrity overnight. Schmurda (who now has a deal) is working on an album and has a new single called, “Bobby Bitch”.
In the past two years, these four artists have become overnight superstars. The thing is, for up and coming artists trying to make it in the industry they have to realize having overnight success (usually) doesn’t just happen – nor does it end well. I just hope that for the next year, we as consumers keep getting new and better music.
– Seymone Kelly