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Underrated: Rap Hits From the Southwest

Hello Kazi readers, as a seasoned writer and critic I am excited to give you a glimpse into the Southwest region from Colorado to California, directly from the grassroots level. The Southwest has all kinds of digital snacks of goodness and thirst quenching ear-drank to satisfy all types of tastes. So every week check back for new tracks, fresh takes on current events and exclusive content. I will be your plug into the Southwest region! Let’s get it started…

DENVER

Atak – “Juhh Do Et

Fresh off a run for his album Siete Salsa, which features some of ATLs finest producers DJ Plugg, Lexi Banks, Shawty Fresh and Bobby Kritical, ATAK drops this little gem “Juhh Do Et.” The video opens with three Latinos sitting in front of Atak, playing an acoustic guitar but then drops into trap mode about 1 minute in. The song is catchy and ratchet, usually a good combo. Check it out below.

Tytanik – “Keto

Tytanik is from Montbello (a North-East neighborhood in Denver), which is probably the place in Colorado with the most refined sound. Other Colorado legends like Young Doe, TheyCallHimAP, Innerstate Ike, Colfax Cacc and more come from the same turf. Tytanik knows who he is and has maintained his style for a long time. This track has the signature Tytanik sound.

Top Flite Empire – “Money over Friends”

Hypnautic and King Tef of Top Flite Empire lead the charge for Colorado rap for over a decade. They have a top 100 Billboard album and countless videos. This is their first animated video and it’s quite interesting. Check out the song and video below.

Esi Juey – “Home is Where the Heart Is” 

Music is often viewed as relief or an escape for the listener, but often we forget the cathartic nature for the artist. Denver native Esi Juey exemplifies this notion in his new song “Home Is Where The Heart Is.” The heart-tugging track was inspired by the shooting and murder of his younger brother this last year, a situation all too familiar in our urban communities. With assistance from Grammy winning singer-songwriter Wil Guice and Dae Dae Singleton, Esi Juey takes us to church on a ride ripe with emotions and narrative. Check out the video below. 

PHOENIX

Vee Tha Rula – “FTN ft. Camo No Flage

Vee Tha Rula touched down in Colorado last month to perform at the Back to the People Festival in Colorado Springs. We were able to catch up with the heavily supported MC in the Phoenix area who really can spit. Vee is signed to The Alumni Music Group which also works closely with Kid Ink and other California based acts. Here’s a song from his latest release, Konfetti (EP).

J. Rob the Chief – “Rings”

J. Rob the Chief is a gem and definitely could be playing in top 40 rotation right now in pretty much any market; no joke. His songs “Run it Back”, “Rings” and “True Colors” all show the heavy Latino influence that flows through. He is a great listen, check out “Rings” below.

LOS ANGELES

Lil Boii Kantu – “Call Me Back”

The California native, under the tutelage of Adrian Swish, is carving out his own lane of a mix between From First to Last and Xxxtentacion. The pop-punk mixed with hip-hop and emo genre-blending has rarely been executed well at a top level, but Kantu aims to be a pioneer on that route. “Call Me Back” is his most signature sound, but he has a lot of content in that vein as he’s been steadily releasing music over the last two years.

DALLAS

Trapboy Freddy, Throwed Ese and Weso G“3XDrip”

Dallas Natives Trapboy Freddy, Throwed Ese and Weso G lace this trap friendly, auto-tuned hood anthem. Of course there are a lot of jewels, drank and ladies; it’s Texas. The song is catchy and already started getting numbers on YouTube. Check it out below.

That’s all for this week, but check back for new slaps and bangs every week. And if you read all the way to the bottom, first off thank you! Now go share this! Also, if you have music from the Southwest region to submit for coverage, send it to Ontoney303@gmail.com. 

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