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Southern Rap

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Southern rap is a subgenre of Hip-Hop that (as its name suggests) largely originated from the American South (with the scene being heavily centered on Atlanta) and was one of the most prominent types of rap music in the 2000s, and contains the prominent subgenres Crunk and Trap Music. However, it's also extremely controversial and polarizing. Southern rap took off in popularity in the early 2000s; the fallout from the "East Coast/West Coast" rivalry and the deaths of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls were among the main catalysts, as was the declining popularity of Bad Boy Records and the outright demise of Death Row Records, while the ability of Cash Money Records and No Limit Records to publish large amounts of albums from artists that had, up to that point, mostly been limited to New Orleans and East Texas (neither of which were known for being major hip-hop landmarks) with low production costs that charted well convinced the music industry to look to the South on more than just an individual basis. The rise of the Hot Boy$ and Lil Jon and the East Side Boyz around the end of the 1990s (and Lil Wayne's own departure from the Hot Boy$ and subsequent solo success) largely cemented the South's eventual stranglehold on the mainstream, and by the end of 2003, crunk had officially taken over, and snap followed roughly a year later. Both genres ruled the charts for the entirety of the mid-2000s, but 2008 was where their hold began slipping rapidly, and by 2009, crunk and snap were completely and utterly gone from the face of the earth as Trap Music began to replace them.


Southern rap typically features minimalistic, bass-heavy instrumentals, chanted choruses, lots and lots of Cluster F-Bomb and N-Word Privileges, overt sexism (there are actually several female Southern Rap artists like Ciara, Trina, Rasheeda, Jacki-O and Diamond and Princess from Crime Mob but they're mainly there as Ms. Fanservice and tend to objectify themselves) and lyrics about casual sex, using and dealing drugs, partying, the club, killing people, criminal activity and girls' butts. There are, of course, a few exceptions, mainly Childish Gambino, Big Boi and Killer Mike, who are highly-respected lyricists and are well-liked even by many people who typically dislike rap, but they tend to be the minority. The earlier artists (primarily Cash Money and No Limit artists) were also famous for their gaudy, ostentatious, larger-than-life album cover artwork that was usually filled with images of jewelry, luxury cars, mansions, and expensive clothing and alcohol, often with flames in the background; these were the children of the Houston-based graphic design firm Pen & Pixel Graphics, and the association with those album covers and Southern artists from 1997-2003 is so strong that anyone seeking to do any sort of "retro" design in the 2010s will almost always attempt to emulate Pen & Pixel.


Examples of Southern rap artists


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