FEATURE: All Four One

Photography Zach Wolf

Photography Zach Wolf

It’s almost noon on a late April Tuesday, and the sun is beating down on a yellow Lamborghini parked on a side street off Edgewood Avenue. The giant rapper Gucci Mane stands next to it, eating lunch out of a Styrofoam container. His cronies Shawty Lo and OJ Da Juiceman sit against a nearby brick building, talking. Assorted crew, stylists, label reps and photography assistants scurry around, preparing for the arrival of Soulja Boy.

The teen star has just touched down on his flight from Florida, on his way to be part of the cover shoot for XXL’s second-annual Hood 2 Hood issue. This year’s hot spot: our current locale, Atlanta. The A has been consistently producing top rap talent for 15 years now, but—as represented by today’s quartet—there’s another new wave coming up from the streets, the MCs leading hip-hop’s leading city into tomorrow.

Four solo artists of varying ages and stages of their careers—Gucci, Soulja, Shawty and OJ,—have developed a strong friendship, be it long ago, through the streets, or more recently, through rap. When Gucci was locked up this past year on an assault charge, Soulja Boy shot a “Free Gucci Mane” video and put it on YouTube in support. They’ve all appeared on each other’s songs, mixtapes and videos—most recently gathering for Soulja Boy’s “Gucci Bandanna”—presenting a united front.

Unsurprisingly, perhaps, Atlanta’s new generation has clashed with the previous one. Gucci Mane endured an all-too-serious beef with Young Jeezy after the success of their collaboration on the 2005 hit “Icy.” And Shawty Lo was at odds with his old Bankhead neighbor T.I. for over a year, before squashing the problem at the local Club Crucial in March.

But today is about the new generation, not the one before. The youngest of the bunch, and the most successful so far saleswise, S.B. arrives in a black SUV packed with a swarm of security and a dozen or so Louis Vuitton suitcases and bags. But while he’s taken the pop path, and never dealt drugs, like the others, the greetings are warm and genuine.

After the camera captures the moment, the four sit down at a table in a location trailer to chop it up in the round.

What did you guys think of the photo shoot today?

Gucci Mane: Personally, I think it was history in the making. I enjoyed it. It didn’t feel like it was no work. It was fun, and I got to kick it with my boys. Get to chill with them. We have busy schedules, so even though it was a photo shoot and it was work, it was good for us to get with each other and to just see each other again and touch bases with each other.

Soulja Boy: I feel like it’s a good thing for Atlanta and just for all us to be on the XXL mag at the same time. That’s just gonna mark our star. So it’s going down real big right now.

This is XXL’s second-annual Hood 2 Hood issue. For the first installment, last July, we had some popular Florida artists on the cover.

Soulja Boy: Rick Ross!

Yeah, we had Rick Ross, Khaled, Trina and Flo Rida. That was the hot hood, musically, at the time. Now, a year later, we feel that you guys, collectively and individually, have been making a big buzz down here—like, a new wave, the new big faces of Atlanta.

Shawty Lo: I believe y’all are really on point with your idea, because we’ve been grinding so long and so hard. And for us to be the underdogs and getting out there good, it’s a real good look for the city and for the rest of the world.

You’ve recorded a lot together. Gucci, Lo and OJ, you are all on the same label. But Soulja Boy, you aren’t. How did you guys come to all work together? Is it that you are friends? Did the labels put some of you together?

OJ Da Juiceman: I think it was a good thing. You know, Atlanta cats, we keep it two, 100. We don’t play soccer—save that for the folks over in Brazil, know what I’m talking about? But it’s a good look that we came together and make the hip-hop better than what it is, because it ain’t nothing without us, ya feel me? Juiceman said that. All we got is that. The music me and Gooch make, you know, it’s just a good vibe. The music that me and Shawty Lo make, it’s a stupid vibe. And the music that me and Soulja make, it’s a wonderful vibe. And if anybody say different, I wish they would, you feel me? And this here’s Atlanta, ya feel me? And we swagged up all the way to the max. Swag 200 for the 100. For the fool that ain’t keeping it 100, you know we 100, anyway. So I say 200—100 for us and for the folks that ain’t 100. Da Juiceman, aye! [Laughing all around]

Shawty Lo: No labels done put us together. We all homeboys from the jump.
When did you first get to know each other?

Gucci Mane: In, like, ’89 I moved to Georgia from Alabama. The first person I really met was OJ. We met picking up cans in the hood.

OJ Da Juiceman: Trading Nintendo cartridges. [Laughing] Awww, man.

Gucci Mane: He used to steal my Nintendo cartridges. We started hustling early teenage years—12,13… And then just went to school together, hung out together, had beef with folks together, all coming up through the years. And just parlayed that into a rap career, man. Just glad we ain’t doing what we used to be doing.

OJ Da Juiceman: Damn sure right about that.

Gucci Mane: And as far as me and Shawty Lo, that’s, like, one of my best friends. We like brothers. And Soulja, that’s, like, my protégé, to me. I parallel myself to him at the same age. He got a lot of things in common with me. He’s a hard worker, just like myself.

That relationship is an interesting one. Gucci, you said in an interview, in our May issue, that Soulja Boy was an inspiration to you, and you applauded him for his positivity. Soulja, you did a “Free Gucci Mane” video when Gucci was locked up. How did you two become friends?

Gucci Mane: To be honest, Soulja Boy told me he was a big fan of my music. But he wouldn’t even imagine I’m a same big fan of his music as he is of mine. So we had mutual respect for each other. That’s my dawg.

That surprised a lot of people. Your images are so different.

Gucci Mane: Me and Juiceman had that conversation when we was coming over here to the photo shoot. We were like, even though me and Juice came up hustlin’ and doing all kinds of things, we was like, Soulja Boy from the hood, too. He made something out of nothing, just like we did. That’s what we were talking about before we got here. We gotta tip our hat to him, just like anybody else.

OJ Da Juiceman: Can’t never knock a hustle.

Gucci Mane: That’s how I am.

The Atlanta rap scene has been hot for so long. Cities rarely maintain that kind of consistency. Houston went up, went down. Same with New Orleans and St. Louis. But Atlanta stays producing
national-level hip-hop talent. What do you attribute the city’s success to?

Gucci Mane: I think what keeps us afloat and what keeps us in touch with the streets so much—not saying that Houston ain’t got that street shit, or Florida, or Cali, or New York—but I think that the lifestyle in Atlanta is just the party atmosphere all the time. And just the people traveling, always coming down here. And the culture that just keeps us with a different, like, swag. Not even swag, just different flavor, you know what I’m saying? Because everybody always say that. A whole different way of seeing life. Partying every day, clubbing every day, you feel me? That definitely gotta be an influence on the music in some kind of way.

Shawty Lo: It is. We got basically all the clubs poppin’ everywhere. It ain’t one, two, three places open—we got 20 places to go to. We got the busiest airport.

Gucci Mane: We see it on a daily basis. So even before I got history, I was partying with stars, even if I wasn’t a star myself. You know what I’m saying?-VANESSA SATTEN

For more of the All For One cover story, make sure to pick up XXL’s June issue hitting newsstands June 2nd.

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  • D-Block

    wouldnt it be nice if they were all in their tour bus or w/e and it got hit by an RPG missile then ran over a land mine.

    • jish

      i like even one on the cover of the new mag, except soulja boy, but that is funny as hell. LMAO

  • D-Block

    lmao i just realized somethin, this is the radios wack equivalent to Slaughterhouse. i would LOVE to see some sort of face off between the two groups it would be hilarious

    • $ykotic

      Ron Mexx calls them “Cotton Gin”.


      this is the radios wack equivalent to Slaughterhouse.

      Yep. Slaugter-1bedroom-apartment.

      • D-Block


  • BeerGangsta

    D-Block u are right. Thes shitty South rappers are garbabe. West Coast need to get this game turn around quick. East Coast got good lyrics but need better beats. Mid-West is ok. Need to learn how to get more well-known. South Rappers know how have fun with it. That’s why they are on top temporary.

    • matty21

      BeerGangsta, U and D-Cock are garbage plain n simple…sorry i meant D-Block, your both very garbage 4sure…n dat goes for any1 else saying anything of da nature you are or any1 who is agreeing wit anything u loser lameos are saying or claiming…gaabage Hi Haters :)…Turn your swag on fags

      • D-Block

        ok i dont even have to right anything to diss this matty bitch, ill use his own words.

        “Turn your swag on fags” FAGGOT
        “Hi Haters :)” FAGGOT
        “D-Cock” REAL FAGGOT

        there you go everybody the biggest faggot in the comment section, matty21

        • matty21

          D-Cock go release your hate somewhere else, no1 wanna c dat sht….if u just hate your boys gucci, lo, oj, n SB soo much den don’t read da article n hate on dem as dudes damn…u must be interested jus a lil bit? rite lol…it’s cool i just gotta get on u haterz a lil bit dats all…i ant da 1 hatin, don’t call me a fag…n ur here to call da rapperz u don’t like fags, not mee rememberr! get ur sht right, keep doin ur thing hatin on da artists workin n keep wishin dey were dead…turn ur swag on fags

        • D-Block

          man you cant even spell you fucking retard, why the fuck are you talking to me? and how am i hating because i am stating the facts that these faggots are GARBAGE they couldnt spit if their life depended on it. all they are good for is making fucking retards, like you matty, like their wack ass shitty corny cock suckin music.

        • matty21

          i dunno y i’m talkin 2 u, dats a good point lol good job 1 of da few u had…n alot of other people mus like it too, der on da cover of xxl mag, i aint da only fag dat likes dem i guess

  • Incognegro_22

    The worst rappers in the game…LOL!

  • IllWill216

    The A is holding it down right now Gucci Mane La Flare the hottestt nigga in the streets right now, Shawty Lo and Juiceman both some real trap niggas and SB is 20x better than we he first came out, them niggas is doin it

    • 619

      Still don’t make sense why cats from down South keep sayin’ “Gucci’s the hottest in the streets”. That’s because you’re down South, you need to travel outside your region a little more before you make dumb ass claims! Be clear, nobody on the West is playin’ his shit, and that’s not hate, I have not heard one system ridin’ by bumpin’ his shit in the streets out here. I don’t know one person who has any of his albums or mixtapes, or even ever mentions him when a discussion about music comes up. So just because he’s the hottest in the streets where you stay at, it doesn’t make him the hottest in the streets everywhere.

      • that nigga

        ^^Absolutely correct. I never knock a niggas hustle but when your hustle sucks like these niggas there has to be an exception. And these niggas fuckin suck.

      • F-Nut

        Dude, im from SD and bump the sh*t out of Gucci, man quit hatin. I’ll tell you what is setting Atlanta apart, and it is the production, they stay makin beats, while Cali is on some wack early 90s beats, change your game up and quit hatin.

  • rick

    these niggas killed hip hop!!!!! take them to jail.

  • a45_solja

    Up north ass niggas cant make club music dats whats gone get played not all that other shit but we’n hate like them niggas we just grind keep hatin on G’s ha


    i respect ya’ll opinions, i do. everything ya’ll say might be true… BUT like juiceman said “Atlanta cats, we keep it two, 100.” (lol, dis nigga is a Negro Please and/or Ron Mexico blog waiting to happen)

    they not the best rappers, hell even good rappers. but they make the shit we party to. Atlanta is a party city, we jus have a good time. and we do it together, we fux w/ each other (no homo). too much money to be made to be hating/beefing n shit like dat.


    if ya’ll hate these niggas. jus wait til J Money, Yung LA, F.L.Y. (swag surfin dudes), Rich Kids, & a lot more garbage ass niggas come out & get some national attention. hey, they suck, but WE PARTY. LETS PARTY (song jus popped in my head).

  • http://allday.com Reality Check

    lol @ wanting a showoff between them and Slaughterhouse…wouldn’t anything happen but Buddens popping off too much at the mouth on the internet, making an ill-fated trip to ATL like everything’s lovely…then promptly getting murked.

  • Federal Ranga


    • Galice

      Co-sign. I seriously want a genuine answer from ANYBODY on staff at XXL of why they keep printing stories about these 4 clowns. The ratio of songs you add to your “bangers” section is TOTALLY biased towards these kinds of rappers (SB, Gucci, Jim Jones, OJ…) and its getting fucking disgusting.

      XXL, I know you guys dont actually think this music is QUALITY, right? Please, from one hip-hop fan to another, STOP THIS SHIT!

  • thechange

    I hate these rappers not one of them is that dope, they got rhymes like a 15 year old, still rapping about the same shit, with the same slew of things. Hey listen you four idiots its called being an MC not a boxed in artist be better writers you all suck so far. No wonder your albums is garbage only making stupid mixtapes for the dumb fans that hop on it for the lame hook & sometimes dope beat but remember a dope beat & wack rhymes makes your music irrelivent if its not any good. So keep practicing & maybe you could be like Eminem, Biggy, Royce Da 5’9″ ect.

  • Epinz

    I was talkin to my boy bout how nggz down here luv gucci and oj but hate on the clipse when they talk it and lived it better than these niggaz did/do(?). We came to the realization that nggz down here dnt wanna here all that complicated shit. Down here it ante about what ur sayin as much as how u sound sayin whatever it is u sayin..its about vibes down here. I LUV the clipse, but I have to say that these nggz make better ridin and clubin music. I guess its just the simplicity of the south. But can’t nobody knock these nggaz hustle, even if u dnt like they’re music.

    • Moving Sideways

      “I guess its just the simplicity of the south.”

      I lived in the A for 3 years, and that sentence just summed up what I hate about the south. Motherfuckers there are simple, and I mean that in the worst possible way. Outkast would never make it out of the ATL music scene if they came out today. Fucking disgraceful.

  • vhingrhamesonyomomma

    HELP! HEEELLLPP! I’m still stuck in this backwards ass mud puddle of a city!! these is some slave ass niggas 5real not 4, 5 Nigga! my god i don’t knock the hustle but damn ere’thang ain’t about the club damnit! These niggas can’t even drank on Sunday, WTF!! Fags walk around holdin hands, exchangin #’s and shit WTF!, and y’all wondrein why the music fucked up! they whole lifestyle down here Fucked! I came for $ once i’m at 20 stacks, deuces!


    4 worst rappers in the game, i hate em all. why are we talking about them ? lets talk about Lupes new CD, fuck soulja boy, juiceman, gucci THEY ALL SUCK THEY KILLED HIPHOP

  • Real Talk

    I didn’t know XXL was going to do another “Hip Hop Is Dead” article? Oh nevermind.

  • thetruth74

    First off i want everybody to know i have never done nothing like this before but i promised myself the next time i see that nigga gucci mane anywhere online i was gonna expose his snitching ass! I live in columbus Ohio and i happen to know for a fact that this nigga snitched on the big homie papa joe and the brittany hills posse. if yall don’t believe me just do some research but the thing is the nigga is a ci(confidential informant)which means you won’t find his name in any court documents. I would say more but obliviously if i did he would know exactly who i am and i aint trying to end up like pookie loc! lol!

  • Gerv

    Some serious hate goin on in here!



  • http://myspace.com/youngburna warrenJae

    it sho is…too much hating for me….ima rapper from the south who dont really like too much off these guys music and its still plain to see in my eyes that these mostly new york niggaz hating so much….quit hating…if you hate how it is so much….change it if you a rapper….if you not a rapper…go find some independent artist from ny who you think got next and support him to the fullest…hip hop is a culture…in the south and north everywhere….niggaz down here doing they thang….gettin money…buzzin like crazy….what yal doing? hatin and bitchin…bottom line…do something about it….and quit leaving bitch ass comments hating on a whole fuckin region…get the fuck outta here

    @ Real Talk, , rick , BeerGangsta , and d-block

  • Takeme

    No Gerv no hatred just real talk…And well quite frankly they look like rappers so at least we can say they got the swag down.

  • http://www.xxlmag.com Aye!!allDay

    Yall some haters mane. Lo, Gucci, and Juice are running things down here. Dont knock no hustle mane.

  • braille

    Gucci has tons of mixtapes and niggas playin his music…so does shawty lo…and soulja boy and OJ….the comparison between the three is almost no comparison…they’re pretty much the same…the crazy thing is that they aren’t lyrical or word play lyricist but they are hot right now….why they are hot is for one purpose and one purpose only….BEATS…niggas want they care to shake like a mufucka so they listen to these rappers who have 808 style…ultra bass synthesized beats…that are simple…hip hop has changed from the 90′s boom bap break beat reverb snare to the 808 snare hi hat boom shitty beats…but its whats popular right now…imagine nas on one of guccis beats…? AM I RIGHT OR AM I RIGHT


    best rappers alive is

    1. Lil Wayne
    2. Plies
    3. Rick Ross
    4. Fat Joe
    5. Yung Berg
    6. Soulja Boy
    7. Mimms
    8. Huey
    9. Shop Boyz
    11.Shawty Lo
    12.missy elliot
    13.vanil ice
    14.mc hmmer
    15.Rich Boy

    This list is official and final. There will be no disputing or adjuments made to this list, all decisions are final.

    • Real Hip Hop

      Hold on a min, i can’t stop laughing, hahahahahahahahahaha. now this is the wackest list i have ever seen. Oh my god, ya are killing me with this best rappers a live list. i hope u joking.

  • corlione39


  • Real Talk

    These artist, yo straight up their music is ass, and only good for gettin a girl to put her ass cheeks on me. They can’t rap for shit.

    Is that hate? I call it love cuz I love rap music where motha fuckaz actually can spit some hard creative bars, even if its a club or party song.

    What yall geek asses do is not love it is hate, cuz yall hate rap music and love disco, techno, butt ass club artist that got no talent, just yell on the mic and buy a hot beat from the producer of the week.

  • $ykotic

    I see all of ya’ll. I’m not hating, but their music hurts my ears…

    I’ma see if XXL puts Slaughter on the cover. Most likely I will die without oxygen waiting for that.

  • http://www.msn.com west philly’s finest

    I dont know why all the people hating on these niggas. If you listening to Gucci or Juiceman you not listening for lyrics.

    As much as niggas hate they bring personality to the game. Everybody would put Nas in they top 5 but he’s a boring ass rapper. Yall niggas just wanna listen to the same people over and over its 09 stop listening to Illmatic.


    16. Flo Rida
    17. Trina
    18. Khia
    19. Paul Wall

    Should I keep going with the list my niggas?

  • http://www.myspace.com/crockerishiphop crocker

    XXL – “Hip-Hop On A Higher Level” Ur fucking kidding me right? Gucci Mane’s hip-hop like Snoop Dogg is a tremendous dramatic actor. Step your pen game up fellas.

  • zayzkidd


    Believe me, that aint the level of all south rappers, thats just the shiit the media pushin. Anyway, if the west or the east was so much better–why yall aint on top then???

  • zayzkidd


    You must be a ten year old boy to write a list like that.

  • zayzkidd

    @Moving Sideways

    You need to get your bitter a$$ off this site, calling every nicca in the south simple. You need to learn your history!!! Don’t be mad because people are listening to them lil dudes, if yall don’t like it, start buying the west and the east coast shiit!!!

  • zayzkidd


    Temporary??? The south been on top since Master P came out!!!

    • 619

      Fuck outta here! Maybe you weren’t old enough to remember a label by the name of Death Row Records that was runnin’ the rap game when Master P came out. Don’t forget who you fools jacked your style from: OJ on the cover wearin’ a red khaki suit. hahahaha.
      West West

  • ChRi$



    20. Nappy Rootz
    21. Lil Wyte
    22. Lil Keke
    23. Lil Boosie
    24. Lil Kim
    25. Lil Lil
    26. Baby aka Birdman aka Bryan Williams aka Wayne Daddy

    • KS

      LMFAO…jay stone you slay me

  • that nigga

    @ zayzkidd, the list was sarcasm dumbass.

    “But it’s a good look that we came together and make the hip-hop better than what it is, because it ain’t nothing without us, ya feel me? Juiceman said that!”

    OJ Da Juiceman, you are officiall a “Negro Please” candidate for that comment. To make Hip Hop better than it was you 4 motherfuckers should kill yourself or just stop rappin altogether. Cant knock your hustle but when you make E-Tarded comments like that, you cant be serious???


    You east coast backpack rapper lovers are some bitter close-minded SOB’s. Yaw did the same thing when the West was running the rap game. That’s why that East/West coast war lasted so long and got out of hand. Like Willie D said” we know new york is where it began….so let the ego trip end”

  • kenny

    what is this? corny rappers allegiance, gall these niggaz are whacker than the other one


    Let me start off by sayin…I don’t live in the south. Some of ya’ll niggas have valid points, but the majority of niggas is hatin. Let me ask a ?, if xxl had a link to two faggot ass niggas fuckin, would you click the link? Some niggas would because thats they cup of tea, but if you a nigga like me then you dont ride wit that, so therefore i aint clickin that muthafuckin link. I say that to ask all the “haters”, If you dont like the shit why click on the shit? For example this article may have had only ten comments instead of over 55. Ya feel me? REAL TALK

  • Corey

    I respect their grind but I damn sure don’t respect their music…shit is garbage!! That’s one XXL Mag I won’t be buying..period!!

  • kavi

    U niggas is some big ass haters. Yall talkin all dis shit about how wack they is but yall read da article. da only 1 wack is shawty lo. Gucci is hot. yung juice is hot. Soulja boy is hot. Yall need to turn yall swag on and stop haten. If u dont like it so what dont go around posten negative shit.

  • chillin mayne

    im from da H-town and i have very few southern cats on my playlist…dat shit irks me, simpletons…oj wat da hell he talkin bout??.. we dont play soccer…just read a magazine dat fucked up my day

  • Prince Caesar

    First of all, I though Soulja Boy was from Mississippi ? So why is he dick riding these niggas ? I respect the hustle, but, all of these guys suck!! The rap game has shifted to a point where it’s all about rapping about the trap and “being swagged out” in a southern accent. I lived in the ATL for all ’06..ya’ll niggaz don’t listen to shit but southern shit. If you not rappin like you got a mouth full of cotton, no one wants to hears what you gotta say.

  • 92FS

    This is a POOR POOR representation of the South! You need to do better than this pile of wack bullshit XXL! I dare Orange Juice to go Brazil or most places in the world with that comment. They’d rape your mother in front of you, then hang you in the town!

  • valdez

    sound like alotta hatin goin on in here. true, they ain’t the best rappers, but they doin they thing. they keeping the game goin right now.

    gotta respect they hustle also.

  • Malzi

    OMG!!!! Yall niggaz on here is so single-minded. People outside of GA fcukin’ LOVE dis nigga Gucci I got people in different places that will tell you the same thing, and yes hate it or love it soulja boy has grown musically and I 4 1ne can appreciate a nigga tryin’ to better his craft and I aint a Gucci fan but sumtimes I can vibe 2 his shit he ced it himself tha atmosphere is wut makes tha music like dat so look at it 4 wut it is not wut u want it to be, tru aint nobody really reppin’ 4 ATL like tha D.F. Was but dem days is tha past. Some of u niggas dats hatin’ on sum “I love hip-hop 2 much 2 see it like dis shit” need to really read summa tha interviews of ya favorite rappers, shit, Pusha T ced he fux wit Jeezy duz dat make him not “hip-hop”??? No. If u don’t like it then don’t pay it no mind, it aint like deez niggas payin’ summa yall 2 hate. . . .

  • Real Talk

    To all you hiphop haters throwin around the word “hate”. I swear you homos would cosign a Martha Stewart and a Oprah album, LMAO! Shes a hustler, doin her thing, and can’t rap just like these guys, right?! :D

    I aint no back packin geek hatin on Southern rappers either. I fuck wit rappers most underground heads hate like TI, Luda, Wayne. Cuz they can spit and make good music. I even think T Pain is pretty creative.

    Bottomline: None of these four half decent wack ass rappers deserve to be on a rap magazine cover, its just XXL is gettin paid by the record label to do it.

    • matty21

      I feel what your sayin…Soulja would be deserving of a cover right now, i would say dat in my opinion…u liein if u say he ain’t doin it huge right now and been doin it…….n da others are big right now in da streets wit mixtapes n all dat n it’s tyte sht, every1 feelin it….i duno bout dat oprah martha stewart thing lol but yea if dey was comin out wit real music, hey do your thing n like juicemane said can’t knock da hustle! 4real….deez dudez are all poppin right now n been workin really hard n are deserving to be reppin da A, don’t 4get it’s hood2hood…of course der are others but deez dudes are doin it nice n are deserving n don’t deserve da HATE but lol ant goin nowhere

  • Real Talk

    XXL: put Slaughterhouse on the cover, or your officially the wackest magazine in the world.

  • Azhar

    i think i can really appreciate good music from anywhere east, west, south i can give a fcuk if its bangin its bangin, and i’m sure these dudes have their fans, but Shawty Lo, Gucci Mane, OJ the Juice Man, Soulja Boy =TRASH


    Maybe one of you so called hip hop headz can answer this. What constitutes real hip hop. Cause I thought its a representation of being true to your self and the way you grew up and then expressing that with dance, spray painting or rapping. So if a nigga grew up leaning and rocking wit it or stanky leggin it or making the trap say aye than thats real hip hop to him. Everyone can’t speak on the 5% nation or subways or things like that cause thats not what they know. Believe it or not theirs a lot of niggaz that don’t fuck with Wu tang, Nas, Jay Z and niggaz of the sort they bump Cube, Snoop, C bo, scare face 8ball Mjg, Gucci, Boosie and Webbie thats real hip hop to them and their everyday lives Im out ALLS WELL

    • D-Block

      real hip hop isnt about bitches, cars, drugs, and money, its about the 5 elements:


      the reason that (mostly) southern rappers create songs with dances is to try to make it a new craze with stupid kids so that they can make money. and yes they are kinda rapping but but rapping involes lyricism, which most (not all) southern rappers dont have. as for graffiti, any dumbass can pick up a can of spray paint and write their name on a wall, but where is the true meaning of the artwork?

      does that answer your question?

      • matty21

        Bitches, Cars, Drugs, and Money ain’t everything, but dey play a big part man…hip hop is a way of life fool, u must be ignorant or sumthin to say dat those things are not involved at all….REAL hip hop is whatever u make it and can be whatever a REAL person is living….REAL music is REAL music, der is no certain criteria for REAL HIP HOP MUSIC fool…dats what u want it 2 b and dat ant it….AND kids ain’t stupid, der kids and der our future, u were a kid once or are a kid now…kids are whats cool and are fans, so don’t hate on what their feelin n tell dem it’s stupid, dats what dey like…ask your nieces and your nephews who da shit?…n where u been? ant tooo many graffiting and breaking deez days lol u stuck in da past mane, get wit it ha u ol’ cats do need to get away from hip hop n believe its dead lol…get wit whats goin on or kill yaself cuz it ant gon stop

        • NAWLEDGE


          I dont think you’re understanding the point dawg.

          On a ceirtain level, you’re correct. There isnt really a criteria for Hiphop music. It’s all good to me whether its Hipster/Backpacking Rap, Club Music, Street Rap, Conscious Rap, Political Rap, Horrorcore, Acid Rap, even Nerdcore got some tight shit out. As long as its good music, its good music. But you’re forgetting one thing.


          Hiphop has not at all progressed homie. As a matter of fact, it’s REgressed. You yourself can admit that lyrics have not gotten any better for the past decade. You’ve also admitted that there are not too many Breakdancers or Graffiti artists out there. Where are they? What happned to the Crazy Legs? The Cope2′s? The B-boys? What happened to the practice and technique? The seriousness of the artform? We went from doing headspins to doing stanky legs?? We went from:

          “Now, my oral demonstration/ be like clitoral stimulation to the female gender/ ain’t nothin better/ let me know when it’s wet enough to enter”


          “Let me set the record straight/ hater you participate/ 3 girls with me like I’m goin on elimidate”

          C’mon dude! You KNOW thats an epic drop from whence we came! This is NOT progression.

          You’re also correct when you say “REAL hip hop is whatever u make it and can be whatever a REAL person is living”. This is understandable. I grew up in Lil Haiti, Miami. Pretty rough place. All I saw was drug dealing & murders. But when Pac came out with Keep Ya Head Up, it let me know that there can be more to life than what I’m living. He and many other rappers gave hood kids like us encourgement to get out. To get educated. To get informed on whats goin on. Get jobs or if not start businesses. And at the same time live life up to its fullest. That inclues smoking blunts(if you smoke), gettin money and pussy. Positive reinforcement.


          They can talk about issues of the hood, but there is MORE than just the hood. Why not encourge the teenager on the corner who’s selling rocks to get his ass back in school? Or use the money to save for a college education? Why not encourge the girl who’s father is a deadbeat to love herself? To make sure that any man she’s with will treat her right? Instead all I hear is: “Get that money, fuck the bitches, fuck niggas with big dicks, & get a strap”. WTF? Thats it? No education? No family? No getting informed on political and social issues? Negative reinforcement, my man. Very negative.

          It may not be that deep to you. It could all just be entertainment. But we also have to remember that RAP is entertainment and HIPHOP is the lifestyle. Too many times do we see life imitate art. Art should imitate life. And like you even said, there’s MORE to life than bling bling and bitches. If these dudes want to be ssssooooooooo “REAL”, they should speak on more about being good fathers and good people. Not just murders, drug dealers, and sluts.

          Thats my 2 cents on the piece. Hope you get what I mean when I say the Hiphop we have today is far beneath the Hiphop we started with.

          P.S: Kids arent dumb but at the same time, they’re not exactly rocket scientists either. Check the lyrics I posted and ask your 16 year old cousin which one he/she understands and you’ll see what I mean.


        • D-Block

          matty it hurts my brain trying to understand the words that you are typing. but i can see where your coming from i guess they make their shit for a certain mass of people. but please please dont disrespect hip hop by sayin that these guys are hip hop. these are R&R aka radio rappers, the farthest thing away from real hip hop. even rock n roll is closer to hip hop than radio rap. but i aint mad at you matty

        • D-Block

          A-mothafuckin-MEN NAWLEDGE i just read what u said

        • matty21


          oooooook nawledge…n aite d-block my bad….man i feel u guyz 4real (especially nawledge) n i do appreciate all aspects of it n sht like u said…jus so u know, i’m 22 so i don’t really go wayyyyy back on da hip hop or nething, like my 1st cd was Bone e.1999(lyricism 4real by da way)….i feel ya’ll talkin bout da lyricism gone n sht like dat, n also u sayin how cats need to speak on both sides of it i got u…u say it’s gone, i would say go get a few T.I. cdz…da artists are here it’s just dat no1 is addressing dem… T.I. Wayne Em jada, man lots of others are appreciating da work/art, are speaking on both sides of it or have in da past, n their art shadows life like u said…da artists are here!….n to be honest i wasn’t a fan of gucci at all, especially da ELIMIDATE rhyme u thru out der lol(n da bitches love dat by da way freaky girl) but he’s been comin hard lately n can tell he’s been workin n i’m feelin it now 4real like his newest mixtapes n sht phatttt…n i dunno if u are but don’t judge da whole game cuz of these 4 dudes, maybe these dudes are ignorant on speaking about both sides of da hood(i don’t think so) but don’t say nobody is doing it cuz i’m a T.I. fan, it’s like cats ant listenin or sumthin n cats ant gettin appreciated for da work dey do put in…..it is a new day ur rite n it is bout money, but dat don’t mean some of dem don’t take it seriously nooo way dude…..n hey i might be 30/40 sumday n b like all dis new hip hop is dead cuz i used to listen to T.I. n wayne n whoever else so who knows….i guess da most we can do is show deez kids(which i try n do) like wat da real music is n who da real artists are n spread da word, cuz we ain’t ignorant obviously as far as me n u lol spread dat truf…not even show da kids but show dem by supporting da artists u support n sht like dat dey look up n follow suit, get dem to listen to what u listen to n hey dey jus wana hav fun too, lifes hard enuf…..dey will be able to learn on der own life ant all bout blunts n money n pussy n dat aspect of it is entertainment becuz every person in dis world has temptation for dat sht….so da game has progressed in my opinion man jus to somethin different, it’s a new day n i bet u know, we are taught to get dis money man n u can’t do much w/o it…n money den brings on lots of things…u openly hear t.i. say go 2 school man n get money legit fuck da drug game it bout dead n da legit money is more abundant neway n he’s now openly Family first soo u know….n as far as deez 4 on da cover mane, der doin their thing n what u want dem to do, turn down the cover? u can’t knock a hustle and DAT IS HIP HOP…i ain’t gonna change my feeling on dat but i still feel n respect wat ur saying…n soulja boy also tryin to do da rite thing n sht as far as settin example for deez kids n shit…again he’s tryin n dat is hip hop in my opinion man n if da words come out good in music n people feel it, den so be it….der jus real men hustlin n peeps sayin dey dont deserve a cover n dey suck n dis/dat are knockin da hustle/hatin n i dont agree wit it…if u feel hip hop dead or not, don’t hate on cats doin their thing(my opinion)

        • matty21

          n i know da radio is flooded wit bulshttt…artists are makin certain records juss to get on da radio n sht i feel u….n jus da game is fckd up real bad as a whole to an extent, i know wat ur sayin….but da artists are def. out ther, don’t listen to da radio den….n it ain’t dead man jus gotta find da real 1s u like…n it’s cool 2 get some records played on da radio n mtv n sht like dat cuz dat’ll get cats to listen to ur album man n den u can come wit da real (dats da game 2day, u gotta get sum exposure man n make sum poppy type hits)..but dat ant sayin der whole albums are dat BS either, its jus da way da game is 2day i guess, n der are stilll artists out ther too dat don’t care bout da radio n jus come wit da real…n how bout dat jay-DOA record man dat sht tyte n dat play a part in our convo a lil too…he still in da game too so it ain’t deaddddddd man

        • matty21

          N read wat jampo said too bout UGK n 8ball MJG n sht…u know people are wrong in wat der sayin wit dis hate on da south particular n hiphop dead, dats wat i debate…like da south or DA 4 on da cover is responsible for killin hip hop n sht lol jus cuz der doin good, crazy………d-block u da man too

        • matty21

          One more thing NAWLEDGE, if your even gonna read all dis lol….but u also said talkin about both sides of da hood n da entertainment being portrayed to da kids…..Well some artists talk bout bof sides n as far as deez guyz (gucci, OJ, LO), maybe dey don’t address bof sides in music but dey are living proof!! and talk bout it in interviews….dey all went from dat negative enviroment sellin drugs n wat not and turned it into something positive n are now makin millions of dollars and helping people in da community…any kid can use his INTEGRITY and take what is right from a persons life(da hard work dey put in to get where der at) and dat is a good example set…Deez are artists just LIVING da example….Da kids will know better dat deez dudes don’t spend 24/7 365 doing wat their talkin bout in music like drugs n partyin n sht, u gotta be able to seperate da two n just where der at in der life shows dat n will show kids….n dats how u lead, by example…u gotta seperate work n play sumwat n integrity needs to be used

        • matty21

          Da work dey put in ALONE deserves a cover…so not nawledge, but back off haterz….showing people BY EXAMPLE u can turn a negative into a positive is deserving of a cover n inspires people neway…fck a hater

        • NAWLEDGE


          Long ass responce. I aint gonna lie,I skipped over some parts but I got the jist of what you sayin. I’m 21 so I’m actually younger than you but I like to do research. I even have like 100 songs one of my ipod playlists full of nothing but 90′s rap. Then I go to the record store, check out some of the music and I’m like WTF? But I feel what you sayin when you say it’s progressed to something different. Never thought of that.

          4sho though, I’ll give Gucci another shot. I’m not a big fan of Wayne(anymore) but T.I is one of my favs. Btw, I feel that Hiphop is coming back to where it used to be with Em selling, UGK selling, Meth & Red got a bangin CD out. So it’s gonna come back. I just hope our youngins can apprciate lyricism again. I actually found a person who said Big L was wack. Yeah, my head hurst just thinking about it.

          Anyways, props to the discussion.


  • http://xxlmag.com stoopidsouthswagg

    mane da souf iz da shit bitchez aint nobody fukkin wit dem niggaz on da cover of dat mag…
    gucci killin em oj dat nigga plain in simple SBezzy stepped it up in shawty lo just bring dat souf swagg 2 da game so fukk yall hatin azz niggaz DSIIDBB DA SOUF IZ IN DA BUILDIN BITCHEZ

  • Don Juan

    First off… I’m from the nation’s cap; therefore I have a neutral opinion, I don’t hold New York, southern, nor west coast rap on a pedastle. Second off… if you wish death on these men, claim that “they’ve killed hip-hop”, or do anything other than clapping it up for them… YOU ARE HATING! What makes the best rappers the best? There is no wrong answer. A few things though are certain… Atlanta… wait a minute… Zaytoven… makes by far the best beats in the entire industry today. Sometimes I will listen to an entire song only to hear the bass and treble that Zaytoven has concocted. Also, where does the status-quo get you in the rap game? The same place Jim Jones & Co. your favorite east coast and west coast rappers’ record sales are–in the gutter. These guys each are bringing something new and fresh to the game. Whether it be Gucci’s SUPER-ebonics or OJ’s super catchy ablibs. Oh yeah, one more thing… both Shawty Lo and Soulja Boy are pretty decent producers as well. Final point… So Icey, Down 4 Life, 32 Entertainment, and S.O.D… each of these young entrepreanuers are black C.E.O.s. If you don’t like that, you most likely don’t like your own mother. East coast and west coast rappers have for years depended on there labels to co-sign for them… whether it has been Bad Boy, Death Row, or Ruff Ryders… these negros grinded it out on there own, and for that, if none of you haters will… I SALUTE THESE PEOPLE!

  • JamPo

    I see tha hate…..its real strong when it come to southern based artist….funny thing is when southern artist was bringing lyrical skills and creating music that was similar to traditional hip hop(whatever that is) niggaz was still hating….Outkast was getting booed at award shows….Goodie dropped critical acclaimed albums but no real exposure…look at years of work Ball, G, Pimp, and Bun put in and niggaz was still hating…..

    granted that this not the best representation of my city but being XXL is a major media outlet and I would love to see a Killa Kill, Bobby Ray, Playboy Tre and a Stat Quo cover(Creekwater,Black Boi, Jody Breeze, Big Gee or some nigga) but that sh!t ain’t popping in the mainstream…commericially this is where the game is going and been heading for a hot minutes…..

    Da A is the mecca right now…..sorry ya’ll…Rice Wade told ya’ll this black man heaven on “Player’s Ball”….decent cost of living….good money to be made….alotta good drugs…..alotta bad bitches…Gucci ain’t lying…..niggaz get to it and then get it on

    • matty21

      JamPo, u da mannn…speak da truth on deez fools ha….every1 should read dat sht for informative purposes….cosign da truth u da man….n u din’t c da A or any of da south hatin on East, West, or any1 dat was on n poppin b4 dem..now da souf on n every1 hatin 4real geez…n ur right, hot minute boyyy keep hatin get used to it 4real

  • http://xxlmag Mzcalidastallion

    I am from cali and I bumb that Gucci all the time…….turn it up haters!!!!!







  • matty21

    Hip Hop is not dead!!!! It’s rich, still workin hard, still progressing, changing, n gettin better, buyin homes, cars n w/e else, selling out shows, partyin, selling a lil’ records, saving lives, helping people, settin trends, affecting culture n da youth, n fuckin model lesbians n sht, n is on in my car…damnn ya’ll crazy….so far from dead…..n deez 4 are on for da ride boy

  • escobar9300

    These four dudes are exactly whats wrong with hip hop today. Fuckin ignorance and “swag” has replaced lyricism and reality. Fuck these four clowns, put all 4 of their sales together and I bet they still don’t break 50 thousand. Their shit is garbage and I cant fuckin wait for them to dissappear from the rap game.

  • antwion23

    look everybody says its hate when u don’t like a certain rapper……you guys on here know damn well these niggas can’t rap! i’m a hip-hop fan 2 the death! and i seen a dude talkin bout all they shit 4 the clubs……but luda has a few club bangers would u say he’s a club rapper? how bout t.i.? jeezy is on that half and half, but my point is, we feel the way we feel cuz all u here on the radio is whats popular but thats the prob, how bout playin some shit everybody wants 2 hear? fuck kiss me thru the phone when the new red & meth just dropped(and its fire) “they know” was not shit until the rmx came out with luda and jeezy, and oh god we not go talk about “aye” by o.j. the sidekick, me personally i don’t own a gucci c.d. there is not a gucci song on my mp3 or on my computer his music at least 2 me is wack as shit. he sounds like watered down late 90′s cash money……his beats are a futeristic manny fresh(and they all sound the same)and everything is brick,chains,bitches,and drank, but if i told ya’ll i listen 2 talib kweli, nas, jay, cnn, common,jada, luda, outkast, 8-ball&mjg, would u call me wack 4 that? any one of these artist would shit on any one of these dudes hands down.

  • http://inkominrecords@myspace Randy Johnson a.k.a Pyppa(pipe-pa)

    I like what i read in the ad. You would have to be tryin to get to were they goin, or doin what they do to understand were they comin from.


  • bk

    ok gucci and shawty and oj make music about how they came from trappin to getting paid. i can dig that. they jus not much of rappers. like somebody said they have BEATS you can vibe to. they suck at rapping but get some of the coldest beats made. soulja boy is jus wack as a rap artist if he came out in the pop genre or some shit like that he would b ok but since he says he is a RAPPER he gets rated as A RAPPER which isnt good for him when u have at least 99% of the game better then u. jay-z said it best: do u fools listen to music or do u jus skim thru it? how bout everybody actually listen to th lyrics of them compared to other artist then say if u think they good rappers still

  • Don Juan


  • Mr,Reeps

    Dang thats Messed up so wat yall are saying is everybody from the south are country bumkins right? and alot of people on this blog are haters extremly you cant hate on these guys especially Gucci, Oj and Soulja I would rather be in the club dancin with a female to soulja boys she got a donk rather to the Lox that wont get a girl to dance yall should see how when gucci and oj gets played everybody shoots straight to the dance floor I’m from alabama and we aint cuntry at all obviously Gucci is doing sumthin right if he has songs with busta Camron he has a gangload of mixtapes thast nigga hot in the south along with oj and that was so stereotypical of ya ron talkin bout oj the watermelon kang and shit we as black people should be happy regardless that there are niggas reppin hard and makin money at that thats why i cant hate on soulja he came with sum catchy shit and hit the jackpot that could happen to any body but i forgot that XXL is a new york based mag so of course the hate would be comming off hard from there but alot of people on here know they bump Gucci and Oj at least on the regular so stop the hate Tha south has the best music right now other than Cam and Busta Real talk

  • Jackson,Tn


  • balaramesh

    4 bozo’s on one cover. they should have done some kid’s birthday party that day. glad i cancelled my subscription over a year ago.

    not made at anyone getting legal money. but not at the expense of the artform or culture.

  • dRoSmOkEr

    fuck them niggas
    shit down south we ride 2 UGK
    R.i.P. Pimp C!
    UGK 4 LiFE

  • Jordan

    Where is Jeezy and T.I.? Those the two selling the most!!!

  • I’m Me

    they on the grind like everybody else first and foremost. dont hate on what they doin. back in the day, nwa bubbled up off that gangsta shit with NO radioplay! look at dre and cube now and u would have never guessed it. look at the way master p and no limit blew up outta nowhere, in bayou country at that. they wasnt no supreme lyrcists. they was RAW STREET! and i mean GUTTER! these boys found they lane too or else they wouldnt be on this cover. shit ESPECIALLY souljah boy! they gettin money. and i’m sure aint nobody givin them nothin. u aint gotta like the music, but i cant see how u can hate the hustle.

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