• GOV'T NAME: Xavier Landum
  • AGE: 26
  • REPPIN': Dallas
  • X: @BigXthaPlugg
  • INSTAGRAM: @bigxthaplug
  • TIKTOK: @bigxthaplug_
  • NOTABLE RELEASES: Songs: “Texas,” “Mmhmm,” “Levels,” “Whip It”; Album: Amar EP: The Biggest Project: Meet the 6ixers with Ro$ama and Yung Hood; Guest Appearances: NLE Choppa’s “Pistol Paccin,” That Mexican OT’s “Hit List” featuring Big Yavo, Mike Dimes’ “Off The Porch” featuring Maxo Kream
  • LABEL: Unsigned
  • CURRENTLY WORKING ON: Sophomore album Take Care dropping in August.
  • WHO ELSE SHOULD BE PART OF THIS YEAR'S CLASS: “I feel like Karrahbooo shoulda made it. Anycia. Veeze was the Ja Morant of rap last year, for sure. I just feel like I thought he would’ve led it. YTB Fatt had an outstanding year.”
  • INFLUENCED BY: “I didn’t grow up to do music. I was supposed to play sports. So, I guess you could say the people who turned me up and got me in my mindset while I was playing sports, you got Lil Wayne, the old Kanye was hard. I’m a R&B type of guy. I listen to Rod Wave and stuff like that to this day. If you wanna throw back, you got Avant, you got, you know, your Boyz II Men, you got your Isley Brothers. That’s all my pops listening to.”
  • AS A FRESHMAN IN HIGH SCHOOL: “Me and all my patnas, we always knew we was gonna be something. We just didn’t know what it was gonna be. ’Cause we was always like, the popular… We hung with seniors. We was always those guys. And then football, sports just made it times 10. So yeah, we was always under some limelight. So as a freshman, I knew I was gonna be something.”

TRUTH ON BEING AN XXL FRESHMAN: “It kinda just shows that whenever everybody thought I was supposed to get it and I didn’t get it, I still kept going. This to show that, like, OK, if you don’t see it, he’s gonna make you see it.

This is like a stepping-stone in this. You gotta do this. Everybody that did this [XXL Freshman]—I’m not gonna say everybody—but majority of the people, even if they declined in music, you still can come back and look right here and see it, you know what I’m sayin’? I wanted to be on this list. I’m one of those people that whenever I do something, I do it. So, as soon as I had the mindset of, OK, bet, I’m finna do music, in my head, every accomplishment, you know what I’m sayin’? I gotta be on the XXL, I gotta win a BET award. All that popped into my head. All the stuff that I was seeing people do, just growing up, watching on TV and whatnot, I wanted to do that ’cause I felt like that’s what shows that this person is a great rapper, you know what I’m sayin’?

[What I bring to this class is] just personality, humor. I’m talking about a lot of harsh gangsta-type stuff, but in more of a groovy way. I’m tryna make rap fun again, you know what I’m sayin? I make people move their hips. You a gangsta, you got your gun in your hand, but your hips moving at the same time, you know?”—As told to Georgette Cline

Watch BigXthaPlug's 2024 XXL Freshman Freestyle

BigXthaPlug
XXL
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BigXthaPlug is having his way. The 26-year-old Dallas rapper has been living large ever since his sonorous voice took his rhymes to new levels outside the Lone Star State. His hometown-pride anthem "Texas" and Billboard Hot 100 smash "Mmhmm" highlight the clever magnetism and striking storytelling that has put him at the forefront of Texas street rap over the last year. He brings both—and lots of cash—to his 2024 XXL Freshman freestyle.

The former football player flexes the ice on his wrist and teeth while putting a bounty on someone's head. "50K on my watch, 30K on my face, 60K on your head if you play then you late/Who you know up the score and put on for his state/You can hate, just don't play with my folks and you great," BigX raps in the video below.

Growing up, the Southern MC was focused on the gridiron not rapping. While Lil Wayne and Ye were artists he listened to on the come up, BigXthaPlug was more of an "R&B type of guy." He makes that clear in his freestyle with a shout-out to 1990's R&B group Escape. "See I really been gliding on sh*t like Escape, biggest steppa," BigX delivers. "When I step on sh*t, bet it shake/Oh you harder than me, I don't do the debates/I got cake, I can never get talked out my place."

BigXthaPlug's place in rap is solidified right now. As an indie artist signed to UnitedMasters, he's been riding high on the charts with no major label backing. His 2023 feel-good hit song, "Mmhmm," is reminiscent of Will Smith's own 1997 smash "Miami," since both tracks sample The Whispers' 1979 classic song "And the Beat Goes On." "Mmhmm" debuted at No. 93 on the Billboard Hot 100 last December. For a man who didn't have big rap dreams as a kid, BigX's talents have taken him pretty far. He's also been pumping out plenty of projects since 2020: Bacc From the Dead, Big Stepper, Amar, The Biggest and the collab effort Meet the Sixers with Ro$ama and Yung Hood. BigX keeps it consistent.

"I didn’t grow up to do music," he admits. "I was supposed to play sports. So, I guess you could say the people who turned me up and got me in my mindset while I was playing sports, you got Lil Wayne, the old Kanye was hard. I'm a R&B type of guy. I listen to Rod Wave and stuff like that to this day. If you wanna throw back, you got Avant, you got, you know, your Boyz II Men, you got your Isley Brothers. That's all my pops listening to."

These days, street rap is BigX's forte, and he's big steppin' all over it. Take Care, his forthcoming sophomore album arriving in August, will feature a mix of BigX's amusing bars "[What I bring to this class is] just personality, humor," he maintains. "I'm talking about a lot of harsh gangsta-type stuff, but in more of a groovy way. I'm tryna make rap fun again, you know what I'm sayin? I make people move their hips. You a gangsta, you got your gun in your hand, but your hips moving at the same time, you know?"

Take a look as BigXthaPlug dodges the debates in his freestyle below.

Watch BigXthaPlug's 2024 XXL Freshman Freestyle

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