You can call it copying XXL, beating them to the punch, predicting their list, or call it REUPSPOT’s own thing. I’ve compiled a list of 10 artists that you should be on the look out for in 2010. The artists are Shawn Chrystopher, Sha Stimuli, Skyzoo, Big Sean, Donny Goines, Emilio Rojas, Jay Electronica, Jared Evan, 88 Keys, and ESSO. I’ve done a small write up on each of the ten artists. As an added bonus I noted a list of buzz gainers and a producer list.
REUPSpot 2010 Freshman Class
His first major project was his mixtape entitled “Keep Your Classroom Vol 1.” With over 10,000 digital downloads, all the hard-work Shawn put into the project, making it flow as if it were an album than a mere collection of freestyles, people finally began to talk about the young kid from Inglewood.
Shawn first gathered my attention with I.W.G.: I Wear Glasses mixtape. Then he came back stronger than the first one with another I.W.G. tape but this time it was I Told You So. That is the tape that really got the internet buzzin’ over this character Shawn Chrystopher. These mixtapes were just the building blocks in what Shawn had next for us his debut (free) album, A City With No Seasons(ACWNS). Personally, I believe ACWNS has set a very high standard for not only just internet/blog artists but the mainstream artists also. ACWNS has been quoted to “change the way you will listen to hip hop”. ACWNS (Deluxe Edition) will be available on iTunes in a week. Shawn’s dedication, hard work, and passion he puts into his music is what will make him the next big thing in 2010. On a side-note Shawn writes, performs, produces, mixes, and masters all of his own music. What up Zaire?
In Biggie’s words “Where’s Brooklyn At?” It all started while as a student at University of Delaware interning for Roc-A-Fella Records. This may have been a positive for Sha, but his road has been less than smooth. In 2002 he dropped his first mixtape Let Me Show You the Way. This landed him a deal with Virgin Records until problems arised…his album never dropping and him eventually leaving the label. Luckily for Sha he still had the drive to continue his dream.
In early 2008, together with childhood friend DJ Victorious Stimuli took on an endeavour to release one mixtape per month for the next 12 months. Each mixtape had a theme and concept, ranging from politics (“March On Washington”) to relationships (“Love Jones”, “The Breakup”), and gained him a significant amount of attention.
Fresh off the release of his debut album “My Soul To Keep” on Chambermusik Records / El Distribution, Sha Stimuli is finally ready to receive the shine he deserves.
Bed-Stuy Sky has launched his career by landing theme tracks for ESPN and Guiness beer, building his own Custom Made Entertainment company, and securing a continuous relationship with North Carolina rap crew the Justus League. You are probably wondering why I am even adding him to the list. Especially since he was a rookie in the game, he managed to work with the likes of esteemed producers Jay Dee and 9th Wonder. Sky is nine mixtapes deep with two albums (one studio). 2009 Sky began to gain the attention with “Power of Words” and “The Salvation” he has deserved. Watch out for Skyzoo to become more of a fan favorite in 2010.
The picture alone should say enough. Since 2007 Big Sean has been rocking the Jesus Piece along side of Kanye West signed to G.O.O.D. Music. Big Sean turned heads with “Finally Famous-The Mixtape” in 2007 and broke necks with “U Know Big Sean–Finally Famous Vol. 2” back in the spring this year. “Finally Famous” the album is being slated to release in spring 2010. It will be Sean’s debut album and is said to include a plethora of hip-hop heavy weights. Some names include: Pharrell Williams, Kanye West, Mr. Hudson and The-Dream, Drake. 2010 Big Sean is hoping to be mentioned with the greats.
Donny Goines was born in the borough of Manhattan but spent most of his youth going back and forth between Philly, the Bronx, and Harlem. Donny had a hard childhood even with being arrested at age 16. In 2003 he received honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy. Donny was chaotically living life on the streets until 2006. Since 2006, Donny Goines has been relentless in the pursuit of his dreams. It all started being inspired by the movie “Fade to Black” he decided to become a serious Hip Hop artist and hasn’t looked back since. In late ’08 Donny released his indie debut “Minute After Midnight.” Since the release he has received label offers but continues to hustle independently. Late spring Donny gave his sophomore album,”The Breakfast Club”, to the bloggers/internet for a free download. With more time of Donny living by the quote “you can’t put a price on love” expect to hear much more great music from the man in 2010.
Emilio, like many of the young MCs, has been using the internet as his best friend to gain fans. Emilio began his life in Rochester, New York, where he was introduced to music by his father at an early age. Emilio began making a name for himself on the college scene by performing at campus events and parties, and even opening for national acts at the school. When it became clear there was only so much he could do as a student, Emilio made the tough decision to drop out of school.
Emilio Rojas has shown he can not only write, rhyme, and spit with the best of them, but he also makes undeniable music. With a style unlike any other, he continues to make headway in the world of Hip-Hop, always sure to let his talent and ability shine through.
Early Fall, Emilio gave us “Recession Proof” and next week he gives us “The Natural”. So if you don’t believe me that this kid is on the rise, make sure you download that next week. Until then I’ll leave you with this quote from ER’s track “Free”. “A free market/the stocks is free fallin’/in a land where freedom will ring and keep callin’ (hello?)/cause they don’t really wanna free up a line/so we don’t free up our minds/we got the freedom to die/and that’s it! The freedom to buy from fascists/where the free press is feedin’ us lies, they facts twists/these COs they taking the free rolls/gettin’ money now that’s easy to make like free throws.”
First off I’d like to say if you haven’t experienced listening to a Jay E track yet…google him now. Jay Electronica first gained significant attention through Act 1: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge), made available on Myspace in 2007.
It is 15 continuous minutes of music, without drums, built from Jon Brion’s soundtrack to the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. There are five segments or movements, marked by changes in music and mood, raps by Electronica, and occasional snippets of sampled dialogue (children arguing in Kurdish, Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka). The first segment is spoken word by Just Blaze and Erykah Badu describing the artist over piano music.
In 2008 he toured North America with Nas, and was part of the Rock The Bells International Festival Series. “Style Wars EP” really brought the buzz onto Jay that year. He is notoriously known for his track “Dimethyltryptamine”. While working on his solo album Jay has teamed up with Mos Def & Curren$y to form a group called Center Edge Territory. The three plan to record an entire album together. Expect HUGE moves from him in 2010.
At the age of 21 Jared Evan is a singer/songwriter, producer, and rapper. In 2008, Jared won the Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival’s Spit 16 competition which led to him opening up shows for Lupe Fiasco. He is currently signed to Zone 4 under Interscope Records. His song “Frozen” which he wrote and produced, appeared on the Lebron James documentary soundtrack entitled “More Than A Game”. If that didn’t create enough buzz he really stirred thing up with his debut mixtape Radio In My Head. This mixtape done nothing less than show off his skills of singing, producing, and rapping. With his versatility…there will be much more of Jared in 2010 & beyond.
Influenced in his teen years by Prince Paul’s work on De La Soul’s legendary album 3 Feet High and Rising, N.Y.C. native Charles Misodi Njapa became 88-Keys and made it his mission to become a hip-hop producer. 88 may be another “Why is he on this list?” but he is here for his rapping. His production is widely known as he has produced records for Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Macy Gray, Musiq Soulchild and Consequence.
Recently, 88′ extended beyond his production credits to highlight his skills on the mic as MC, singer and collaborator, most notably on his solo debut album The Death of Adam released on November 11, 2008. Executively produced by 88’s close friend Kanye West, the concept album tells the story of a man named Adam who has been murdered in a loft apartment in Harlem. In August 2008 a fifteen-track mixtape titled, Adam’s Case Files, was released as a prequel to The Death of Adam. The album’s first single titled “Stay Up! (Viagra)” was officially released through iTunes on September 9, 2008.
88 Keys is out to prove beyond his production skills in 2010.
Harlem born ESSO has went from playing baseball at University of Michigan and Howard to being on MTV,BET,blogs and more for his music. ESSO was named “Unsigned Hype” by The Source magazine in December of 2006. Since ’06 ESSO has had five mixtapes including his latest and most notorious “Off The Wall“. ESSO teamed up with Woodysproduce to pay homage to Michael Jackson’s music legacy. By the end of 2010 everyone will be a part of the “ESSOExperience”.
My Honorable Mentions:
Young & On The Rise Producer:
Feel free to argue with my list or add your own thoughts. Please pass this article along to gain others opinions.