8ball & MJG

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Posted by pompos 03/14/2009 @ 15:09

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8Ball & MJG

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8Ball & MJG is an American hip hop duo from Memphis, Tennessee, consisting of rappers 8Ball and MJG. The two rappers met at Ridgeway Middle School in 1984.

For their later releases they signed with Bad Boy Records. Their first album for Bad Boy Records, Living Legends, was certified Gold by the RIAA. Their second album on Bad Boy Records was titled Ridin High and was released in March 2007.

Commercially one of the high points of 8Ball & MJG's career was their being featured on Three 6 Mafia's hit song "Stay Fly" in 2005. That song peaked at #13 on the Billboard Hot 100, which is the biggest hit of Three 6 Mafia's career and the biggest hit for 8Ball & MJG. The song was a collaboration between two of the most successful rap groups from the state of Tennessee, where Three 6 Mafia also hail from.

Today 8Ball and MJG also head their own record labels. 8Ball heads 8 Ways Entertainment (distributed by Koch Entertainment), while MJG heads MJG Muzik. On their label are the young, up and coming Memphis duo, Da Volunteers, who are widely known throughout the Southern United States for their 2006 single, "What's Yo Favorite Color?", which glorifies their neighborhood of Orange Mound.

In March 2008, MJG signed a deal in Atlanta with 404 Music, Inc. to release his newest solo album entitled, This Might Be The Day. The album is scheduled for release June 2008.

The group had announced in December of 2007 that they have signed on to T.I.'s record label Grand Hustle.

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Bad Boy Records

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Bad Boy Records (originally Bad Boy Entertainment) is an East Coast record label, dealing largely in Hip-Hop/R&B music, founded by producer/rapper Sean "Diddy" Combs in 1993. Today it operates as a subsidiary of Warner Music Group, and is distributed by Atlantic Records.

After his climb from a non-paying internship to becoming an A&R executive at Uptown Records, Sean ("Diddy") Combs was abruptly terminated in 1993 by then CEO Andre Harrell—reportedly due to his own difficulty to work with. Upon his firing, Arista Records chief Clive Davis took advantage of Combs' free agent status and agreed to bankroll him his own vanity label to be operated through Arista and its BMG parent. A handful of the acts who had been signed to Uptown via Combs just prior to his dismissal were dropped from the label; among them were Christopher Wallace (aka The Notorious B.I.G.), and Craig Mack—both of whom Combs would take with him to his new company.

The label’s first release was Craig Mack's "Flava In Ya Ear", followed quickly by Mack's debut album, Project: Funk Da World in 1994. On the heels of these releases came "Juicy" and Ready To Die, the lead single and debut album from The Notorious B.I.G. (who would also be referred to as "Biggie"), released the same year. While Mack's album went gold, Ready to Die achieved multi-platinum success. Dominating the charts into 1995, B.I.G. became one of the rap world's biggest names of the day and Bad Boy’s premier star. Also in 1995, the label continued its success with platinum releases by Total and Faith Evans. Bad Boy, meanwhile, staffed a bevy of in-house writer/producers, including: Chucky Thompson, Easy Mo Bee, Nashiem Myrick and D Dot—all of whom were instrumental in producing many of Bad Boy’s most noted releases during this time.

The quick success of The Notorious B.I.G., and Bad Boy as a company, did not sit well with all—most notably the Los Angeles-based Death Row Records. For two years leading up to 1995, Death Row (and the west coast hip hop scene that it led) had largely dominated the commercial rap scene. With Bad Boy, and east coast hip hop, now garnering the notoriety that it was, resentment loomed as the attention and acclaim now had to be shared.

Suge Knight, CEO of Death Row Records, especially didn’t take too kindly to the emergence of Bad Boy, and publicly jeered Combs. Tensions were heightened when west coast rap superstar Tupac Shakur (2Pac) signed with Death Row, after having recently forged an indignant rivalry with Wallace (B.I.G). More fuel was added to the fire when some music fans began taking sides between Wallace and Shakur, Bad Boy and Death Row, as well as East coast-vs.-West Coast.

While Combs made a handful of attempts to denounce the coastal/label feud, and didn’t allow any of Bad Boy’s artists to publicly lash back at the slights coming from the other side, most of it fell on deaf ears as tensions reached a boiling point in 1996. Later in the year on September 7, 2Pac was shot and killed in a drive-by by a still-unknown gunman. Though Bad Boy issued a public statement of condolence, the bad blood continued. On March 9, 1997, as the label readied for the release of Biggie’s double album, Life After Death, he too was shot and killed, ironically in similar circumstances as 2Pac did. The deaths of Biggie and 2Pac left many to speculate if the coastal hostility had been responsible for their demises. The police investigations of both cases, meanwhile, remain unsolved.

Posthumously, Biggie’s Life After Death entered Billboard Top 200 Albums Chart at number one. Its first two singles, "Hypnotize" and "Mo Money, Mo Problems" also topped the singles charts. It eventually sold 10 million copies in the United States alone, and is one of the highest selling rap albums ever.

In early 1997, Puff Daddy had begun recording his own solo debut album. The first single, "Can't Nobody Hold Me Down," peaked at number one on the rap, R&B, and pop charts that spring. In response to Biggie’s death, the label rush-released a Puff Daddy tribute song, "I'll Be Missing You", which featured Biggie's widow, Faith Evans, and Bad Boy's R&B singing group 112. The single topped the charts for eleven weeks and became the hasty second single from Combs’ album, No Way Out, which was released in the summer and sold seven million copies. Mase, Combs’ newest protégé, in the meantime was immediately thrust into the void that Biggie left. His own debut album, Harlem World, also released the same year, would go 4x platinum. Due to the successive successes of Life After Death, No Way Out, and Harlem World, by the end of 1997, Bad Boy as a label and brand name had hit a commercial peak. During this time, the label began to promote its latest signing—the Yonkers-based act, The L.O.X., who had been prominently featured on various Bad Boy releases that year. Though highly anticipated, their 1998 debut album, Money, Power & Respect sold below commercial expectation. Shortly thereafter, the group departed the label and entered into a long standing publishing dispute with Combs that would continue up until 2005.

In the years to follow, Bad Boy saw a decline. In 1999, Mase became religious and abruptly retired from the business—leaving a serious dent in the company, especially since his second album had just been released. Bad Boy found some success with Shyne, a young rapper from Brooklyn, who garnered both praise and criticism for his deep voice and slow flow—which many considered to be too reminiscent to, and perhaps a rip-off of, the Notorious B.I.G. Meanwhile, Combs' own follow-up albums failed to generate the same kind of acclaim that his debut had. In an attempt to further market himself, he underwent several name changes; from "Puff Daddy" to "P. Diddy", to now simply "Diddy".

As the 2000s emerged, Bad Boy had noticeably floundered. Many of its more noted acts would eventually vacate the label, while those who remained saw their sales dwindle as time went on. In spite of continually releasing new material, and various attempts at building artists to the status of Bad Boy’s deceased icon, few proved as successful as the company hoped.

Southern rap duo 8Ball & MJG released an album called Living Legends to some success in 2004—prompting the creation of Bad Boy South, which would eventually house acts such as Boyz N Da Hood and Yung Joc. In 2002, Combs’ participated in MTV's Making The Band 2—which spun off the Bad Boy assembled act, Da Band. In spite of their MTV exposure leading to a gold selling debut album, Combs later disbanded the group. At this time, the label also signed a rapper named Aasim, who hasn't been heard from since his signing.

Arista Records bought a 50% stake in Bad Boy in 1994. Following Clive Davis’s departure from its parent company, the label broke ties with Arista and BMG—moving to Universal Music Groups’ Universal Records in 2003. The change of distribution, however, did not increase productivity. In 2005, Warner Music Group bought out the remainder of Bad Boy's agreement with Universal Music Group, then bought a large minority stake in the label. Today the label is distributed through WMG's Atlantic Records, and continues to operate.

Bad Boy saw its fortunes improve in 2005, with the success of releases from new signees: Cassie and Yung Joc (both of whom would score top five singles/debut album albums). Also in 2006, Bad Boy hit paydirt with Making The Band 3’s Danity Kane, whose debut album topped the charts at #1 (the labels first chart topping album since the Bad Boys II: The Soundtrack three years prior), and spun off a top ten single. Their sophomore album, Welcome to the Dollhouse also debuted at #1, and containted the group's second top ten single "Damaged". Diddy also signed Day 26 & Donnie Klang to the label.

Boyband B5 (band) has recently left Bad Boy Records due to lack of promotion.

Recently, Diddy kicked Aubrey O'Day & D.Woods out of Danity Kane. At this point the future of the group is not certain, although a recent MTV interview suggests that the internal problems within the group could be resolved.

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Al Kapone

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Alphonzo Bailey, better known by his stage name Al Kapone, is an American rapper from Memphis, Tennessee.

Al Kapone is known principally for his underground success in the Memphis hip hop scene in the 1990s and current role in a number of contemporary songs. Before the popularity of fellow Memphis rappers 8Ball & MJG and Three 6 Mafia, Al Kapone was a mainstay of the underground Memphis hip hop scene.

After a decade of cultivating underground cult status in Memphis, Al Kapone began to achieve some mainstream success starting with his role on the soundtrack to the film Hustle & Flow. On that soundtrack, he had one solo track, titled "Get Crunk, Get Buck". He also wrote and produced "Whoop That Trick" and wrote "Hustle & Flow (It Ain't Over)", both tracks performed by Djay.

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Suave House Records

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Suave House Records is a record label located in Houston, TX founded by Tony Draper. In April 2008, Suave House signed a joint venture deal with Koch Entertainment. The label first release under the partnership was 8ball & MJG Greastest Hits album. The label plans on releasing upcoming albums from Jiggolo and Gillie Da Kid.

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On the Outside Looking In

On the Outside Looking In cover

On the Outside Looking In is the 1994 album by 8Ball & MJG released on Suave House Records.

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Ridin High

Ridin High cover

Ridin High is the seventh album by the rap duo 8Ball & MJG and their second release for Bad Boy Records. The album was released on March 13, 2007. It was originally scheduled for July under the title "Pure American Pimpin'", but then has been confirmed to be titled "Ridin High".

The album features artist like Three 6 Mafia, Juvenile, Yung Joc, Diddy, The Notorious B.I.G., Jazze Pha, 112 & Project Pat. Productions will come from Jazze Pha, Sean Dre, Drumma Boy, Lil Jon, DJ Toomp and Timbaland's protégé Nate "Danja" Hills.

The first single off the album is "Relax and Take Notes", which features The Notorious B.I.G. (containing a sample of "Dead Wrong" from his posthumous album Born Again) and fellow Memphian Project Pat. The second single of the album is called "Cruzin'", and it has been confirmed on 8Ball & MJG's official website . The explicit version of the album leaked onto the Internet on March 7, 2007. The album was also highly publicised on Xxlmag.com.

Following its release, the album debuted at number eight on the U.S. Billboard 200, selling about 50,000 copies in its first week. As of September 2007, the album has sold approximately 200,000 copies worldwide.

Highlights on the album include "Cruzin'", an outstanding R&B collaboration with Slim from ATL's 112 and Three 6 Mafia, the bluesy "Runnin' Out of Bud" with Killer Mike and the steamy track "Take It Off" featuring Poo Bear. Jazze Pha adds his smooth R&B flavor to "Pimpin' Don't Fail Me Now", and Yung Joc heats up the hot party track "Clap On". "Memphis", an impassioned track produced by B Rock and featuring Al Kapone, is a well-constructed gem that finds the duo paying homage not only to their hometown but to their musical legacy as well. They vividly recount their life experiences and give props to other cities that have impacted their lives over the years. The song "Stand Up" was featured on the video game WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2008.

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Source : Wikipedia