OZONE AWARDS & TJ’s DJ’s TASTEMAKERS SPECIAL EDITION
DAVID BANNER NO MORE MR. NICE GUY
10 REASONS OZONE MAGAZINE IS THE SHIT
WITH OZONE AWARD NOMINEES:
BUN B * CHAMILLIONAIRE KHIA * LIL SCRAPPY * MAGNO RICK ROSS * DJ DRAMA * DJ KHALED TOO $HORT * KILLER MIKE * E-40 * DRE FIELD MOB * JACKI-O * KAMIKAZE * B.G. PAUL WALL * PITBULL * BOHAGON * RAPID RIC * SLIM THUG TRAE * TREAL * TRICK DADDY * UNCLE LUKE * YOUNG CASH YOUNG JEEZY * YUNG JOC * PRETTY RICKY * T-PAIN & MORE
OZONE AWARDS & TJ’S DJ’S TASTEMAKERS SPECIAL EDITION
LIL WAYNE I’MA MAKE IT HAPPEN, I’MA MAKE A WAY
10 REASONS OZONE MAGAZINE IS THE SHIT WITH OZONE AWARD NOMINEES:
BUN B * CHAMILLIONAIRE RICK ROSS * DAVID BANNER DJ DRAMA * DJ KHALED * DRE TOO $HORT * KILLER MIKE * E-40 FIELD MOB * JACKI-O * KAMIKAZE KHIA * B.G. * LIL SCRAPPY * MAGNO PAUL WALL * PITBULL * BOHAGON RAPID RIC * SLIM THUG * T-PAIN TRAE * TREAL * TRICK DADDY UNCLE LUKE * YOUNG CASH YOUNG JEEZY * YUNG JOC PRETTY RICKY & MORE
OZONE AWARDS 2006
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tj’s dj’s tastemakers & ozone awards itinerary
*subject to change
Friday August 4, 2006
Don Diva Magazine), Wendy Day (CEO, Rap Coalition), & Wendy Washington (Senior Vice President of Media Relations, Universal Records)
10 AM - until On-Site Registration at Host Hotel Ivanhoe Plaza/Sheraton Hotel 60 S. Ivanhoe Blvd. downtown Orlando, FL
1:30 PM – Manish Man presents the DJ Crew Panel panelists: 1st Lady El (CEO, Murda Mamis), Cristal Bubblin (Vice President, Bumsquad DJz), DJ Mars (CEO, SuperFriends), Kaspa (CEO, Hittmenn DJs) Scrap Dirty (CEO, Violator All-Star DJs), & Tony Neal (CEO, The CORE DJs)
*all panels and suite parties take place at Host Hotel unless otherwise noted* 2 PM – Musik Boxx presents the Producers Panel panelists: Cool & Dre, DJ Toomp, Jim Jonsin, Khao, KLC, Mr. Collipark, Nitti, & The Runners 2 PM – No Name Necessary presents the Technology Panel panelists: Corey Llewellen (Digiwaxx), Donya Floyd (AOL Radio), Roslynn Cobarrubias (Myspace.com), Jamie Chvotkin (CDBaby.com), Wendy Day (CEO, Rap Coalition) & more TBA
1:30 PM – Bossman presents the Media Panel panelists: Carl Chery (SOHH.com), Cavario Hodges (Don Diva Magazine), Jesus Trivino (Senior Editor, Scratch Magazine), Kraze (CEO, All Access DVD), Matt Sonzala (Murder Dog Magazine), Maurice Garland (Music Editor, OZONE Magazine), N. Ali Early (Editor-In-Chief, Grip Magazine), Rahman Dukes (MTV News/Mixtape Mondays) 4 PM – Jathar Diamonds presents the Artist Panel panelists: David Banner, Juelz Santana, Killer Mike, Pimp C, Slim Thug, T-Pain, Webbie & more TBA
3:30 PM – b.i.G.f.a.c.e. Entertainment presents the Indie Executives Panel panelists: Bryan Leach (TVT), Chaka Zulu (CEO, DTP Records), Jason Geter (CEO, Grand Hustle), Ted Lucas (CEO, Slip-N-Slide Records), Mike Clarke (Swishahouse), Uncle Luke (CEO, Luke Records), & Vince Phillips (CEO, BME Records)
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM – DJ Suite Parties / Listening Sessions (DJ CREDENTIAL REQUIRED FOR ACCESS) - Bad Boy/Atlantic Records Suite Party with 8Ball & MJG - Asylum Records Suite Party with Lil Flip - Jive Records Suite Party with Dre & M.O.S.
3:30 PM - Royal Blunts presents the DJ Panel panelists: Brandi Garcia, Clinton Sparks, DJ Chuck T, DJ Jelly, DJ Nasty, DJ Wally Sparks, Green Lantern, & Greg Street
8 PM - 10 PM - Tastemakers Only Showcase Club at Firestone 578 N. Orange Ave. downtown Orlando, FL with DJ-exclusive Serato & laptop raffle performances by Trillville, Mr. Magic, Tampa Tony, J-Shin, Young A & more
5-7 PM – DJ Suite Party/Listening Sessions (DJ CREDENTIAL REQUIRED FOR ACCESS) - Koch Records Suite Party w/ DJ Unk & Baby D - Others TBA 7-10 PM – Welcome to Florida Pool Party & Fashion Show hosted by Khao & Stay Fresh performances by Crime Mob, Chyna Whyte, B.H.I., Young Capone, THud, Mannish Man, & Da Mouf Records 10 PM - 3 AM - Interscope Records Official TJ’s DJ’s/OZONE Awards Kickoff Party Cairo Nightclub performances by Young Buck, Lloyd Banks, Slim Thug, Rich Boy, Jibbs, Obie Trice, Hot Rod, & Stat Quo Music by DJ Q45, Supastar J-Kwik & DJ Greg G Registered members of the conference are admitted free until MIDNIGHT.
10 PM - 3 AM - Tastemakers Only Afterparty Club at Firestone Lil Wayne & many more celebrity guests will be in the building Music by Cool Runnings, Disco & the City Boyz, Emperor Searcy, & Supastar J-Kwik Registered members of the conference are admitted free until MIDNIGHT. 3 AM – until - Late Night Suite Party at Host Hotel - TBA
Sunday August 6, 2006 12 PM - 3 PM - OZONE Brunch - Location TBA 4 PM - 6 PM - OZONE Red Carpet With comedians Benji Brown & Roland “Lil Duval” Powell Livingston St. in front of the Bob Carr Auditorium
3 AM – until BME Records Late Night Suite Party at Host Hotel with Crime Mob, Chyna Whyte, B.H.I. & more
7 PM - 11 PM - 1st Annual OZONE Awards Bob Carr Auditorium 401 W. Livingston St., downtown Orlando, FL hosted by David Banner & Trina
Saturday August 5, 2006 10 AM - until On-Site Registration at Host Hotel Ivanhoe Plaza/Sheraton Hotel
performances by Lil Wayne, T.I., Pimp C & Bun B, Trick Daddy, Pitbull, Rick Ross, Too $hort, Shawnna, T-Pain, Young Dro, Slim Thug, Trae, Yung Joc, Paul Wall & more
*all panels and suite parties take place at Host Hotel* 12 PM – G-Mack of Lost Land Entertainment presents the A&R Panel panelists: Dart La (Director of A&R, Shady Records), Dino Delvaille (Senior VP of A&R, Sony BMG), James Eichelberger (Director of A&R, TVT Records), Joie Manda (Director of A&R & Promotions, Asylum Records), Kawan Prather (Executive VP of A&R, Sony Urban), MeMpHiTz (Director of A&R, Jive Records), Mike Caren (Senior VP of A&R, Atlantic Records), Shakir Stewart (VP of A&R, Def Jam), Shawn Holiday (Senior VP of A&R, Interscope Records), & Wes Phillips (Select-O-Hits) 12 PM – Earthworm Clothing presents the Women In The Industry Panel panelists: Elora Mason (CEO, E. Mason & Associates), Jill Strada (Program Director, WPYO Power 95.3 Orlando), Kim Osorio (Editor-In-Chief, BET.com), Miss Info (On-Air Personality, Hot 97) Supa Cindy (Morning Show On-Air Personality, WEDR 99 Jamz Miami), Tiffany Chiles (CEO,
appearances by 8Ball & MJG, Aztek, B.G., Bohagon, Bonecrusher, Cam’Ron, Choppa, Crime Mob, DJ Khaled, ESG, Grandaddy Souf, JackiO, Juelz Santana, Khia, Killer Mike, Lil Boosie, Lil Flip, Lyfe Jennings, Obie Trice, Rich Boy, Roy Jones Jr. & 3D, Smitty, Sqad Up, Stat Quo, TV Johnny, Twista, Uncle Luke, Webbie, Young Cash, Young Jeezy, Yukmouth & many more 10 PM - 3 AM - Atlantic Records Official OZONE Awards Afterparty with Grand Hustle, Bad Boy Records, & Slip-N-Slide Club at Firestone 578 N. Orange Ave. downtown Orlando, FL performances by Young Dro, Plies, B.G. & many more TBA music by DJ Drama, DJ Khaled, DJ Nasty, & Disco & the City Boyz Registered members of the conference are admitted free until MIDNIGHT.
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meet our panelists BRANDI GARCIA / DJ & radio personality, KBXX-Houston – DJ Panel (Houston, TX) The bit of sunshine Brandi Garcia took from her native state of Florida has paved a bright future. Garcia worked the radio ladder to become the proud owner of Houston’s #1 night show on 97.9 The Box, host of the music video show “Hot TV,” creator of the sultry Southern Stilletto mix CD series, and becoming 2006 Southern Entertainment Award’s Female DJ of the Year. A proud member of the Murder Mamis & NoizeMob, Garcia is en fuego! BRYAN LEACH / TVT Records – Indie Exec Panel (New York, NY) Bryan was largely responsible for propelling acts like Lil Jon & the Eastside Boyz, the Ying Yang Twins, and Pitbull to national success during his time as VP of A&R at TVT Records. Now on the verge of launching his own label, Bryan’s thorough knowledge of the music business and hands-on approach to artist development will guarantee him success. CARL CHERY / SOHH.com – Media Panel (New York, NY) CAVARIO HODGES / Don Diva Magazine – Media Panel (Atlanta, GA) CHAKA ZULU / Co-CEO, Disturbing Tha Peace & Ebony Son – Indie Exec Panel (Atlanta, GA) Chaka Zulu has been making his mark in the music industry for the past 10 years. Much like his namesake, Zulu relies on education and tenacity for success while giving back to his people. Chaka Zulu has worn many hats including Music Director for Atlanta’s Hot 97.5, radio promotions for Sony & Universal, and currently serves as Co-CEO and manager for entertainment icon Ludacris and the Disturbing Tha Peace brand. CLINTON SPARKS / DJ, Producer, Entrepreneur – DJ Panel (Hartford, CT) Music is universal as Clinton Sparks proves through the syndication of his “SmashTime Radio” heard in the USA, Australia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Canada and on Sirius Satellite’s Shade 45. Sparks takes full advantage of his entrepreneurial skills with two merchandising websites MixUnit.com & FlixUnit.com. While cats from Kanye West, 50 Cent, Eminem, & Pharrell have all blessed his famous mixtapes, the world is just now “getting familiar” with Sparks the producer. And as Sparks continues to push it to the limit with a new album plus deals involving video games and Pepsi, the world is about to become very familiar with Clinton Sparks. COOL & DRE – Producer Panel (Miami, FL) Production credits include Ja Rule f/ Jadakiss & Fat Joe “New York New York,” The Game f/ 50 Cent “Hate It Or Love It,” Christina Milian f/ Young Jeezy “Say I,” Juvenile “Rodeo,” and DJ Khaled f/ Paul Wall, Rick Ross, Pitbull, & Fat Joe “Holla At Me.” COREY LLEWELLYN / Digiwaxx.com – Technology Panel (New York, NY) CRISTAL BUBBLIN / Vice President, Bum Squad DJz – DJ Crew Panel DART PARKER / Dir. A&R, Shady Records – A&R Panel (New York, NY) Most folks in the industry base signing new talent from charts and bandwagons, but true A&R’s such as Dart Parker rely on their ear and the conviction to stand behind the music they sign. Parker has trusted his instincts ever since leaving Raleigh, NC via Amtrak armed with $800 and a dream. Parker has continued living his dream beginning as a producer for DMX and De La Soul then eventually moving up to becoming Director of A&R for Shady Records, signing Stat Quo and Ca$his to the house Em built. DJ CHUCK T / DJ & CEO, Port City Productions – DJ Panel (Charleston, SC) Frustrated with the lack of opportunities available to independent artists, Chuck T dropped his mic and picked up the turntable. He decided to fight the game from within the system and has opened doors for many artists in and
around his hometown of Charleston, SC though his mixtape series, Ghetto Gangsters including dropping 45 titles in one year! DJ Chuck T has already had coverage in The Source, Ozone Magazine, Scratch Magazine, and MTV’s Mixtape Mondays to name a few. His hard work is paying off as DJ Chuck T was nominated for 14 Southern Entertainment Awards in his first year of eligibility and looks forward to watching his label Port City Productions become a super power in the music industry. DJ JELLY - DJ Panel (Atlanta, GA) DJ MARS / Founder, World Famous Superfriends – DJ Crew (Atlanta, GA) As the President and founding member of the World Famous Superfriends Crew, DJ Mars single handedly changed the DJ scene in Atlanta. While attending Clark Atlanta University, DJ Mars started his career DJing in the cafeteria during dinner for only $75. Mars went from being Outkast’s original DJ to touring with Usher. Currently Mars is living the life of legends and happily on tour with Ciara. DJ NASTY / DJ & Producer, Nasty Beatmakers – DJ Panel (Orlando, FL) Now that his partner DJ Prostyle has departed for NYC and BET, Nasty virtually holds a DJ monopoly on the city of Orlando, dominating radio and clubs. Widely considered one of the best on the one’s & two’s, Nasty and his brother LVM have also used their industry connections to venture into production. Their tracks have appeared on albums by everyone from Camron to Ludacris. DJ TOOMP – Producer Panel (Atlanta, GA) Production credits include T.I.’s “Dope Boyz,” “U Don’t Know Me,” “Motivation,” “What U Know,” “Be Easy,” and Ludacris’ “Two Miles An Hour.” DJ WALLY SPARKS / DJ, syndicated – DJ Panel (Chattanooga, TN) Once upon a time Wally Sparks was OZONE Magazine’s music editor, but he left us to pursue his true love 24/7: DJing and breaking new music. He can currently be heard on 3 commercial radio stations in 3 different states in addition to his own weekly show on Sirius Satellite Radio entitled “League Crew Radio.” Wally Sparks currently has globally distributed mixtapes featuring big names such as Ludacris, Chamillionaire, Yung Joc, Trae, and 8Ball & MJG. DONYA FLOYD / Programmer, AOL Radio Network – Technology Panel (New York, NY) Donya Floyd programs nearly 40 urban music stations for the AOL Radio Network, including R&B, dancehall and gospel – acting as a liaison between AOL Music and labels and artists. In addition to her radio responsibilities, she is a contributor to AOL Music’s news and feature articles, AIM interviews and Sessions. Ms. Floyd’s background includes programming and on-air stints at WOWI-FM in Norfolk, WPGC 95.5 FM in Washington, DC, and WUSL Power 99 FM in Philadelphia. Most recently, she also appeared as a weekly entertainment news contributor on Philadelphia’s top-rated TV station, NBC-10. ELORA MASON / Founder, E. Mason & Associates – Women In the Industry Panel (Atlanta, GA) Elora Mason is the founder and CEO of E. Mason & Associates, a Miami based Events Management and Publicity Firm. She is also the co-founder of Young Florida Vote, a non-profit, non-partisan voter empower program and the Florida Entertainment Summit, Florida’s most important entertainment networking summit. Elora, born in St. Croix, has worked with Atlantic Records, Bigga Rankin, Benji Brown, Caribbean Reggae Fest, DJ DEMP, DEMP Week, So South, Tarvoria, The Core DJs, The Core DJs Retreat, Trick Daddy, Trick Luvs Da Kids Foundation and a host of others.
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1st LADY EL / Founder, Murda Mamis Ent - DJ Crew Panel (New York, NY) 1st Lady El is the architect of the largest collective of
meet our panelists women in the urban entertainment industry, The Murda Mamis. This prolific group covers all industry genres from DJs, recording artists, media personalities, producers, executives, journalists, and models including placements at MTV, Don Diva Magazine and power stations like KBXX-Houston to name a few. Lady El notes that “I started Murda Mamis to unify women in Hip Hop. Women are very powerful and together we can be invincible.” With a hustler’s ambition this strong, the Murda Mamis will always be respected to the 1st degree. GREEN LANTERN – DJ Panel (New York, NY) Aside from the infamous Jadakiss DVD incident which led to Green’s dismissal from Eminem’s camp, Green is known for being one of the sickest mixtape DJs, dropping unique blends and exclusive songs regularly.
KASPA / CEO, Hittmenn DJs (Atlanta, GA)
and Ray Cash.
KHAO – Producer Panel (Atlanta, GA) Production credits include Young Jeezy f/ Trick Daddy & Young Buck “Last of a Dying Breed,” T.I. “Why U Wanna,” T.I. “Stand Up Guy,” T.I. f/ P$C “Limelight,” Paul Wall f/ T.I. “So Many Diamonds,” and Lil Kim “Get Yours.”
GREG “GATE$” DAVENPORT / Murder Dog - Media Panel (N. Florida) GREG STREET – DJ Panel (Atlanta, GA) The Ultimate Hustler, Greg once balanced dual radio shows in Atlanta and Dallas and has expanded his brand to encompass car shows, sneaker shows, and other entrepreneurial ventures. JAMES EICHELBERGER / A&R, TVT Records – A&R Panel (New York, NY) JASON GETER / Co-CEO, Grand Hustle – Indie CEO Panel (Atlanta, GA) As both T.I.’s manager and business partner, Jason can be largely credited with not only the success of T.I.’s individual career, but the success of the label as a whole. Grand Hustle was responsible for the Hustle & Flow soundtrack and, in addition to the veteran P$C crew, recently brought in new acts like Young Dro and Yola who are set to follow in T.I.’s footsteps and achieve worldwide success. JESUS TRIVINO ALARCON / Senior Editor, Scratch Magazine – Media Panel (New York, NY) Jesus Trivino Alarcon has been apart of the Scratch Magazine family from the beginning as a founding editor of the DJ publication. Alarcon is not relegated to the desk as he has interviewed Nas, Kanye West, Willie Colon, Jay-Z while writing for Vibe, The Source, XXL, King, People.com and others. As a Brooklyn-born South American, Alarcon provides a unique experience that readers can’t enjoy more. JILL STRADA / Program Director, WPYO Power 95.3 FM – Women In The Industry Panel (Orlando, FL) Jill Strada is currently the Program Director of Orlando hip-hop station WPYO/Power 95.3. Jill entered the entertainment industry in January 1996 as a promotion intern at WJHM/102 Jamz in Orlando. In 1999, she became the Marketing Director of a new start up radio station in Orlando, WPYO/95.3 Party. Jill is always challenging herself, and over time she took on additional responsibilities in the station’s programming department and added Assistant Program Director & Music Director to her title. Jill also believes that giving back is one thing that is missing in the industry, so she started up Stradagy Inc. – a non-profit organization that fosters mentorship within the entertainment industry. JIM JONSIN - Producers Panel (Miami, FL) Formerly 1/2 of the Unusual Suspects duo with Big D, Jim has now branched off into a solo production career and also maintains an executive position at Southbeat Records. Production credits include Trick Daddy “Let’s Go,” Pitbull f/ Piccalo “Dammit Man,” Jamie Foxx f/ Ludacris “Unpredictable,” Pretty Ricky “Your Body,” Pretty Ricky “Grind With Me,” and Trina f/ Kelly Rowland “Here We Go.” JOIE MANDA / Head of A&R & Promotions, Asylum Records - A&R Panel (New York, NY) Asylum, billed as an “incubator” label, serves as the “umbrella” for many successful indie labels like Swishahouse. As head of A&R, Joie is involved with projects from artists like Paul Wall, Mike Jones, Webbie, Lil Boosie, Cam’Ron, and Bun B.
KAWAN PRATHER / Executive VP of Sony Urban and Head A&R (New York, NY) Originally from Atlanta, KP first made his mark as an A&R by pairing Usher with Jermaine Dupri for the My Way album. He also discovered and signed T.I. and the YoungBloodz and signed them to LaFace Records long before the Southern movement was widely accepted. Now at Sony, his most recent signees include John Legend
KIM OSORIO – Editor, BET.com Although you may recognize her name as former editor of The Source during the Dave & Benzino days, Kim is now responsible for BET’s online content. KLC / producer, Beats By the Pound & The Medicine Men – Producers Panel (Baton Rouge, LA) Few producers can claim an entire place in time. KLC as a member of Beats By The Pound served as the backbone behind the No Limit movement that peaked at over 40 million units sold and opened a brand new sound. Today, as a member of The Medicine Men, KLC has produced for mega stars such as Ludacris and Mariah Carey while anticipating the release of the first release for The Medicine Men’s Overdose/Asylum venture entitled KLC The Drum Major. KRAZE / CEO, All Access DVD (New York, NY) MATT SONZALA / Writer, Photographer, Promoter, Booker –Media Panel (Houston, TX) Matt Sonzala is a writer/photographer/promoter/booking agent from Houston, TX. He’s been in the music game since the age of 16 when he first started promoting live events at clubs. Since then he has developed into THE voice for Houston hip-hop. While he is not affiliated with any artist officially, when you need to get at someone from Texas, you call Matt first. In recent years he has been published in Ozone, The Source, XXL and Vibe Magazine, and is currently booking artists like Devin the Dude and DJ Rapid Ric on tours of Europe, Canada, and the Pacific Rim. His weekly radio program - the wildly popular Damage Control Show with DJ Chill - is heard all over the world and is a direct link to everything going on in Dirty South Rap. MAURICE G. GARLAND / Music Editor, OZONE Magazine – Media Panel (Atlanta, GA) After a stint working at Rolling Out, Maurice joined the OZONE team and has been responsible for several memorable spreads (“20 Greatest Southern Albums,” “Bay Area Patiently Waiting,” etc.). MICKEY “MeMpHiTz” WRIGHT / VP, A&R – Jive; CEO, HiTz Committee – A&R Panel (New York, NY) Arriving in New York fresh from his hometown of Memphis, Tennessee, Mickey Wright embarked on a journey fueled by faith and determination that would eventually lead him to becoming the most sought after golden ears of hip-hop. Wright released both the debut album of his latest signing, Tallahassee R&B singer/songwriter, T-Pain, as well as the YoungBloodZ’s third album, only a week apart. He is currently back in the studio, preparing releases with legendary Houston group UGK, J-Kwon, and newcomer M.O.S. (Money Over Sex), a rapper from Durham, NC. With his recent promotion to Vice President of A&R at Jive, Wright’s eyes and ears are always poised for the next big thing, but he particularly cares “more about real talent, potential stardom, and longevity.” MIKE CAREN / Senior Vice President of A&R, Atlantic Records - A&R Panel (Los Angeles, CA)
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MICHAEL CLARKE / VP, Swisha House; owner, M&M Music – Indie Exec Panel (Houston, TX) Michael Clarke embarked on a career in the music industry before landing a coveted executive position at Swisha House Records. A proprietor of the family owned and operated M&M Music, Clarke assumed full responsibilities of manning and operating the award winning record store in 1996. Since joining the Swisha House family officially in 2003, Clarke has risen in ranks from a consultant to Vice President. Clarke expertly outlines the marketing and promotional procedures for all artists on the Swisha House roster simultaneously working in conjunction with the record company partner’s various departments to provide artists with optimal success. MIKE RIOS / Mixunit.com (Hartford, CT) MISS INFO / Journalist, Personality – Hot 97 – Women In The Industry Panel (New York, NY) Whether on radio, television, or print, Miss Info brings the same opinionated blend of wit, news, and gossip that’s become her trademark. Born to Korean immigrants in Chicago, Miss Info moved to New York to join the staff at the Source Magazine. She has since written and edited for magazines such as Vibe, XXL, King, Mass Appeal, Rolling Stone, Glamour as well as MTV News and various shows on VH1. Recently, Miss Info joined New York City’s Hot 97 family, wrote a book, and still has time to pen a monthly Vibe column and give writing workshops.
During Def Jam’s transition, Shakir helped maintain the label’s reputation for breaking rap acts by signing bubbling talent like Young Jeezy and Rick Ross and helping their careers break on a national level. SHAWN HOLIDAY / Senior VP of A&R, Universal Records – A&R Panel (Los Angeles, CA) SUPA CINDY / Personality, WEDR-Miami – Women In The Industry Panel (Miami, FL) For the past 6 1/2 years Supa Cindy has kept the #1 spot in the Arbitron ratings. First with her partner Big Lip Bandit in the evenings and now for the last 2 years as part of the “Big Lip Bandit in the A.M.” Mornings Show. Along with holding the title as the most popular female radio personality in South Florida, Supa Cindy also has the responsibility of running her own non profit organization called “Supa Friends” whose main goal is to motivate and inspire young women. Supa Cindy plans to use her bilingual skills (thanks to her Haitian and Dominican parents) to broaden her resume with a new television venture. TED LUCAS / CEO, Slip-N-Slide Records – Indie CEO Panel (Miami, FL) THE RUNNERS – Production Panel (Orlando, FL) They got their big break with Rick Ross’ “Hustlin’” and DJ Khaled’s “Born & Raised,” and are now working with everyone from Lil Wayne to UGK.
MR. COLLIPARK – Producer Panel (Atlanta, GA) Also known as DJ Smurf, Collipark crafted the sound and progress of the Ying Yang Twins career and now is working with several new acts including P Stones and Homebwoi. He produced the infamous “whisper song” for the Ying Yang Twins as well as David Banner’s “Play,” Bubba Sparxxx’ “Ms. New Booty,” Bun B’s “Git It,” Pitbull’s “Shake,” and dozens of other Ying Yang Twins hits.
TIFFANY CHILES / CEO, Don Diva Magazine – Media Panel (New York, NY) TONY NEAL / CEO, The CORE DJs – DJ Crew Panel (Milwaukee, WI) After a rather vocal departure from the Tech.Nitions, Tony pushed forward to create his own DJ crew The CORE and has assembled an all-star cast of DJs and industry movers & shakers from across the country that moves as one unit. A former boxer, Tony’s take-charge attitude has enabled him to build a strong, valuable army of DJs.
N. ALI EARLY / Editor at Large, Grip Magazine – Media Panel (Atlanta, GA) A proud graduate of Clark Atlanta University, N. Ali Early began humbly with UrbanStyle Weekly serving as Music Editor for 2 years. Since then Early has set the world on fire with credits in XXL, The Source, Vibe, and more while still having time to launch his media umbrella, www.KreativeSouls. com. Now as Editor-At-Large for Grip Magazine, Early is optimistic knowing that “the sky’s the limit as to what we can accomplish – and we want it all.”
UNCLE LUKE / CEO, Luke Records – Indie Exec Panel (Miami, FL) A veteran in the game both as an artist and a businessman, Luke can provide valuable information of what to do – and what not to do – when running your own record label. VINCE PHILLIPS / Co-CEO, BME – Indie Exec Panel (Atlanta, GA) In addition to his work as an entertainment attorney for some of the biggest names in Atlanta music, Vince owns BME along with Lil Jon, Rob Mac, and Emperor Searcy. The upstart label which launched Lil Jon’s career now boasts a promising roster that includes Lil Scrappy, Trillville, E-40, Chyna Whyte, Bohagon, B.H.I., and more.
NITTI – Producer Panel (Atlanta, GA) “This is a Nitti beat,” c’mon, you had to have heard that at least a million times by now on the intro to Yung Joc’s “It’s Goin’ Down.” Nitti has also crafted beats for 8Ball, Young Jeezy, Rasheeda, and a crop of talented upcoming Atlanta artists. RAHMAN DUKES / MTV News - Media Panel (New York, NY)
WENDY DAY / Founder, Rap Coalition - Women In The Industry Panel (Atlanta, GA) In chess, the Queen is the most powerful piece on the board. Likewise, Wendy Day runs the boardroom as if she wields the power, continuously crafting deals for the likes of Cash Money, No Limit, Eminem, and David Banner. Founder of the Rap Coalition, she is an advocate for artist rights and believes firmly in the adage “knowledge is power.”
ROSLYNN COBARRUBIAS / NARIP, MySpace.com – Technology Panel Roslynn Cobarrubias started “Third Floor Radio” in college in 1998 where she acted as host, producer and DJ. In July of 2004, she came to MySpace. While holding the position of Director of Marketing for the National Association of Record Industry Professionals (NARIP), Cobarrubias met Chris De Wolfe (CEO of MySpace.com) via her former boss, president of the network, Tess Taylor. The web community had just begun MySpace Music and only had 3.5 million users compared to the 90 million + that it has to date. Friends know her as a work-aholic that calls herself the “traveling janitor.” She prides herself most in the ability to help others and has a strong belief in coincidences after reading the Celestine Prophecy numerous times. SHAKIR STEWART / Senior VP of A&R, Island Def Jam – A&R Panel (Atlanta, GA)
WENDY WASHINGTON / Senior VP of Media Relations, Universal Records – Women In The Industry Panel (New York, NY) Once a law school student, Wendy now runs Universal’s media relations/publicity department. During her first years in the music industry, she helped Bad Boy launch Biggie’s career. Since then, she’s been responsible for securing press coverage for everyone from A Tribe Called Quest to Nelly to Juvenile. WES PHILLIPS / Select-O-Hits (Memphis, TN)
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First Annual OZONE Awards: Sunday, August 6th at the Bob Carr Auditorium in downtown Orlando, FL red carpet: 4-6 PM showtime: 7 PM
in association with TJ’s DJ’s Tastemaker’s Music Conference (August 4th-5th) visit www.ozonemag.com or www.tjsdjs.com to register for weekend passes to all events Tickets to the OZONE Awards are also available through www.ticketmaster.com Nominees were selected by a panel of DJs, journalists, and other knowledgeable, non-biased individuals in the rap community. OZONE is widely known and respected as the premiere voice of Southern rap music, so it’s only right that our nominations this year are focused on Southern artists. Keep in mind that this year’s nominations are based solely on music released between May 1, 2005 and April 30, 2006.
BEST ALBUM - RAP Bun B - Trill
The king of collaborations brought together the entire South for his perfectly-timed first solo album, even uniting Houston - if only for a few minutes - on the “Draped Up” remix.
Juvenile - Reality Check
Facing with the challenge of adjusting to a new recording home and picking up his life after Katrina, Juve came with his best material since his groundbreaking Cash Money release 400 Degreez.
Lil Wayne - The Carter 2
Wayne became a critical and media darling with the superior lyrical dexterity he showcased on his latest project.
T.I. - King
He claimed the throne years ago, and backed it up in a major way in 2006 with one of his strongest efforts to date.
Young Jeezy - Thug Motivation: Let’s Get It
The highly-anticipated major label debut from the South’s hottest underground commodity spawned numerous hit singles and club anthems.
BEST RAP ARTIST (MALE)
BEST RAP ARTIST (FEMALE)
Crime Mob (Diamond & Princess)
Left alone to keep the UGK flame burning, the Trillest of the Trill came strong with a gang of top notch collaborations and elevated himself to become one of the finest solo artists in the rap game.
Cash Money’s most loyal soldier took shots at former labelmates Juvenile and B.G., but backed it up with a release that captured his confidence, growth, and versatility.
In addition to dropping his first national release, The People’s Champ was everywhere this year. He dropped verses for everyone from T-Pain to Nelly to Bun B and even using the birth of his firstborn son as an opportunity to market his side hustle selling grills.
This young duo kept their crew’s name alive after people got tired of knucking and bucking.
The self-proclaimed Madam of Miami will take your attention, your man and your jewelry if the cameras aren’t watching. But, when on the mic, she takes no shit.
Raw and uncut, Khia still represents for the ghetto females in the ongoing battle of the sexes (“J.O.D.D.,” “Snatch the Cat Back”).
The “R” in her name must stand for resilient. This “Georgia Peach” has proven that she’s here to stay.
This Urban Legend told you he was Serious, but he still had to Trap you with his Muzik until you crowned him the King he’d always claimed to be.
After helping to establish Boyz N Da Hood, the Snowman used his charisma to entrance the entire nation as he vividly described the realities of street life.
Slowly but surely stepping out of Ludacris’ shadow, this Chi-Town queen is about to make the world respect female emcees again. Attitude for years, sassiness for months and ass for days, Trina “blah blah blah”-ed her way to the top and snagged Birdman Jr. on the way.
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nominees BEST R&B ARTIST (MALE)
Originally written off as an R Kelly Jr., Trey Songz created his own lane and brought a breath of fresh air to R&B.
BEST RAP GROUP
The raw emotions in his voice catapulted him to near iconic status in today’s climate of soulless music.
Boyz N Da Hood
This former Mista front man went from Organizing Noize to Disturbing Tha Peace and created a sound hit in the process.
A collective comprised of two underground rap vets and two flashy newcomers, Boyz N Da Hood took the South by storm, drawing comparisons to the legendary gangsta rap group N.W.A.
This smooth teen catapulted to the top of the charts virtually overnight.
After penning hit records for Mario and others, Ne-Yo stepped out into his own limelight.
Love them, hate them, or hate them a lot, ATL foursome D4L ignored the dissenters and made an undeniable run for the top.
Dem Franchize Boyz
Right when you thought they got worn out, Dem Franchize Boyz dusted off the “White Tees” and reminded us why we like them.
A little raunchy for your mother’s liking, but Pretty Ricky snuck their way into the hearts of teenage girls everywhere. Their “Grind” finally paid off.
Three 6 Mafia
BEST R&B ARTIST (FEMALE)
Ying Yang Twins
With his seamless songwriting abilities, this Rappa Ternt Sanga made it seem classy to fall in love with a stripper.
Although born in New Jersey, this talented singer spends a lot of time in the Dirty Dirty these days, collaborating with Young Jeezy, Lil Jon, and Miami production duo Cool & Dre.
They held up a mirror and forced hip-hop to take a good look at itself with their critically acclaimed major debut The Minstrel Show. It’s a little easier out here for a pimp now that Memphis legends Three 6 Mafia have received their mainstream respect. Best known for their strip club anthems, this Atlanta duo expanded their horizons into grown-man territory with United State of Atlanta - and still managed a few “HANH?!?”s in the process.
This overnight celebrity dropped an album and had a run that proves she will be here for many moons. Houston’s angels bid farewell, but did so in grand fashion.
Even though he’s reppin’ the Screwed and Chopped state of Texas, Cham’s flows and lyrics are anything but slow.
George Clinton, Big Gipp, Bun B and Pastor Troy can vouch for her. She is the Queen of the Underground.
Swiftly becoming the Mary J. Blige of her generation, Ms. Cole got hyphy with the fellas but still represented for the ladies.
Showing that there is indeed life after Beyonce, Luckett crept in with the Houston wave and found her niche.
BEST ALBUM - R&B Anthony Hamilton - Ain’t Nobody Worryin’
His second studio album clearly indicated that he was not a flash in the pan.
Lyfe Jennings - Lyfe 268-192
If every convicted felon had a soulful voice and songwriting skills like the ones displayed on Lyfe’s autobiographical debut, we wouldn’t see many repeat offenders. Fuck a license plate – give them a guitar!
Ne-Yo - In My Own Words
R&B’s new man of the hour scored big with “So Sick” and his debut album.
T-Pain - Rappa Ternt Sanga
Shaky release dates and a shelved album almost deaded his name, but Killa Kill managed to stay alive with the amazing freestyles and lyrical dexterity of The Killer mixtape and the Got Purp? compilation.
Lil Wayne finally gained nationwide respect for being the talented emcee that he has been since his pre-teen years.
For well over a decade Scarface has proven why he is one of the most revered voices in all of hip-hop. In 2006 he continued to add to his legendary status with his group The Product.
He talks cash shit and he’s money on the mic, but T.I. still spits like he struggling in the trap.
BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST Mike Jones
He may not have picked up his phone when you called, but Mike Jones saw his career go from off the radar to off the hook.
Tallahassee’s multi-talented son dropped an album laced with his trademark singing and production style, and produced two massive hits in the process. Not bad for a rapper.
Trey Songz - I Gotta Make It
The South ain’t got lyrics, huh? Tell that to Bun B. There’s a reason why he’s been featured alongside virtually every rapper you’ve ever heard of.
On top of single-handedly birthing (and soon killing) our fascination with Grillz, Paul Wall went from being a local Chick Magnet to The People’s Champ.
Hustlin’ every day (for years) led Miami’s Rick Ross to a major label bidding war and a multi-million dollar Def Jam deal.
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nominees Slim Thug
They say everything’s bigger in Texas. Houston’s 7-footer was ridin’ a Bentley even before the album dropped.
Save for the now infamous chain-snatching incident, T-Pain’s breakthrough has been a pleasurable experience. Being “Sprung” and “In Luv” never hurt nobody.
Coming from Lousiana’s ‘other’ city, Baton Rouge’s Webbie brought back the I-don’t-give-a-fuck attitude that others have forgotten.
BEST RAP COLLABORATION Bun B f/ H-Town All Stars (Lil Keke, Slim Thug, Paul Wall, Mike Jones, Aztek, Lil Flip, Z-Ro) “Draped Up (remix)” Rodney King and DJ Screw would be so proud to see everybody just get along. Or at least they edited it that way.
by the Ying Yang Twins’ “Wait.”
Dem Franchize Boyz “Lean Wit’ It, Rock Wit’ It”
DFB ruled the airwaves in the year of the snap, with back-to-back radio cuts that were unavoidable.
Dem Franchize Boyz f/ Jermaine Dupri, Da Brat, and Bow Wow “Oh I Think They Like Me (remix)” Jermaine and his entire So So Def roster came through to remix this “White Tees” spin-off.
Webbie f/ Bun B “Gimme Dat”
We’re not condoning rape - but when a woman says “no,” sometimes she actually does mean “yes,” which could explain this record’s widespread appeal.
CLUB BANGER Bubba Sparxxx f/ Ying Yang Twins “Ms. New Booty”
After a disappointing reaction to his sophomore attempt, Bubba came back strong with his third-time’s-the-Charm project and gave the people what they wanted.
DJ Khaled f/ Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Fat Joe, and Pitbull “Holla At Me Baby”
Miami’s DJ Khaled called in a bunch of favors for this energetic lead single off his debut album.
Rick Ross “Hustlin’”
Everybody in the country can relate to this record, no matter what their hustle is.
Purple Ribbon All-Stars (Big Boi & Killer Mike) “Kryptonite”
Yeah, the song was jamming. But you may need to go back and listen closely to Big Boi’s verse. He’s no slouch.
Three 6 Mafia f/ Young Buck & 8Ball & MJG “Stay Fly”
This Tennessee union was a long time coming, but well worth the wait.
Trae f/ Big Hawk & Fat Pat “Swang”
Only God can bring the whole crew back, but until then, Screwed Up Click fans have Trae’s tribute to hold them down.
BEST RAP/R&B COLLABORATION Beyonce f/ Slim Thug “Check Up On It”
T.I. “What You Know”
The lead single off King set the stage for both T.I.’s big screen debut and his biggest album to date.
Ying Yang Twins f/ Pitbull “Shake”
First they caught the country’s attention with a whisper - then back to the usual ass-shaking ruckus, teaming up with Pitbull for added effect and multi-cultural appeal.
Yung Joc “It’s Goin’ Down”
This breakthrough record from Bad Boy South’s newest representative came complete with its own dance.
This H-Town radio friendly combo had clubs jumpin’ all across the country.
MIXTAPE MONSTER AWARD
Field Mob f/ Ludacris & Jamie Foxx “Georgia”
Texas’ tamale king stays in the kitchen, whipping up new product.
These underrated country boys paid tribute to their home state along with Luda and a damn good Ray Charles impersonation by Jamie Foxx.
T-Pain f/ R Kelly, Twista, Pimp C, Paul Wall, MJG, & Too $hort “I’m In Luv (Wit’ A Stripper)” remix
Dallas’ T-Town Music collective landed a $7 million dollar deal with Universal Records off their impressive underground grind.
Better known as “T-Pain featuring everyone,” the only hit bigger than the original version of this song was the remix. Apparently, a lot of men can relate.
Ying Yang Twins f/ Avant “Bedroom Boom”
Young Jeezy f/ Akon “Soul Survivor”
NO ESCAPE AWARD
Atlanta’s wildest “twins” got grown and sexy and hooked up with Avant to serenade the ladies. Akon’s unique vocals were a perfect match for Jeezy’s street tales on this massive hit from Jeezy’s debut album.
The record that was such a huge hit you literally could not escape it if you wanted to - from the radio to the clubs to the streets, it was everywhere.
D4L “Laffy Taffy”
Love it or hate it, music lovers of all ages were introduced to snap music in a big way through D4L’s breakthrough record.
David Banner “Play”
Banner stepped outside of his element and showed his versatility by creating a smash hit with Mr. Collipark that blew up, riding the wave created
Mike Jones’ (who?) former partner Magno now represents DJ Clue’s Desert Storm South and stays on his mixtape grind. No longer just Mr. 305, this internationally recognized superstar still stays true to his humble beginnings and releases mixtapes frequently. Ft. Myers, FL newcomer Plies’ 100% Real Nigga mixtapes with Cool Runnings’ DJ Bigga Rankin helped him amass plenty of fans, and haters, in 2006. This category wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Jeezy’s accomplishments with mixtapeS like Trap or Die and Can’t Ban the Snowman.
SLEPT ON ARTIST B.G.
Although he’s been in the game for a decade plus, B.G.’s independent releases and lyrical skills have been largely underappreciated by the mainstream rap audience.
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Lil Jon’s secret weapon helped everybody “Get Crunk,” but he’s just a soulful country boy at heart.
Jazze Pha protege and Boyz N Da Hood member Jody Breeze is still waiting to drop his solo album, and fans are waiting also.
Allegedly dubbed “too intelligent” for their audience by BET, the lack of recognition for this North Carolina trio proves once again that catchy hooks unfortunately often win over substance.
ist added “inventor” to his list of job titles this year with the ingenious smoker’s device Da Splitta.
The founder of The CORE DJs, Tony goes the extra mile to make sure his crew eats.
TJ’s DJ’s TASTEMAKER AWARD:
(MUSIC/SOUND) DJ Screw
Although he’s gone (R.I.P.), his legacy and music lives on through Houston’s recent rap explosion.
Grimy, gutta, and unrefined, this truly talented Baton Rouge rhymer stayed somewhat under the radar despite two big singles.
Respected in the streets of Memphis and beyond, Yo Gotti is still awaiting national recognition.
LIVING LEGEND AWARD
The trailblazing artist/individual who’s influence can be clearly seen in the music released during this time period.
8Ball & MJG
Before all the radio play and mainstream attention, it was 8Ball and MJG who helped put Southern music on the map with Comin’ Out Hard. Since then, they’ve maintained their core fanbase.
After parting ways with the Geto Boys, this Houston emcee developed a ghetto-nurtured rap trademark, leading a wave of Southern emcees who emulated his style.
Three 6 Mafia
By now, we all know that they made history by winning an Academy Award. But even before the Oscar, these Memphis legends’ impact was clear.
Sharing his sexual tales and stories of violence, Too $hort pioneered a movement while earning two gold and four platinum plaques. More importantly, he blazed a trail for the South’s independent explosion.
Port Arthur, TX, rap partners Bun B and Pimp C have each earned the title of Underground King. Bun B also gets the loyalty award for his relentless (and apparently, successful) “Free Pimp C” campaign.
Snap, crackle, pop. The “inventor” of Atlanta’s newest trend, snap music, K-Rab’s impact is clear.
Even though somewhat silenced this year by label issues, Jon ventured beyond the South and kept his sound alive by linking up with rock groups like Korn and California legends like E-40.
Although its longevity remains to be seen, Mr. Collipark’s vision for a new genre of “intimate club music” became a reality with the success of the Ying Yang Twins’ “Wait” and David Banner’s “Play.”
Florida’s dreadlocked rapper, singer, and producer discovered a new vocal effect in the studio and “went crazy” with it. Love it or hate it, you’ve got to admit that it worked.
TJ’s DJ’s TASTEMAKER AWARD:
(STYLE/TRENDSETTER) Dem Franchize Boyz
White tees have become hip-hop’s official uniform, thanks in part to DFB.
Fabo of D4L
Famous for his white sunglasses, Fabo’s unique style kicked off a new trend.
Bling, bling. Every time I come around your city, bling bling.
Paul Wall & TV Johnny
TJ’s DJ’s HUSTLER AWARD
From challenging censors to paving the way as a businessman, Miami’s bass king has earned the title of “pioneer.”
Not only is T.I. a great rapper, but he’s also become a sex symbol.
DJ Chuck T
Carolina representative “Mr. Publicity” lives up to his name, churning out mixtapes consistently and maintaining numerous other hustles.
Whether rapping, producing, acting, or aiding hurricane victims in his home state of Mississippi, Banner redefines 24/7.
Drama and his Affiliates’ crew are literally everywhere, and he played a key role in the success of artists like T.I., Young Jeezy, and Paul Wall.
You don’t grind, you don’t shine. You don’t work, you don’t eat. Call 281330-8004 for more information.
Everyone and their brother, sister, mama, and grandmomma has a grill now, thanks to Paul Wall’s side hustle and his comedic - but presumably rich - business partner, Johnny Dang of TV Jewelry.
Known for his Florida anthem “Keep Jukin’,” Tampa’s most creative art-
Although CNN tried, they couldn’t ban the Snowman. Jeezy’s trademark t-shirts became a best-seller at hip-hop clothing stores worldwide.
BEST VIDEO Chamillionaire f/ Krayzie Bone “Ridin’ Dirty”
Kudos are already in order for having Debo in the video, but the parallel between pro wrestling and police brutality was ingenious.
Da BackWudz “I Don’t Like The Look of It”
The Willy Wonka movie is already weird enough, so calling this video weird is mundane. But you have to appreciate a vid where the models don’t get more face time than the artist.
David Banner “Play”
ozone 16 awards
nominees Speaking of models, this one was a who’s who. Sweaty, steamy and sticky, Banner gave his fans a little eye and ear candy.
airwaves and streets for quite some time.
Juvenile “Get Ya Hustle On”
When workaholic Greg Street isn’t planning a celebrity car show, sneaker show, or party, he can usually be heard blazing the Atlanta airwaves.
This video had more accurate Katrina reporting than Fox News on their best day. Juve reminded us of the forgotten.
Rick Ross “Hustlin’”
Greg Street (Atlanta, GA)
DJ Nasty (Orlando, FL)
Now branching off into the production world, Nasty’s skills on the turntables remain top-of-the-line.
Crossing the bridge into the real Miami, Rick Ross gave the world a glimpse of the everyday hustle in his Carol City ‘hood.
Three 6 Mafia f/ Young Buck and 8Ball & MJG “Stay Fly”
A night in the life of a rap star: endless partying captured by great camera work made us feel like we were right there with them.
Honorable mention: Although Korn is not a Southern rap group,
their video for “Twisted Transistor,” which featured Lil Jon, David Banner, Xzibit, and Snoop Dogg playing the roles of the band, certainly deserves mention.
HONORARY SOUTHERNER AWARD The artist from outside our region who showed the most love the South and/or was most accepted in the South.
Don’t forget, this guy rapped on the “Neva Scared” remix and did a “Bout It” remake a while back. So his collabos with Webbie and Lil’ Wayne should come as no surprise - he’s no bandwagon jumper.
He unified crunk with hyphy and still maintained his O.G. status.
Michael Watts (Houston, TX)
Swishahouse’s Michael Watts carries on the legacy of DJ Screw through the fine art of chopping and Screwing.
BEST PRODUCER Cool & Dre
Miami’s Terror Squad affiliates Cool & Dre have put their stamp on the industry, producing massive hits for Ja Rule and Game and more recent records like Christina Milian’s “Say I” and Juvenile’s “Rodeo.”
After landing both an executive position and a label deal at Virgin Records, he bulked up his roster by producing hits for Dem Franchize Boyz and Bow Wow post-puberty.
After a few years as the reigning King of Crunk, Jon kept up his winning streak with the YoungBloodz’ “Presidential” and E-40’s “Snap Yo’ Fingers.”
His Jeezy mixtape hasn’t dropped, but Juelz earned his Dirty South pass.
Having lived in Atlanta since the 90s, he’s damn near a Southerner now. But at the end of the day he’s “still coming straight from Oakland.”
Chi-town’s rapid-fire spitter’s trademark style has universal appeal, and Twista is no stranger to Dirty South collabos.
BEST CLUB DJ Bigga Rankin (Jacksonville, FL)
Cool Runnings’ O.G. Bigga Rankin faithfully preaches his Ghetto Gospel to clubgoers all throughout the South, no matter how drunk they are.
DJ Irie (Miami, FL)
Widely regarded as one of the top mixers in the country, the official DJ of the Miami Heat still finds time to rock your favorite South Beach nightspots.
DJ Khaled (Miami, FL)
Waited in line too long and your favorite record was over by the time you got inside? Don’t worry, the Southern version of Funkmaster Flex is sure to bring it back and drop a bomb on it - three or four times.
Although somewhat low-profile since departing Cash Money, Mannie’s production skills are still on point, as evidenced by records like Young Jeezy’s “And What,” Bun B’s “I’m Fresh,” and B.G.’s “Move Around.”
Otherwise known as DJ Smurf, the man behind the Ying Yang Twins took bass music to a whole new level and created “intimate club music.”
The Unusual Suspects (Big D & Jim Jonsin)
Although Big D and Jim Jonsin have since moved on to pursue solo projects, they achieved major back-to-back successes as a duo, crafting Pretty Ricky’s album and hits for Trick Daddy, Trina, and Twista, among others.
BEST MIXTAPE DJ Bigga Rankin (Jacksonville, FL)
Bigga’s trademark WRNR: Real Nigga Radio mixtape series is ghetto platinum in the streets, introducing artists like Plies and Young Cash and reintroducing Jacki-O to ‘hoods across the South.
DJ Chuck T (Charleston, SC)
The cockiest DJ in the Carolinas talks a lot of shit, but consistently backs it up with a flurry of releases showcasing the hottest new music and breaking indie acts.
DJ Drama (Atlanta, GA)
Lil Larry (Memphis, TN)
Larry keeps the clubs poppin’ in Tennessee.
Drama took his mixtape series Gangsta Grillz to a whole new level. DJ Chuck T asserts that Drama’s career path is the blueprint for all other DJs - a strong statement coming from a fellow nominee.
DJ Mars (Atlanta, GA)
DJ Ideal (Miami, FL)
BEST RADIO DJ
Rapid Ric (Austin, TX)
The CEO of the SuperFriends’ DJ crew, Mars keeps the party jumpin’.
DJ Khaled (Miami, FL)
If you had a bad day at work, Khaled’s afternoon mix is sure to liven up the rest of your day.
Freddy Hydro (Memphis, TN)
Yo Gotti drama aside, Freddy Hydro has been holding down the Memphis
Straight from Da Bottom, Ideal played a role in Pitbull’s success and dropped solid projects with everyone from Ludacris to Smitty. The Mixtape Mechanic’s Whut It Dew? series consistently captures the essence of Texas music, highlighting the best of the best.
DJ Smallz (Tampa, FL)
Smallz’ peers have mixed feelings: some hate him, some love him, some envy him, but most do respect his hustle. Smallz’ created a career with exclusives and industry connects, not hype and image.
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nominees PATIENTLY WAITING: FLORIDA Acafool (Tampa, FL)
Tampa’s class clown put his “Hata Blockas” on and sparked both a radio frenzy and label bidding war.
BloodRaw (Panama City, FL)
Rejuvenated after winning a Federal court case, the Bangin’ Bay representative is back on the road with Young Jeezy and his CTE camp and taking full advantage of all opportunities.
Plies (Ft. Myers, FL)
Stirring up controversy with his bold “100% real nigga, dawg” campaign, Slip-N-Slide’s newest recruit rocked packed clubs throughout Florida without an album or a video.
Treal (Orlando, FL)
Central Florida’s hypest foursome, known for their crunk performances, stayed on their grind and landed in regular rotation on local radio.
Triple J (West Palm Beach, FL)
Arguably one of Florida’s top lyricists, Triple J has survived record label politics and gunfire and still managed to create a name for himself with witty rhymes and creative mixtape records.
Young Cash (Jacksonville, FL)
Jacksonville’s head honcho stayed on the scene this year with his Duval County Rockstars, dropped records with Webbie, Paul Wall, and Mike Jones, and landed a deal with SRC/Universal.
lorida has had its spurts in hip-hop. Luke and the 2 Live Crew movement was the first, but fizzled out when the group broke up. 69 Boyz went platinum with their classic hit “Tootsee Roll.” Trick Daddy and Trina were soon to follow with their barrage of hits coming out of the MIA. Now Florida has Rick Ross at the forefront to show the world exactly how M-I-Yayo be hustlin’. However, for the first time in the state’s hip-hop history, the future looks bright with talent from all areas looking to break out and show the world that Florida is here to stay. Nicknamed the Gunshine State for the shape of the state, first up is Bloodraw hailing from Panama City. Soon after signing to Young Jeezy’s CTE label, Bloodraw was arrested, and eventually acquitted on drug charges. Working on a Gangsta Grillz mixtape as well as group U.S.D.A.’s album, Bloodraw is the leader to break North Florida. Five hours across the state is Duval County’s own Young Cash. Signed to SRC/Universal, he is patiently waiting to release his debut album. Recording a local hit track with Paul Wall, “Disco Ball,” Young Cash has much more to come from Jacksonville. Treal have been local stars for years ever since they dropped their Orlando classic “Orange County.” With their recent independent release “Crunk Tested and Approved,” Treal are ready to show the world what it is like to be crunk in a city that outsiders consider Mickey Mouse territory. Everyone across I-4 has their “Hatah Blockas” on. One of the few Tampa artists to break through and receive local radio support after years of hard work, Acafool found his niche and has the Hatah Blockas shades craze spreading throughout Florida. It’s only a matter of time before he blows. One of the more underappreciated artists in Florida, Triple J reps West Palm Beach to the fullest. He wasn’t even one to appreciate his talents until after he was shot. He made a transition, but kept the streets locked. With his MLK BLVD album, he is sure to have labels hunting for him. Finally, “the hottest nigga in Florida” is the street’s own Plies. Hailing from Ft. Myers, Plies carries an “I don’t give a fuck” attitude with Slip-N-Slide/Atlantic backing him. This South Florida new breed of MC is destined to blow nationwide. With just this small group of Florida talent, who is to deny them as the next to shine? - Leon Bailey
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nominees PATIENTLY WAITING GEORGIA Citty (Atlanta, GA)
Even with a Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam deal, you can still find the Cookieman in the streets and the hole-in-the-wall clubs that made him hot.
Da BackWudz (Atlanta, GA)
They waited for quite a while, and their patience finally paid off this year when they linked up with Dallas Austin.
Lil Weavah (Atlanta, GA)
Weavah’s widely respected independent hustle extends from the internet to Soundscan.
Slick Pulla (Atlanta, GA)
Young Jeezy’s smooth-talking CTE sidekick’s rap skills have improved rapidly - Pulla represents the trap with lyrics and clever wordplay.
Yola (Atlanta, GA)
With “Ain’t Gon’ Let Up” currently the most requested song on Atlanta radio stations, the future is bright for Yola.
Young Dro (Atlanta, GA)
After stints with various Atlanta collectives, Dro finally found a home with Grand Hustle and landed a hit with “Shoulder Lean.”
uilt on the blueprints of more recent breakthrough artists like Ludacris, T.I. and Young Jeezy, 2006 saw a new crop of Georgia artists make their presence felt. And with crunk fading into its last stages in popularity and snap music reaching its apex and eventual fall, it was prime time for lyricists to come back to the forefront.
Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam signee Citty proved that he was indeed a soldier ready to go for his in the war that is the rap game. The former Marine and Field Mob protégé toured every nook and cranny that had a microphone, creating his buzz from the ground up. His underground single “Da Cookieman” showed that there are more hustles than selling dope and pimping women. Then songs like “That’s Gangsta” proved that you can get a crowd amped without brandishing weapons in every line. Another group that gave us plenty of alternatives were the Da Backwudz, reminding people of Outkast, but yet showing that Southern Hip Hop’s future is in good hands. Hell, the simple existence of their debut Wood Work is historic in the fact that it made Dallas Austin resurrect Rowdy Records just for them. You can’t mention the new talent coming from the Peach state without talking about Lil Weavah either. Correction, you can’t mention mixtape grind without talking about Lil Weavah. True to the underground, this Southwest Atlanta bred artist has his name on the minds of everyone in the country with no radio support, although an appearance on ESPN’s Cold Pizza and mention on MTV.com definitely helped. Appearing on 200 mixtapes since last year and getting massive support from overseas is evidence that Weavah won’t be patiently waiting for too much longer. Even though Slick Pulla hasn’t been on a bunch of mixtapes, his appearances on Young Jeezy’s have given him a muchdeserved spotlight. Him bringing wordplay and wit to the much talked about “trap life” shows that there is more than one way to skin a cat. Now, with his debut album The Trapublican slated to release later this year, Slick is bound to pull a lot of attention his way. Keeping in tune with that, Yola Da Great has been able to motivate thugs in his own way as well. His infectious single “Ain’t Gon’ Let Up” has been killing Atlanta radio for months and his grind was rewarded with a deal through Grand Hustle/Atlantic Records. As your reading this article, odds are you’ve heard Young Dro’s “Shoulder Lean” at least twice today. Already a name in the streets through regional hits like “Yes Sir” back in 2002, he eventually signed with Grand Hustle this year and plans to burn the scene with his debut Best Thang Smokin. If these six artists are an indication of what Georgia has to offer for the future, your best bet is to hop on the bandwagon right now. - Cedric Boothe
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nominees PATIENTLY WAITING: TENNESSEE All Star (Nashville, TN)
The self-proclaimed Cashville Prince scored a huge hit with “Grey Goose” and landed a solo deal with Cash Money.
Cadence (Nashville, TN)
A witty emcee with striking versatility, Cadence toured the world opening for Kenny Chesney but still makes records that can get the most thugged out club poppin’.
D. Cooley (Chattanooga, TN)
Thanks to his consistent grind, D. Cooley has seen his record “Trap Clothes” grow into a bonafide regional smash.
Kinfolk Nakia Shine (Memphis, TN)
This indie hustler played an integral role in other Memphis’ artists careers, but now he’s telling you to “Respect My Fresh.”
Lutinent G (Memphis, TN)
Representing for Memphis’ underground rap breeding ground, Lutinent G had every club in Tennessee screaming “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah” to his monster club banger.
Yo Gotti (Memphis, TN)
Never one to wander far from the streets, the hottest up-and-comer in Memphis hustled his way through the mixtape and indie scene and is poised to achieve national success.
ast year, hip-hop witnessed a first when Three 6 Mafia took to a Hollywood stage and accepted an Academy Award. Tennessee, which has had its fair share of musical adversity, was finally able to bask in a shining moment again. Add to that the strong reemergence of the state’s crowned princes via the bonafide hits “Stay Fly” and “Poppin’ My Collar,” the release of Project Pat and Playa Fly from jail, and the influx of young visitors to Memphis for major boxing matches, and it’s obvious that Tennessee is on the rise once again. While “Tennekey” has been on the music scene for years, producing the likes of Al Green and 8Ball & MJG, in recent years it’s remained relatively quiet while surrounding areas have stepped into the spotlight. Even still, talent continued to bubble quietly, and 2006 was the year for it to be manifested publicly. Take Cadence, for example. Hailing from “Cashville,” this rapper proves that witty lyricism and concentrated storytelling can be just as entertaining as snapping your fingers and two stepping with his debut, Songs of Vice Virtue. Having previously toured with alternative rock group Uncle Kracker and country phenom Kenny Chesney, folks couldn’t help but compare him to Kanye West, and with due cause. His easy charm and penchant for diversity made him an underground favorite. It’s only a matter of time before everyone else catches up. Memphis rapper Yo Gotti’s persistence and familiarity made his TVT debut Back 2 Da Basics one of the most anticipated of the summer season, propelled by the single “Gangsta Party” featuring Bun B and 8ball. He continued his rise to success with his artist All-Star, who also hails from Nashville. After garnering a buzz with his impressive showing on Young Jeezy’s “Grey Goose” the rapper is poised to make a significant mark in the rap game. Even the often ignored city of Chattanooga produced the regional hit with D. Cooley’s “Trap Clothes,” featuring Atlanta rapper, Maceo. Reaping the benefits of his consistent grind, D. Cooley has undoubtedly shown that a little hustle can go a long way. And of course, the Bluff City remained on the cusp of innovation with Kinfolk Nakia Shine and Lutinent G. Kinfolk’s single “Respect My Fresh” quickly became an underground favorite, defined by the rapper’s natural swagger. Newcomer Lutinent G made significant waves with his catchy, humorous single, “Mangla,” from his debut Out Da Gate on Select-O-Hits It’s clear that Tennessee is a haven for inspired artists. Seems like “Patiently Waiting” may not be an accurate description for the state’s talent much longer. - Jacinta Howard
ozone 20 awards
nominees PATIENTLY WAITING: LOUISIANA Chyna Whyte (New Orleans, LA)
BME’s female rapper made noise with Lil Jon when he first dropped, but fell off the radar momentarily. Now she’s back and ready to make a solo statement.
E-Vicious (Lake Charles, LA)
This former member of the X-Mobb is now signed to UGK Records.
Lil Boosie (Baton Rouge, LA)
Webbie’s labelmate is a diamond in the rough, with one of the most unique voices in rap and highly underappreciated lyrical abilities.
Max Minelli (Baton Rouge, LA)
One of Louisiana’s most persistent artists, over the years Max has collaborated with everyone from C-Loc to Paul Wall.
Partners-N-Crime (New Orleans, LA)
This duo inked a deal with Juve’s UTP Records and linked up with Rap-A-Lot.
Sqad Up (New Orleans, LA)
Lil Wayne’s former crew, still intact after Hurricane Katrina, is now dropping a solo album.
o Limit and Cash Money Records came and went with a gangload of gold and platinum plaques. Other then those two labels, Louisiana has been quiet on the national scene. Last year Webbie made some noise with his hit single “Gimme That”, but that’s about it. The following artists have been patiently waiting their turn and are on the verge of breaking loose. E-Vicious is from Lake Charles, LA, which is close to the Texas line. He linked with Pimp C and is signed to his label UGK Records. The former X-Mobb member is featured on Pimp C’s “Pimpalation.” He is definitely ready to show you that Louisiana is not just New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Southside Baton Rouge, Louisiana native Lil Boosie has been through his trials and tribulations. A Baton Rouge favorite, he’s released several solo albums and has undeniable talent, but it all depends on the label to show the world why many consider Lil’ Boosie Bad Ass the best out the boot. He will be a problem once he releases Bad Ass. Another Baton Rouge native, Max Minelli, has been putting it down for years. An original member of the Concentration Camp, he is highly slept on as a lyricist. Releasing many successful selling albums, he is currently in a bidding war with major labels. While patiently waiting on that chance to blow, he is scheduled to release Pain Medicine on Koch in October. Godfathers of the popular genre called ‘bounce music’, Partners-N-Crime embody New Orleans. They were holding their city down before anyone knew who the Hot Boyz or TRU was. Having just releasing their album Club Bangaz on UTP/Rap-A-Lot, PNC hopes to show the world that New Orleans is still bouncin’. Exploding on the scene with her aggressive verse on Lil Jon’s “Bia Bia,” Chyna Wyte has been quiet for a few years. But this New Orleans bred femcee recently stepped back on to the scene, dropped a mixtape with DJ Smallz, and is waiting to raise the bar that previous New Orleans female artists left high. Many thought that they were just Lil Wayne’s sidekicks. But since branching off into their own, Sqad Up has made plenty of noise independently. Releasing their debut album Now or Never, numerous mixtapes, and their new album We Here Now, Sqad Up is poised to show the world that New Orleans rap is to stay. No disrespect to No Limit or Cash Money and what they have done, but these artists are the new generation, and all come to the forefront with different styles. - Leon Bailey
ozone 21 awards
nominees PATIENTLY WAITING: MISSISSIPPI Big K.R.I.T. (Meridian, MS)
At the young age of 19, K.R.I.T. is a more complete artist than some who have been making records for a decade. He is not only an extremely talented producer, but also a rapper with solid subject matter.
Boo da Boss Playa (Canton, MS)
Having spent years on the shelf due to record label politics at both Interscope and J Records, Boo is still waiting for his turn to shine.
Jewman (Jackson, MS)
This newcomer’s “Swag” created a buzz in the streets of Jacktown.
Kamikaze (Jackson, MS)
David Banner’s former rap partner will split your head to the white meat with his hard-hitting lyrics. In addition to his regional successes as an artist, he founded the Mississippi Artists & Producers Coalition.
Scar (Columbus, MS)
Big Boi’s “secret weapon” has a story to tell and talent to match.
Smoke D (Jackson, MS)
This soulful UGK affiliate appeared on the group’s classic Ridin’ Dirty album, live from the penitentiary. Now free like Pimp C, he’s focused on GFM (God, Family, & Music).
n the 90s, during the rap world’s infatuation with the East Coast vs. West Coast, one would have thought it absurd to suggest that a rap revolution was brewing in Mississippi. The average American’s impression of the ‘Sipp is perhaps one of racial strife and backwards thinking.
But over the past few years, as rap has gradually turned Southward and remains below the Mason-Dixon line, country vocals became more acceptable and Mississippi representatives like David Banner have broken through the stereotypes to take the Mississippi mentality worldwide. In 2006, a new crop of country rap tunes is brewing. Speaking of David Banner, he recently sought out Meridian-based producer/rapper Big K.R.I.T. for some beats. And he’s not the only one noticing the promising young talent. K.R.I.T. is quickly making a name for himself amongst industry heads as an all-around hustler who’s taking the right steps to succeed. Formerly signed to Interscope and now waiting for J Records to drop his major label debut, Boo da Boss Playa, a.k.a. Boo Rossini, is perhaps best known for his street single “Miss Me With That Rap Shit.” The single, which featured Jeezy just as he blew up, was perhaps a blessing and a curse because Jeezy’s street buzz almost overpowered the fact that it was Boo’s song. Still, Boo has stayed true to his grind and can usually be found anywhere between Miami and Houston. Already a local celebrity, Jackson-based newcomer Jewman’s “Swag” has the streets talking. Combine that with mixtape appearances and you’ve got a strong start to a potentially fruitful career. Moving right along from a newcomer to another veteran, Kamikaze has enjoyed regional success with singles like “U Ain’t Hard,” and is still on the verge of a big breakthrough. Perhaps best known to the average rap fan as the other half of David Banner’s Crooked Lettaz, Kamikaze lacks the charisma and ridiculous stage antics of his former rap partner but can lyrically compete with your favorite emcee. Still a hometown favorite, Kamikaze’s The Franchise drops later this year. Hailing from Columbus, Mississippi, you can catch Scar - guess how he got that name - in the new Outkast video for “Morris Brown,” dropping that Dungeon Family flavor alongside Big Boi’s sharp vocals. One of the most promising members of Big Boi’s Purple Ribbon camp, Scar’s background story is just as intriguing as his musical abilities. Smoke D, once the unofficial third member of UGK, spent seven years in prison which prevented him from nationwide success with the group. After his release he began recording for a solo project, with his trademark soulful vibe that explores all aspects of the streets and life in general. - Mayson Drake
ozone 22 awards
nominees PATIENTLY WAITING TEXAS Big Tuck (Dallas, TX)
The lead-off solo artists from Dallas collective DSR, Tuck is prepared to carry the city on his back.
ESG (Houston, TX)
Although he’s been in the game for years, national acclaim has thus far eluded ESG, known for his wicked freestyles.
G.R.i.T. Boys (Houston, TX)
This group, affiliated with Paul Wall, brings a fresh new flavor, speaking on Ghetto Reality in Texas.
Kiotti (Houston, TX)
Young and charismatic, this former battle rapper has a bright future in front of him.
Money Waters (Dallas, TX)
As the Houston hype slowly dies down, it looks as if Dallas is next to blow, with Money Waters ranking high on the list of the city’s talented artists.
Trae (Houston, TX)
Trae is straddling the thin line between patiently waiting and full-out blown up. After gaining the attention of several major labels with his single “Swang,” he signed with Rap-A-Lot.
p until maybe last year, the Patiently Waiting column was practically tailor-made for Texas. The rap scene in that great state had been bubbling and building for years, until finally it peaked and a bunch of artists from Houston reached the top. Well, Houston is a big city, but Texas is a huge state and hot on the heels of Paul Wall, Chamillionaire and Slim Thug are a hot new crop of artists who are popping off from border to border. Here’s a look at what’s next for Texas. A lot of people have Dallas metro star Big Tuck pegged as the next to blow out of Texas. His countrified voice has a very direct and imminent delivery that makes what he has to say hard to ignore. A member of the group Dirty South Rydaz, Tuck’s reputation is solid in the streets, the clubs and the booth. DSR is certainly the biggest group in Texas from outside of Houston. Houston-based ESG has been patiently waiting to get that national exposure for some years now. His 1995 hit “Swang and Bang” is a Texas anthem to this day and ever since then he has consistently dropped some of the hottest independent releases in the region. He’s been eating well off of the rap game for over 10 years, but is now pursuing that major label status. He’s the backbone of the Houston rap community and one of the folks who pioneered the sounds you are currently hearing from the Lone Star State. Also hailing from Texas, the G.R.i.T. Boys are one of the hottest young groups in the streets of Houston and their affiliation with Paul Wall has been taking them all over the United States. Their name stands for Ghetto Reality in Texas, so you won’t hear a lot of the same ol’ same ol’ from these guys. Their stories are ones of struggle and pain, coupled with the lighter side of life in the hood. They are some lyrical giants who come from the same area as most of the Screwed Up Click and hold those values tight, but have an original sound and a whole different energy than their predecessors. Recently signed to Asylum Records, Kiotti is best known as a battle rap champion around Houston. But you can’t sleep on the regional hits he has been a part of, most recently “Minute Plan” also known as “The Phone Song.” He’s a serious hustler who has been at it since his early teens and seems set to finally blow nationwide. Dallas representative Money Waters comes with a whole different perspective than the other artists on this list. He is more like the old sage - though he is young – who you can turn to for advice or a funny story. This vibe runs throughout his CD’s and his live show where often he comes off as a brilliant blues man rather than your average rapper. Recently signed to Rap-A-Lot Records, Trae has been hot in the streets of Texas since his first release in 1999, the debut album from his group, Guerilla Maab. He is a voice for the voiceless in Houston and beyond, representing the hard streets with his reality based raps. He’s seen a lot of struggle and strife in his life and has no problem telling you all about it. He is possibly the most reality based rapper the game has seen since the early days of Scarface. - Matt Sonzala
ozone 23 awards
nominees PATIENTLY WAITING: ALABAMA 334 M.O.B.B. (Montgomery, AL)
Representing the Montgomery area code to the fullest, 334 M.O.B.B. parlayed their intense mixtape grind into national opportunities.
Attitude (Birmingham, AL)
Formerly signed to Timbaland, this underrated lyricist has penned rhymes for Diddy and Bubba Sparxxx. Now living in Atlanta, he’s poised and ready.
Birmingham J (Birmingham, AL)
Birmingham’s official hood representative has dropped several indie albums over the years, catching the majors’ attention.
Rich Boy (Mobile, AL)
Multi-talented Mobile representative Rich Boy landed a deal at Interscope through Jim Crow rapper/producer Polow and has since been working on his debut album.
The Last Mr. Bigg (Mobile, AL)
Mobile’s O.G. has survived court cases, prison time, and a near-death experience. Now sporting a glass eye, he’s collaborating with Three 6 Mafia to expand his musical reach beyond the region.
Tyte Wurk (Enterprise, AL)
Coming from a small town in South Alabama, Tyte Wurk had to double up their grind to get noticed.
ven beyond their music being overlooked, Alabama has had to fight stereotypes and scrap for respect for years. A lot of times, the only time you hear them mentioned is when someone hurls an insult like, “You’re ‘Bama.” How flattering can that be? Well, this year, things took a turn in the right direction for the state that rests in the heart of the South. Headlines were made when word broke that Montgomery’s 334 M.O.B.B. got signed to Def Jam. But instead of letting that get to their heads, they continued to work as hard as they did before they got the deal and it worked out in their favor. Releasing mixtapes on top of mixtapes, this duo received plenty of exposure with hardly any help from their pioneering label. If you need more proof, just peep them on Myspace. “Patiently Waiting” is definitely appropriate when speaking on Birmingham’s Attitude. Poised to blow by way of a deal with Timbaland’s now defunct Beat Club, ‘Tude got a chance to travel the world and work with the likes of Missy and Diddy. Even though no record came from out of that deal, it was not a wasted experience. Birmingham J reps so hard that he puts his city on the map without even saying a word. But, when he does finally speak, people listen. And that includes everyone from local retail and radio to big time A&Rs. And with his city prepping to be the next area to blow in the South, J is sure to lead the charge. About three hours away, you can hear what Mobile has cooking too. Rapper/producer Rich Boy is slowly proving that casinos aren’t the city’s only attraction. His single “Get To Poppin” generated just enough buzz to make is Gangsta Grillz mixtape one of the most anticipated releases of the year. Still signed to Interscope, Rich is bound to get richer. Right around the corner, we also saw the resurgence of The Last Mr. Bigg. Already a legendary figure in his region, he got a lot of face time due to his cameo on Three 6 Mafia’s “Poppin’ My Collar.” Now, with people going back to peep his older music after his unfortunate shooting earlier this year, his new music is guaranteed to open some more doors. A drive east to Enterprise, Alabama will bring you to Tyte Wurk. Their smash “Mary Jane: Remix” had smokers singing their praises while their other song “What It Is” served as the opening song for ESPN’s Sunday Night Football this past season. With this crop of artist leading the charge Alabama just may turn “Bama” into a compliment. - Kale Swanson
ozone 24 awards
nominees PATIENTLY WAITING: CAROLINAS Big Cas (Fayetteville, NC)
Cas has effectively captured the internet, the streets, and mainstream media with his music, buildling up his fanbase equally in each area.
Fat Boy (Charleston, SC)
The diplomat of the Carolinas, Fat Boy has the respect of his peers and good relationships with record stores, other artists, radio personalities, producers, and ‘hood dudes.
J-Khrist (Fayetteville, NC)
J-Khrist got his swagger back and is ready to carry the flag for the Carolinas.
Mac-A-Don (Columbia, SC)
Over the past year, Mac-A-Don has grown lyrically and developed his own style, creating a buzz from the ground up.
Marly Mar (Charleston, SC)
Charleston’s most consistent artist has dropped over ten albums over the past three years and maintained a steady radio presence.
Piazo (Columbia, SC)
Piazo’s steady mixtape grind has helped him lock down the streets of South Carolina and create a fanbase.
he Carolinas aren’t known for being a hotbed of talent. For years, we’ve sat back and watched Southern hip-hop evolve, moreso as fans and not active participants. We’ve seen artists from Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, and other smaller areas receive major deals and nationwide exposure, while we sat on the sidelines patiently waiting for our turn to shine. For years we screamed that the game is coming to us. But it seemed like success and recognition in the hip-hop industry went to every Southern state surrounding us and then took a wild turn and headed to Texas and skipped right over us here in the Carolinas. We thought we’d get the look we needed when Petey Pablo went platinum and Little Brother finally signed with Atlantic, but neither one of those artists created enough buzz to catch the attention of A&Rs. Through all our misfortune, we’ve come to realize that we can’t depend on the industry to come to us. We have to create our own industry. Just like the blues and jazz performers of the 40s and 50s created the Chitlin Circuit to gain exposure, Carolina artists have ben forced to do the same. Marly Mar, from Charleston, SC, was the first artist in the city to have a song in regular rotation on the radio. His hit single “Act A Donkey” is over four years old and still continues to get heavy spins on the radio and in the clubs. He’s also one of the most consistent artists in the state, having released 3 albums per year for the last 3 years. Big Cas, from Fayetteville, NC (also know as Fayettenam) has taken the mixtape game by storm. He’s appeared on over 60 mixtapes in the last 2 years and has shared songs with Jae Millz, Freeway, Grafh, Remy Ma, Geolani, Corey Gunz, and other prominent East coast hip hop artists. Also causing a ruckus on the streets is Meccadon, from Columbia, SC, and J-Khrist from Fayetteville, NC. These two artists are relatively new to the Carolina hip-hop scene but both have taken the game by storm. They’re constantly doing shows all throughout the state and have singles blazing the radio airwaves and tearing up the clubs. Meccadon’s last single “No” was a huge hit and his new song “We Ball’n” is following in the same pattern. J-Khrist’s single “Swagger Back” is a club banger that can go toe to toe with any other song on the Billboard charts. It’s a guaranteed hit once it touches mainstream radio. As far as longevity and street credibility are concerned, Fat Boy and Piazo both have that aspect of the game sewed up. Fatboy, representing Charleston, SC, not only had one of the best selling albums of 2005 but has also been a key figure in easing the tension between hip-hop artists from Downtown Charleston and North Charleston. His new album, Laughing Hyenas, drops this fall and features artists from both areas on the same tracks and is set to be one of 2006s most highly anticipated album. Columbia, SC’s Piazo is one of the Cackalack’s most sought after artists and has a slew of albums and mixtapes on the streets that date back to 1995. He’s been pounding the streets longer than any other artist from the Carolinas and has maintained a consistent a buzz both on the streets and on the radio throughout his career. His music has caught the attention of many label A&Rs, most recently G-Unit Record’s Sha Money XL, and he has had had offers on the table from many major record labels. now! - DJ Chuck T
ozone 25 awards
tj’s dj’s tastemakers xclusives disc 1 1. Rich Boy / Throw Some Dees – Interscope Contact: Rosalie – 310.865.7929 On this track you can tell that Rich Boy is steady smirking ‘cause his flow is dangerous. What’s more, like Indego Montoya, he knows something that you don’t - he’s not even right handed. His natural talent is production rather than rapping. 2. Rick Ross / Push It - Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam Contact: Eclass@nextel.blackberry.net “Push It” features an interpolation from one of the greatest montage records made famous by Scarface the movie and South Park. Rick Ross’ Miami gangsta tales are so boss that they would make Crockett & Tubbs look silly. 3. David Banner ft. Yola / Get Money – b.i.G.f.a.c.e./SRC Contact: Willie Nash – 601.238.5658 David Banner cleverly samples Yola’s “Ain’t Gonna Let Up” and proves that he’s ahead of his time as the rest of the world has yet to discover what Yola has to offer. Scroll down to track 9 and you’ll see why Banner decided to run with this lil monster. 4. Trick Daddy / I Pop – Slip-N-Slide/Atlantic Contact: Sam Crespo – email@example.com Trick Daddy’s got another notch for the catalog. This record is funky and shows Trick on a different level. Plus Trick continues to spit thought provoking word play when he explains why “$100 bills smell like pubic hairs.” 5. BHI / Dat Bubble Gum – BME Contact: Sabrina Montgomery – 404.367.8130 Just when you thought snap music was through, BHI will have the genre sticking around like “Bubble Gum” with this juicy record. 6. Young Dro / Rubberband Banks – Grand Hustle/Atlantic Contact: Sam Crespo – firstname.lastname@example.org Young Dro takes a break from making his shoulder lean to show that that record has set him up rather lovely. In other words his rubberbands have expanded like his bank account. 7. Bohagon ft. Crime Mob & Fabo / Wuz Up – BME Contact: Sabrina Montgomery – 404.367.8130 Bohagon, the B-M-E- representa, strikes a strong blow for those who are interested in having their bass bins blown up by an MC that will make your cones snap to the music. Plus, with Crime Mob checking in on the track shaking their dreads, the track is elevated to another club banging dimension. And that’s wuz up! 8. Young Buck ft. 50 Cent / Do It Myself – G-Unit/Interscope Contact: Rosalie – 310.592.2121 The theme of the record is really simple. When you need to make improvements on how you live, like Home Depot you should do it yourself and G-Unit with 50 Cent can help. In fact, 50 lets a few bullets off of his chest by drawing a retaliatorial line in the sand. 9. Yola / Ain’t Gonna Let Up – Grand Hustle/Atlantic Contact: Sam Crespo – email@example.com At first listen, the Caribbean steal drums in the production lead to a laid back vibe until Yola gets on the track and crushes all haters in the way. Straight up, Yola is a monster in training. By the way, watch out for T.I. - the executive. Quiet though. 10. Young Capone / Wat It Iz – So So Def/Virgin Contact: Tikke Chaney – 212.786.8215 This is a Nitty beat that Young Capone takes full advantage of. Young Capone is a nice addition to the So So Def/Virgin stable. He’s been in the minor leagues getting his weight up and from the sound of this record; it is time for him to be called up to the majors. 11. Magic ft. Detroit / Shorty – BHE/TVT
Contact: TVT – 212.979.6410 Magic knows that shorties love a gangsta. And Magic is more than eager to deliver yet another quality tune that the people want. Be on the lookout for Magic, he is on another level since his rise from the ashes of New Orleans. 12. Obie Trice / Jamaican Girl – Interscope Contact: Rosalie – 310.592.2121 Taking the lead from Eminem the producer on a carefully crafted island tune, Obie Trice demonstrates that he is not afraid of change. And in fact, flows well on the oceans of this tropical melody. 13. Chyna Whyte ft. Gangsta Boo & DJ Demp / Drop A Bundle – BME Contact: Sabrina Montgomery – 404.367.8130 Finally, China White has come back to whup tracks and beat bass with a gangsta style unmatched by any other MC. She has recruited Gangsta Boo and DJ Demp, the shorty pimp to accentuate an already club crunching record soon to break needles across the South. 14. Jibbs / Chain Hang Low – Geffen Contact: Rosalie – 310.592.2121 Jibbs perfectly translates a children’s nursery rhyme into a tune that celebrates opulence. If the thought rolls eyes, keep an open mind, remember there were many people who felt Nelly could never sell a record with a nursery rhyme, and he turned out alright. 15. Daz ft. Kurupt / Daz Thang – So So Def/Virgin Contact: Tikke Chaney - 212.786.8215 Daz reached back to his roots with a jam just short of “7 Minutes of Funk” and he brought The Whole Darn Family by reuniting with the OG DPG Kurupt. Jermaine Dupri is in a great zone right now and continues the trend with another hot one. Oh, and the XXX rated video of this tune is a great way to have your break today. 16. M.O.S. / Drug Related – Jive Contact: Chad Brown – firstname.lastname@example.org On “Drug Related,” M.O.S. speaks of life in the land of Carolina blue where life wasn’t guaranteed. It’s not the life that’s celebrated, M.O.S. is happy he made it and with tracks this good, I’m sure Jive is too. 17. Young Hot Rod ft. Mary J. Blige / Be Easy - Interscope Contact: Rosalie – 310.592.2121 Anytime the Queen blesses a track a certain polish remains leaving the listener with the understanding of what makes soul music feel so good. Young Hot Rod is old enough to know when a blessing is bestowed upon him and crafts a record worthy of royalty. 18. Plies / Take Off – Slip-N-Slide/Atlantic Contact: Sam Crespo – email@example.com For the record, Plies is not the future of Slip-N-Slide, he’s the right now. And if you come up shorting Plies, you better take off cuz he has no problems seeing you about it - he’s got lots of bond money behind him. 19. Trillville ft. Kandi & Cutty Cartel / Eat It Up – BME Contact: Sabrina Montgomery – 404.367.8130 Trillville has teamed up with everyone’s favorite multi-platinum flavored Kandi to make a track that tastes so good, you have to “Eat It Up.” Be prepared to dance off the pounds because a joint that tastes this good can’t be good for your health. 20. Lyfe Jennings ft. Lala Brown / S.E.X. – Sony/Columbia Contact: Cara Lewis – 212.903.1316 One word: wow! This is the definition of a great record that is sure to boost the population 9 months from its release. - Keith “1st Prophet” Kennedy, firstname.lastname@example.org
ozone 28 awards
tj’s dj’s tastemakers xclusives disc 2 1. Plies ft. Akon / I Wanna – Slip-N-Slide/Atlantic Contact: Sam Crespo – email@example.com If you were trying to find a great way to express your feelings about how talented a dancer in the pole position is, this is the record for you. Akon opens many mainstream doors for the judicially prepared Plies as this record will get more action than the champagne room. 2. 8Ball & MJG ft. Diddy / Ridin’ High – Bad Boy/Atlantic Contact: Sam Crespo – firstname.lastname@example.org Traditional 8Ball & MJG fans may not be used to the duo on an up tempo S. Florida ride out vibe, but give them a chance and you’ll be impressed. And if you’re worried about how Diddy mic checks; don’t worry if he writes rhymes, he writes checks. 3. DJ Unk / Walk It Out – Big Oomp/Koch Contact: Gazelle – 212.353.8800 x266 DJ Unk with “Walk It Out” continues the Big Oomp tradition of keeping folks musically intoxicated while they shake jelly on the dance floor. One time to DJ Montay who is in a great production zone right now. 4. Da Backwudz / The World Could Be Yours – Rowdy Contact: Eli Brown - 404.345.0609 Milwaukee Black turns in another masterpiece with Da Backwudz lacing the verses. Women, listen closely and Da Backwudz will tell you the tale of why men need space. The lesson - be easy and the world could be yours. 5. Smoot ft. Slim Thug, Chamillionaire, & Killa Kyleon / Grain Grippa - Kwik Contact: Smoot - 310.497.2880 Direct from the town that’s so cool it’s got two drop top stadiums, Smoot helps Houston continue its run of candy painted tunes that are sweet to your CD player. 6. Blak Jak / Bobbin’ My Head – 1972/Vintage Sounds Contact: Jerry Clark – 404.966.0010 When this record drops, you’ll have no choice but to ride & swerve, throw up deuces, and start bobbin’ ya head. Blak Jak has a knack for making those records that just make you feel good in your ride as if you just left a fresh detail shop. 7. Shawt prod. Mannie Fresh / I’m Da Man – Akright Contact: Heidi Buech - 310.869.4010 With a proclaimed beat king like Mannie Fresh behind him, it’s no problem for Shawt to claim that “I’m Da Man.” Thankfully, he has the skills to make the track Akright and develop into a record worthy of such acclaim. 8. Hard Head Jacob / Trap All Day – Stay Paid Contact: Rio – 678.283.8057 In order to stay paid, Hard Head Jacob outlines his daily routine while working at the “Trap All Day.” The hard bass line is strong enough to scare the trap rats away and vibrates speakers enough to trap the hood rats. 9. Big Koon & Hollywood / Take It Back – Two Dogg Contact: Johnny Vickers - 850.443.5999 If you needed extra motivation to get your stacks up, Big Koon & Hollywood murderize this cut to provide a sense of urgency to collect that paper. 10. Small Tyme Ballaz / Be Rich One Day – Small World/Long Money Contact: Uncle Paully - 334.221.8497 Just because you’re a baller on a budget doesn’t mean you can’t have big tunes. If you have an optimistic outlook and hustle hard like the Small Tyme Ballaz, you’ll “be rich one day” too.
11. Wine-O / Pop My Trunk – Wine-O/Universal Contact: Heidi Buech - 310.869.4010 Fed up with the haters dipping into his business, Wine-O has popped the trunk and is ready to lay haters to rest. This jamming track is your warning - stop the gum flappin’ before this cap’n gets to poppin’! 12. Lil Ru / King Of The Parking Lot – Bout What Contact: Greg Fish – 803.731.8173 DJ Brad of the Legion of Doom laces a beat that Lil Ru takes full advantage of. When this track drops in the classic rides outside of the club, Lil Ru will officially be crowned King of the Parking Lot. 13. Urban Mystic ft. Stacks / I Refuse (Remix) – Sobe Contact: Buggah – 305.754.6446 Urban Mystic, the lil guy with a big soul has found the right combination to make ‘em make ‘em clap to this like Rakim on repeat. It involves Rick Ross, Stacks, and a hip-hop classic that makes you refuse to listen to this record only once. 14. Tiffany ft. Jacki-O / Automatic – Phamus Folks Contact: Micky Rollins – 786.586.4653 Thanks to Gorilla Tek, Tiffany and the Miami Madame Jacki-O jump in for a musical ride a la Thelma & Louise that keeps you hanging on to your seat as if you’re flying off a cliff. 15. Durt Mobb Clik / She Wrong 4 Dat - Da Mouf Contact: Pope – 910.474.6559 Mixing well with the snap beat sets, Durt Mobb Clik have arrived to become the club fashion police by drawing attention to all of the reasons why a club chick goes home lonely. 16. Baby Boy / The Way I Live – Universal/Republic Contact: O.J. Wedlaw - 212.584.5406 When you live the life of Baby Boy it is standard to be grown and still ride big wheels. Plus, it helps to have a hook that’s fun to sing along to as DJs watch this record go round and round. 17. Sonia Collymore ft. Black Majik / No Cash Flow – Manatee Contact: Doc – 312.226.9034 If the road to hell is paved with good intentions, Sonia Collymore is one of the hottest artists on the market as she wants to buy her man so many good things but there’s “No Cash Flow.” With a tune this vibrant it won’t be long before Sonia leaves her money woes behind. 18. Decky ft. Max Minelli / Louder - Divided Soul Contact: Brent Dixon - 225.315.1772 Decky made a smart move by keeping the in-house production of Divided Soul as they laced a beat with a nice mix of scratching and a protruding bass line. With a track produced this well you will have no choice but to turn the music “Louder.” 19. Black Majik / Put Your Drink Up – Manatee Contact: Doc – 312.226.9034 Black Majik fits a perfect slow mo flow over production that makes your ears hear double as if intoxicated by this Chicagoan’s lyrical sensations. 20. Coalition / Alarm – Pure Platinum Contact: Big Boo - 901.240.5491 Driving two miles an hour so everybody sees the Coalition, haters will have to raise the alarm to alert the block that true ballers are on the set. And with a cup of drank in their palm the Coalition ain’t bout to let no B.S. pass on this cruisin’ tune. - Keith “1st Prophet” Kennedy, email@example.com
ozone 29 awards
tj’s dj’s tastemakers xclusives disc 3 1. Khao / Keyz In The Air –Intaprize/GTT Contact: Tanya Marvin - 866.379.0027 Although he has production credits on TI’s “The King,” Khao can’t rest until he gets a throne of his own. With this cut, Khao with a solid lyrical beatmaking K.O. will have other artists putting their keys in the air because it’s time for them to go home. 2. Crime Mob / Rock Yo Hips – BME Contact: Sabrina Montgomery – 404.367.8130 For those who love chicks rocking hips to that Crime Mob crew, this joint is for you. When this beat drops make sure you hold on tight because if she’s got that Beyonce’ lusciousness you may be in for a long ride. 3. Tampa Tony / Bobbahead – SouthBeat Contact: James Jackson - 305.695.6730 Tampa Tony takes a break from pushing his Blunt Splitta’s to describe his favorite chick, the “Bobbahead.” For those who are slow, the “Bobbahead” is a chick who loves to bob her head like a bobble head found at the ball game. If a “Bobbahead” acts right, they might end up on Tampa Tony’s dashboard. 4. Lil Flip / I’m A Balla – Asylum/Warner Bros. Contact: Asylum Promotions – 212.707.3030 True ballas are the ones that know how to flip their chips over and over. Even on a new imprint, Lil Flip will continue to define what ballin’ is all about. Plus, it doesn’t hurt if you have the luck of a leprechaun on your side. 5. J-Shin ft. T-Pain / Sent Me An Email – SouthBeat Contact: James Jackson - 305.695.6730 Roger & Zapp were years ahead of their time singing about Computer Love. Now, J-Shin & T-Pain put together a nice lil diddy that explains what love in the computer generation is all about. And it ain’t always something to LOL about. Beware of those viruses! 6. Randy B. / It’s Over Now – Southern Boy Contact: Randy B. - 850.766.6356 Love past its expiration date can be a traumatic experience. Thankfully, Randy B. has been able to encapsulate the feelings of a breakup and strike the right chords to make the song cry instead of you. 7. T-Hud ft. UGK & Static Major / Never Thought – T-Hud/Nutty Boyz Contact: Nikki - 612-720-8252 T-Hud never thought he would have a track this good unless he hooked up with certified platinum stars like UGK and Static Major (songwriter, Ginuwine, Aaliyah). Thankfully, T-Hud will have nothing but clear skies and great weather forecast for his future with this jamming tune. 8. Jovan Dais / Came A Long Way – Nzone Contact: Bernard Parks - 404.753.6522 DJ Toomp has shared his bag of Hollywood Magic to have Jovan Dais pair with the 5 Heartbeats’ Eddie Caine to form a duo who have come so far but have so far to go. By the end of this record you will know that on nights like this nobody can be Jovan Dais. 9. D-Shep / Stay Real – Conspiracy Music Contact: Mike Rojas - 305.672.7562 Opponents of the use of the “N” word stay away from this tune. D-Shep flips the word by wisely blending the hook to phrase the emotionally charged term in a way that makes you say, it may not be right, but I understand. 10. G-Mack ft. Young Ca$h / Checks Out – Lost Land Contact: Kaper - 614.596.7485 From Kentucky to Duval, G-Mack and Young Ca$h unabashedly run shit. So if you listen to this tune and you hear them talk about it, you already know it’s for real. So respect their gangsta or rest in peace.
11. Willo Da Don / Hustle All Day, Ball All Night – Two Dogg Contact: Johnny Vickers - 850.443.5999 All work and no play makes Willo Da Don a dull artist. That’s why he has to make sure that if he hustles all day, ya gotta ball all night. It’s only right to have a party soundtrack so tight. 12. Strangers / Guac – Two Dogg Contact: Johnny Vickers - 850.443.5999 Although they may be strangers to you, these Strangers are no strangers to getting plenty of guac. With this bass thumping tune, the Strangers provide a new use for stacks of chips. 13. Scoundrel Squad ft. Bohagon / Pat Em Down – Invisible Contact: Pamela Shelby - 706.984.5406 Fresh from a nod by Billboard Magazine, the Scoundrel Squad have been getting much attention from the haters. So, they need to “Pat Em Down” at the door to make sure that no foolishness goes down at the shows. And be forwarned these Savannah sergeants play no games. 14. Suga Suga / Studio Trap – Nzone Contact: Bernard Parks - 404.753.6522 DJ Toomp fresh off one of the hottest tunes of the season (TI’s “What U Know About”) has lent his production talents to his artist Suga Suga who put some work in the studio. With this much bang in the studio other MCs don’t stand a chance. 15. Killa Kim / I Pop – Phamus Folks Contact: Micky Rollins - 786.586.4653 Killa Kim masterfully rides this track into submission and has the beat in her total control making it pop and bend to her will. Luckily she’s brought us along for the trip. 16. La Chat ft. Yo Gotti / Baby Mamma Drama – Inevitable Contact: Mario Myers - 901.406.4528 Yo Gotti & La Chat are the baddest thing smoking from Tennessee since that hillbilly boogie! Yo Gotti & La Chat has been making noise on the underground for the longest and with this track the underground will continue to bubble their name like a 5 prong bong. 17. Alozade / Bad Out Deh – Manatee Contact: Doc - 312.226.9034 Lawdamercy! Alozade knows it’s “Bad Out Deh” so he has to shoot ‘em down wit a bang bang like he was trying to Kill Bill. This is a nice sample of a rude bwoy living the life of a true shotta on a mellow groove. 18. Haitian Fresh / On My Own – Fresh Productions Contact: Ms. Rivercity - 904.465.0745 Although Haitian Fresh is in the streets and grinding on his own, he always has the isle of Haiti on his back. And with a legion that strong no force can stand against him. 19. Young A ft. Juvenile / Down N New Orleans – Akright Contact: Heidi Buech - 310.869.4010 “Down N New Orleans” reveals a dark side of the Crescent City that has become more ruthless since Queen Katrina established her reign of terror. With Young A & Juvenile tag teaming to tell the truth on this track, they show that like a stale beignet, it ain’t sweet. 20. Raw LT ft. Bun B / Getcha Mind Right – BBH Contact: Big Bank Hank - 832.215.7317 Raw LT rides the track like a royal highness should. With Bun B getting her back, I wish somebody would try and disrespect the crown. 21. F.A.S.T. ft. Smoke / Str8’n Me – Fat Fred Contact: JB - 850.528.5028 Smoke from the po’ folk lyrical assassins, Field Mob reaches out to F.A.S.T. to lace a track that will Str8’n anyone being disrespectful. - Keith “1st Prophet” Kennedy, firstname.lastname@example.org
ozone 30 awards
sponsors We at TJ’s DJ’s & OZONE Magazine wish to thank the following partners who helped to make the 2006 TJ’s DJ’s Tastemakers DJ/Music Conference & 1st Annual OZONE Awards the Greatest Event In Southern Music History! Title Sponsors BME/Warner Interscope Diamond Partners Atlantic Records Bad Boy Records Grand Hustle Intaprize/GTT Slip-N-Slide Records Multi-Platinum Partners Ackright Records Asylum Records Jive Records Koch Records LRG Clothing SouthBeat Records Virgin Records Platinum Partners 1972/Vintage Sounds ADL Custom Designs BBH Bout What Records Crunk Juice Da Mouf Records Fresh Productions Lost Land Entertainment Manatee Records Select-O-Hits Southern Boy Entertainment Sobe Phamus Folks Booking & Mgmt Pure Platinum Records T-Hud/Nutty Boyz Entertainment Two Dogg Records Gold Partners A&M Addicted Akademiks Azzure Jeans Bernard Moore Bathhouse Cheese Wagon Conspiracy Music Divided Soul Entertainment Dlishia Clothing Earthworm Clothing Envy Me, Inc. Fat Fred Entertainment Gino Green Global Indigo Red Invisible Records Juana Records Key Block Entertainment Kwik Entertainment Latino Royalty Miskeen Originals Mixrevolution.com Musik Boxx No Name Necessary Productions NZone Entertainment Pinel Swimsuits Reprise Roger Gary’s Aqua Couture Royal Blunts Rowdy Small World Entertainment/Long Money Stay Paid Steve Harvey Suits Struggle Wear Clothing StingIt.net The Spot Tye Dye Couture Universal/Republic White Trash Entertainment Wine-O/Universal
ozone 32 awards