8ball and MJG
A few years back, some friends and I were at the counter ordering subs at the Lynch Street Subway. The joke of the day was that I somehow didn't like 8ball and MJG. Overhearing the conversation, a "sandwich artist" looked up and asked, "Who doesn't like 8Ball and MJG, and which sandwich is his?" I had to quickly explain the situation or that brother was not about to let me get my steak-n-cheese. The Orange Mound, Tenn., duo have been living legends since their first commercial release, "Comin' Out Hard," in 1993.
It's hard for a southern hip-hop fan to understand the comment I heard in a D.C. barbershop: "You know UGK, they were in the 'Big Pimpin' video." That statement, also true of video models, shouldn't define the Port Arthur, Texas group. When southern rap was far from fashionable, UGK (Pimp C and Bun B) gave the burgeoning rap scene a bravado that would influence both northern and southern rap stars. Listen to any Jay-Z CD and though you may not hear UGK's voices, you will hear their lyrics.
Now everyone won't admit it, but everyone loves Outkast—except maybe the late Rosa Parks. (Parks sued the duo over a song that bore the civil rights legend's name.) The song actually had little to do with Parks and was more about making way for a new sound that has become the Atlanta group's trademark.