From the day Rick Ross planted his flag on the top of Club Rolexx, the scene in Florida completely changed. That was 2006, and I just founded my label, Valholla Entertainment. In South Florida, independent artists came up by getting their songs played in strip clubs which could lead to radio spins and hood fame. Most artist shining at that time either made music for the streets or the club. Around 2007, “Jook music” got really popular and artists like Grind Mode, Ballgreezy, and others enjoyed success on mainstream radio (Ballgreezy’s “Shone” & Grind Mode’s “I’m So High” both charted on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart in 2008).
As far as our company, we started making an impact in 2008 with our mixtape releases but we finally got mainstream radio play for the first time with a release called “This is the Life” (which featured Kirby Maurier). It was a Jook influenced rap song. Around 2009–2010 is when the blog era began and street artists weren’t the only ones getting shine anymore. With the help of blogs, artists didn’t need strip clubs or radio to get their music poppin’. This was when the disconnect between the streets and the internet started.
Artists who now enjoyed success on the blogs in some cases were getting national attention, and some artists in the streets may not have even known about these new batch of indie stars. The same thing applied to artists making noise in the streets. Then after 2011, when SpaceGhostPurrp garnered national success, he helped start a new wave in music coming out of Florida that birthed the careers of countless independent artists which thrived in the new era of Soundcloud rappers.
Today, there’s still a divide. See, there are artists popping on both of the spectrums of music in Florida… Street artists and “Soundcloud” rappers. The disconnect is many don’t really know who’s who in both areas. The era that is going to help change that, in my opinion, is the playlist era. If artists out of Florida knew more about each other this could help more collaborations happen which will ultimately help Florida in a whole. With the rise of playlists, this can happen.
Enter This is Florida. I’ve linked up with a couple of curators that are native to Florida to curate a brand new playlist of the artists that are making waves in the streets and on the internet. This will help everyone know who’s who, and they can hear the latest songs from the top artists in the space. This is Florida will be updated weekly and will help bridge the gap between artists in Florida and let the world know who’s hot in Florida. Follow the playlist on Apple Music, Spotify, and Tidal. If you’re an in Florida, when you have a new single dropping, let the curators know on Twitter and Instagram. Let’s bridge the gap in Florida. We are the new powerhouse in music.
Like this story? Please share with everyone you know in Florida’s music community. Clap for me and also follow the playlist on Apple Music, Spotify or Tidal. Thanks!