The Stories Behind Five H-Town Rap Anthems

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You know the song as soon as the beat drops. You rap them better than the artists themselves do at concerts. You'll slap your little brother for butchering the lyrics. But do you know the real life stories behind these five H-town rap anthems?

Pull up a chair, grab a bag of popcorn, and a cold beverage. Dig in, it's sweet.

5. "Wanna Be a Baller," Lil Troy (1999)

You can call Lil Troy a one-hit wonder, but one thing you can't call him is "phony." When Troy said he was Sittin' Fat Down South, he wasn't kidding around. Dude kept it real in the streets and reaped huge dividends from his supernova hit. Fueled by the success of "Wanna Be a Baller," Troy moved 1.5 million units of his debut, outpacing Puff Daddy en route to national fame. Then it all came crashing down.


The Story: Troy was one of those rappers who adhered strictly to hip-hop's "keep it real" mantra. Like Jay-Z before him, Troy's street dealings enabled him to fund his own music career. As he was riding the wave of success, the alphabet boys popped him for his clandestine street activities and sentenced him to 18 months in the pen.

"Everybody was saying when I went to jail, 'Man, why you selling drugs and getting in trouble when you're all on TV selling records and stuff?' Man, that happened before I done sold nann record," Troy said after his release. "I had to get the money to put the music out."


4. "Still Tippin'," Mike Jones (2004)

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Loud and languorous, "Still Tippin'" captured the essence of dirty south hip-hop in 2004, as the Texas triumvirate of Slim, Mike, and Paul traded rhymes about Southern comfort.


The Story: Unbeknownst to observers outside Space City, the original version of "Still Tippin'" featured Mike Jones, Slim Thug and Chamillionaire. When Mike and Cham got crossways, Jones yanked Chamillionaire from the recording and gave his spot to Paul Wall.

That's how Cham missed out on an opportunity to be on one of the most important songs in Houston hip-hop, but he would go on to record a ubiquitous hit of his own, the Grammy-winning "Ridin'," a couple years later.



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