We ain't gonna lie: When Justus Samuel first announced the Arizona Hip Hop Festival back in 2014, we thought he was nuts. Or suffering from delusions of grandeur. Or both. Bringing together close to 100 artists (and their egos) from Phoenix's fractured and often-contentious scene for an enormous one-day showcase? It seemed destined to implode under the sheer weight of Samuel's ambition. We were wrong. Save for some logistical snafus, the inaugural festival was a resounding success. Six years later, it's still going strong, helping to develop local talents, foster a sense of community, and put Arizona hip-hop on the map. That's been Samuel's M.O. for more than a decade with his record label and promotions company Respect the Underground, which showcases rappers through regular gigs and lands them airplay on online platforms like iKON Radio. He's even adapted to the COVID-19 crisis, using livestreams and virtual concerts to get RTU's music to the public — whatever it takes for Arizona's hip-hop godfather and biggest booster to continue repping this fine state.