Hip-Hop

The 2016 Phoenix Hip-Hop Power List

The Arizona Hip Hop Festival capped off a strong year for Phoenix hip-hop.
The Arizona Hip Hop Festival capped off a strong year for Phoenix hip-hop. Frank Cordova
From world tours to government-sanctioned hip-hop festivals, Arizona hip-hop flexed a lot of muscle in 2016. In an attempt to comprehend it all, we took the time to look at some of the most powerful movers and shakers of the last year.

10. Trap House
As one of the most consistent artists to release music out of Arizona, it was interesting to see Trap House turn his focus toward more worldly causes. Trap spearheaded a “Keep the Guns Away” initiative that was designed to bring awareness to the growing violence in local neighborhoods. As one of the New Times’ 10 Noisemakers, Trap has truly ascended to a level of influence beyond just his street tales.

click to enlarge Sincerely Collins performs onstage at Comerica Theatre during the 2015 Arizona Hip Hop Festival. - BENJAMIN LEATHERMAN
Sincerely Collins performs onstage at Comerica Theatre during the 2015 Arizona Hip Hop Festival.
Benjamin Leatherman
9. Sincerely Collins
Collins’ anticipated release, The Legend Of Phoenix, played out as an autobiography for the young emcee. The well-received project was already on the New Times list of best hip-hop releases this year, and continued to stay in the minds of Arizona hip-hop fans as songs like "Midas Touch" and "Possible" made the rounds on various radio stations and blogs.

click to enlarge COURTESY OF AVENUE OF THE ARTS
Courtesy of Avenue of the Arts
8. Avenue Of The Arts
AOTA is one of the longest-running and -respected hip-hop crews in Arizona, and is known for staying true to the authenticity of the elements of the genre. Deejays such as Blesd1, Psychopat, and Les735 play on radio, internet and multiple weekly nights, like Live and Learn Thursdays at Tempe Tavern and New Grand Fridays at ThirdSpace. Meanwhile, potent emcees such as RunLike, Everyday Affiliates, and Ohm continue to spread captivating underground hip-hop vibes through their performances. Avenue Of The Arts kept its members' names ringing throughout the streets of the underground community in 2016.

click to enlarge Turntablist king DJ M2 put on a phenomenal set during his appearance at the Blunt Club. - BENJAMIN LEATHERMAN
Turntablist king DJ M2 put on a phenomenal set during his appearance at the Blunt Club.
Benjamin Leatherman
7. Dumperfoo/Blunt Club
As one of the most respected entities in the local hip-hop community, Dumperfoo and his affiliates, which include the likes of Tricky T and Pickster Uno, provided great entertainment almost every night of the week with events like Motown on Mondays at Crescent Ballroom, Uptown at Rips on Wednesdays, and New Grand at ThirdSpace. Their monthly Blunt Club event, which now resides at Valley Bar, is still the longest running hip-hop night in the Valley and caters to a packed housed every time. Despite Dumperfoo’s departure to Portland, Oregon, the engine continues without missing a beat, delivering a much-needed fix for the music junkies.

6. 101.1 The BeatLocker
The veteran trio of Pokafase, Dj Marvel, and Louanna Faine paid a dutiful service to the hip-hop community with their Sunday morning show “The Beatlocker.” The radio program strived to play only local hip-hop from some of the best artists in the Valley. Expanding upon that, their showcase at Wasted Grain gave those same artists a chance to showcase their talents in front of a live audience.


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Jaron is a musician, writer, promoter, videographer, and a founder of the like-minded collective and movement known as Starstruck.
Contact: Jaron Ikner