by John Tarpley
Speaking of long-tenured genre icons, this year marks the 21st year for 8Ball & MJG, the Memphis rap architects whose loose, swaggering releases in the early '90s brought some well-deserved, long overdue attention to the mid-South, provided some of the major building blocks of Southern rap and helped open the door for all of the Master Ps, Three 6 Mafias and Outkasts to come. During their last visit to town in October 2009, the duo brought Hill Country Revue, the blues two-piece, to act as a genre-smashing backing band. This time, however, it's bringing a busload of opening acts from the relatively familiar (Lil Wil from Memphis has made waves on regional radio with his new single "My Dougie") to the up-and-coming (Mr. Pookie & Mr. Lucci) and a parade of randoms with awesome names (King Kong Cotton, Stubbalean). For guys of a certain age who grew up not too far away from Memphis — this writer definitely included — 8Ball & MJG are nothing short of dirty ridin', syrup slurpin' superheroes. And you never get too old for a little "Space Age Pimpin'."
The bill is rounded out by Big Doughski G, Stoney Crook Family, Hot Rod D'conte, Adam Bomb, Lilo Eskimo and DJ Mike Blaze. V.I.P. tickets are available for $75.
Check it out: "Relax & Take Notes"