Just in the past few years alone, the sound of hip-hop has constantly evolved. When Lil’ Jon introduced the world to crunk music, its hard beats made you want to confront the dude in the club you had beef with. But just when crunk music decided to take a little breather, something else came in and stole the spotlight; one of the most simplistic, yet addictive sub-genres of hip-hop today. It is called snap music. You can literally hear the snapping of fingers in every song and while the music seems to be everywhere, it’s the dances, which were inspired by the music, that seem to get any party hype.
The Atlanta bred, So So Def/Virgin recording artists, Dem Franchize Boyz have been living well lately. With songs like “Oh I Think They Like Me” and “Lean Wit It, Rock Wit It,” they have been taking the charts by storm. Their debut album, On Top Of Our Game, has been certified gold and while backstage at the Chris Brown/Ne-Yo tour in Miami, the group had time to reflect on their success and talk about why snap music has become such a phenomenon in the States.
How are you guys handling the whole success of your group?
Parlae: We are just taking it one step at a time. You know? We ain’t rushing nothing. We are getting more and more famous, so we are just taking it one step at a time.
Lil’ Jon introduced listeners to crunk music and you all have helped take snap music from Atlanta to the rest of the world. What has the success of snap music done to your careers?
Parlae: We originated the whole thing and the thing about snap music, it’s not just the snap, it’s a whole vibe. It’s the rhythm of urban music. We turned that rhythm into snap music and we trying to keep it going. Ever since we been in the game, we’ve been trendsetters – since “White Tee,” everyone was rocking the white tees; “Lean Wit It, Rock Wit It” with the dancing. We expect people to follow. We the kings of the snap!
D4L – another group out of Atlanta – have claimed that they are the originators of snap music. They have taken shots at you in the press. What is your whole take on that?
All: Who are they?
Parlae: There’s a lot of up and coming artists. We don’t know too many of them. We just know a couple songs.
Pimpin: Where they at now though?
Talk about the Atlanta music scene. Atlanta is dominating the charts right now. What is it like to be a part of the Atlanta music community?
Pimpin: It’s like a big family down in ATL. Everybody is trying to get money, so whatever it takes to get money, they gone do it. And everybody is just humble, that’s why it’s easy to collaborate.
What do you say to the critics who don’t see the artistic value in your music?
Parlae: Well, what is music to them? If it’s not a form of music, then why are a lot of artists doing it right now that ain’t never did it before? So it has to be something. It’s new right now and it’s the hottest thing out right now.
Jermaine Dupri has had an influential role in the group’s success. What things have you learned from being under his wing?
Jizzal Man: He’s took our career to a whole other level. He’s a humble guy and we just appreciate that.
Parlae: Jermaine is helping us be entrepreneurs which is a phenomenon in and of itself. He’s also making us become better artists and better people because the stuff he does helps us become better all the way around.
What happens when snap music is no longer ‘hot’? What are you guys doing to ensure that you have longevity in the business?
Parlae: Well, we feel like we are going to be here anyway. It wasn’t the snap music that made us. Before we made it, ya’ll never heard of it and ya’ll were still vibing with us.
Jizzal Man: We got our independent labels going on – T.N.T. Entertainment. We got the new single with Brooke Valentine. We got a clothing line. We got our first artist – Young Nut who was on our “Lean Wit It, Rock Wit It” single.
Anything else you want to say to the readers?
Jizzal Man: The album [On Top Of Our Game] is in stores right now dropping like hotcakes. Be looking out for Young Nut. Definitely be looking out for Dem Franchize Boyz next project coming out real soon. Our last video off this album, “Freaky As You Want to Be” featuring Trey Songz, is coming real soon.
Parlae: We trying to see numbers like the Matrix. We just taking it over. DFB. So So Def baby!
Marcus Washington can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.