We’re four months into 2020, and yes, it’s been a rough year so far. But there’s one thing we can count on, even in uncertain times: the power of music. Can you hear it? It’s the sound of April showers turning into May flowers, coming straight out of Memphis.
Here’s a list of some of our favorite 2020 music releases so far.
1. BlocBoy JB: Swervin
The Memphis rapper responsible for creating the 2018 viral “Shoot Dance” is back to show the world exactly what he’s capable of on his new track “Swervin.” Blocboy JB is most known for “Look Alive” featuring Drake, which peaked at number five on the Billboard Hot 100, and on “Swervin” he rediscovers his fun-loving, tongue-in-cheek style.
2. GoonTwinn: Pop My Sh*t pt. 2
The young Memphis rapper emerged on the scene three years ago with his viral debut mixtape 2 Days in Hell. The success of his mixtape made him an underground Memphis superstar at the ripe old age of 17.
3. Tay Keith: Nothin To Me
Best known for co-producing Travis Scott’s “Sicko Mode,” which peaked at number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and earned him a Grammy nomination, Memphis native Tay Keith joins Hardo, Peewee Longway, and Doe Boy on his latest track “Nothin to Me.”
4. Healy: Reckless
Since his 2015 debut EP, “A Galaxy with Skin,” Memphis-born Ethan Healy has been living a double life: med school student by day, and musician—simply known as Healy—by night. His breakthrough moment came on “Reckless” from his 2017 debut album Subluxe. The video for the track was released this January.
5. Jozzy: Let You Down Let You Go
Born and raised in Memphis, Tennessee, rapper and songwriter Jozzy got her start writing for Timbaland and Missy Elliott. She hit it big last year when she was recruited to help write the Billy Ray Cyrus verse on a remix of Lil Nas X’s blockbuster single “Old Town Road.” The song was nominated for a Grammy for Song of the Year. No word on when Jozzy plans on dropping a full-length solo project.
6. Key Glock: I’m Just Sayin
A protégé of Memphis rapper Young Dolph, Key Glock rose to fame in 2017 for his mixtape Glock Season. Since then, the Memphis rapper has released a whopping 5 albums. The Latest, Yellow Tape, peaked at number 14 on the Billboard 200. “I’m Just Sayin” is the third single from the album which Pitchfork calls a “work of wicked truths and unfiltered confidence, a book of genesis that feels like a post-mortem.”
7. K. Michelle: Just Like Jay
With her 5th Album, All Monsters Are Human, the Memphis singer, songwriter, and television personality wants us all to remember that “Everybody in here is a villain to somebody and in somebody’s story, you’re not an angel.” The album debuted at number 11 on the Billboard 200 and is “by far K. Michelle’s biggest release to date.” “Just Like Jay” is the third single from the album.
8. Moneybagg Yo – 123
In the video for the third single from his highest-charting album Time Served, the Memphis rapper and songwriter “knows the value of his worth, but when it comes to the company he keeps, the question remains: ‘Why would I switch out a dime for a penny?’” The track features Memphis Rapper Black Youngsta.
9. The Poet, Havi – You’re My Jesus
A couple of weeks ago, We Are Memphis Music had the honor of premiering The Poet, Havi’s latest sonic-visual masterpiece. The Memphis artist and Studio 88 owner has been honing his craft for a few years, and after an extended hiatus, he is back with a renewed perspective. He says, “This song, this video, are both testaments to love.” Our favorite line: “I think you made me a believer, I think you’re really my Jesus.”
10. Yo Gotti: H.O.E. (Heaven On Earth)
Memphis rap veteran Yo Gotti released his tenth album Untrapped in January, and as luck would have it, the album also debuted at number 10 on the Billboard 200. On the album’s third single, “H.O.E. (Heaven On Earth)” Yo “plays around with the preconceived notions of the controversial hip-hop vernacular.” In the video, he plays the President, promising to “Make the hood great again.”
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