I'm not entirely sure when I started getting obsessed with Houston hip-hop, but I think it was...let's say six months ago, when I was talking to a Houston native and they mentioned Fat Pat. I had no idea who Fat Pat was, which was apparently like telling a NBA fan you had no idea who Michael Jordan was. It made me realize how many cities have their own hip-hop universes, and how little I really know about Houston specifically.
So I set out to get educated. I researched, talked to H-Town residents, got up to speed on my Houston history and then once I felt like I had a grasp on the past, I turned towards the future. From A$AP Rocky to Drake, in some ways it seemed like Houston rap had never been more popular and influential. But then why weren't more rappers actually from Houston on? And who were those rappers? Who's on the rise in the city? I couldn't stop thinking about it.
Again, I got to work and assembled a list of ten artists it felt like represented different facets of Houston's present, and future. It's not some definitive, exhaustive list (shout out to Beatking and Maxo Kream and everyone else who's not here) and it's by no means a final verdict. Houston's next superstar could easily be someone I've never heard of. But I do feel like it's a good snapshot of the city right now, taken by an outsider determind to learn about one of hip-hop's most unique cultures from every insider I can find. So without further ado....
Polo Perks Is Building a Future From Pieces of the Past
We talk to the Surf Gang artist about microdosing alternative music in his raps.