Outkast – The 30th Anniversary of SouthernPlayalisticadillacmuzik

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Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik credit by LaFace-Arista-RCA
Reading Time: 3 minutes
Outkast. Strictly for editorial purposes. No copyright Infringement intended
Outkast. Strictly for editorial purposes. No copyright Infringement intended

Let it be known that Outkast shook up the Hip Hop world on April 26th, 1994, with their debut Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik. Not because it was just another rap album with good rhymes and good beats, but because in a time when the culture’s eyes focused on East Coast VS West Coast, the duo of Big Boi and Andre 3000 took everyone on a tour guide through Hip Hop southern life that would reshape music.

The Trip

Southernplayalistic’s intro is a voyage ride guided by Peaches, who smoothly speaks of Atlanta metropolitan areas like SWATS, Eastpoints, College Park, and Decatur. There’s a psychedelic feeling that steer the traditional Hip Hop ear away from its norm into a vibrational shock with Myintrotoletuknow. Big Boi paints his description rhyming sharply, matching the DJ scratches, saying, “Just bein’ a hustler, serving loyal customers. Rent was due on the first of the month, so I’m hustlin’.”

Ain’t No Thang quickly shows the cleverness of a young not yet Andre 3000 but simply Dre when he says, “In case of physical breakdown, ya’ll can break now,” destroying all “Them south n****z can’t rap” stereotypes. Yet, the chorus of “Ain’t no thing but a chicken wing” is an embracement of Southern slang itself.

Mason Dixie Rhymes

The passion of southern pride shines brightest on the album title track, Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik. The beginning guitars plays in sequence as a blues record blends with a saxophone drum combo, giving a disco effect. The creative instrumentation is courtesy of the legendary Organized Noise, who also produced the entire album. Both Dre and Big Boi rap brilliantly back & forth, sounding as one throughout the beat with Big Boi like “N****z who tried to f**k with me. Get sprayed like Raid ‘cause it ain’t nothin to see,” while Dre has his back saying “My heart is in the trunk along with that quad knock. No, my heart don’t pump no Kool-Aid. Jump and you’ll get too sprayed.”

Southernplayalistic also delivers the South’s first posse cut with Git Up, Git Out featuring Goodie Mob. Cee-Lo’s “I don’t recall ever graduatin’ at all” is soulfully felt as a line that speaks with apathy, relating to the then-young Black Gen-Xer. The song is a cautionary yet rallying cry for one to become self-inspired, because trying and maybe failing is always better than not trying at all.

Holiday Players

Outkast credit by Reddit

While every song is a masterpiece, the album’s lead single, Player’s Ball, makes it a classic. Big Boi and Dre deliver their version of the southern street holiday spirit. The song’s essence of eight ball pool tables, candy-painted Cadillacs, and Kangol hats is a rhythm that electrifies one’s nervous system.

The South Got Something to Say

Outkast’s Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik wasn’t just an alternative to Hip Hop’s commercially successful gangsta braggadocious rap. The album was a calling to those who have always felt like outsiders in their private worlds. Big Boi and Dre planted their unapologetic southern flag without permission and without apology. Together, they showed the culture and beyond another version of musical soul and rhythm. Their slick rhyme tales of street dues were about hustlin not for glamor but for better means. At the same time, the beat production elevated and pushed Hip Hop to embrace country melody. The duo-in-rhyme would grow into Hall of Fame legendary MCs with an almost flawless musical catalog. The album became critically and commercially successful while pioneering the charge of Hip Hop’s Southern three-decade-plus reign.

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