This week's Saturday Hustle shares the talents vying for the Best New Artist award at tomorrow's BET Awards.
Hailing from Harlem, 23-year-old Rakim 'A$AP Rocky' Myers is one of the hottest New York rappers on the scene. Rocky made his debut after an unofficial compilation of his YouTube hits by a fan in Paris titled Deep Purple was released in August of last year. Deep Purple launched his first singles Peso and Purple Swag, and its success resulted in Rocky signing a record deal with Sony, RCA Records and Polo Grounds Music. Rocky released his debut mixtape LiveLoveA$AP last October to positive reviews, and plans to release his debut studio album, LongLiveA$AP, in July 2012.
West Detroit rapper, 24-year-old Sean Michael 'Big Sean' Anderson, has been on the Hip Hop scene since 2007 with the release of his mixtape trilogy: Finally Famous 1, 2 and 3. Big Sean signed with Kanye West's GOOD Music in 2007, and then in 2008 signed with Def Jam Recordings. Finally Famous, Sean's debut studio album, was released June 28, 2011, and launched three hit singles: My Last, Marvin & Chardonnay and Dance. The album features guest appearances from A list artistes like Lupe Fiasco, Pharrell Williams, Kanye West, John Legend, Roscoe Dash, Chiddy Bang, Wiz Khalifa, Rick Ross and Pusha T.
The fresh prince of Hip Hop, 17-year-old Daniel Dwayne Simmons III, known on the music scene and to all teenage girls alike as simply Diggy, is one of the youngest game-changers Hip Hop has seen in a while. Son of one of Hip Hop's pioneers, Rev Run, then 14-year-old Diggy in 2009 released his debut mixtape The First Flight, which received more than 100,000 digital downloads. Following its success, Diggy was approached initially by five record labels, but signed with Atlantic Records by early 2010. Diggy released his second mixtape, Airborne, that same year which featured the leaked hit Oh Yeah!, featuring Pharrell Williams and Lupe Fiasco; and Great Expectations, which was made famous by a national AT&T television commercial, before releasing his debut album Unexpected Arrival in March of this year.
Nayvadius Wilburnage, better known on the ATL scene as Future, is a 26-year-old southern rapper who has been active since late 2010. Future has released a series of mixtapes including 1000 and True Story, the latter including the single and one of his biggest hits to date, Tony Montana. Future signed on with Epic Label Group in September of last year, before the release of yet another mixtape, Streetz Calling. His debut album Pluto, was released in April.
Maybach Music's newest driving force, 25-year-old Robert 'Meek Mill' Williams, has been churning out hits since he was signed to the Rick Ross lead label in March of last year. Meek Mill released his debut single, Tupac Back as well as Ima Boss last year, both featuring Rick Ross, and both from his current label's compilation album Self Made Vo. 1. Ima Boss was later remixed to feature TI Birdman, Lil Wayne, DJ Khaled Swizz Beatz and Rick Ross and was charted on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #51 and on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart at #20. In May of this year Mill released the second installment in his Dreamchasers mixtape series, which features hip hop giants like Drake, Big Sean, Jeremih, 2 Chainz, and Kendrick Lamar.