The Lox's Sheek Louch on Rap Imitating Gang Life: "Like Pacino, He's Not Really Scarface"

The Lox's Styles P, Sheek Louch, and Jadakiss.

Notorious B.I.G. used to smoke blunts and drink liquor with The Lox.

They met when Mary J. Blige delivered the group's Styles P, Sheek Louch, and Jadakiss from the streets of Yonkers to Puff Daddy's Bad Boy headquarters, where they helped make hits like "It's All About the Benjamins."

Later, they blew up with DMX and the Ruff Ryders. And then they started their own damn shit, D-Block Records. Today, they are a still vital force in New York hip-hop. And tonight, they're gonna rock downtown Miami's Grand Central, thanks to DJ Heron.

Here's what founding member Sheek Louch had to say about Scarface, guns, and the Versace Mansion.

See also: Five Richest Rappers of 2014

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2 Live Crew's Brother Marquis on New Album, Turn Me On, and Three Decades of Dirty Rap

Categories: Local Music, Q&A

The 2 Live Crew, back in the day.

Brother Marquis was 19 years old when he joined 2 Live Crew and started recording some of the most famous dirty raps that the world has ever known.

He was born in New York, moved to L.A. at 14, and flew straight to Miami when the Crew needed an extra rapper.

Nearly 30 years later, he's been to the Supreme Court, and fought and won to preserve the right for every American to record and sell songs like "We Want Some Pussy." Now Marquis and Fresh Kid Ice have an amazing new 2 Live Crew album, Turn Me On, with production by Pretty Tony and Mannie Fresh, not to mention features from Trick Daddy, Trina, Too $hort, E-40, and Insane Clown Posse.

Here's what Brother Marquis has to say about wild shows, his first Spanish girl, and how he came up with his lyrics.

See also: Miami Booty Bass: Ten Best Acts of All Time

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Cris Cab on Where I Belong: "Great Albums Tell a Story, and That's What I Wanted to Do"

Photo by Tom Clark

Most 21 year olds don't spend their days traveling around the world, performing their songs for crowds of adoring fans while collaborating with some of the biggest names in the music industry. 

But Cris Cab is not most 21 year olds.

Thanks to a combination of hard work, determination, talent, and luck, he linked up with singer-songwriter, rapper, record producer, musician, and fashion designer Pharrell Williams. 

The Grammy winner took Cab under his wing and exposed him to a world of superstars before young Cris was even out of high school.

Now this 21 year old is getting ready to release his debut album, Where I Belong. So we here at Crossfade caught up with him to get the story behind this first full-length record.

See also: Miami's Cris Cab on Pharrell: "I Couldn't Ask for a Better Mentor"

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De La Tierra's Alex González Talks Metal, Hardcore Punk, and Stupid Critics


Some of the most rabid revelry in metal fandom can be found in Latin America, where the devil horns fly hard by the hundreds of thousands.

Mosh pits the size of soccer stadiums are the norm, and music about fighting oppressive and corrupt regimes hurtle the masses into cathartic euphoria.

Metal supergroup De La Tierra hails from Guadalajara, Buenos Aires, and Sao Paolo, with members from the world-famous Maná, Sepultura, Los Fabulosos Cadillacs, and A.N.I.M.A.L. Here's what founding drummer Alex Gonzalez had to say about hardcore punk, Suicidal Tendencies, and stupid critics.

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Miami's Anjuli Stars on VH1's The Linda Perry Project: "Nothing Was Fabricated"

Categories: Local Music, Q&A

Photo by Neil Dyer

Anjuli Stars has a voice that could make the devil change his ways, the sun shine brighter rays, and the ocean calm its waves.

She's a rapper, a singer, and a business woman reppin' West Kendall to the fullest who has taken the sounds of The Hammocks to the world on tracks with Pitbull, Scott Storch, and now Linda Perry.

Perry, the songwriter behind Christina Aguilera's hit "Beautiful," picked up Anjuli for a VH1 show, The Linda Perry Project, seeking to sign the next great artist for her Custard Records label. Here's what Ms. Stars had to say about TV drama, freestyle rapping, and aggressive criticism.

See also: Ten Best Female Rappers Ever

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GTA's Van Toth and JWLS Talk Success: "It's Crazy, and It Keeps Getting Crazier"

Categories: Local Music, Q&A

GTA's Van Toth and JWLS: All gold everything.

A lot has changed for the boys of GTA. They're no longer Miami's most promising upstarts but internationally known DJ-producers. They've opened for Rihanna's world tour, played nearly every major music festival in the United States, and relocated to the West Coast.

But even though JWLS (AKA Julio Mejia) and Van Toth (AKA Matt Toth) may have become almost famous and moved to Los Angeles, they're still the same old subtropical dudes screamin' "Death to genres!"

We here at Crossfade recently spoke with the GTA bros about how far they've come and why it's so important to kick off their new cross-country party series, Good Times Ahead, in the MIA.

See also: Miami's 25 Best Electronic Music Acts

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Quantic on Uniting Latin and Electronic Dance Music Lovers


As an electronic dance music artist, you can either draw your influences from the relatively limited palette of styles within the genre itself, or reach beyond it.

If you're Quantic (AKA Will Holland), the quest for inspiration could even take you as far as crossing the Atlantic, from England to Colombia, to discover the South American country's rich folk music heritage.

As an expat living and working in Colombia for almost a decade now, the British DJ-producer has explored traditional local music flavors like cumbia and salsa through the kaleidoscopic lens of modern electronic music production. The new crown on Quantic's formidable discography is his latest long player, Magnetica, which he will be presenting at Electric Pickle, along with other choice cuts from his catalog of Latin-electronic fusion originals.

Ahead of the show, we spoke with Quantic about falling in love with Colombian music, the new album, and his return to a more dance floor-focused sound.

See also: EDM's Five Greatest Delusions

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Mayer Hawthorne: "Every Song Is Based on Real Life, Otherwise People Won't Connect to It"

Categories: Q&A

Photo by Ian Witlen
Mayer Hawthorne, charming his fans' pants off at the Mercedes-Benz Evolution Tour stop in Miami.

Mayer Hawthorne (real name Andrew Mayer Cohen) is a chill dude.

Backstage at Miami's Soho Studios, prepping for last night's Mercedes-Benz Evolution Tour gig, his band, manager, and crew crowd around him, listening to every word that comes out of his mouth. With such a successful career, he could be a dick. But nope, not this middle-class Jewish guy.

As he sits down for an interview with Crossfade, he's wearing a silky zebra-print shirt. On anyone else, this would look stupid. On Mayer, it's cool.

See also: Review & Photos: Blonde Redhead and Mayer Hawthorne - Mercedes-Benz Evolution Tour - Miami

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Three 6 Mafia's DJ Paul on Da Mafia 6ix, Working With ICP, and "Keeping It Grimy"


Oceans of blood, purple syrup, and pounding bass pervade every monstrous track by Three Six Mafia, currently touring as Da Mafia 6ix.

Straight outta Memphis and thuggin', DJ Paul's notorious crew of head smashers are a riotous force to be reckoned with. And like any great high-speed chase, you either have to roll with it or get rolled on.

Tomorrow night, they're gonna drop on downtown Miami's Grand Central like a ten ton subatomic bass bomb, alongside Flesh and Bizzy Bone, DJ Heron, Problem Kids, Layce, and a slew of openers. Here's what founding Three 6 Mafia member DJ Paul had to say about Wife Swap, Poison Clan, and dubstep.

See also: Bone Thugs-n-Harmony on Final Album: "End of an Era, but the Beginning of a New One"

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Seven Years of Safe Miami: "Leading People Who Trust Us Into the Unknown"


Miami's underground dance music scene owes many hard-working local promotions visionaries, many of which have come and gone. But one crew that has stood the test of time, while standing out for its bold, forward-thinking musical programming, is SAFE.

Since launching in 2006, these trailblazing tastemakers have introduced Miami to many of electronic dance music's great iconoclastic luminaries, including DJ Sprinkles, Optimo, Ben UFO, Martyn, and Joy Orbison. Put simply, SAFE parties are more than mere dance floor hedonism -- they offer a musical education.

Ahead of the crew's seventh anniversary celebration at Electric Pickle with DJ Sprinkles on Friday, Crossfade caught up with SAFE's Diego Martinelli to chat about SAFE's evolution and seven essential records.

See also: Safe's Diego Martinelli on the State of Dance Music: "This EDM Thing, It's Atrocious"

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