Category: Musicians

5 Rappers That You Might Have Forgotten About

The rap genre has a lot of legends, including the likes of Jay-Z, Eminem, Tupac Shakur, Notorious B.I.G., etc. The list really goes on for a while, but if you hear a certain name, you know about their legendary status. However, the genre isn’t comprised entirely of legends. There have been plenty of names that have come and gone, some of which were one-hit wonders that some saw as novelty acts.

Today, we remember some of those rappers whose careers were a flash in the pan. We’ll remember their hits that had people talking for a brief period, and what happened to them after their 15 minutes of fame. Here are five rappers that you might have forgotten about.


St. Louis rap started to gain attention in the early 2000s thanks to Nelly, and one of the people who benefitted the most was J-Kwon. Born as Jerrell C. Jones, J-Kwon started rap battling in St. Louis as a child and had several run-ins with the law while struggling to survive in general. That would change in 2004 when he landed a record deal and released his debut album “Hood Hop”.

The album contained the massive hit “Tipsy”, which reached the number two spot on the Billboard Hot 100. Then, J-Kwon had a modest hit with “You & Me” and wasn’t heard from for years. He waited five years to release another album and it hardly sold any copies. J-Kwon said his career was sidetracked due to being jailed for unpaid child support, claiming that the child wasn’t his. It turns out he was right and he created a foundation for people in similar situations.

Bone Crusher

Atlanta has created some of the best rappers of all time, and some of those legendary performers were able to bring exposure to some of the lesser-known from the ATL. Among those that found brief success thanks to the early 2000s rise in Atlanta’s hip-hop popularity was Bone Crusher. Born Wayne Hardnett Jr., Bone Crusher was a staple for video game soundtracks of the era.

His debut album “AttenCHUN!” was a huge hit, reaching number one on the R&B Chart thanks to songs like “Never Scared”. Afterward, he would release just two albums (in 2006 and 2007) before finishing his recording career. At the time, he said he was just waiting until his kids grew up a bit, but enjoyed fatherhood so much that he walked away from rapping altogether, so this story definitely has a happy ending.


It seems like these days that almost every rapper has “Lil” or “Da” in front of their name, but in the early 2000s, there were a lot of rappers that had one-word names or even acronyms. One of those rappers that fall into both categories is MIMS, which stands for Music is My Savior, but is also his real last name. Shawn Mims was born in New York City in 1981 and found success in his mid-20s with the release of his debut album.

The album contained a long list of tracks, but the one that everyone remembers is “This is Why I’m Hot”. The song reached number one on the charts, and “Like This” would be a top 40, but that was it for MIMS. He released just one more album in 2009 titled “Guilt” which didn’t crack the top 50 of the Billboard 200 before getting dropped from his label. Thankfully, he found success in the tech world, creating an app called RecordGram.

Shop Boyz

Another Atlanta-based act, the Shop Boyz was a collective that comprised of Meany (Demetrius Hardin), Fat (Richard Stephens), and Sheed (Rasheed Hightower). The group started up in 2004 and fused both rock and rap, catching lightning in a bottle three years later when the two genres mashing up became popular in the mainstream.

Their debut album “Rockstar Mentality” was released in 2007, reaching #11 on the Billboard 200 and #2 on the rap charts. Of course, the song that caught on the most was “Party Like a Rockstar”, a number-two hit. Their follow-up scraped the top 100 and they released just one more single before being released from their label.


Jibbs released just one studio album and had one top-10 hit, but what a hit it was. Born as Jovan Campbell, Jibbs is another St. Louis-based rapper who came onto the scene in the mid-2000s, releasing the hit track “Chain Hang Low”. The song reached number seven on the charts and was certified platinum from his album “Jibbs Featuring Jibbs”.

He had one more single titled “King Kong” that had modest success, but no other entries into the Billboard Hot 100. JIbbs is still performing these days, but his focus has been on being a father.

5 Largest Live Music Crowds Ever

Music is universal, and for most, it’s the first thing that comes to mind when you ask what their hobbies are. Because of this, millions of people go to concerts every year. Whether they be in small venues that only hold a few dozen people or massive widespread parks, we love seeing our favorite bands live. Out of all of the concerts ever held, though, which ones drew the largest crowds ever?

For this list, the concert had to be for a single artist as the headliner and fans had to pay for admission. Festivals that last for several days and free shows weren’t considered. That’s what sets these five concerts apart as being something genuinely captivating to have that many people pay to see one person in one venue.

5. Tina Turner (1988)

Tina Turner went on the sixth tour of her career between March 1987 and March 1988 which would end up being one of the biggest tours of all time and the highest-grossing female tour of the 1980s. Pulling in over $60 million, Turner opened each show with “What You Get Is What You See” and wrapped up with “Paradise Is Here”.

Due to being marketed as the final tour of her career, Turner sold a lot of seats, but none more than in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil at Maracana Stadium. On January 16, 1988, Turner brought in 180,000 people to see her belt out her greatest hits. To this day, it remains the largest audience for a female artist ever.

4. Paul McCartney (1990)

For many years, Paul McCartney toured with the Beatles and then with Wings. Starting in September 1989, though, McCartney went on tour on his own with over 100 shows until July 1990. McCartney started his tour in Drammen, Norway, and wrapped up at Chicago’s Soldier Field, ending his shows with songs like “Carry That Weight” and “The End”.

One of the stops along the way was at the same venue, Maracana Stadium, where Tina Turner had played just two years prior. McCartney topped what was then the all-time record with 184,000 people buying tickets to his show in Rio. For McCartney, Rio was the only stop he had in South America, but a worthwhile one indeed.

3. Glay (1999)

While the first two artists on the list are people that North Americans and Europeans are extremely familiar with, they might not be accustomed to this next group. Glay is a Japanese rock band that formed in 1988 and became one of the country’s most successful bands ever. The group had traditional concerts, but also had what they referred to as expos.

The first-ever Glay Expo was held in 1999 in Chiba, Japan, and at the time broke McCartney’s record for attendance. In the same year, Glay released the album “Heavy Gauge”. Just around 200,000 people made their way to Glay Expo’99 Survival, which was tops among their impressive list of concert attendances. 

2. Bijelo Dugme (2005)

Once again, North Americans probably aren’t too aware of Bijelo Dugme, though this time the Europeans get to join in on the fun. The group is one of the most notable from the old Soviet Republic, hailing from Sarajevo and formed in 1974 until their split in 1989. After years of listening to their greatest hits albums, fans finally got to see Bijelo Dugme live again in 2005 for a trio of reunions.

The reunion tour had stops in Sarajevo, Zagreb, and Belgrade. The latter of which was held at the Belgrade Hippodrome in Serbia and set a new attendance record with 220,000. Unfortunately, the band hasn’t toured since the massive performance.

1. Vasco Rossi (2017)

Among the best-selling Italian artists of all time is Vasco Rossi, who was a huge name during the 1980s throughout much of Europe. Though his fame never made it to the United States, Rossi was a big enough name to hold the record for the most-attended paid concert in music history with over 225,000 attendees.

The concert was titled Modena Park 2017 and was held at Enzo Ferrari Park on July 1 of that year, which is a race track that’s nearly 1.5 miles in length. Several artists backed up Rossi, including an appearance at the end from Manowar.

5 Biggest Music Tours Of All-Time

There’s a lot that goes into a tour for the biggest musical acts, especially when they’re playing in large venues with a lot of set-up involved. When this happens, usually ticket prices are astronomical, but those that attend say that the cost was worth it to see the spectacle of their favorite performer playing live.

There have been many memorable tours throughout music history, with some lasting for several years before the band gets an extended break. Out of every tour, there are a few that stand out as being the most lucrative and memorable for fans and ticket sellers alike. Here are the five biggest music tours of all time and some info about each one.

5. A Head Full Of Dreams Tour (Coldplay)

From March 2016 until November 2017, Coldplay went on the road through five continents and played 122 shows in total, beginning and ending at Estadio Ciudad de La Plata in Argentina. The setlist included some of the band’s biggest hits, including “Yellow” and “Paradise” and typically ending with “A Sky Full of Stars” and “Up&Up”.

Because of the sheer amount of shows, it was one of the highest-grossing tours of all time, pulling in $523 million, which was good for an average of $4.59 million per show. The tour earned the Billboard Award for Top Draw and the American Music Award for Tour of the Year.

4. Sticky & Sweet Tour (Madonna)

While some think that Madonna’s top tour may have been in the 1980s or 1990s, her biggest tour to date came from August 2008 to September 2009 when she performed 85 shows. There were different themes with each show, and the tour was the crown jewel of her new contract with promoter Live Nation that began in Cardiff, Wales, and wrapped up in Tel Aviv, Israel with each performance ending with “Give It 2 Me”.

Madge was able to make $4.84 million per show, which brought in a total attendance of 3.5 million and a total gross of $411 million. The tour wasn’t without its issues, though, as the concert set for Marseille, France suffered a stage collapse that led to the show’s cancellation.

3. Reputation Stadium Tour (Taylor Swift)

Upon the release of her sixth studio album, “Reputation”, Taylor Swift kicked off a tour of the same name in May 2018 through November of the same year. There was only one caveat, though, and it was that Swift was only playing in large stadiums, many of which happened to be outdoor venues like NFL stadiums. Over 53 shows, Swift was able to sell out these venues left and right.

The Reputation Stadium Tour started out in Glendale, Arizona at the University of Phoenix Stadium and concluded at the Tokyo Dome in Japan. The setlist typically started with “…Ready for It?” and finished with “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”. All in all, the tour was able to pull in 2.888 million people and grossed $6.52 million per show for a total of $345.7 million.

2. 360 Tour (U2)

With the release of their album “No Line on the Horizon”, U2 came out with one of the most innovative tours of all time with the 360 Tour. The tour featured a contraption known as “The Claw” which had a massive video screen and sound system that was over 160 feet tall. U2 took “The Claw” with them over seven legs and a total of 110 shoes between June 2009 and July 2011.

The setlist tended to change with each leg of the tour, with “Moment of Surrender” serving as the final encore for the first two years while “Out of Control” ended their shows in 2011. The 360 Tour is the highest-grossing of all time (when adjusted for inflation) with $736 million and 7.2 million attendees, averaging $6.69 million per show.

1. No Filter Tour (Rolling Stones)

The Rolling Stones have had plenty of amazing and memorable tours throughout the years, with the No Filter Tour being the biggest of the bunch. Though some of it was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the tour was still able to draw big-time from September 2017 to November 2021.

With a changing setlist that typically ended with “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”, the Stones made 58 stops on their tour that earned $546.5 million in ticket sales. Thanks to selling out massive venues, the tour set a record for $9.42 million per show on average.

5 Best Selling Metal Albums Of All Time

Some people say that metal is one of those genres that are very “niche” and that it doesn’t have mainstream appeal, but there have been several bands that have proved that notion wrong. While the list of best-selling albums is typically dominated by pop artists including Michael Jackson and The Beatles, there have been plenty of successful metal groups that have made big waves on the charts.

Of all of the highest-selling albums of all time, you may be surprised to find out just how many of them would be considered metal. With millions of copies sold worldwide, these albums are iconic for having great hits from the start to the end. Here are the five best-selling metal albums of all time and what made them so beloved by fans worldwide.

1. Back in Black by AC/DC

In the Summer of 1980, AC/DC released their seventh studio album, Back in Black, with new frontman Brian Johnson. It showcases some of their greatest hits like Back in Black, You Shook Me All Night Long, Hells Bells, and Rock and Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution. The album is responsible for what some claim was the rise in the popularity of metal at a worldwide level. Back in Black has kept its place as the second best-selling album of all time and the number one best-selling metal album of all time, with an estimated 50 million copies having been sold worldwide. 

2. Led Zeppelin IV by Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin IV by Led Zeppelin is one of the highest-earning metal albums of all time. Released in 1971, Led Zeppelin’s fourth studio album sold over 37 million copies worldwide. Some of the most popular songs on Led Zeppelin IV include Black Dog, Stairway to Heaven, and Misty Mountain Hop. It’s the band’s best-selling album and helped earn them the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and were honored at the annual Kennedy Center Honors. 

3. Hybrid Theory by Linkin Park

Linkin Park’s debut studio album, Hybrid Theory, is one of the best-selling nu-metal albums of all time. Released in late 2000, the album sold 27 million copies worldwide, making it the best-selling debut album of the century and the second best-selling album worldwide in 2001. Some of the most popular songs featured include One Step Closer, Papercut, Crawling, and their biggest hit In The End. Linkin Park’s new sound, combined with incredible vocals by Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda, earned Hybrid Theory the #2 spot on the US Billboard 200. 

4. Appetite for Destruction by Guns N Roses

Released in the Summer of 1987, Guns N Roses’s debut studio album Appetite for Destruction stands as the band’s most popular pieces of work and one of the best-selling metal albums of all time. Appetite for Destruction has sold over 30 million copies worldwide and features largely popular songs like Paradise City, Mr. Brownstone, Welcome to the Jungle, and Sweet Child o’ no Mine. The album reached #1 on the US Billboard 200 and Rolling Stones placed it #62 in the 500 greatest albums of all time. 

5. The Black Album by Metallica 

Metallica’s fifth studio album, Metallica, also known as The Black Album, was released in the Summer of 1991 and is one of the best-selling heavy metal albums of all time. The Black Album sold over 31 million copies worldwide, reaching 16x platinum in the United States alone. It also spent four consecutive weeks at the #1 spot on the US Billboard 200. A year after its release, The Black Album earned a Grammy for Best Metal Performance. Some of Metallica’s most popular songs are featured on the album, they include The Unforgiven, Enter Sandman, Nothing Else Matters, and Wherever I May Roam. All of which were solely written by the band’s frontman James Hetfield. 

5 Best Live Acts in History

Music has changed a lot over the years, especially how we listen to it. These days, almost everything is digital as the days of CDs, cassettes, and even 8-tracks have all died out. One thing that will never change, though, is our love for attending live concerts.

Throughout music history, there have been certain acts that people would be willing to travel across the world to see because their performances were so legendary. These five in particular are heralded as the best to see live for varying reasons, whether you’re looking to find yourself and your place in the universe or just want to down a few beverages and party.

5. The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones have been one of those bands on everyone’s bucket list since way back in the 1960s. For most bands, the shows tend to not have as much energy as the members get older, but that’s certainly not the case for Mick Jagger and the rest of the Stones as they have continued to bring it every decade.

Though the setlists aren’t as long as they were in the 1970s, the Rolling Stones have that “it” factor where you can tell that they’re truly passionate about every show that they perform. Many have said that they’re the greatest rock and roll band of all time due simply to their live shows throughout the years, even.

4. AC/DC

For most bands, there are some “cooldown” songs where much of the group takes a rest while the lead singer pulls up a stool and performs a softer track. That’s not the case for AC/DC, however, as all of their high octane songs came one after another. Angus Young is one of the greatest showmen in rock and roll history and became a must-see for music fans of all ages.

Even if you ignore the energy and Young’s live performances, you’re still left with some of the greatest set designs in music. AC/DC spares no expense for making their shows into spectacles, and their concerts are considered to be an all-out party for fans. This has been true through three different lead singers over the years, too.

3. Pink Floyd

To get through an AC/DC concert, you’re going to need a lot of adrenaline. To get through a Pink Floyd show, though, you’re going to need a lot of something else that may or may not be legal in your location. Pink Floyd is known for their trippy shows with a lot of fog machines and laser lights to go along with hits like “Comfortably Numb” and “Wish You Were Here”.

The best time to see Pink Floyd would’ve been during the years in which Roger Waters was still the group’s lead singer. Waters always had a voice that resonated well in a live setting, and those songs that we mentioned were enough to give everyone in attendance goosebumps and send them on a spiritual journey.

2. Queen

Sometimes you don’t have to have elaborate set pieces or even flashy outfits to be one of the greatest live acts of all time. Instead, sometimes all you need is a catchy hook and a frontman that knows how to work a crowd. That’s what Queen had in spades, especially during the prime years of Freddie Mercury before illness tragically took his life.

All you have to know about Mercury’s ability to get a crowd behind him is to watch the Live Aid concert in 1985. Mercury was a natural born showman and his energy was second to none. The current lineup for Queen isn’t half bad, either, with former “American Idol” runner-up Adam Lambert putting on a tremendous show.

1. Prince

It’s hard to describe what the feeling was like for a Prince concert other than to say it felt like you were transported to a beautiful purple planet where the vibes were amazing. You also didn’t feel like you were at a concert, either, but rather at a religious experience with a guitar mostly replacing an organ, but the organ was still there.

Prince was able to play just about any instrument that you could throw in his direction, which contributed to his amazing live acts. Out of all of his legendary live shows, though, perhaps none was more memorable than his Super Bowl halftime show in Miami where he shredded “Purple Rain” in a torrential downpour.

5 Facts About The Modern Music Industry Hopeful Musicians Need To Know

Are you an aspiring musician who dreams of someday becoming a superstar? Before you put all your hopes on that path, you should know some hard facts about the music industry.

Fact #1 No One Gives a Crap About Your Music

You can produce wonderful music. Then, work hard to record it well. After that, you distribute it yourself using services like Distrokid or Tunecore. You get your songs out there and released in all the online music stores and streaming systems, like Spotify, Apple Music, etc. Then, you have the frustrating experience that almost nobody, except your closest friends, listens to it.

Here is the harsh reality – at least until you work to change it. Consider Spotify as an example. Spotify is the most popular streaming system. More than 60,000 new songs are uploaded to Spotify every day. That is your competition. Think your music is better than the 60,000 songs released today? How about the 60,000 more released tomorrow?

Not only do you have to create, record, and distribute your music, you have to promote it. Promotion takes a lot of time and costs a lot of money.

Fact# 2 You Probably Will Not Get Rich from Music

Zip Recruiter reports the average professional musician’s annual earnings are $43,350. This amount is equivalent to $20.84 per hour.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported for the second quarter of 2022 that the median salary in the United States was $54,134. This amount is equivalent to $26.02 per hour.

Compare these figures to a plumber’s earnings. reports the average plumber’s salary is $59,651. This amount is equivalent to $28.68 per hour. Additionally, the average overtime pay is an extra $6,750 earned each year.

Most professional musicians have a second job to support themselves. If you want to succeed, consider working as a plumber or another high-paying job during the day and work on your music at night.

Fact # 3 Traditional Promotion is Expensive

The Recording Industry Association of America® (RIAA) reports that promoting an artist in a major market like a big city such as New York, Chicago, or Los Angeles may cost up to $2 million. That is the cost per city.

Record labels invest over $4 billion yearly in promotion and marketing expenses. Even if you are a top artist, it takes a lot of money to build a following and let people know about your new album.

Fact #4 Everything is Online – Even More Than You Think!

RIAA also reports that 88% of the music industry revenues come from online sources, and 75% are from streaming services. Concerts and tours used to be big money-makers until the pandemic put them all on pause. The big concert tours are starting up again. However, the pandemic forced the closure of many small venues across America. The number of performance spaces that closed is extremely unfortunate.

Fact #5 The Top 0.1% Make All the Money

Using Spotify again as an example, in 2020, just over 13,400 musicians made at least $50,000 that year from Spotify. Only 7,800 musicians made more than $100,000. For over $50,000 in earnings, the number goes down to 1,820, and there were only 870 musicians who made more than $1 million from Spotify.

Spotify represents about one-third of the music streaming services, so a musician who is popular may have total online earnings of two to three times the Spotify amounts.

Can you become a successful musician? Yes, but it is not easy. At least now you know what you are up against.

5 Bands Who Overdid It With The Fog Machine

Going to a concert isn’t just about the music, it’s about the entire physical experience. One thing that really adds to the ambience of the concert is the fog machine, especially when paired with some great lighting. You can probably picture it in your head right now with a cloud of smoke rolling through an arena, but which bands and acts used fog machines the most? Here’s a few that have had noteworthy experiences with the underrated piece of concert equipment.

5. Black Sabbath

Headlined by the likes of Ozzy Osbourne and Ronnie James Dio, Black Sabbath has been no stranger to fog machines at their concerts, but it even extends to album covers. For their smash hit self-titled album, Black Sabbath used a fog machine to capture the right look. At first, they tried dry ice in the early hours of the morning, but eventually felt that the fog machine would do the trick.

4. Luke Bryan

While it might seem strange to include a country musician on the list, Luke Bryan has had a lot of problems in his career with fog machines. This includes an incident in 2015 when a fog machine went off while he was standing nearly directly on top of it, causing him to stop singing for a moment while he laughed off the incident. Then, in 2021, Bryan thought his fog machine was doing too much at a Phoenix show and got accidentally kicked in the head while trying to move the machine. “So smoke machines dry my s*** out,” Bryan said.

3. Pink Floyd

Perhaps the best psychedelic rock band of all time, Pink Floyd has had several members come and go throughout the years. Currently, the lineup consists of just two members (David Gilmour and Nick Mason), but the love for the fog machine has never died. Gilmour in particular is known for his love of the fog machine to set the ambience for performances, including arriving on stage while surrounded by fog. Of course, there’s a fog that sits over the audience, too, but it doesn’t come from a machine.

2. Led Zeppelin

When you’re describing the sound of Led Zeppelin, “hazy” is a word that doesn’t typically apply to sound, but you know it when you hear it. If you’ve ever been to a Zeppelin concert in their long history, you’ve probably been hazed out yourself both metaphorically and literally. Zeppelin concerts are known for use of dry ice and fog machines that make the lower halves of the musicians almost impossible to see. It does make for quite an experience, though.

1. Jethro Tull

Jethro Tull has been rocking since back in 1967, and has been led by frontman Ian Anderson throughout their duration. However, the use of fog machines for more than half of a century has caused Anderson to experience lung problems in his own words. During an interview in 2020, Anderson stated that he had developed COPD because of the foc machines. “I’ve spent 50 years of my life onstage among those wretched things that I call smoke machines,” Anderson said. “Today, they’re politely referred to as hazers, as if they’re somehow innocent and not damaging to your lungs. I really do believe that’s a very significant part of the problem I have.”