Exclusive: Arrested Development talks breaking barriers in hip hop, new music

Arrested Development was introduced to the world at a time when most of Atlanta-based artists were ignored by the mainstream media. During the early 1990s, Atlanta had yet to become the Black music capital and was relatively ignored. 

But Arrested Development changed that with the release of their debut album, 3 Years, 5 Months and 2 Days in the Life Of..

The album became an instant hit winning multiple Grammy Awards and selling 4 million copies in the U.S. alone. 

It was it was tough because hip hop was ruled by the east coast and west coast at the time. And so New York and LA was basically calling the shots. And it was tough to get we had to work hard to prove that we deserve to be here. And so from our first video, Tennessee, we firmly established the southern look, totally juxtapose just just about juxtaposition. Keep trying whatever. juxtaposing what New York was doing, which was sort of the high high rise bricks in the buildings and the fences and the basketball courts. We were the rural south, the grandmothers, the children running around. It was a 100% different image for a hip hop period, and really represent in the south, and so it was it was tough, but we made a splash and we won two Grammys, we want to MTV awards, in the Grammys. We want best new best new artists, you know the first hip hop group to ever do that. Still, to this day, I think the only hip hop group to ever do that. So yeah, we made a big, big splash and as Andre 3000 would later say, The South has something to say we already proven that that the South had a lot to say. We sold 4 million albums so you know, that’s a lot. A lot of people heard what we were saying. What does that mean to you? All?

Unknown 2:28
Right. So the sense the test of time.

For let’s say, three, three days. Three days. Yeah. What does it mean?

Unknown 2:39
I mean, it’s absolutely magical. Whenever you’re able to create something that you first of all feel proud about, and then the world catches on to it. And not only do you get to reap the benefits of it during the first release, but three decades later, people still lauded as one of the top things that’s come out in hip hop, we were awarded what was it? Rolling Stone, I think, you know, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is 500 best songs in the history of rock and roll right. And that was the song Tennessee. So that was our first single so you know, it’s magical that to be able to have that kind of approval from the world

Unknown 3:20
Oh, that’s so nice. I was just gonna say to like as an artist you want your music to outlast you got lifetime Yeah, I mean so just for the music tardy make it past those that many decades. Yeah, it’s like this isn’t a live pass. Long pass. Yeah. You know, what’s interesting is that that song is played for the first time I stopped being able to do it, the song is playing.

Unknown 3:45
So in Atlanta during the early 90s Yeah, it was interesting that it’s going to be introduced to an entirely different generation exactly in a different medium. Yeah, I mean, we get young fans always saying, What the hell is this, like when they hear to the sea and they’re like, there was songs that had messages like this and hip hop, because a lot of them were born after that style of hip hop came and went and so they’re recognizing it for the first time and they’re just digging deep, and dive in deep into it, and it was on BMF but it was also on raising Canaan.

Unknown 4:22
You know, a lot of the new shows are, you know, showcasing our music to a whole new generation people and you can see a lot of the influence in fashion, especially now that 90s In the younger culture, a lot of 90s Fashion has been resurfacing and you can see a lot of the rest of elements style being represented there as far as how we dressed and how that is the rule and southern This is really hip hop time. That’s all over the world.

Unknown 4:52
It’s early voting period right now.

Unknown 4:54
So you know, I know you guys just said you guys happen to out and now.

Unknown 4:58
This is already on.

Unknown 5:01
But it you have to come up with a song or information. How would that work? Like what is the concept? Sometimes, you know, revolution, we didn’t find a middle change. Let your voice be heard. Right. So what would you say beautiful people around the world stand up for what you believe.

Unknown 5:24
Let your voice be heard. Yeah. So I mean, that’s really the point about voting for me. There will never be a time. As long as I’m able that I will not vote. I will always vote and I will always make sure that my voice is heard. There’s numerous reasons for that. But one of the biggest reasons is that only a few decades ago, my ancestors were not allowed to do it. And even if they were they were discouraged from doing it. And so there’s a reason that people wanted to keep you from the voting booth. Get out there and vote the way I see it. It takes anywhere from two hours to two minutes to go vote and it is worth it and make sure obviously to do it across the across the whole thing. So it’s not just the president that was voting. And just to be clear, it’s not okay to just not vote even if you don’t like everybody or everything. Find something that resonates with what your voice in what your beliefs are. Yes, but that a drop in the bucket is worth it. Worth it.

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