For the uninitiated, there exists a rank of authority, and similarly seniority, that exists in the hip hop world. Whether you’re talking about the rap game or the radio game, homage is due to the OGs. Hot 97 is often regarded as the apex of hip hop radio play. Its tagline aptly expresses its seniority in rap radio: Hip Hop Lives Here. In terms of commercial success, hip hop records and personalities featured on Hot 97 have thrived, often consecrating artists within a classic repertoire that has become synonymous with the genre. Hot 97 is home to hip hop’s most notable DJs and hip hop hosts. They include Funkmaster Flex, Peter Roseberg, and Ebro “The Old Man” Darden.
It’s no secret at this point that Brampton is currently undergoing what its older sibling Toronto has recently undergone with the rise of Drake; a serious rebranding of epic proportions. For much of Brampton’s cultural transformation, it has primarily emerged within the boundaries of the Toronto cultural space. The relationship between Brampton and Toronto is undeniable, as there exists a similar connectedness between Compton and Los Angeles, or Yonkers and New York City. But, at least in the hip hop sphere, Compton and Yonkers retain a unique identity that is unequivocally distinguishable from their metropolitan hubs. I argue that a similar identity is emerging out of Brampton’s hip hop scene.
It all starts with Derin Falana. At 7:51pm on August 16th, Derin posted a video to his Facebook. The caption reads:
‘Brampton made it to Apple Music today. Thank you Apple Music. Shoutout to Ebro and Beats1 for featuring my song “West” on the show. Hit my SoundCloud and check it out if you haven’t.
Ebro from Hot 97 featured Derin’s new song, West, on his Beats1 segment on Apple Music, a program shared by the likes of Zane Lowe and Julie Adenuga. Ebro introduces the song with,
‘Toronto. Brampton, Canada. What’s good, you guys?’
Ebro proceeds to play the song and requests The Flan to dance in some of his videos! Check out the original video below:
Brampton made it to Apple Music today. Thank you Apple Music. Shoutout to Ebro and Beats1 for featuring my song “West” on the show. Hit my SoundCloud and check it out if you haven’t.
Posted by Derin Falana on Tuesday, August 16, 2016
The title West could be a nod to Brampton’s location in relation to Toronto, which is on the western limit.
Derin’s radio play and the Brampton shout out on Ebro’s Beats1 segment should not be taken lightly. With The Flan showing so much love to his hometown, this is as much of an achievement for us as it is for him.
So, to answer Ebro’s question, what’s good? I guess he, and the rest of the OGs in rap radio, are about to find out.
As one line in Derin’s West goes,
“Life’s been giving lemons for a while now, crazy how’d I end up in the limelight”
As a city, we can definitely relate.