Jermaine Dupri has many accolades to his name. Aside from being a multi-platinum producer, a platinum artist and the founder of So So Def Records, he’s also a member of the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame – one of a few hip-hop artists even in the Hall alongside Missy Elliott and JAY-Z.
However, Dupri’s impact on Houston lays within the fabric of DJ Screw and “June 27th,” a 37-minute freestyle by members of the Screwed Up Click and showcase moments for Big Pokey and Yungstar.
On the latest season of Mogul centered around Screw’s short life, the dizzying rise of chopped and screwed music, and his untimely death, “June 27th” gets an entire episode dedicated to it. In part, the episode shows how Dupri’s contribution of crafting Kriss Kross’ “Da Streets Ain’t Right” eventually led to the most used instrumental in Houston rap history.
“Da Streets Ain’t Right” wasn’t a major hit for Kriss Kross on their third and final album Young, Rich & Dangerous. In fact, it wasn’t even an official single from the album as “Tonite’s Tha Night” was pushed. Somehow, due to Texas ingenuity, it persevered on.
The night was Yungstar’s introduction to the Screwed Up Click and “June 27th” was his first recording with the SUC ever. Big DeMo first spotted Yungstar rapping shirtless and rhyming endlessly. With his birthday tape coming up, DeMo knew the only person he wanted to make the tape more special – was the young rapper with the croak in his voice.
“I don’t even know how Screw got the instrumental,” Dupri said. “I don’t even know where it came from, but I made that beat … I started hanging around Bryan Michael-Cox and more people from Houston; I learned this was their version of ‘Planet Rock.’ Everybody has rapped over this beat. Slim Thug, Paul Wall, you name it. But I never knew. I feel like if this was something that happened in New York, there would be a whole documentary on this sh*t. Or LA. But this was at a time when the South wasn’t getting that look of being creative in hip-hop.”
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Listen to the Mogul episode above to learn more about the creation of “June 27th” as both a freestyle and influential Screw tape. The entire six-part mini-series hosted by Brandon “Jinx” Jenkins is available exclusively on Spotify.
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How Jermaine Dupri Gave Houston Its Signature Beat – “June 27th” was originally published on theboxhouston.com