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Join us as we salute all the ATLiens

Joseph Tiller
Posted by Joseph Tiller on Oct 3


A3C is taking it back to '96 this year. Twenty years ago, Hip-Hop has a monumental year, and Atlanta's own, Outkast was included in that. In 1996, Big Boi and Andre 3K released their ATLiens album and it solidified Atlanta as a city where Hip-Hop lived. It gave the Atlanta Hip-Hop a sense of pride and identity. It is only right that there be a ATLiens tribute at this year's A3C Festival and Conference. We have invited some of the best artists in and out of Atlanta to perform some of their dopest tracks. Check out the line up and join us on October 8, 7:00pm at the Main Stage as we witness how the influence and legacy of Outkast spread.    



Phay presents a unique perspective. As the son of immigrant parents who relocated to the United States seeking a better life for their yet to be born children, Phay uses Hip-Hop to share his experiences. Due to his background and roots, he is able to articulate a perspective and speak for a culture that isn’t normally represented. 



Kelechi is a rapper and producer with a unique sound. As the son of Nigerian immigrants who moved to Atlanta, Kelechi fuses the sounds of his parents native land with the sounds of Atlanta. Kelechi's music is truly a clash of cultures. He discovered his talent for rapping at the age of 14 and has not looked back since. Influenced by rappers like Common, Kelechi often tackles social issues in his music. Signed to Mountain Dew's, Green Label Sound, Kelechi released his debut album , Before the Quarter, was released in May of this year.      

 Deante Hitchcock


An Atlanta native, Deante Hitchcock has amazed fans with his twitter freestyles. A true ATLien, Deante pushes the envelope of lyricism in the Atlanta music scene. He credits Bow Wow’s Beware of the Dog and Ludacris’ Word of Mouf albums with giving him an appreciation for the city’s diverse music scene. At the age of 12, Deante and a friend formed a rap group called Tainted Clique. With two solo mixtapes out, Deante is focusing on reintroducing himself to the music scene in a proper way with his GOOD, BETTER, BEST series. Deante is poised to be a star and already has Charlamagne Tha God and Wale talking about him.

Michael Aristotle

Michael Aristotle grew up emerged in a wide variety of music. Brooklyn born, his parent would throw block parties and play everything from pop, reggae, soul, and funk. That environment with rich sounds stuck with Michael. It wasn't until he moved to Atlanta with his family that Michael began to express his own musical talents through rap. After learning how to structure songs, Michael began creating his own mixtapes. After a while he caught the attention of Atlanta’s premiere radio DJ and personality, DJ Greg Street.


ForteBowie is a musical jack of all trades. He's a singer, rapper, producer, songwriter, and DJ with years of exposure in Atlanta's underground scene. An Atlanta native, Forte found a liking to music of all genres at a very early age. This would allow him to utilize a wide variety of sounds when creating his own music. In 2011, Forte released two mixtapes online along with a number of leaks. The following year saw the rise of Trinidad James, with Forte being featured on the single "Southside", which he also produced. In February of 2013 he released one of his best projects, a 7 track EP titled Vice Haus. Around this exciting time, Forte began working closely on developing a sound for R&B singer Jacquees. The world is now waiting for Forte to come for behind the scenes again and share more of his talents.

Yani Mo


Yani Mo has climbed to the top of the Atlanta underground scene. Described as melodic, smooth, sensual, and profound; she captures the listener's ears with her soulfulness. Hailing from Lithonia, Georgia, her influences range  from Toni Morrison, Al Green, Lauryn Hill, and J Dilla. Yani Mo incorporates her spoken word background into her 2013 debut, EP Compound/Words. Mo's recent release of her second project Space & Simplicity with Decatur-based producer ProRow, has catapulted her to the top of the underground Atlanta emcee movement. She has taken over the Internet and college radio market with increased spins on stations like Georgia States WRAS 88.5 with favorites like "BNW," "Vine City," and "Roll Call."

Nick Grant


Nick Grant has been gaining a lot of attention lately. He has been branding himself as a true lyricist. His Sway in the Morning radio freestyle even impressed Jeezy. Grant’s '88 mixtape has been a hit on the internet and has people wanting more from the young wordsmith. He has been honing his skills for a while now and is ready to unleash his talent.

Chase N. Cashe


Chase N Chase is a combination of rapper and producer. A New Orleans native, his debut album was titled Gumbeaux, a perfect description of his style and sound. Following his Gumbeaux release, Chase N Chase put out a mixtape, The Heir Up There, with DJ Drama. That led him to joining Drake's Club Paradise tour where he touched the same stage as ASAP Rocky and Kendrick Lamar.

Chilly Chills


Chilly Chills is a young rapper with a different approach to things. "I’m from the heart of the city. I’m not in a gang. I don’t sell dope. Everybody else wants to do that in order to be a rapper." Chilly Chills is for the Mechanicsville area of Atlanta, by way of Chicago. Learning from his families mistakes, Chilly Chills puts his families drug riddled past on display in his music and uses it to spread a positive message. A brutally honest rapper, Chilly Chill bares his soul in his music.  

Apollo Ali


  Whenever 9th Wonder compliments your music that means you’re doing something right. Apollo Ali received that compliment back in 2011 and has been working harder ever since. Hailing from New Jersey, Apollo decided to challenge himself and pay homage to the veteran producer, with Apollo Ali Vs 9th Wonder. Apollo took a beat tape that 9th wonder released and laced it with his rhymes. Apollo’s ability to share detailed accounts of his life in songs makes him an engaging artists worth the listen.   

Jace (of Two9)

Jace is one half of the group Retro  Sushi, and a member of the Two 9 collective. Behind Curtis Williams, Jace is the second breakout star from the crew. An East Atlanta native, Jace is a witty rapper, stringing together words like no one else. His debut solo project (Jace tape) is a proper introduction to him.

 Apollo Brown & Skyzoo


Skyzoo started as a solo artist, making waves in the underground scene. His colleague, Apollo Brown would often collaborate with him. The two thought it would be fitting to join forces and they were right. One hailing from New York and the other representing Detroit, the one-two punch of Apollo Brown & Skyzoo gives listeners an earful of bars. Their  album, The Easy Truth is a perfect demonstration of how two emcees collaborate to make great music.

Ras Kass


Rass Kass has rapped with some of the best. Once in a group with Cannabis, Kurupt and Killa Priest, Ras Kass can stand own his own when the mic is being passed around. The west coast rapper was once called "one of the best rappers of all time," by Pitchfork Media. With four albums under his belt, his fifth album Intellectual Property: SOI2 was released this year.  

Scotty ATL


Its obvious where Scotty ATL is from. He put the city in his name and on his back. He has become one of the premiere artist rising out of Atlanta. You can hear a heavy Outkast influence in his music, which is expected, making him a needed addition to the ATLien tribute.

The Outfit Tx


Texas has produced some Hip-Hop legends over the years. Now it’s time for a new generation of stars to rise. Born and bred in Dallas, TX, Dorian, JayHawk, and Mel are The Outfit TX. The three created the group in 2006 while enrolled at the University of Houston. TOTX is made of three rappers, with two of them handling the production. The group has a developed an alternative Hip-Hop sound and have been recognized by The Fader, Complex and Noisey. Now The Outfit TX is coming to A3C to introduce themselves to you.

3D Na'Tee


 It's rare to come across a female rapper that can go bar for bar with anybody. Queen Lateefah, MC Lyte, Lauryn Hill, Remy Ma, Nicki Minaj are a few who have proved to be better than most guys at rapping. Now, 3D Na’Tee is next up in the legacy of female rappers. She has been compared to Nas by XXL. A New Orleans native, 3D Na’Tee has been through a lot in life and she shares it all through her music. She has been featured in Complex, TIME, MTV and PlayBoy. Since 2012 she has been playing festivals such as New Orleans JazzFest, Fader Magazine’s Fader Fort, SXSW and A3C regularly. She has collaborated and shared stages with artists ranging from Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, Timberland, August Alsina, Melanie Fiona, and more.

Jack Preston


 Jack Preston is considered one of the most innovative artist out right now. His alternative sound puts him in a lane of his own. The influences of Outkast, George Clinton, Prince and J Dilla are evident in his music. Jack Preston will open your mind and ears to a new way of experiencing Hip-Hop. Get ready because he’s bringing his unique flavor to the A3C stage.  

John Robinson


John Robinson is a genius on the mic. He isn't afraid of letting his intelligence show when he's rapping and that's what make him stand out even more. With Brand Nubian and KRS-1 serving as his inspiration, there is no wonder why he takes a deep dives into politics and science in his music. Robinson was raised in between New York and New Jersey, he has honed his skills in Atlanta and Los Angeles. Robin has had the opportunity to travel the world with the late Gil Scott Heron. Robing not only uses his intellect to teach through music, he also is the president of his own indie label, Shaman Work Recordings.

 J Live 


J Live has been around since 1995 giving him insight and experience that many rappers wish they had. As an emcee, dee jay and producer he is a staple in the underground Hip-Hop scene. Through his 20 years of spittin rhymes he has released 7 full length albums, 4 EPs and has countless guest appearances. J-Live is always on the move, consistently touring internationally. A true showman, J-Live is a one man set. He raps and  DJs for himself. Seeing him beat juggle while he rhymes, is a must see and it probably will be the first time you'll ever see it done.



Innovation is the key to Goldyard's success. They encourage other to bite their style. They evolve and reinvent at a rapid pace leaving fans and spectators wondering what they will do next. The ATL duo can stand out any where and that is part of their mission. They go against the grain which is why their latest project is titled F*ck Culture 2. Try during their performance.

 Jay Dot Rain


Jay Dot Rain got his start rapping in a way that some rappers may be familiar with. Like a real like Zeke from The Get Down, JDR started out writing poetry to get girls. His friends would encourage him to rap whenever a cypher would start. Hailing from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, JDR has been able to get his music placed in a Canadian indie film that was shown in the Cannes Film Festival. A big step from writing poetry for the girl next door. Jay Dot Rain goes by the motto, risk or regret, which seem to be working out for him.   

 Nappy Roots


We all have been acquainted with the Nappy Roots, and not the ones on your head. The Kentucky raised rap group had everyone speaking with a country twist when they dropped their hit "Awnaw." That was only the beginning for the group. Some people may think they disappeared after their debut album Watermelon, Chicken & Gritz released in 2002, but them country boys have been releasing new music almost every year since, with 11 albums and mixtapes in their catalog. The  group found their niche in music licensing, earning big bucks lending their music out to television shows and films. Nappy Roots still tour, even more than most Hip-Hop acts and they will be in attendance for the A3C Festival. 

 Clay James 


Atlanta born and Savannah, GA raised, Clay James is the ATL's fly guy. Always dressed to impress, his rhymes do the exact same. James is one half of the duo, Southern Playas. He is also the retired champ of Hot 107.9's Battleground competition, has appeared on the Fader and Revolt TV, and has performed at  The BET Music Matters Show and SXSW multiple times. Big Boi of Outkast has taken the young rapper under his wing. If that wasn't enough to solidify Clay James as the next up, he was recently signed by Snoop to his Doggy Style Records.    


Joseph Tiller

Written by Joseph Tiller

Topics: a3c, ATLiens

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