T.I., undoubtedly one of the biggest rappers in the US over the last 10 years recently announced the signing of North London grime artist turned major label platinum selling rapper Chip, (until recently was known as Chipmunk) who recently took the brave decision to leave his label deal with Sony.
“I’m 21 now,” Chip explained in an interview, alongside TI. “I’m pretty much, I wouldn’t say as big as I can be in the UK, but we kind of hit a glass ceiling. I got signed when I was 17. I had a platinum album, previous number one singles, top 10 hits, countless top 10 features. The biggest hit I had in the UK was a song called “Champion” featuring Chris Brown. It’s actually the theme song on [American Football video game] Madden 12.”
Chip is also viewing this move as a way of closing the US-UK gap.. “It got to a point where people in the UK felt like if there was someone over there that could help bridge the gap between the cultures in the Urban music over here and in the UK, it’s me. Tip was rockin’ with what I was doing and we just linked up.”
T.I. also recently announced the signing of Australian female rapper Iggy Azaelia and certified Texas rapper Trae the Truth to his label which also includes acts such as B.O.B, 8 Ball & MJG and Killer Mike (check my interview with him here).
Grand Hustle is definitely looking to be one of strongest rosters in hip hop, ready to challenge the likes of Birdman/Lil Wayne’s ‘Cash Money/Young Money’ and ‘We The Best’ (run by DJ Khaled).