Andre 3000 GI

History and present day insights from one of the kings of the Dirty South.

As was reported earlier this year, Andre 3000 has been in the studio with Aretha Franklin working on an album of covers, alongside the likes of Babyface.

This week Three Stacks – or whatever you want to call him as he says – sat down with NPR’s Microphone Check presenters Frannie Kelley and Ali Shaheed Muhammad (of ATCQ fame) for an insightful discussion about his recent work and the impact of his early days with Outkast.

Touching on the Aretha Franklin project, Andre refers to the album as a collection of “diva hits” and notes that it includes a Prince cover and was recorded in Detroit. The discussion then moves onto the historical significance of Outkast’s debut in the 1990s and how the duo, and their production crew, Dungeon Family, helped redefine hip hop. You only have to look at today’s hip hop landscape to see just how deep Atlanta, and other southern cities, have impacted the industry.

Andre also shouts out Tribe and west coast legends Hieroglyphics as early influences, talks time signatures and not having an Atlanta sound per se.

For more on Atlanta’s legacy, we also recommend checking out VH1’s ATL: The Untold Story of Atlanta’s Rise In The Rap Game, an hour-long insightful documentary on the city’s rap history. It has a few holes in it, but it’s still great to see those stories being told. Sadly, the official stream is only available to US residents.

Earlier this year we put together our 50 definitive Outkast songs.

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