FatRat Da Czar
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FatRat Da Czar

Columbia, SC | Established. Jan 01, 2008 | INDIE

Columbia, SC | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2008
Solo Hip Hop R&B




"Fat Rat da Czar"

There aren’t many Columbia music-scene pillars that have been here longer than local emcee extraordinaire Fat Rat da Czar. Possessing a unique ability to be respected by everyone — despite what kind of hip-hop you make — Fat Rat has been a unique ambassador for the Metro’s music scene. Now, roughly a calendar year after the release of his 2008 album-slash-mixtape Da Cold War, he comes with the sequel, appropriately titled Da Cold War 2.

The project has familiar guests and voices. Acclaimed local visual artist Dre Lopez of the Pinsea Art Company once again did the cover, and DJ Shekeese tha Beast of 103.9 FM and Non-Stop Hip-Hop Live! fame once again helms the project from the driver’s seat. Da Cold War again features beats from local beat bangers Midi Marc — who crafted the beat for the addictive “Do Whud I Do,” one of the strongest efforts on the album — Jah Freedom and Frank Hustle, and the project also includes guest verses by Dan Johns, Ali Rah and the recently retired Misfit, ex of Fat Rat’s Street Side Records crew. Though Misfit’s since sworn off of music, quitting’s never occurred to Fat Rat.

Fat Rat da Czar

“That’s a very real question,” he says when asked if he’s ever thought of hanging up the mic. “I tell myself that as long as I enjoy making the music, I will continue. I’ve been frustrated with resistance from commercial radio, but I’m still able to move units. I’m still able to bring a crowd. I feel like I have the most overdue shot. I was in line when nobody was in line for it.”

It appears that he doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon: Fat Rat’s confirmed that there will be a third Cold War installment, and he also has a full-length album in the works. If artists advance by their hustle, the tag-team of Fat Rat and Shekeese can expect success on the horizon.

“I’m an artist in the booth before anything,” Fat Rat says. “Anything that comes our way, I want to make sure that there’s enough to make it worth everybody’s time. I’m not going to sign a contract unless it increases wealth, [distribution] or whatever. If the right thing doesn’t occur, we’re down to doing everything independently like we have been.”

Although Fat Rat is close-lipped on details, he does reveal that he’s received a few offers. It might come to a surprise to some, but not Fat Rat or anyone in his entourage or his now-defunct Street Side crew.

“We were the best thing for groups in South Carolina,” Fat Rat says of Street Side. “I don’t mean any disrespect to any other crew, but you have to know your worth. We’ve been doing it for a while and it’s hard to find people that could come on our level.”

During these times of economic hardship — in which South Carolina has the third-highest unemployment rate in the nation — crime and the swine flu, Fat Rat uses the times as inspiration for the project.

“The album is chillier this go-round,” he says. “We touch on issues like the decisions I’ve made in the past, domestic violence and the hip-hop scene in South Carolina.”

Case in point: “Don’t Know What They Thinking.” Fat Rat explains that the song focuses on how the fans and artists are too often caught up on the wrong things: copying another city’s success as opposed to finding a voice of their own, not to mention a lack of support for the local scene from producers and consumers.

But Fat Rat and Shekeese plan to change that with Da Cold War 2 and its accompanying release party at New Brookland Tavern. The show will offer an opportunity to support local music and hear one of the Metro’s microphone legends, and its guest list will be a who’s who of local celebrities. It’ll be best to see him now, because at this rate, success will be knocking on his door soon. And it’s harder to get a seat at the Grammys than admission to the Tavern.

- Free Times - -Columbia News & Arts article by: Preach Jacobs

"Music Crawl 2009 by P. Jacobs"

Fat Rat da Czar
10:20-11:05 p.m.
Fat Rat da Czar has been one of the most respected emcees in the Metro since the late ‘90s. Being the outspoken, friendly-but-don’t-cross-him member of the Street Side Records clique, Fat Rat quickly became a crowd favorite during the underground hip-hop movement in Columbia. Over the past couple years, and with the release of 2007’s Da Cold War and this sequel Da Cold War 2: Da Day Afta, Fat Rat has secured his reputation one of the region’s best hip-hop artists. With his no-nonsense attitude and an honesty that blue-collar and street listeners can equally appreciate, Fat Rat has a charm that fans will relate to. His connection with the audience can be seen when hosting Non-Stop Hip-Hop Live!’s events at the New Brookland Tavern, and his stage presence can only be described as “towering.” Standing a little over 6 feet tall with massive dreadlocks, Fat Rat embodies the pure essence of hip-hop: Sturdy and hard to move. It appears that the success of Fat Rat’s latest mixtape — he also has a full-length in the works — proves the ideal to be true. Get ready for lyrics and Hot 103.9’s DJ Shekeese to back him. A one-two punch reminiscent to Guru and Premier, displaying the very essence of the culture: An emcee and a DJ. Enough said.
- P. Jacobs - FreeTimes Columbia News and Arts


Street Side
1999 - Blowin' Your Operation 12" Single
1999 - We Got Dat Maxi Single
2000 - The Weight Is Over LP
2001 - The Heat Maxi Single
2002 - Street Side 4 Life Vol. 1: No Mercy mixtape
2003 - We Got Dat II Maxi Single
2003 - Street Side 4 Life Vol. II: Headbanga mixtape
2004 - South Cackalaki/Street 12" Single
2005 - Street Side 4 Life Vol. III: Times Up mixtape
2006 - Rollin single

Fat Rat Da Czar
2006 - LaFamillia w Shekeese Tha Beast mixtape
2007 - Fat Rat Is Dead w/Shekeese Tha Beast mixtape
2007 - Like A Fat Rat single
2008 - Da Cold War
2009 - DA Cold War 2: Da Day Afta



As South Carolina’s godfather of hip-hop,
FatRat Da Czar’s music career has spanned over two decades. Originating
in Hampton Roads, VA and honing his skills in Columbia, SC, Czar
solidified his role as an acclaimed solo artist with the release of Da
Cold War album trilogy (2007-2012). In addition to opening for national
acts to include Notorious B.I.G., Snoop Dogg, and Lauryn Hill, Czar has
also engineered sessions for national artists ranging from KRS-One to
Kevin Gates at the Boom Room, the hip-hop focused enclave of South
Carolina's legendary Jam Room Recording Studio. Through his role as founder and executive director of Love, Peace & Hip-Hop,
Czar established World Famous Hip-Hop Family Day in 2013. This free
annual festival dedicated to celebrating hip-hop culture has delivered
artists such as Kool Moe Dee, Slick Rick, and Kid N Play to crowds of
12,000+ on Columbia’s Main Street.