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"Everett Rapper Swag Debuts Video on BET"

Last Thursday, Everett-based rapper Swag debuted the video for his street anthem "Swag'n" featuring Jim Jones on BET in a not-so-subtle play on the 2000 Nic Cage remake of the 1974 car theft flick Gone In 60 Seconds.

The Warner Music Group signee -- and CEO of his own local label, Paper Route Records -- isn't exactly representative of much of the prominent parts of Seattle's current hip-hop scene ("Who you know gettin' money like us?"). And while straight-up gangsta records aren't the rage that they were when 50 Cent dropped Get Rich or Die Tryin' in 2003, Swag is pursuing an undoubtedly commercial route and basking in the accompanying publicity.

In light of the ideas Kevin Capp raised in "206 Hip-Hop: Still About to Be Big", this is one MC who might just break into the national spotlight. And as local rapper/promoter Candidt said in the piece, "Anybody putting in work and making some noise out of Seattle is good for all of us, bottom line, no matter what type of sound they have."

By Nick Feldman, Wednesday, Jan. 13 2010 @ 2:03PM

- Seattle Weekly


The Blueprint of a Hustler
Release Date: February 3, 2009
Format: Album

Swag featuring Jim Jones
Release Date: September 17, 2009
Format: Single

The Recession Is Over
Release Date: March 2010
Format: Mixtape

The Pipeline
Release Date: April 2010
Format: Mixtape

The Corner
Release Date: Summer 2010
Format: Mixtape



With the gimmicky rap lyrics and dance fads penetrating the rap game, Swag has risen to the occasion to be the representative for what the block wants.

With his urban bravado and authentic style, Swag has created nothing short of a following in California, Washington, Arizona, the East Coast and the South. Under his own Paper Route Records moniker, Swag is effectively building momentum as a rising emcee. Now the time has come to present the world with his take on the good, the bad and the ugly on the lifestyle of a true street soldier, with his latest mixtape, “The Corner”.

Acquainting himself with the masses that might not be familiar with the hard work he put in under the radar, Swag has also made appearances on many Hip Hop DVDs such as SMACK and Sub-0 and performed throughout the United States for the 2009 and 2010 DUB Car Show Tour, gaining a huge fan base and buzz. With his current single "Swag'n" gaining momentum nationally on the airwaves, BET's 106 & Park and MTV, it won't be long before Swag gets the opportunity to ascend to hip hop’s elite echelon.

To say Swag created his own diagram is a serious understatement: he’s been rapping since the age of 13.
At 18, under the name Goldberg Slim, he generated an underground buzz with mixtape “D-Boy Music: The Mixtape”. The streets responded by snatching his album and mixtapes out of the mom and pop record stores and car trunks in loads. By 19, he signed a record deal at with Sony and released "The Afterparty" under his newly- founded record label, Paper Route Records.

Skillful at not only his lyrical deliverance but in overcoming his discouraging adolescent and young adult years, Swag made the transition from nothing to something look relatively easy. However, the journey was anything but troublesome. Raised in the heart of South Central Los Angeles and later West Covina, California, Swag gravitated towards rap’s late 80’s era. Legends such as Big Daddy Kane and Easy-E were some of his early inspirations. Actually, Swag’s most nostalgic memory was listening to K-Day.

Unfortunately for Swag, the golden era of rap coexisted with the crack epidemic in America’s urban communities. Music was unable to guard him from the effects of the plague. Barely a teenager, Swag was forced to fend for himself after the death of his mother, a single parent. By the early 90’s Swag found himself completely immersed in the gang life and what came along with it.

“When I came into my manhood and I had to make real decisions,” Swag remembers. “When my mom passed away, that’s when I fell real heavily into the bangin’ and the hustlin’ and the streets, and was doin’ everything under the sun. That’s when I said, ‘Forget the music.’”

Able to overcome a jail sentence, Swag relocated to the Pacific Northwest where he had relatives, with an even greater appreciation for hip hop. “Hip hop is what kept me alive while I was locked up. I was rapping constantly as something to do.”

It was in the Pacific Northwest that Swag garnered a swell of attention via live performances in the Seattle area. Unfortunately, however, that wasn’t enough at the time to get recognized as a rap artist on the West Coast with southern artists dominating the rap game. But with a drive as aggressive as his music and a vital ally in childhood friend and producer, Khrys Hollywood, Swag quickly inked another record deal, this time, with Warner Music Group and released "The Blueprint of a Hustler" in 2009. Continuing to channel his pure hustler’s ambition, Swag was recently discovered by Jim Jones and is set to release his latest mixtape "The Corner" in collaboration Jones' Byrd Gang West label. Slated to feature the likes of Jim Jones, Gucci Mane, Juvenile, Kokane and Swag’s own artists Ambush and E. Moe, "The Corner" is a healthy dose of honesty, reality and life from an authentic perspective.

“Sony and Warner were on-the-job training,” says Swag. “I appreciated the opportunities, but now that I’m doing things my way. I know what lane I want to go in."

“Nothin’ can compare to what I’ve been through,” says Swag. “I’ve always been a go-getter, by all means. It’s been good thing and it’s been a bad thing. I’m sharing my story by doing what I love. I hope that by doing so, what we hear on the radio won’t be more of the same. It’ll be real talk that we all can relate to.”