SouthSide Click
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SouthSide Click

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Brandon R. Garcia
February 5, 2009 - 1:52PM

Rocky Gonzalez doesn't miscalculate.

His bosses trust him with making sure their million-dollar figures are in order, and when you're answering to bankers, there's no room for mistakes. It's the same way with his other job, too.

By day, the 27-year-old Texas State alum is the white-collar Mr. Gonzalez, a reconciliation specialist at a financial institution he'd rather not name. But come quitting time, Rocky transforms into his alter ego, A-1, a gruff-voiced hip-hop poet.

Wait ... "A-1?"

"I bring the sauce," he says. "Everytime I hit it, the song is done."

While Mr. Gonzalez would never introduce himself to a client like that, he and A-1 aren't really that different. Mr. Gonzalez holds a degree in marketing. A-1 is a shameless self-promoter who, together with Killarific (a.k.a. Marc Gonzalez, his younger brother, a finance major), makes up the hip-hop duo Southside Click.

Even in disguise, these rebels of rhyme keep the bottom line in mind. Selling themselves and their act is serious business. They distribute free demo CDs at businesses across McAllen. While Marc networks and puts up fliers between classes at South Texas College and UTPA, Rocky is doing research, studying the intrepid ways artists are getting themselves signed these days.

"It's hard to sell CDs when no one knows who you are," he said. His former marketing professors might shed a tear over his solution.

"Branding. It's the most important thing. You put you name on everything, everywhere you can," he said.

Do it right and people will remember you, he says. "They may not know where they heard it from, but they know your name."

Mr. Gonzalez and A-1 have gotten good at the game, but both would agree it's still a rat race. A-1's lyrics reveal private fears they both share -- fear of wasting time, of losing motivation by way of "the Valley lifestyle." And deeper still, a fear of failure.

"I don't want to clock in and pay the bills for the rest of my life," Rocky said. "(Marc and I) love the music."

The goal is to start a record label and work with other local artists. Southside Click has already collaborated with some big names in the Valley hip-hop scene, such as H Productions, Cold Ice of Ice Mound Records, DJ Drew and Dolla Bill.

But it's not about name-dropping, Rocky says. It's about mutual success.

"The more people you collab with, the more options you have of getting your music out."

Still, he is a hip-hop artist. Boasting is just a matter of decorum.

"We're not your typical valley hip-hop artists," Rocky said.

"Both of us spit fire," a reference to Southside Click's in-production debut disc, "Double Dragon." "Both of us are lyricists. Lyrically, other people can't put metaphors, similes together (like we can)."

Those certain other people just happen to include some fellow Valley hip-hop artists.

"They put on fronts," Rocky said. "We try to be as real as possible," i.e. not gangsta rappers.

Oh, and Southside Click is not the name of a South Texas gang or something, he points out. It's a misconception he's seen before. Southside, he explains, is a reference to all of South Texas; the click is the growing group of artists like himself who have you yet to see their big break. All of them are roughing it right now, but then again, Rocky doesn't like getting things handed to him.

"I take pride in earning things myself," he said. Like his reputation with the bigwigs at the bank.

He once tried to conceal his double life from his bosses, but they're no fools. Recently, word of Rocky's moonlighting trickled all the way up to office of the bank president, who confronted Rocky at the company Christmas party last December. There was answered the age old question: "Does A-1 go with filet mignon?"

The answer is yes, if it keeps the IRS away.

"(My bosses) have been encouraging me, like letting me leave work early to make it to shows," Rocky said.

It may take two to get the job done, but it takes something extra to get it done well. Or well done.

RIGHT CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD A FREE SONG BY SOUTHSIDE CLICK
SOUTHSIDE CLICK
BASED IN: McAllen
ONLINE: www.myspace.com/southsidechronic
FORMED IN: Summer 2005
GENRE: Hip-hop/Rap

THE BAND
Rocky "A1" Gonzalez, 27
Marc "Killarific" Gonzalez, 23

IDOLS
Ludacris, Chamillionaire, UGK

DISCOGRAPHY
*THE PURPLE (2005)
*THE SAUCE (2007)
*THE NINE-FIVE-SEXY (OCT. 2008)
*THE DOUBLE DRAGON - release at the end of this year, half of the tracks produced, debating where to record them at.


TIPS FOR MARKETING YOUR MUSIC FROM A MARKETING MAJOR

1. Give MySpace a rest. "A lot of them rely too much or solely on the Internet (MySpace in particular)." Strategies like posting bulletins don't work well because people are bombarded with them, and then they're gone in a flash."

2. Use what works. Word of mouth is still Southside Click's most productive strategy.

3. Keep innovative. MySpace-like sites owned by producers or labels (e.g. Wemix, Reverbnation) that allow musicians to exhibit their material directly to the people who could sign them to a contract.

Brandon R. Garcia is editor of Festiva. You can reach him at (956) 683-4461. - McAllen Monitor Newspaper


Discography

2006- The Purple Mixtape
2007- Tha Sauce
2008- 9-5-Sexy Mixtape

Our single from the upcoming all original album 'Double Dragon' is currentlystreaming on Myspace.com/SouthSideChronic
Wemix.com and reverbnation.com.

Photos

Bio

$outh$ide Click is a rap/Hip Hop act with an R&B vibe. Their soul-driven lyrics alongside smooth. full bodied harmonies make up their signature sound known as the "sauce."SSC ( SouthSide Click) consists of two brothers, Rocky and Marc Gonzalez, A1 and Killarific, respectively. In 2005 A1 graduated from Texas State University and returned home from San Marcos. The brothers starting writing and recording tracks with a group called the "Riot Bois."Although the two brothers had never recorded together, each had previously been recording tracks seperatly. The two groups collectively put out a cd called "The Purple Mixtape" in the summer of 2006.Due to artistic differences the two groups parted ways and the SouthSide Click teamed up with rapper/producer Kold Ice of Ice Mound Records. By the following summer in July 2007, SSC dropped its 2nd Mixtape titled"Tha Sauce", which includes the two Mcallen classics, 'All About My Doe' and 'Mcallen Anthem.' These songs were featured at the Lil Flip concert in December of 2007 in which the SouthSide Click opened up for the platinum sold artist. In October of 2008, the SouthSide Click dropped another mixtape, but this time with a twist. This mixtape featured slow r&b instrumentals accompanied by smooth, suggestive lyrics that make you feel the true essence of "The 9-5-Sexy."
Currently the SouthSide Click is preparing to release its first all original album titled," Double Dragon." They have released the single'Watse of Time' which feaures R&B artist J Ash of Square Bisnezz Entertainment. This song has spread through the McAllen City streets quickly sparking an average of 85 hits a day on their myspace page(Myspace.com/SouthSideChronic).
SouthSide Click was recently featured in The McAllen Monitor Newspaper's Festiva/Entertainment section. Here is a link to the article:

http://www.themonitor.com/entertainment/rocky_22882___article.html/click_southside.html

The SouthSide Click's musical diversity and lyrical tenacity, complimented by the "sauce", is what sets this group apart from all others.