The Bay Area is one of the most iconic hip-hop regions in the states.Boasting immense talent from the likes of E-40 and Souls of Mischief, Northern California has always had a home in hip-hop. This region of the U.S. has always played an instrumental part in the progression and evolution of the hip-hop sound. Rich with culture and diversity, the Bay area is a perfect place for young artists to master their talent.
Anyone who has been to Northern California can attest that the region truly has their own true identity. Those born and raised in the area are proud, gritty and on top of their crafts. As times change in the hip-hop world with social media and digital marketing, it’s only a matter of time until the landscape of the hip-hop globe gets flipped upside down.
A new generation of emcee’s are holding it down in NorCal. In the new year, I believe it’s essential to take a dive into the Bay’s top up and coming artists to get a better understanding of who we need watch out for here in 2019.
With a unique and solidified style, Tay “Tay Mackin” Bernstine is comfortable and confident while performing.
Releasing music for the past six years, since 2013 Mackin has been ahead of the learning curve. As he’s continued to grow as an artist he’s also continued to gain motivation. Whenever you hear him on a track he draws you in with his energy and cadence.
With a flow and style that is synonymous with the Bay Area modern style it’s understandable to see why Mackin is making moves in his area. His mixtape titled Tha Undadawg released in mid August of 2018. Mackin embraces the life he lived and the stories of those around him. Mixing gang inspired and thought provoking bars throughout his eccentric beats, the young artist brings an abundance of talent to the table.
You can find some of Mackin’s songs on Thizzler, a resource for everything hip-hop in Northern California. It’s an incredibly dope community and resource, so definitely check them out when you have a chance.
As Mackin continues to work on his craft and pushes his social media presence, we can expect that the passionate and hardworking emcee will continue to push through to the spotlight. You can continue to follow Mackin at his Apple Music, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube here. You can also preview Tay Mackin’s song “Never Fold” down below.
Bonus: this photo is too great not to share.
Tay Mackin – “Never Fold” Dir. @SuperGebar
Hailing from Vallejo, Salsalino has a dope style that accompanies his classic West Coast styled beats. He is most known for his projects New Money and Year of the Clouds. With a dedicated following, Salsalino has been releasing a variety of content since 2015 including to his Soundcloud in 2016. With a number of years under his belt, the young artist has created a distinguishable image and sound.
This young artist has worked alongside Bay Area talent such as the likes of E-40, Baby Treeze and more. Besides his major features with different artists, Salsalino also curates his own YouTube channel. His channel, Ryda4Reelz, hosts an amplitude of talented artists, fresh cuts, and a taste of the Bay Area life.
With heavily auto tuned vocals and an archetypal flow, Salsalino can hang on a beat with the best. As the 21-year-old artist continues to build his credibility and talent, he’s kept his content home grown. Staying true to his home state, Salsalino is primed to continue to move up in the hierarchy of rap. In my opinion, he’s just a break out song away from being front and center in the limelight.
But it’s not as if this artist hasn’t seen major success yet. Some of his music videos on his channel have reached over 100 thousand views. With this notoriety, Salsalino has been climbing the ladder in NorCal. It’s only a matter of time until we see this young artist taking the next steps into the national public eye.
Like Mackin, you can also locate a plethora of Salsalino’s work on Thizzler’s Youtube and website. You can catch more of Salsalino at his: Apple Music, Soundcloud, Spotify, Instagram, Twitter and Youtube.
Salsalino – “Run My Bag” feat Swisha C , Oskie & AngelTeamMarvo (Prod By Kayoe)
Although, definitely not lowkey, P-Lo makes my list for multiple reasons. The Bay born Filipino rapper is a multi-faceted talent who offers a multitude of different successes for the NorCal region.
He began his journey into music around 2005 when he met his co-founder of Heartbreak Gang (HBK) Iamsu!. Their partnership was originally formed in early 2008, when P-Lo was 17 years old. The group would pickup members such as Sage the Gemini and formerly Kehlani.
P-Lo was originally infatuated with creating his own beats as a producer. Inspired by Kanye West’s The College Dropout. Yeezy’s solo image that sets him apart from other artists was instilled into P-Lo. Backed up with bumping West Coast beats, his flow can change in a second. With his relaxed demeanor and trance inducing measure, P-Lo has established himself as a top upcoming talent not only in NorCal, but through the entirety of the south-western most state.
The 27-year-old has created works beside some of the best in the business. With features from the likes of E-40, G Eazy and Skizzy Mars P-Lo has inaugurated himself as a talent to continue to watch in this next upcoming year.
P-Lo – “Put Me On Somethin'” (feat. E-40)
Saweetie, besides possibly being my favorite artist on this list, is a one of a kind talent. The Santa Clara born emcee has earned praise from established companies such as Vibe Magazine, XXL and HipHopDX. Her exceptional boss styled image fits her sound perfectly.
Before pursuing music she was originally a Communications (shout out Comm majors) at the University of Southern California. She was making money on the side by selling hats and different apparel. This money gathering attitude attributes to her hustle. Making connections through her past experiences, like meeting Max Gousse for her first single, have primed her to take opportunities as they appear.
Saweetie has been achieving massive success with her music, achieving millions of listens on each record. Not only this, but her Youtube has completely blown up over the years. With over half a million subscribers and millions of views on each song, this artist continues to raise expectations and set the bar high.
She has had artists such as G-Eazy, Rich the Kid and Kehlani featured on her releases. With this all-star cast surrounding her and with more projects to come, it’s easy to say that Saweetie is on the come up this 2019.
Saweetie x London On Da Track – “Up Now” Featuring G-Eazy and Rich The Kid
Standing in as the youngest emcee on our list is Pimp Tobi. Born in 1999 in Berkeley, California, the young musician has set himself as one of the future big names in the NorCal rap industry.
He began his music career in 2015 by releasing his first song titled Splash Money Intro to Soundcloud. Tobi claimed nearly instant notoriety and fans as his plays continued to blow up on the famous site.
His primed, easy going voice and rhyme schemes concentrated over funky based filled beats culminate in a stellar singular sound that can only be referenced back to him.
Pimp Tobi has affiliated himself with artists such as Ybn Nahmir and Seattle’s very own Lil Mosey. Even on his Youtube each releases reaches the high 250k’s in views. With this many eyes on his movements, Tobi continues to climb the ranks of the Hip-Hop world.
With cash and lean in hand, Tobi portrays his lifestyle through his unique feel and look. Through his entire discography you can find a considerable amount of different flows and styles. With Tobi’s multi talented skill set and as he continues to work alongside bigger and bigger artists we need to continue to keep our eyes out for this young bull.
Pimp Tobi – “Kickback” (ft. Lil Mosey)
2019 in The Bay Area
As it always seems, the Bay Area scene is bumping with a fortitude of talent on every front. As social media and the internet continue to change the game, the crop of talent throughout the world will continue to bloom. Northern California has long been a capital for the Hip-Hop sound and culture, and it seems no different with this up-and-coming generation.