Music

Humble hip-hop beginnings

Local MCs drop CD Rap Songs to a small but boisterous crowd

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Leslie Ventura

Las Vegas’ hip-hop scene is gaining momentum, but support for local artists apparently still has a ways to grow. When local MCs Phil A and Hassan dropped debut album Rap Songs—a no-frills project blending East and West Coast-style hip-hop—last Saturday, a smallish crowd turned out to see them play Aces and Ales. Opening acts HighDro, Isaac Sawyer and Marion Write kicked off the evening, but it wasn’t until Write’s hard-hitting set that the crowd began to resemble a real party. Phil A and Hassan took the stage around 1 a.m., spitting raw lyrics backed by Phil’s beats to the finally hyped crowd. Known for his role in Mob Zombie, Phil says he’s still with that local group but that they’re currently on hiatus. For now, Rap Songs is his main focus, with the duo booked for three promotional shows in California. As for drumming up more support for local hip-hop, Hassan says it’s a simple matter of hard work and more good records. “That’s all we need to put Vegas’s hip-hop scene on the map,” Hassan says. “It can become a force to be reckoned with.”

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