Jermaine Dupri has been putting in work for over 30 years, both in the Atlanta rap scene and hip-hop at large.
So some might call it fitting that a documentary is coming that’ll cover his many contributions and his record label So So Def, which he started in 1993.
The documentary is called “Power, Influence & Hip Hop: The Remarkable Rise of So So Def,” and it’ll feature some of those who’ve worked with Dupri, like Mariah Carey, Usher, Bow Wow, TLC’s T-Boz and Snoop Dogg, who explained why the rap executive was so unique.
“His train of thought was different than the average CEO,” he said in a trailer. “‘Cause he had a variety of artists. Most labels were focused on rap or just focused on R&B. He was able to do them both.”
Dupri was actually immersed in the hip-hop scene before it became a global phenomenon, first being a dancer for the ’80s rap group Whodini, whom he signed to So So Def many years later.
The Atlanta-raised mogul also had a penchant for discovering young talent and turned kid acts like Kriss Kross and Bow Wow into household names.
On top of that, Dupri had major success as a writer and producer and penned hits for a large number of artists, including Carey, Usher, Monica, Janet Jackson, Destiny’s Child, TLC, Ludacris, Da Brat, Tyrese, Jay-Z, Ashanti and Xscape.
The documentary will also talk about the influence Dupri had on Atlanta being such a hip-hop powerhouse today, since some have given him full credit for it.
But others have given those props to the Dungeon Family, since its members Outkast and Goodie Mob have been called the first Atlanta rap groups, outside of Dupri’s kid acts, to gain international recognition.
In fact, Dupri talked about himself and Outkast in a 2018 interview and said he had more impact on Atlanta rap than they did.
“As far as culture? Me,” he said when asked who had a bigger influence between himself and the “Aquemini” creators.
“I brought people to Atlanta who had never been to Atlanta. I showed everybody in the world Magic City. I’m the person who started throwing the money first in the club.”
“I had to pay for all the magazines to come to Atlanta,” he added. “So as far as the culture goes, bringing Puff, bringing [DJ] Clue and Envy to Atlanta, that was all me.”
“Power, Influence & Hip Hop: The Remarkable Rise of So So Def” airs July 18 on We TV. The trailer can be seen below.