66 Records (pronounced "sixty-six records" or "double-six") is a label you'll want to know about. Formed by John Nelson and Abraham Poni, the pair have put together a group of half a dozen artists, including Eco$ystem, Lil Jaye, BBG Smokey and BabyT, all of whom bring something new and exciting to the table in the realm of Australian hip hop.
BBG Smokey has just dropped his new track, High Speed Redlights, and it's a slow-burning track that showcases off BBG's confident, melodic flow. It's more proof of why he's being touted as an artist to watch by those in the know, so to celebrate, we've put together a guide to 66 Records and the artists that make up the exciting label.
The artists on 66 Records came together in the basement studio of their housing projects building in Melbourne's inner-city, and have been hustling ever since. 66 Records have been building a fanbase already with live events being held around Melbourne, but it's time for the world to find out why the music coming out of thme label and collective is so damn exciting.
Melbourne hip-hop has been blowing up in the last few years, but it's largely filled with artists that are Australian-born and bring only Australian perspectives to the table. 66 Records is set to show another side of hip-hop in Australia and in Melbourne, so people around the world can see what hip-hop in Australia has to offer, and how it's evolving. It's not just rappers talking about barbeques and mates anymore - this stuff stands up on a global scale.
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Speaking about starting the label alongside Abraham Poni, founder John Nelson says, “My dream was to change the African Australian Hip Hop scene into an international scene. We see ourselves as the Australian version of Quality Control - even though we are still in the early stages of our journey we dream big. We believe that the movement that we are creating is bigger than us."
They're gearing up to release a heap of new music over the next few weeks, and have just dropped the first taste of what to expect, with BBG Smokey, Lil Jaye, Eco$ystem and BabyT all flexing their skills on Devil Persona. The track shows off each artist's distinctive style, but it's obvious they've all got chemistry, with it sounding as natural a posse cut as we've heard in a long, long time. The collective was slated to open for the NLE Choppa and Famous Dex tour before it was postponed.
Here are the rappers you'll want to keep an eye on from 66 Records, and what makes them so exciting. 66 Records is set to pop off in a big way, so you'll want to get in on the ground floor, and put your friends onto some sick new music that is truly world-class.
When listening to Eco$ystem, artists like Travis Scott, Burna Boy, YG and Tyga come to mind, and for good reason. Eco's music is pure fun, and his live show is just as exciting as his records, if not more. hat's not to disregard his music, though. 2019's REDFACE (feat. Gs Phantom) sees Eco making a low-key trap banger - it's icy, and it's clean.
He's been working away for a few years on his music, which saw him honing his skills alongside the other 66 Records artists, before touring with Juice WRLD (R.I.P.) on his last Australian tour. The tour saw him playing to huge 5,000 capacity rooms, and not missing a beat. On a stage, Eco is in his element.
If you're a fan of Lil Uzi Vert, Gunna, Young Thug or Playboi Carti, then you'll dig Lil Jaye. Lil Jaye was born in Paris, before relocating to Melbourne in his teens. He began writing lyrics and beats with the other artists in their basement studio, before announcing himself to the world with his debut single Choppa Make Her Dance, which saw him share the stage with Juice WRLD (R.I.P.), as well as Lil Mosey and Xavier Wulf.
Lil Jaye's bars are as witty as he is, and he brings a sense of effortless style and swagger to everything he does. Lil Jaye is a name that you'll want to keep an eye on going forward - he's on the path to stardom.
Some artists spend their whole career trying to find their voice, while others have it from the get-go - and BBG Smokey definitely sits in the latter category. His flow sounds endlessly natural, and his music is inspired by his experiences with the law and the outcomes of those run-ins.
BBG Smokey brings the energy both on record and on stage, and we can't wait to see what he's cooking up next - his recent track, FEDERAL, gives us a taste of what he's been working on, with BBG Smokey spitting about what he and his friends have experienced at the hands of the police.
BabyT knows his way around a hook. Ask him to come up with a chorus that'll get stuck in your head, and he'll blow you away. His booming voice is unmistakeable and gets stuck in your head - much like his playful lyrics. BabyT is cool, but he's not afraid to have fun - and he's part of the reason that 66 Records' live shows have already become a thing of legend.
His track Yung OG shows off exactly what makes his flow so memorable - it takes you along for the ride. It's melodic and sounds effortless, and the music video is just as fun as the track - it features footage of both BabyT and Scarface, with BabyT wearing a Scarface t-shirt in the video. Scarface wishes he could be BabyT.