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DJ Jimi


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Jimi “DJ Jimi” Payton was a club deejay who also worked with DJ Irv in the early 1990’s. Working out of a club called Big Man’s, Jimi honed his crowd-hyping skills, and in 1992 he was signed to Isaac Bolden’s Soulin’ Records. He recorded a single for the label entitled (The Original) Where They At, which was similar to Tucker’s song, but far from identical. Jimi’s song introduced infectious chants like “Put a hump in your back and shake your rump” and “Shake that ass like a salt shaker,” while the complex and layered production by Dion “Devious” Norman and Derrick “Mellow Fellow” Ordogne was much more complex and polished than Tuckler and Irv’s previous release. The single took off in the local and regional markets, but was too risqué for the major label distribution deal that Bolden was seeking, so he instead licensed it to Memphis’ Avenue Records. The song made the Billboard charts and secured Jimi’s status as the first artist to put the chant-heavy and dance-oriented bounce sound out on an official release.

Using his grandmother and mother as his backup dancers, Jimi toured regionally to support the record and soon recorded a follow-up album for Soulin’/Avenue that featured production by Leroy “DJ Precise” Edwards and introduced the first recordings of a young rapper named Juvenile, now the most famous hip hop artist to emerge from New Orleans.

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