André 3000 of OutKast famously declared “the south got something to say” at the 1995 Source Awards. Nearly 30 years later, Luther “Uncle Luke” Campbell is still standing up for Hip Hop acts from the southern state of Florida.
Hip Hop commemorated its 50th anniversary on August 11, 2023. Numerous celebrations took place around the world as rappers, fans, streaming services, networks, and other entities spotlighted the history of the culture.
However, Uncle Luke believes Florida-bred Hip Hop performers did not receive enough attention during the events acknowledging Hip Hop’s longevity and impact. The 2 Live Crew frontman shared a message to other FL residents on Instagram.
“Hip Hop fans from Florida. Don’t be upset they don’t recognize your favorite Floridian artists as part of Hip Hop’s 50th year celebrations,” posted Uncle Luke. “This industry has never considered us as Hip Hop from the time I started Hip Hop in the south.”
He also added, “You can only imagine the names they called us. Country booty music, trash music. I can go on and on [about] the disrespect towards Florida Hip Hop. Still to this day, we fight for our respect, and you have stood behind us every step of the way.”
2 Live Crew’s Uncle Luke Defended Hip Hop & Free Speech In Court
Uncle Luke helped elevate southern rap to the forefront as a member of 2 Live Crew and as a soloist. Additionally, the Miami native won a landmark criminal case in 1990. The state of Florida failed to convict 2 Live Crew of violating obscenity laws for performing the explicit “As Nasty as They Wanna Be.”
Luther Campbell also famously won a 1994 U.S. Supreme Court copyright infringement case filed by Acuff-Rose Music. 2 Live Crew released “Pretty Woman” as a spoof of Roy Orbison’s “Oh, Pretty Woman.” The Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc. decision established that a commercial parody qualifies as fair use.
In conclusion, Uncle Luke’s Instagram statement read, “There will be a day this year where we come together and celebrate Florida Hip Hop [artists] from the top of the state to the bottom. We love you. Thank You for your support.”
Florida has produced some of the most successful rappers in the history of Hip Hop culture. Besides Uncle Luke and 2 Live Crew, the Sunshine State was once the stomping grounds for acts such as City Girls, Denzel Curry, Flo Rida, Kodak Black, Plies, Rick Ross, Rod Wave, Trick Daddy, Trina, XXXTentacion, and many more.