FRESHPEOPLE LIST 2022
After multiple delays, the fourth installment of SleepWalker’s long-awaited and highly-anticipated Freshpeople List (FKA Freshman List) has finally arrived. Similar to the annual list put out by X**, our list highlights artists who are relatively new to the rap game that gained a lot of attention this past year for their next-level work. However, our list differs from X**'s increasingly out-of-touch selection by avoiding industry-sponsored choices, and keeping our roots firmly in the underground. We also include creatives from all facets of Hip-hop including rappers, producers and visual artists. These creators had a great year, and we believe that everyone will be listening to and watching them in the near future, if they aren't doing so already. Enjoy our 2022 Freshpeople list and don’t forget to support these artists!
Founder of Hotsauce Records and a key member of Popstar.FM, the Buffalo-born and Atlanta-raised emcee has been surrounded by music since he was a child, having familial ties to the ATL rap-mogul 2Chainz. Bear1boss started uploading tracks to his Soundcloud in 2013, and grew alongside the sound of Atlanta, making Trap and Plugg music throughout the 2010s. By 2020, Bear had established his own sound, frequently working with rockstar-trap producer 14GOLDS and longtime collaborator B-Rackz, while occasionally producing under the moniker HOTSAUCE (inspired by the streetball legend).
Bear1boss started adding sound effects to his tracks this year too, first seen on his Big Slime Like A Dragon tape. They would grow into an integral component of his music, spamming songs with ambulance sirens, airhorns, Luigi screams, Sonic rings, and his “Cross him up Hotsauce” soundbite. Bear then locked in with one of the most impactful artists in Atlanta’s modern underground scene, Popstar Benny. The two released their first collaborative project America's Sweetheart at the end of 2020. 1boss would go on a prolific run the next 18 months, dropping over 15 projects, a debut album, and a plethora of singles at an Rx Papi / Rx Nephewesque rate. He also established (with the help of Benny and 14) an entire superteam of producers dedicated to delivering ear-bending melodies and 808s for him to lyrically dance over. A few members of Bear’s single-name producer squadron include Cade, Ziti, Jackson, Tike, Aidan, Tylur [Ocean], firemane, and Baredex.
Popstar Benny (@popstarbenny)
Songs to listen to produced by Popstar Benny: Sharc - Body Paint (p. Cities Aviv + Popstar Benny), Bear1boss ~ Woah Naenae Whip! (p. Glumboy + Globebwoy + Popstar Benny), Tony Shhnow - Chances (p. Tylur Ocean + Popstar Benny) Long.Live.6.Dogs (p. Popstar Benny + Ziti + 14 Golds)