Eminem Signs Cherokee Rapper Yelawolf

January 16, 2011

The biggest news in the hip hop world last week was that Eminem’s Shady Records is back in business with two significant signings: supergroup Slaughterhouse and indie sensation Yelawolf. Hailing from Gadsden, Alabama, Yelawolf is half Cherokee, and his stage name is inspired by his heritage. As he told ShockMansion:

“Yelawolf is Native American. My father is Cherokee and I’m from Cherokee county – Gadsden, Alabama. Yela represents light, the sun, power, fire, hunger and Wolf represents my ability to survive… my fierceness.”

For Yelawolf, it’s a vote of confidence, if not a new start. He was briefly signed to Columbia records in 2007 but left that label, then resurfaced in 2010 on a number of collaborations and the commercial mixtape Trunk Muzik 0-60, released on DGC/Interscope. The jump to Shady Records (also distributed by Interscope) is a priceless thumbs-up from today’s most influential rapper. As Yelawolf said in a prepared statement quoted at the L.A. Times’ Pop & Hiss blog:

“Considering where I’m from and the [stuff] I’ve been through, it’s hard to put into words what partnering with Shady means to me, my team at Ghet-O-Vision, and my state of Alabama … I can tell you that when you’re willing to give your life up to see a dream through, the reward is great. And now that I’ve become an apprentice to one of the greatest artists in the world, my potential reaches beyond anything I ever imagined.”



bwop4's picture
Submitted by bwop4 on
I saw this guy perform in the cypher on the BET awards show. He caught my attention. I send him nothing but good energy. Now that Eminem is sober and clean he can offer good a young native some positive guidance. Big ups Yelawolf….

Submitted by nchiwanapum on
Bout time. Glad EM cleaned out his ears. Now for the rest of the rap world : )

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