Rip It Out

The coming year in Houston recordings.

"Hold Up," a brutish piece of bravado punctuated by braggadocio from not only Trae's gravelly voice but Diddy, Grand Hustle capo T.I. and Young Jeezy, became the first song of his in more than five years to crack Houston's radio airwaves. It was the lead single from his I Am King mixtape, a project the Houston Press selected as one of the ten best rap releases of 2013.

Trae's "ban" from The Box, which was never officially confirmed by the station, has been discussed at length. Its origins stem from comments the rapper made about a Box personality at the time who critiqued his music in the wake of a 2009 Trae Day shooting. It was of course idiotic and silly, and sent Trae's career to a peculiar crossroads, but the end result saw him craft some of the best music of his career while he was in exile.

Now he can assert a small victory in the feud, thanks in large part to the brand-new station that also has a gripe with The Box.

Electronica duo Bagheera is starting off 2014 with a Twin Shadow collaboration.
Mark C. Austin
Electronica duo Bagheera is starting off 2014 with a Twin Shadow collaboration.
The Tontons poured lots of soul into their new LP The Make-Out King and Other Songs of Love.
Julie Worsham
The Tontons poured lots of soul into their new LP The Make-Out King and Other Songs of Love.

Of course, the news was met with a huge fervor on social media, which repeated and retweeted the hashtag #937TheBeatSupportsTrae as often as possible. The man himself was humbled by the notion, saying on Twitter, "This Shit Feel Like When We All First Heard Me On 104.9 For The First Time!!! #NoLie... Now I Can Continue Makin The World Respect Texas."

It's not just that the new station has been calling out The Box by sending not-so-subtle messages to new listeners about "stepping outside the Box" and being here to "beat the Box up." It almost feels like someone inside 93.7 has been listening to the complaints of radio-listening rap fans inside the Loop and figured they'd do something about it.

In less than a week, The Beat established itself as direct competition to the Box in more ways than just its format. It wanted to make a wave, and this was a big start: fully embracing the "king of the mountain" mentality rife in Houston's underground scene.

For now, The Beat is doing everything right for a city that was starving for competition. Now it's got the city's best-known "asshole" on board as well.

Ask Willie D

Motel Time Again
Does catching your man at a motel automatically mean he's cheating?

Dear Willie D:

One night my boyfriend didn't come home, so I called him and he never answered. I asked the Lord to show me a sign that he was cheating, and on a hunch I checked his credit card statement. It said: Woodland Inn. So I went up there blowing the horn, then I put his tires on flat. I never saw him but he said he heard me, and was scared to come outside.

Deep down I feel like he's full of shit, but he swears on his grandmother that no one was in the motel room with him. He really wants me to put it in the past, but the situation is too new. Do you think I should believe his ass?

Deep Down:

Of course you should believe him because that was not a motel. It was a rooming house in a bad neighborhood, and he was only there because he was checking out a retirement spot for his dear grandmother.

When he heard the horn blowing and saw it was you, he panicked not because he had done anything wrong, but because that's what a man does when his woman pulls up blowing her car horn, slices his tires and demands that he come outside. That could've been about anything. Better safe than sorry.

Ask Willie D appears Thursday mornings on Rocks Off.

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