photo credit: @tillinfinitymultimedia
Radio B is a man of many things: an artist, entrepreneur, culture forwarder, battle rapper, battle rap league owner, brother, family man, and the owner of the RVA Rap Elite. When it first launched in 2018, the formerly named RVA Lyricist Lounge was set out to uplift all the lyricists along with curating pathways for networking. Their YouTube channel can draw comparisons to how YO! MTV Raps was in its heyday. I wrote an article back in 2020 for RVA Mag on how they increased their presence and became a stronger platform interviewing some of the faces of the Rap Elite from emcees to staff members. This time, I decided to chat with the man behind the plan, Radio B.
Jay: With the set weekly schedule on the IG lives, do you feel like that would still be needed when the pandemic is over with?
Radio: Well we’ve already cut down on the amount of shows we do a week but we have maintained NameBrand’s producers lounge and Spielburg has moved his mix show to StationHead. However, we will still be doing shows and different live content after the pandemic. We realized that was an untapped form of engagement and content that we wish we had been using all along.
How has the platform affected you personally? Does it give you more satisfaction than expected?
Absolutely. It’s exactly what I hoped it would be and more. I really wanted to bring back the focus on lyricism, on rappers being emcees, and pushing themselves to write better and focusing on their bars and their verses and being competitive, showing, proving, and watching how that develops them as artists and performers and it’s been beautiful to see the Rap Elite community grow, and how that goal and standard has been established.
The platform had singers, rappers, poets, quasi-emcees, and other unexpected faces perform on the platform. Can you pitch to the reader why should someone participate in the open cypher?
The open cypher is a true lions den and litmus test for an emcee. If you can hold your own in the open cypher you will have proven things to yourself about your ability to write, to prepare, to perform and move a crowd. How to entertain. You get to see where you really stand with those skills and talents. You also get a tremendous amount of exposure to the Richmond hip-hop scene and beyond. It’s really the bloodline of the platforms.
What do you feel like the platform need to touch up on to grow even further?
We are working on broadening our additional content, and our YouTube show. We’ve had a vision all along of the type of content we want to produce and we haven’t executed there yet so you’ll be seeing a change there this season. Also we just want to get back into the groove we were in with our live events before COVID-19, with those two things and a few other tricks we got in the bag I think we’ll be in a great space.
What was your favorite season of the rap elite and why?
I would have to say Season 2. We had an awesome time at Champion Brewery which helped us grow and then moving to The Darkroom was where we really found our sweet spot. Overcoming the close of two venues during that season really showed our resilience as well.
You can check out the RVA Rap Elite YouTube channel below and follow them on
Radio B @radioblitz
Written by: Jay Guevara. @justinhisprime on all social media.