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A3C 2013's don't-miss list 

From Questlove to Da Mafia 6ix, 18 picks that you don't want to miss

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Pharoahe Monch

Upon disbanding Organized Konfusion with fellow MC Prince Po after three consistently rewarding LPs, Pharoahe Monch went on his own slow-paced path. At the height of Rawkus Records' reign of late '90s and early aughts hip-hop, Monch flourished with his lyrical complexity, blowing out the tasteful production and unrestrained creativity provided by an indie label. Best known for his 1999 breakout single "Simon Says," which repurposed a monstrously symphonic and uncleared sample from "The Godzilla Theme," Monch cemented his outlandish yet foreboding delivery in the hip-hop mainstream. Following the success of his debut LP, Internal Affairs, Monch took a nearly eight-year recording break before releasing 2007's Desire and 2011's W.A.R. Thurs. Oct. 3, 10 p.m. Variety Playhouse, 1099 Euclid Ave. 404-524-7354. — BP

Da Mafia 6ix

DJ Paul, Lord Infamous, Crunchy Black, Gangsta Boo, and Koopsta Knicca are all on deck for what is ostensibly a Three-6 Mafia jam — minus Juicy J (sadly). But who knows? This is Atlanta. Anybody could turn up. With so many wild cards in the mix, all of the ingredients for an explosive night filled with classic Three-6 joints, such as "Sippin' on Some Syrup," "Who Run It," and "Tear Da Club Up" are in place. They'll probably feel compelled to whip up some of the newer numbers as well. Like Boo says, "Come and get it while you can trick, before it's all gone. Goin' once, goin' twice, oh my God it just went gone!" Fri., Oct. 4, 8:15 p.m. Old Fourth Ward Stage, 427 Edgewood Ave. 404-525-3002. — CR

9th Wonder

From 2001-2010, Durham, N.C., Little Brother crew — comprised of producer 9th Wonder and MCs Phonte and Big Pooh — nurtured a poignant mix of old-school soul samples and backpack hip-hop. Largely attributed to 9th Wonder's lean but effective production style using soulful loops of jazz and R&B records, Little Brother broke as the underground counterpart to Kanye West's fast-rising fame. Since recording and issuing three albums with Little Brother before leaving the group in 2007, 9th Wonder has gone on to release collaborative albums with Murs and David Banner while producing tracks for major label mainstays Jay-Z and Chris Brown. Fri., Oct. 4, 10:30 p.m. Star Bar, 437 Moreland Ave. 404-681-9018. — BP


Bouncing between his solo career and the nine-member Brooklyn based musical outfit Phony Ppl, Dyme-A-Duzin stays busy making sure true hip-hop stays alive. Cosigns from Plain Pat and Harry Fraud helped him make a name for himself in the music game, a culture he's been dedicated to since writing his first rap at age 11. The Warner Bros. records signee is revered for his sophisticated delivery, something he describes as "swank," and a talent for singing on his own records. A Portrait of Donovan was the product of an 18-month recording process and is a testament to Dyme's lyrical chops. Fans are eagerly waiting to hear what he's up to next, and those at A3C may just be lucky enough to hear some of the new material during his upcoming performance. Fri., Oct. 4, 11:30 p.m. Spring4th Center, 728 Spring St. 404-870-0040. — BK

Roc Marciano

Although he'd already been vetted as a member of Busta Rhymes' Flipmode crew in the mid '90s, Roc Marciano has been on the upswing since going tit for tat on verses with Ghostface Killah and Raekwon on Busta's "The Heist" back in Y2K. The Long Island rapper, born Rakeem Myer, has spent the last decade-plus crafting singularly modern productions steeped in grimy, street-savvy beats, rhymes, and samples. Nostalgia takes a back seat on his 2010 underground opus, Marcberg, and a recent collab with producers the Alchemist and Oh No for the Greneberg EP. By placing a high premium on creating hip-hop that sounds like it was made in the here and now, Roc's greatest hits are still to come. Fri., Oct. 4, 12:55 a.m. Space2, 482 Edgewood Ave. 404-835-2534. — CR


click to enlarge MADLIB: Otis Jackson, Jr. aka Beat Konducta, Quasimoto, Loopdiggaz, et al. plays the Earl Sat., Oct. 5. - COURTESY PITCHBLEND PR
  • Courtesy Pitchblend PR
  • MADLIB: Otis Jackson, Jr. aka Beat Konducta, Quasimoto, Loopdiggaz, et al. plays the Earl Sat., Oct. 5.

In the world of underground hip-hop, Madlib (born Otis Jackson Jr.) is the producer's producer. Best known as the king of crate diggers, Jackson carefully samples deep cuts from a seemingly endless array of source material, whether it be international psych from the '70s or free jazz of any era. These esoteric bits and beats, seamlessly grooved together, form the flesh and bones of some of the most revered hip-hop outings in the post-millennial scene. Want proof? Check out 2004's Madvillainy with MF Doom, or any Madlib album released under one of his many pseudonyms: Beat Konducta, Quasimoto, Loopdiggaz, et al. Sat., Oct. 5, 11:05 p.m. The Earl, 488 Flat Shoals Ave. 404-522-3950. — BP

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