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Yay Area Grammar 

Wednesday, Sep 10 2008

Rapper Nelly has won Grammys, sold millions of albums, and put St. Louis on the international rap map. Interestingly, he has spoken about the influence of Bay Area hip-hop — and particularly tongue-twisting wordsmith E-40 — since the beginning. 40 appeared on the remix of Nelly's first hit "Country Grammar," and his son Droop-E recently produced Nelly's song "The Bay," on which Nelly makes multiple references to songs by 40 as well as Oakland's Too $hort, rapping in the icons' signature cadences over a hyped-up club track: "Pocket full of fatties and sippin' on Hurricane/So just sprinkle me, mayne." (For our Q&A with Nelly on his Bay Area rap heroes and more, visit

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Tamara Palmer


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