Alabama-born hip-hop phenom Yelawolf (real name: Michael Wayne Atha) will hit the road this fall on his annual Slumfest Devils Pass Bike Tour. In 2015, the release of Yelawolf’s second Slumerican/Shady/Interscope album, Love Story, which debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 and topped both the Rap and R&B/Hip-Hop album charts as the follow-up to his debut, 2011’s Radioactive. Love Story was recorded mostly in Nashville with producers Eminem, Malay, WillPower and DJ Paul. Last September, he released a music video for the track, “Devil in My Veins,” which he called “the rawest song I’ve ever done,” directed by Ryan “Spidy” Smith, who also helmed the video for “Best Friend” from the album, which featured Eminem. “I’m telling the truth about a lot of things,” he said about Love Story. “I try to be as honest as I can with everything I do.” The Boston Globe said of the album: “If you scratch his songs’ surfaces, you hear a smart, sensitive outsider searching for some solace… The disc’s best moments come when the songs smolder.” Rolling Stone praised Yelawolf’s “strong embrace of his Southern roots,” while the Knoxville News Sentinel compared him to a “Southern Eminem or an edgier Kid Rock… but that’s selling him way short.” Yelawolf released his independent debut album, Creek Water, in 2005, followed by an EP and four mixtapes, the last of which, Trunk Muzik, landed him his deal, with Interscope Records re-releasing it as Trunk Muzik 0-60 in November 2010. In March 2011, Yelawolf signed with Eminem’s Shady Records, releasing Radioactive in November 2011. Love Story was released April 21, 2015, with his third effort, Trial By Fire, slated for release later this year. Yela was featured on the cover of XXL’s March 2011 issue with Eminem and fellow Shady labelmates Slaughterhouse, and was also named among the magazine’s Top 11 Freshmen that same year. His Shady debut, Radioactive, received a coveted 4.5 out of 5 mics from The Source, calling the album a “near-classic.” Eminem served as executive producer, with other contributing producers including Jim Jonsin, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League, Diplo, The Audibles, Pooh Bear and WillPower. Others who made cameos on Radioactive include Eminem, Kid Rock, Lil Jon, Fefe Dobson, Mystikal, Shawty Fatt, Rittz, Killer Mile and Gagnsta Boo, among others.
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