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Young Dolph, Memphis Icon

Whether you knew Young Dolph through his music or you had the privilege of spending time with him in person, you always had a story to tell. The Memphis rapper’s braggadocio was underscored by a gift for introspection and a willingness to make sure that everyone went along for the ride with him. Fans who heard his booming bravado and hilarious deadpan punchlines got to feel like they were riding shotgun through South Memphis in his fleet of luxury cars, and local residents who had the chance to rub elbows with him were treated like royalty.

Young Dolph, born Adolph Robert Thornton Jr., began his rap career in 2008, with the release of his first mixtape, Paper Route Campaign. After a two-year break between his initial project and 2010’s Welcome 2 Dolph World, he soon became one of the more prolific artists in Memphis, releasing no less than two projects per year from 2011 to 2019, and it wasn’t long before bigger acts took notice of the following that Dolph was building. In 2013, he dropped East Atlanta Memphis, a collaborative mixtape recorded alongside Gucci Mane, helping to expand his audience even further outside of city limits.

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