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Together with production partner Juicy J, DJ Paul played an important role in the South's rise to prominence within the once East- and West Coast-dominated rap industry. Behind the duo's leadership, Three 6 Mafia rose from an underground phenomenon in Memphis to a nationally recognized rap empire, spinning off numerous solo albums for the collective's many members in the mid- to late '90s. Like his production partner, DJ Paul specialized in dark, eerie tracks driven by bass-heavy beats and haunting sounds. He also raps as a member of Three 6 Mafia and contributes rhymes to most of the albums he produces for such artists as Project Pat, Gangsta Boo, La Chat, and Tear da Club Up Thugs. Moreover, DJ Paul ventured into filmmaking with Choices (2001), a straight-to-video film starring most of the Three 6 Mafia collective.
Juicy J (born Jordan Houston) and DJ Paul (Paul Beauregard) first came together at the dawn of the '90s, when they worked as DJs in the Memphis area. The two soon began producing their own tracks and invited numerous Memphis rappers to rap over the beats. They released the resulting tracks locally as Triple 6 Mafia; years later these recordings would resurface as re-releases. In 1995, the loose collective changed its name to Three 6 Mafia and self-released its debut album, Mystic Stylez. The album became an underground success, and Three 6 Mafia, in turn, signed a distribution deal with Relativity for its Hypnotized Minds imprint. Throughout the late '90s, Juicy J and DJ Paul produced numerous albums a year for Hypnotized Minds and capitalized on the lucrative distribution deal. By the end of the decade, the two producers were at the helm of an empire, having extended their brand to alarming lengths, culminating with their commercial breakthrough album, When the Smoke Clears (2000), which debuted at number six on Billboard's album chart.
Paul Beauregard, better known by his stage name DJ Paul, is an American rapper, record producer, DJ, songwriter and entrepreneur from Memphis, Tennessee. He is a founding member of hip-hop group Three 6 Mafia and the half-brother of late rapper Lord Infamous.
DJ Paul started his career in the late 1980s as a DJ and released a number of solo tapes, as well as three collaboration albums with Lord Infamous as The Serial Killaz. After meeting Juicy J, the three created the group Three 6 Mafia which achieved national success in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Their 2000 album, When the Smoke Clears: Sixty 6, Sixty 1, debuted at number six on the Billboard 200 chart and was certified platinum, later followed by Da Unbreakables in 2003 and Most Known Unknown in 2005, both of which were commercially successful. In 2006, DJ Paul, Juicy J, and Crunchy Black won an Academy Award for Best Original Song for "It's Hard out Here for a Pimp" from the film Hustle & Flow. Paul has also released three solo albums, and created the soundtracks to two movies. He and the rest of Three 6 Mafia are known as the creators of the crunk music style.
Apart from music, DJ Paul has taken part in a variety of business ventures, including film making and real estate. He founded his own record label Scale-A-Ton Entertainment, co-owns the fashion wear line Dangerus / Skandulus, has a collection of BBQ seasonings and is the spokesman for a legal version of the alcoholic drink Sizzurp.Birchmeier, Jason. "DJ Paul | Biography | AllMusic". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 29 December 2013.
ContentsMusic career1.1 1988–1992: Career beginnings1.2 1993–2005: Three 6 Mafia and debut solo album1.3 2006–2012: Academy Award win, Scale-A-Ton and A Person of Interest1.4 2013–present: S.I.M., Da Mafia 6ix, The Killjoy Club and Master of Evil
1988–1992: Career beginnings
In 1988, DJ Paul started his career as a DJ in Memphis club "380 Beale". At first he wanted to focus on DJing instead of rapping. In 1989, he formed the duo The Serial Killaz, together with his older half-brother Lord Infamous. Paul served as the producer, making beats, which Infamous would rap over. The two did not have any equipment, so they used to rent local DJ Just Born's studio with the money their father gave them. Paul would play and scratch records on his mother's record player when she was not home. They released self-recorded tapes in their neighborhood, school, and local shops. Their first tape, Portrait Of A Serial Killa, was released in 1992. The following year, the duo released another tape called Come with Me 2 Hell.
"Mixtapes, back in the day, was just a mix of people's favorite songs. Like if your uncle or whatever would take his favorite O'Jays songs, his favorite Staples Singers songs, and put them all on one tape, so when they have a party, they could play all of their favorite songs. ... Memphis took it a step further. ...that's what me, DJ Squeeky, and Juicy J would do. We would put our own songs on our mixtapes. That's what people do today, but we were doing that back in '88."DJ Paul in an interview with journalist Louis Goggans from Memphis Flyer newspaper in 2013.
DJ Paul eventually bought studio equipment, consisting of a keyboard, a turntable, and a four-track recorder. He started making mixtapes with popular songs and selling them at his high school. Later he started including songs of his affiliated rappers on the tapes as well, in order to promote them. Eventually, he began making mixtapes consisting only of original songs by himself and local artists. Paul claimed that Memphis DJs, such as himself, DJ Spanish Fly, DJ Squeeky and Juicy J created the modern format of mixtapes by including their original songs, instead of making compilations of other artists' music.
DJ Paul also released a number of solo tapes called Underground Volume 1 to Volume 16. He rose to prominence as a DJ and producer on the south side of Memphis, and was introduced to fellow producer Juicy J, who was also garnering buzz on the north side of the city. Together with Lord Infamous, they formed the group The Backyard Posse. DJ Paul and Juicy J soon began producing tracks, described as "dark, eerie ... driven by bass-heavy beats and haunting sounds." They changed their name to Triple Six Mafia, after a phrase Lord Infamous would use to refer to the group in their songs.
1993–2005: Three 6 Mafia and debut solo albumMain article: Three 6 Mafia
In 1994, Triple Six Mafia were joined by Koopsta Knicca and released the underground album Smoked Out Loced Out. Later the group acquired two more members, Gangsta Boo and Crunchy Black and changed its name again to Three 6 Mafia. In 1995, they self-released their debut studio album, Mystic Stylez. Following the album's success, Three 6 Mafia signed a major label deal with Relativity Records. They also started their own label Hypnotize Minds and signed a number of local artists, such as Project Pat, La Chat, Frayser Boy and Lil Wyte, among others. DJ Paul and Juicy J exclusively produced the whole albums by their artists, as well as Three 6 Mafia's releases. The group achieved commercial success with their 2000 album, When the Smoke Clears: Sixty 6, Sixty 1, which debuted at number six on the Billboard 200 chart and was eventually certified platinum by RIAA.
In 2002, DJ Paul released his debut solo studio album Underground Volume 16: For Da Summa. Most of the songs, originally featured on his 1994 mixtape Underground Volume 16: 4 Da Summa of '94, were remastered and some of the old featured artists were replaced with new ones from Hypnotize Minds, such as Frayser Boy and La Chat. The album peaked at number 127 at the Billboard 200.
Three 6 Mafia released two more commercially successful albums: Da Unbreakables in 2003 and Most Known Unknown in 2005, both peaking in top five of Billboard 200. They also created the soundtracks of the movies Choices and its sequel Choices II: The Setup. By 2006, Paul and Juicy were the only members of the group left.
2006–2012: Academy Award win, Scale-A-Ton and A Person of Interest
In 2006, DJ Paul, Juicy J, and Crunchy Black won an Academy Award for Best Original Song for "It's Hard out Here for a Pimp" from the film Hustle & Flow. The song, which they co-wrote with HCP member Frayser Boy, was also ranked at number 80 on VH1's "100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop".
After Three 6 Mafia released their 2008 album Last 2 Walk, the group had conflicts with their label Sony about their music style, which led DJ Paul and Juicy J to pursue other ventures and their solo careers.
In 2009, Paul released The Weigh In – his first mixtape since the Volume series in the early 1990s. A few months later he followed up with his second solo album Scale-A-Ton, released under Paul's newly founded label Scale-A-Ton Entertainment. The album was received well by critics, earning a positive review and an "Album pick" by AllMusic. In 2010, Paul released his second mixtape Too Kill Again, hosted by DJ Scream and DJ Whoo Kid. The mixtape features many upcoming and new Memphis artists such as Lion Heart, Thug Therapy, Partee and Miscellaneous. DJ Paul stated the tape was a preview to his upcoming album, also titled Too Kill Again, which however was never released. Instead, in 2011, Paul made a new collaboration mixtape with rapper Ya Boy and producer Lil Lody, called Pray For Forgiveness. A few months later Paul released a retail No-DJ version with bonus songs to iTunes.
In 2012, Paul announced he was working on an experimental dub-hop EP called A Person of Interest. Later he changed it into a full featured album, which was released on October 22. A Person of Interest was packed with a bonus DVD, including a self-titled short movie, music videos and behind the scenes footage. Paul released videos for a number of songs from the album, including "What I Look Like (W.I.L.L.)", "Wit Tha Shit", "Trap Back Jumpin", "E&J" and a remix of "I'm Dat Raw" with Snow Tha Product. Paul called A Person of Interest his favorite solo album, stating that he loved the production and the "raw" sound of the album.
2013–present: S.I.M., Da Mafia 6ix, The Killjoy Club and Master of Evil
In early 2013, DJ Paul focused on performing as a DJ, and created a DJ duo, called S.I.M. (Sex is Mandatory). The group created a number of live sets, as well as remixes to songs, such as Just Blaze & Baauer's "Higher".
In late 2013, Paul and Lord Infamous were discussing creating a sequel to their 1993 album Come with Me 2 Hell, when the latter came with the idea to try and reunite the whole Three 6 Mafia crew. Infamous brought back Crunchy Black, Koopsta Knicca and Gangsta Boo, and the five of them reunited as "Da Mafia 6ix" with plans to release an album in 2014. On November 12, 2013, Da Mafia 6ix released their first mixtape 6ix Commandments. The tape was almost entirely produced by DJ Paul and featured Yelawolf, 8Ball & MJG, Krayzie Bone, Bizzy Bone, SpaceGhostPurrp and HCP affiliates Lil Wyte, Skinny Pimp and La Chat, among others. Juicy J and Project Pat also appeared as surprise guests on the posse song "Body Parts", being credited just as "& more" in the track listing.
DJ Paul collaborated on a mixtape titled Clash Of Da Titans with fellow Memphis producer Drumma Boy that was released on October 23, 2013, and on a free EP, called Black Fall, with rapper Yellawolf, which they put out for Halloween on October 31, 2013. On November 26, 2013, DJ Paul released Volume 16: The Original Masters, a remaster of his 1994 mixtape 4 Da Summer of '94. It was revealed on the PSYR17 EP given away at the 2014 Gathering Of The Juggalos that DJ Paul plans to release his next solo album "Master Of Evil" on Psychopathic Records in 2015. He later confirmed it himself on the 28th of August on The Australia underground hip hop podcast "The Underground Podcast", as well as on the outro song to The Killjoy Club's debut album "Reindeer Games".
DJ Paul has been announced to play South by Southwest showcase in Austin, Texas on March 21, 2015.Goggan, Louis (April 11, 2013). "Q & A with DJ Paul of Three 6 Mafia". Memphis Flyer. Contemporary Media, Inc. Retrieved December 26, 2013. C.M., Emmanuel (December 22, 2013). "DJ Paul On Lord Infamous' Legacy And What He Meant To Hip-Hop". XXL. Retrieved December 22, 2013. Coleman II, C. Vernon (October 31, 2010). "Happy Halloween: DJ Paul Of Three 6 Mafia Names Top Five Horror Movies Of All Time". HipHopWired. Retrieved December 26, 2013. "DJ Paul & Lord Infamous – Come W/ Me 2 Hell". Discogs. Retrieved December 26, 2013. Twells, John; Kelly, Chris (November 27, 2013). "The Essential…Three 6 Mafia". FACT. Retrieved December 26, 2013. Cite error: The named reference allmusic1 was invoked but never defined (see the help page). Meara, Paul (December 22, 2013). "DJ Paul Reflects On Lord Infamous' Career & Founding Three 6 Mafia". HipHopDX. Retrieved December 29, 2013. Macnie, Jim (September 24, 2008). "VH1′s 100 Greatest Hip Hop Songs Ever". VH1. Retrieved December 30, 2013. Zeichner, Naomi (October 15, 2012). "Interview: Juicy J". The Fader. Retrieved December 30, 2013. Jeffries, David. "DJ Paul Scale-A-Ton". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved December 30, 2013. DJ Paul (June 12, 2011). "Pray For Forgiveness"No Dj/Album Version for 4.99$ wit bonus songs". Twitter. Retrieved December 30, 2013. "Pray for Forgiveness - DJ Paul". iTunes. June 21, 2011. Retrieved December 30, 2013. DJ Paul. "DjPaul King of Memphis - Uploads". YouTube. Retrieved December 22, 2012. Baker, Soren (November 15, 2013). "DJ Paul Says Da Mafia 6ix's Music Is Crazier Than "Mystic Stylez"". HipHopDX. Retrieved December 26, 2013. Baker, Soren (September 28, 2013). "DJ Paul Announces Da Mafia 6ix Album Info". HipHopDX. Retrieved November 13, 2013. "Three 6 Mafia! Da Mafia 6ix! New Mixtape "6ix Commandments"". LiveMixtapes. November 12, 2013. Retrieved November 13, 2013. "DJ Paul & Drumma Boy - Clash Of The Titans". LiveMixtapes. October 23, 2013. Retrieved December 30, 2013. Tardio, Andres (October 31, 2013). "Yelawolf, DJ Paul "Black Fall EP" Cover Art, Tracklisting, Stream & Download". HipHopDX. Retrieved December 26, 2013. "Volume 16: The Original Masters - DJ Paul". iTunes. November 26, 2013. Retrieved January 14, 2014. Watkins, Greg (August 28, 2014). "EXCLUSIVE: theundergroundaustralia DJ Paul - August 2014 ; Open Container". TheUnderground. Retrieved 28 August 2014.
DJ Paul and Juicy J starred in MTV's 2007 reality show Adventures in Hollyhood, which showed Three 6 Mafia's move to Hollywood, California, following their Oscar win. The show also featured their personal assistants Computer and Big Triece, as well as Hypnotize Minds artists Project Pat and Lil Wyte. The series aired for eight episodes between April 5 and May 23, 2007.
In 2011, DJ Paul starred in VH1's cooking show Famous Food together with seven other celebrities and eventually won the first place. In an interview, Paul cleared up some controversy from the show, involving Ashley Dupre best known from the Eliot Spitzer scandal.
In a 2013 interview, Paul said he is getting three hours of sleep a day due to the amount of work he has to do in the variety of business ventures he has a part in. Describing his daily schedule, he said that he works with all of his companies during the day and records music during the night, stating that "I feel like if I'm not working, then I'm losing and I'm not really giving my life what I should be giving."
On December 20, 2013, his older half-brother, Lord Infamous, died from a heart attack at his mother's house in Memphis, Tennessee.
DJ Paul is engaged to Majda Baltic and they participated in an episode of Celebrity Wife Swap together with Plaxico Burress and his wife. They stated that they met at the Salt Lake City Airport."DJ Paul Bio". DJ Paul. Retrieved 26 December 2013. "Danielle Staub and DJ Paul Named Winners of VH1′s Famous Food!". Reality Tea. September 8, 2011. Retrieved 30 December 2013. http://www.talkofthetown411.com/2011/07/three-6-mafia-vh1-famous-foods-juicy-j.html TalkoftheTown411.com. Retrieved 27 July 2011 Balfour, Jay. "DJ Paul Reacts To The Contemporary Influence Of Three 6 Mafia's "Mystic Stylez"". HipHopDX. Retrieved 27 December 2013. http://www.sbnation.com/2014/7/30/5951913/celebrity-wife-swap-plaxico-burress-dj-paul-herbivores
In 2001, DJ Paul and the rest of Three 6 Mafia created the straight-to-video film Choices, followed by a sequel Choices II: The Setup, which was released in 2005. In 2007, DJ Paul and Juicy J started their own fashion wear line titled "Dangerus / Skandulus". It was branded as the official Three 6 Mafia wear and includes T-shirts, hats, accessories and stickers. DJ Paul founded his own record label Scale-A-Ton Entertainment in 2009. He has released his last two albums under the label.
In 2012, DJ Paul launched a collection of BBQ seasonings called "DJ Paul BBQ". Paul initially created a BBQ rub seasoning, soon followed by a Smoked Out BBQ Sauce. In 2013, DJ Paul became the official spokesman for a new legal version of the alcoholic drink Sizzurp. As of 2013, Paul also owns a real estate company."Three 6 Mafia: Choices - The Movie". IMDB. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "Choices 2". IMDB. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "Dangerus Skandulus, The Official Three 6 Mafia Apparel". Dangerus Skandulus. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "Three 6 Mafia's DJ Paul launches signature BBQ rub seasoning". The Grio. January 10, 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "Welcome to the Home of DJ Paul BBQ". DJ Paul BBQ. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "DJ Paul's Safe Way to Enjoy Sizzurp!". DJPaulKOMTV. Retrieved 2013-02-13. Cite error: The named reference hhdx2 was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
In an interview with Power 105.1's The Breakfast Club, Paul stated he has been arrested numerous times. He was sent to jail for the first time at the age of 17.
In 2006, a man from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, named Ramone Williams, filed a lawsuit against DJ Paul and other Three 6 Mafia members, claiming he has been severely beaten at a Three 6 Mafia concert when other fans followed the lyrics of the song "Let's Start a Riot" and attacked him. The man claimed he was hit with a chair, kicked and stomped numerous times. Three 6 Mafia asked for dismissal of the suit on a summary judgment motion. In October 2006, both sides settled the suit and Williams received financial compensation.
On June 8, 2012, a lawsuit was filed against DJ Paul and Juicy J for failing to appear in a concert which they were booked for. The suit claimed the two were booked for an April 2011 show in Orlando, Florida but never showed up. They also never returned a $9,000 advance payment they received for the performance. Paul and Juicy are demanded to pay $50,000 for economic loss, out-of-pocket expenses and loss of income and revenue.
In October 2012, few days before his third album was released, DJ Paul was arrested in New York when a Taser stun gun was found on him during a routine search. He was charged with misdemeanor and released shortly after. Paul commented on the arrest: "I honestly didn't know it was illegal. I thought it was at the same level as pepper spray." Paul pled guilty and was sentenced to 21 hours of community service."Video: DJ Paul – The Breakfast Club Interview". Power 105. October 18, 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "Three 6 Mafia Seek Lawsuit Dismissal". Contact Music. 5 September 2006. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "Three 6 Mafia Settle Lawsuit". Star Pulse. World Entertainment News Network. December 1, 2006. Retrieved 30 December 2013. Watkins, Greg (18 June 2012). "EXCLUSIVE: Juicy J., DJ Paul Accused Of Ditching Show And Keeping Money". AllHipHop. Retrieved 30 December 2013. Watkins, Greg (October 15, 2012). "EXCLUSIVE: DJ Paul Of Three 6 Mafia Arrested In New York With Taser; Open Container". AllHipHop. Retrieved 30 December 2013. "DJ Paul: 'I didn't know Taser gun was illegal in New York'". ABC2 News. October 16, 2012. Retrieved 30 December 2013. Diep, Eric. "DJ Paul Sentenced to Community Service After Weapons Arrest". XXL. Retrieved 26 December 2013.