Plies Readies His Second LP Of 2008; Rick Ross Works On Mixtape, Two New Albums, In Mixtape Monday

Plus: T.I. preps for release-date showdown with Big Kuntry King; Gucci Mane gives his last interview before being sentenced to a year in jail.

Artist and DJ: Gucci Mane and Drama

Mixtape: Gangsta Grillz: The Movie

Representing: Zone 6 (at least that's what Gucci is claiming)

411: You know how it goes: "Burr! Burr! Burr! Well, daaayumm!" A little more than a week ago, Gucci Mane proudly showed us why his label is called So Icey. He pointed to that ridiculously big "So Icey" piece around his neck. "It looks like a steering wheel," Bobby Valentino, who was at the Gooch's Atlanta headquarters, said in his syrupy Southern drawl. And what's the "burr," you might ask? The chilling sensation of seeing all those diamonds — neck, wrists and fingers.

"This is my first Gangsta Grillz with Drama," Gucci noted. "This is harder than some of my albums that I put out. It's some crazy production on there."

"I had to make sure it stays street-certified," Drama said. "What better way to do it than with Gucci Mane?"

"Man, I'm telling you it's a wrap," Gucci added, wearing sunglasses so big that Elton John would call the gaudy. "Not like the raps I be doing, a wrap like a burrito. Finito. You feel me? It's Gucci Tarantino, hollering at my amigos.

"All y'all 'Pulp Fiction' guys out there telling these non-believable stories, I'm watching you, dog," he added.

While Gucci has taken on the last name of one of Hollywood's most deranged filmmakers for the release of The Movie, the man behind the Gangsta Grillz series jacked one of Tinseltown's most successful leading men.

"I'm back with a vengeance and back with a new name," Mr. Thanksgiving declared. "From here on out, y'all can call me Dram Cruise. Blockbusters only. Mixtapes all day, everyday."

Days after Gucci and Dram shot their Mixtape Monday segment, reality yelled, "Cut." Mane was sentenced to a year in jail [LINK sentenced to a year in jail TO] because he not fulfilled the community service that was mandated as part of his probation. Sentenced to more 600 hours in 2005, Gucci had only logged 25 hours, according to the courts.

Joints To Check For

» "Photo Shoot." "We're looking like a photo shoot right now," Gucci explained. "I look at my watch, my bracelet, my rings, my handsome face and my brand-new haircut. I think it's time for a photo shoot."

» TK. "The soundtrack to East Atlanta," the Mayor of Bouldercrest Avenue said. "It's your boy, Gucci Mane Lafleur. Burr! It's getting kinda cold in here. We just dropped a movie, the mixtape. I'm the king of mixtapes and I'm the king of the streets. They say I'm the down-South 50. I've been called the down-South Biggie, the down-South 'Pac. What I liked to be called is Gucci Tarantino. ... Rated double, triple X. It's not the Big Dipper, it's the big tipper, baby."

'Hood's Heavy Rotation: Bubbling Below The Radar

» T.I. (featuring Ludacris and B.O.B.) - "On Top of the World"

» Rick Ross - "Dope Boys" and "Mrs. Officer" freestyles

» Diddy - "Swagger Like Puff" [LINK "Swagger Like Puff" TO]

Don't Sleep: Other Notable Selections This Week

» Suge White - Skull Gang vs. K.A.R.

» Yung Berg (presented by DJ Nik Bean, the Empire & the Kidd Domination) - Yung Boss or Die Vol 2

» DJ Woogie & Cashis - Global Warning Pt. 3

» DJ 4Sho - King Trapper (Jeezy or Gucci)

» Tom Gist - Sixteen 16's

The Streets Is Talking: News & Notes From The Underground

Slip-N-Slide Records founder Ted Lucas recently had a vision. He wanted to spread his wings. He and his staff have started a rock division and are trying to break pop artist Qwote and R&B singer Shonie.

Still, Lucas hasn't forgotten what got him to the top: street hip-hop. The next two huge releases from the label are Rick Ross' Deeper Than Rap and Plies' The Realest.

"December 16, Plies ain't gonna let you down," the exec promised. The album's first single is "Pants Hang Low," produced by Mannie Fresh.

"The music business changes so quick," Lucas added, explaining why Plies is dropping again, even with his gold album Definition of Real still in cycle. "Plies is a hard worker. There's no need to hold him back. I heard the album, heard the music, and I feel he's ready. You gotta feed the fans. When you got a fanbase and you're growing and they like your music, give them what they want. Before, you had albums come out by, like, Michael Jackson — people be on that album for two years. Now, the way the business is, we have to make sure the fans are happy and continue to grow."

The Realest will continue Plies' string of mainstream hits and street anthems.

"He's definitely understanding the business," Lucas noted. "He understands what it means to be mainstream, and he's still keeping core to his fans. He ain't watered down his music. The fans are still getting what they heard on the first mixtape. I feel he's one of the best at feeding the streets, but he understands the business. He can make a mainstream song that fits on radio and TV, but it's still on the edge."

Rick Ross is on a tear as of late. In the past couple of weeks, he's leaked freestyles to the Net where he's rapped over instrumentals, and made unofficial remixes to songs like Robin Thicke's "Magic" and the Game's "Dope Boys." Look for a Ross/ Papa Smirf mixtape soon, but first he's releasing H, an album made in conjunction with an independent film he and Birdman are top-lining. (The "H" stands for hustle and honor.) Ross' third Def Jam LP, Deeper Than Rap, is set to hit shelves early next year.

"When he says 'deeper than rap,' he's not joking," the CEO continued. "I already knew he was ahead of his class five years ago. Now he's ready to spread it and show people what he can do — giving people good music. People ain't seen nothing yet. Ross is always in the studio putting in good work, and the music is incredible. They gonna be riding with Deeper Than Rap."

As you may know, longtime Slip-N-Slide flagship Trick Daddy recently left the label.

"It ain't like we parted ways and we don't speak," Lucas said of T-Double-D. "We're still close." ...

On September 30, T.I. drops Paper Trail, one of the year's most anticipated LPs (that's such a cliché saying, but in Tip's case it's true). He seems like a lock to debut at the #1 position once the SoundScan numbers are tabulated. So who would have the grapefruits to launch their album on the same day as his? One of his own Grand Hustle artists, Big Kuntry King.

"I gotta take advantage of all that traffic," Kuntry laughed, when we caught up with him at a show in Atlanta. His My Turn to Eat LP comes out September 30 as well, and in the interim, he's putting out mixtapes. TK is out right now.

For other artists featured in Mixtape Monday, check out Mixtape Mondays Headlines.