Hip-hop is headed back to the arenas with the No Limit Army Tour 1999.
No Limit Records announced plans Thursday (July 15) for 12 of its artists, including its chief executive officer Master P and Los Angeles rapper Snoop Dogg, to tour the U.S. The package is booked in 10,00020,000-seat venues, beginning with an amphitheater show in Dallas next month.
In a press release, the label revealed the first eight dates in the tour, which will begin Aug. 6 at the Starplex Amphitheatre in Dallas and end Aug. 29 at the University of South Florida Sun Dome in Tampa, Fla. The bill also includes Silkk The Shocker, C-Murder, Mercedes, Mystikal, Mia X, Fiend, Magic, Mac, Mr. Serv-On and Ghetto.
The 27-year-old Snoop Dogg (born Calvin Broadus) said he was excited about the tour in May, back when it was only an idea under discussion. "It's me, Mystikal, Silkk, C-Murder, Magic, Fiend, Mia-X we rollin'," he said. "We going on a No Limit tour. And we gonna go do it this summer. So everybody be on the lookout for it."
More dates are expected for September, label publicist Betsy Bolte said, adding that all 12 artists will perform at each stop on the tour.
The announcement marked the continuation of what has been a good year for No Limit and for hip-hop tours.
Six albums by No Limit artists, including Da Crime Family by Tru, a group with brothers P (born Percy Miller), Silkk (born Vyshonn Miller) and C-Murder (born Corey Miller), posted top-20 debuts on the Billboard 200 albums chart. This week, Fiend debuted at #15 with the gangsta-rap album Street Life.
Four other albums, including Mercedes' Rear End, debuted in the top 100. The Rear End cover shows the 21-year-old female artist in tight red shorts, bending over away from the camera .
"It's just to grab attention, that's what it is," Mercedes (born Raequel Miller) said last month of the cover. "I took a lot of pictures, but that was the one that you knew ... would get some type of reaction, being negative or positive, so we went with it."
The No Limit tour will be the second all-hip-hop arena tour this year. The 52-date "Hard Knock Life" tour, featuring New York area rapper Jay-Z, DMX, Redman and Method Man, grossed $13.7 million, according to Pollstar, a trade magazine that covers the concert promotion industries.
Bolte said the No Limit outing is something Master P, 29, has wanted to do for a long time. "A tour is important, and P knows the fans really want to see [the artists]," she said.
Fans who attend the shows will get a chance to see the Miller brothers share a stage. When C-Murder's album Bossalinie debuted in March, he said that making the Tru album, Da Crime Family, was both a pleasure and a learning experience.
"It's much easier to work this way [with your brothers]," he said. "You can sit back and say, 'Damn!' You just respect what they're doing a lot."
In a display of loyalty to Master P not uncommon among the so-called No Limit "soldiers," Snoop Dogg said working with the company CEO has been a learning experience for him, too. No Limit Top Dogg, which includes the Dana Dane cover "Snoopafella"
(RealAudio excerpt), debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 albums chart in May.
"For instance, there's a song for my momma on my album ["I Love My Momma"]," Snoop said. "If I wouldn't be on No Limit, I wouldn't even did a song like that. But since Master P, every album he do, he got a song about his momma. He got a song about his dead brother. It's like, it don't ever get old to him. So, it made me feel like, 'Sh--. It's cool to give my momma some props.'"
No Limit Army Tour 1999 Dates:
Aug. 6; Dallas, Texas; Starplex Amphitheatre
Aug. 7; Denver, Colo.; Fiddler's Green Amphitheatre
Aug. 13; St. Louis, Mo.; Kiel Center
Aug. 14; Detroit, Mich.; Cobo Arena
Aug. 15; Cleveland, Ohio; Convocation Center
Aug. 27; Philadelphia, Pa.; First Union Spectrum
Aug. 28; Charlotte, N.C.; Charlotte Coliseum
Aug. 29; Tampa, Fla.; University of South Florida Sun Dome