This Music Executive Is Changing the Culture of Southern Hip Hop

Rodney Lewis says Birmingham is about to change Hip Hop and he has receipts.

Abesi Manyando
3 min readOct 14, 2018

When you think of the music business the last place you would imagine cultivating new talent is Birmingham, Alabama but one of the fastest rising music executives in the country is changing this. As the head of the multi-facted record label, MBK4L, Rodney Lewis is changing the face of music and the culture. Lewis’ label is the home of YBN Day Day, Bam, Young Ali and a sought after TV and Film production headed by Savion Nehemiah and Johnny Wilson. Like a young Shawn Carter or Sean “Diddy” Combs, Lewis is on his way to be the next music mogul but instead of gloating about his success Lewis wants to help artists and other aspiring executives. We caught up with the mogul this week as he shared his business tips and advice as well as insight on Birmingham.


How would you describe Birmingham?

  1. Birmingham is a wonderful city, It’s growing every day and providing its residents with new opportunities. It is home to some of the best colleges and corporations in the nation and I believe it will soon to be a staple in the entertainment industry.

What are your goals for the city?

Birmingham has always had a rich history of being the birthplace of some of the most talented entertainers. My desire is to create a platform for artist which they can express their creativity to the world. This city has an overflow of talented individuals and my mission is to assemble, assist and give my all to a team of talented individuals that cannot be stopped.

Everyone has been buzzing about MBK4L. What are your goals for your label?

My plans for MBK4L can simply be placed into one word “Dominate”. I say this with all humility we don’t work for second place. I tell all my artists you give your all and I will give my all and we can’t lose, winning is the only option for MBK4L.

We already know YBN Day Day is a big deal in hip hop right now but what can we expect from MBK?

There is a lot of talent. Lil Bam — a smooth street rapper with edge and lyrical finesse. In every song he gives you a piece of his life and brings you into his reality.⁃ YBN Day Day — an animated rapper that’s pure entertainment. He’s sure to give you a song you can dance to as well as giving a dose of the streets.⁃ Rudy Ru — is a premier story teller. He’s the type of artist you can vibe to an totally envision the picture he’s painting with his lyrics.⁃ Whitt. — has a singing/rap style all his own. A double threat in which women adore his vocals and fellas can vibe to his flow. My focus is on my entire team. We’re a family and no one man is bigger then that. My team is working constantly so they are always ready.

When we think of Birmingham we think of Civil Rights how has this impacted you and the hip hop scene.

The effects of the civil rights movement and southern culture definitely plays a major role in the impact of Birmingham artist. They to have the same strength, resilience, and fight as those in that time. You can correlate the civil rights movement and the current music scene as we’re then. The overlooked, the disadvantaged, the underdogs but our voices will be heard. My plans are to make a great impact in the industry and grow my city economically. I want to break records and most importantly change some lives and make dreams come true. MBK 4 Life