Nearly a decade ago, Chingy rose to stardom behind his Southern drawl and pop-influenced single, “Right Thurr.” A member of Ludacris’ Disturbing Tha Peace, Chingy immediately became the first artist, outside of Ludacris, to go platinum under the DTP name with Jackpot. Despite the success Chingy had, Ludacris’ label, Def Jam, was not involved and Chingy ended up joining fellow DTP artist, I-20, on Capitol Records.
Chingy would soon move over to the main Capitol Records to release his second album, titled Powerballin’. The success of the first single, “Balla Baby,” would be the only successful single off the album. Considered a successful album, Powerballin’ was a drastic decrease from Chingy’s Jackpot debut and he would take a break following the album. Many then felt the run Chingy enjoyed was over.
During the summer of 2006, Chingy proved he was simply taking a break and he returned with his third album, Hood Star. Fueled with a Tyrese chorus and a SWV sample, the lead single, “Pullin’ Me Back,” the song returned Chingy to the top ten. Again with the successful single, Chingy released “Dem Jeans” as the follow-up, but the song was not promoted the way the lead single was. The album would be another success, but again it was a sharp decline in the record sales Chingy was used to.
In the end, Chingy decided to leave Capitol Records, citing their lack of promotion on his projects as his reason for leaving. Chingy would return to Ludacris’ DTP Records, this time also signed with Def Jam. After releasing one album under DTP/Def Jam, Hate It or Love It, Chingy would end up leaving DTP for good. The album featured the Amerie-assisted “Fly Like Me” single, a catchy, yet under-promoted tune. Chingy has been out of the spotlight for some time since the release of his 2007 album. Recently, Chingy returned, following a four and a half year hiatus, with his new mixtape, Jackpot Back.
Though released a month ago, Jackpot Back, has put Chingy right back in the spotlight. This time around, things will be much easier, as far as promotion goes, with the influx of hip hop websites. Nearly a decade ago, Chingy boasted in his rhymes about being featured on BET, now he can boast of the number of views his video got on YouTube and the popular hip hop sites which feature his songs. Through it all, Chingy proved he was a bankable star when he had the right people around him. Some time has passed, but Chingy still has what it takes to achieve success in this new hip hop market.
In St. Louis, those close to Chingy indeed feel as if Jackpot is back.