Map shows landmarks significant to Waterloo Region's hip-hop scene

A Waterloo Region music fan is turning up the dial on the local hip-hop scene, launching a new website that's focused on homegrown talent.

"Our region has a really fascinating and long history of DJs, rappers and radio hosts," said Sam Nabi, who created the website Tri-City Hi-Hop with the help of a Region of Waterloo grant.

Users can explore an interactive map that highlights areas culturally significant areas, like Victoria Park, which has been the backdrop for a number of music videos.

"It's very intentionally a map because hip-hop in particular has a lot to do about sense of place, representing where you're from, representing your neighbourhood," Nabi explained.

Aaron Fletcher, who goes by the name Air Blaq, is one of the local rappers making a name for himself.

"I love the KW hip-hop scene. It's not too well known on a large scale," he said.

He began filming a video for his latest song, "Dreams," with Bieber Industries.

"I've been talking to them, it's been going great – same passion of giving back to local talent," Fletcher said.

He kept the recording local too, enlisting the help of Tait Garrett of Kitchener's Trackhouse Studio.

"You would be surprised how much talent is out here," Garrett said. "A crazy amount of talent."

Both agreed that the region could use more representation and resources to put its music on the map.

"It's history, it's what's going on currently," Garrett said.

"I can't wait to see that website have pins all over it with so many connections."

It also includes stories of local professionals and artists to help a small but mighty music scene continue to grow.