Wilkins, Langston



Langston Collin Wilkins returns to the city where he grew up to illuminate the complex relationship between place, identity, and music in Houston’s hip hop culture. Interviews with local rap artists, producers, and managers inform an exploration of how artists, audiences, music, and place interact to create a heritage that musicians negotiate in a variety of ways. Street-based musicians, avant-garde underground rappers, and Christian artists offer candid views of the scene while Wilkins delves into related aspects like slab, the area’s hip hop-related car culture. What emerges is a portrait of a dynamic reciprocal process where an artist, having identified with and embodied a social space, reproduces that space in a performance even as the performance reconstructs the social space.

A vivid journey through a southern hip hop bastion, Welcome 2 Houston offers readers an inside look at a unique musical culture.


Langston Collin Wilkins, PhD is folklorist, ethnomusicologist, and writer. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Folklore and African American Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Dr. Wilkins research and writing focuses on all manner of African American folklife and urban culture. He lives in Madison, WI with his wife and daughter.