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Preaching the merits of Cleveland for close to two decades, Suave Goddi broke on the scene when hip-hop was first discovering its commercial potential. "There was no gangsta rap and no Death Row/Only Roxanne Roxanne and UTFO," Goddi recalls of his mid-'80s origins. "That's when I knew my destiny/To be the baddest rapper the world would never see."

To this day, Goddi remains 10,000 leagues beneath the mainstream. He drives a Hyundai, not a Cadillac -- the rare MC who doesn't put on airs about his lack of bling. "I'm still selling my own CDs out of a plain old box/Still eating Frito-Lays and Faygo pop," he spits. Backed by a sparse production of plinking keys and grimy basement beats, Goddi rhymes in deep, gritty tones, like a midwestern Method Man. The Real Dope Game is just raw and rugged enough to ensure his continued struggle.

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