By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Steve Brennan
By Joseph Hess
By Allsion Babka
By Kelsey McClure
By RFT Music
By Christian Schaeffer
By Gabriel San Roman
The Force has too many members to include a complete rundown of everything it's cooking up, but a few websites are keeping tabs on the collective: the aforementioned Smoking Section, Tech's blog (irepstl.wordpress.com) and mademonarchs.com, the latter of which emphasizes fashion. With such a strong presence on the Internet, the group's working hard to capitalize on the buzz it's created. So what are their goals for the next five years?
Tech Supreme: Success. Not necessarily money success, but we want to be in a position to do what we love. We love making music, and we want to make it our full-time job.
RFT: Ideally, would that include running a label or studio?
Finsta: Ideally, we'll be like a new Motown. St. Louis can be the next city — we've been the "next city" for three or four years.
TS: St. Louis is definitely boiling right now. We're about to put the ramen noodles in...
Why do you think it has taken so long?
Finsta: St. Louis is a hard town when it comes to music. I think we've pretty much been sharpening our blades for years now.
TS: You've got the Force movement, plus you've got Bradd Young making good R&B music. You've got the Aye-Verbs and Remys getting national attention on the battle-rap side of things. Everything's just coming together.
How would you define your role in this paradigm shift?
TS: When you turn on the radio and hear a hip-hop song, that's what the Force is. When you go to a show and it's packed wall-to-wall, that's the Force. We're everywhere!