HNHH details the twenty biggest stories of 2014.
The hottest beats is a misnomer for this list of 20 productions that shaped the commercial sound of hip-hop culture in 2014. Of all the thousands of tracks produced each year under the umbrella of hip-hop, we could only honor a select few as standing above the crowd.
J. Cole has come a long way from rapping about how to get up off the sideline. Three albums in, with 2014 Forest Hills Drive, the “God” is home. The Fayetteville, North Carolina native composed an honest, nostalgic album without any apologies. Cole typically plays it safe, straddling the fence of a conscious rapper who can still create commercial hits and enjoy a good romp in the bed.
The A$AP Mob isn’t really a mob, you know. “Mob” denotes unruliness, panic, chaos and lawlessness in an unorganized mass. Nothing could be farther from what this Harlem collective actually is, because the so-called “mob” has a leader.
Raury has had a huge 2014. In addition to turning the ripe age of 18, the artist garnered the attention of Andre 3000 and found a place on beat-maker SBTRKT's sophomore album.
This week on Charts Don't Lie we see the Christmas spirit in effect, as Mariah Carey's 1994 album Merry Christmas soars back up the charts. We're also seeing a relatively quick decent for the MMG boss Rick Ross, and a relatively low debut for his counterpart Omarion. Wu-Tang Clan arrive on the charts with A Better Tomorrow receiving around 25k streams and sales, although they get one-upped by Ms.
Have you ever scrolled through Instagram and instantly bursted into uncontrollable laughter? Raised your eyebrow? Scratched your head? Instantly smiled? Thought, "Damn. That's dope."? Stared at your phone? Did an instant repost? HNHH is sure you've answered yes to at least one of those questions.
When Royce da 5’9” and DJ Premier announced that they’d be making an entire project together, hip-hop heads everywhere got excited. Premier is a legendary figure in hip-hop and Royce is widely revered for his ability to spit quality bars. With three years having passed since Royce’s last project, he’s still managed to remain active with work related to Slaughterhouse and Shady.
Interesting juxtaposition we have in the first two weeks of December. This week saw the release of J. Cole's 2014 Forest Hills Drive, an album projected to be highest selling hip-hop project of the year while having more than its fair share of aw shucks moments. We're turning up next week, though. The Pinkprint is coming out, and those thinkpieces will be on their way soon.
Battle rap is quickly growing as a culture. What was almost completely relegated to street corners and Youtube a few years ago has garnered national recognition, more tv programming, Pay-Per-View events, and other attention of the mainstream media. Hip Hop icons like Eminem and Snoop Dogg have put on events for the battle scene and at this rate things can only continue to expand.
2014 was a relatively quiet year for music. It almost felt like the first half of the year was dedicated to the remnants of 2013 (so we had Young Thug continue to blow up, all the Drake leftovers) and the second half was a build up to next year (we received no Lil Wayne or Kendrick Lamar album, etc). Nonetheless, the year is ending on a high note, with albums from J.
Ghostface Killah goes by many names: Ghostdini, Iron Man, Tony Starks, Pretty Tone and any slang-derivative of 'em is pretty much fair game. Despite the identity crisis, Ghost has always been reliable for putting out quality music.
Ranking Jay Z albums can be like doing any other Jay-related list: it's impossible to get it right. The God MC himself ranked his albums last year via Life + Times and caused an uproar from just about everyone, including die hard fans, casual listeners and committed Internet trolls, who bombarded the comment section with commentary like, "Nah! Vol.
When hip-hop began, samples were all that DJs and producers had to construct instrumental tracks with. They'd dig through crates of vinyl trying to find isolated drum breaks, melodies or vocals that they could repurpose for use in hip-hop music. Today, sampling has become less common, but a choice sample can still push a track from lukewarm to hot faster than you can say "uh-huh honey".
The trend of surprise albums has definitely caused a shift in the traditional method of releasing music. Interviews, music videos and singles are still protocol (well, usually), but we’ve watched the likes of Jay Z, Beyonce, Kanye West, Skrillex, J. Cole etc. trade customary release dates for something a little more exciting and spontaneous.
Like we did last year, we'll be rolling out a slew of year-end lists to round up everything that went down in rap and r'n'b in easy-to-digest list-form. We like to kick things off with the Most Searched Artists on our site of 2014, because that will give people a good gauge of who was popping on HNHH specifically in the last year.
This is our weekly rundown of what's new and notable at the top of our charts. Y'all were feeling real introspective this week and it shows in tracks from Lil' Herb, Nicki Minaj and J. Cole.
Ghostface Killah’s new LP 36 Seasons comes to us just one week after the release of Wu-Tang Clan’s A Better Tomorrow. While the latter LP received lukewarm reviews due to questionably experimental tracks, 36 Seasons is the exact opposite. It is concise and precise, using that classic Wu sound to march along an incredible story line while The Revelations provide the production.
MJ Cole is a London based remixer and producer who got his start in music as an oboe player at England's esteemed Royal College of Music. He released his first album, Sincere, in 2000, which was nominated for The Mercury Prize (her Majesty's award for the best album in the UK and Ireland).
The remix. It can mean a lot of things. Today it usually means a trap or house DJ took a tune and chopped it up for the dance-floor, but there was a time in hip-hop where the remix was an opportunity to invite old friends and make new ones over a celebrated beat.
Los Angeles-based Jay Rock signed to Top Dawg Entertainment in 2007, long before "Money Trees" were providing Grammy-nominated types of shade. The rapper, real name Johnny Reed McKinzie, Jr. was born in 1986 and started rapping in 2005, releasing a bunch of mixtapes and what not.
It's a mantra that hip-hop listeners are all too familiar with. Year after year, statistics prove that the black community in America--particularly in lower-class neighborhoods--is subjected to unjust treatment from those supposedly designated to protect them. For the most part, these are the same communities that dominate the rap marketplace.
Fifteen years of Shady Records represents an unusual time for rap music, transitioning out of the shiny suit era and into a bubble featuring new names. Aside from D12 and Obie Trice releases, the label’s existence was mostly tied to Eminem signing a certain Queens MC.
This is a pretty eventful Charts Don't Lie, as we were not only anticipating first week sales for the likes of Eminem, Rick Ross, Beyonce and Iggy Azalea, but we're now seeing the streaming initiative from Billboard in full effect. For those unaware, we'll explain real quick.
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- De La Soul Raised Over $600K On Kickstarter For Their New Album7,976 Views37 Comments
- "Barter 6" Producer Wheezy Wants To Work With Lil Wayne32,723 Views61 Comments
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- Turk Files Default Motion After Cash Money Ignores His Lawsuit12,184 Views24 Comments
- Jay Z, Drake & Eminem Are Among Billboard's "Money-Makers" Of 201438,975 Views22 Comments