Meek Mill's infatuation for Nicki Minaj goes back further than you might think.
"In my entire career in the music industry, I have never found anything from a demo tape or a CD. When Jimmy played [Eminem’s demo], I said, 'Find him. Now.'” -Dr. Dre
Rich Gang is now synonymous with Young Thug and Rich Homie Quan. The young duo is the hottest commodity out of Atlanta, and they haven't even released an album. Their music is different than anyone else's, but then again, everything about them is different.
Waking up isn't always easy. Why would anyone want to leave the comfort of their warm bed to enter out in to the world? It almost doesn't make sense when you think about it. But we all have responsibilities, and we can't waste our entire lives away sleeping!
In the era of Yeezus Christ and King Kendrick, it's easy to fall into the mindset that every hip-hop album should be an experiment in pushing hip-hop forward. Every track should ooze with idealism and what's new. This feeling goes double for mixtapes. Freed from the binds of needing to make something that is commercially viable, rappers are able to let their wildest experiments roam.
Obviously the biggest topic of this week's Charts is Drizzy Drake. The rapper utilized the surprise release tactic that we've seen several artists find success with over the last year or two, and it definitely paid off for him as well.
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.
Hype Williams may have only directed four videos in 2014, but that doesn't mean we can't all remember a time when every dope hip-hop video seemed to have Hype's fingerprints on it. Countless legendary MCs collaborated with Hype Williams, including the likes of Jay Z, Notorious B.I.G., Nas, Busta Rhymes and A Tribe Called Quest, and also R&B stars like Blackstreet, Aaliyah, Usher and Mary J.
Things turned down a few notches after last week, which isn't a bad thing considering how crazy that week was. Kanye West returned to The Breakfast Club, and that was pretty much the biggest thing. We're still on the look out for his album and Big Sean's Dark Sky Paradise. Until their drop (or next week), check out 140 Bars Or Less.
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.
With a wealth of new music, including two collaborations with Paul McCartney, surfacing in conjunction with the release of his "Yeezy: Season 1" line with adidas, Kanye West has been back in the spotlight and bigger than ever.
With an unexpectedly sample-heavy release from Drake blowing up your newsfeeds all week, we have a wealth of tracks to pick from for Samples Of The Week. We could've easily devoted this entire thing to If You're Reading This It's Too Late, but we thought we'd spare you another feature article on Drake. Still, one or two songs from the tape are included on here.
This week, Chief Keef caused a stir by releasing two tracks with Andy Milonakis, a comedian who'd formerly rapped alongside RiFF RAFF and Dirt Nasty in the group Three Loco. The man who came up as the poster boy for Chicago's violent drill scene was chilling out a bit and embracing humor with these tracks, or so it seemed.
Talib Kweli is one of Brooklyn's many great MCs. In 1998 he linked up with fellow Brooklynite Mos Def for the lone Black Star LP, a record that is still influencing rappers today.
On 2009's "Successful," a young Drake rapped, "Diss me, you’ll never hear a reply for it," creating somewhat of a mission statement for his career from there on out. In a way, those words were accurate, as Drizzy rarely (if ever) calls out anyone by name in his music, but more accurately, he's become known as the king of the sneak diss, the sultan of the subliminal shot.
The rap game is all about your aesthetic. What you do, how you do it, how you look and how you market yourself are all a massive factor in a successful career. Some rappers take their aesthetic to the next level, creating something completely unique out of their brand.
If it weren't for the weird for-pay nature of Drake's new "mixtape" then all five of these tracks would come from the 6 God. That's not to say the rest of the week was terrible. Our Top 100 chart contained a number of notable tracks.
Cash Money is an indisputable empire, and at the helm, sits Birdman--and, behind the scenes, his brother Slim. In its nearly 25 years of existence, Cash Money has become one of the most successful hip-hop labels of all-time, though many of its living legends look back on their Cash Money days with disdain. When Cash Money and Young Money joined forces, the empire looked to be unstoppable.
Were it not for Juicy J, "ratchet" would not be nearly as popular a term as it currently is.
Ne-Yo has been topping charts since the early 2000s when we we're all dancing in school gymnasiums to his first breakout hit "So Sick". His latest album, Non-Fiction featured the track, "Coming With You," a song that has become huge overseas.Blonde is a UK production duo comprised of Adam Englefeld and Jake Manson. The two have been remixing hip hop tracks and turning them house.
We know you're probably sick of all the year-end lists from last year, but we're already in the second month of 2015, and we're hypothesizing who will get their big break in the coming months. This time last year, Bobby Shmurda came across a particularly fiery Jahlil Beats production on YouTube. Months later, iLoveMakonnen would see Drake remixing his song on Instagram.
You may not agree with everything Kanye West says--in fact, it would be worrisome if you did--but you can't deny his omnipotence as a tastemaker. If Kanye says it's hot, it's hot. Many of today's household names were once unknowns, and thanks to Yeezy, we can now enjoy their them in their full spotlight. The Grammy's prime nemesis has won more Awards than anyone his age--21 total.
Hailing from Gary, Indiana, Freddie Gibbs moved to Los Angeles in 2006 after he signed to Interscope Records. Things didn't work out with Interscope and Gibbs inked a deal with Young Jeezy's CTE label. Things didn't work out there either, but with the help of Madlib, Freddie Gibbs was on the tip of everyone's tongue last year, and founded his own imprint, ESGN.
Kid Ink's sophomore effort hit the Billboard 200 this week, although it didn't perform quite as well as his debut My Own Lane. My Own Lane pushed 50,000 copies out opening week, which was deemed a strong release, especially for an independently-signed rapper's debut.
The Weeknd rose up as a largely anonymous kid from Toronto who released three epic mixtapes in 2011. March, August and December each held a release date for this dude who was mixing sounds of electronica, hip-hop, dubstep, R&B, downtempo and soul in a way that had never been done before.Well, it worked.
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