Reflect back on some of the essential songs Lupe Fiasco released in his earlier days.
About ten years ago, it seemed like Lupe Fiasco was going to be the next great force in hip hop music. In 2006 he released the great Food & Liquor, and followed it up in '07 with the equally awesome The Cool. Lupe had a little bit of a difficult time following that one, and it didn't help that Atlantic Records was skeptical of releasing the album for fear of commercial appeal.
More so than any rapping ability, swagginess, or A&R masterminding, the ability to collaborate with a wide range of artists and dabble in various sounds without once straying from his distinct vocal style has been French Montana's greatest strength.
Anderson Hernandez grew up in Washington Heights, an area in New York City he says no one has ever come from before. After putting in a short time as an emcee, Hernandez fell in live with producing and never looked back.
Following the Grammys there was a surge that gave hip hop artists a boost in sales. For example, Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp A Butterfly jumped up from #60 to #16 after crushing it at the award show. The Weeknd also jumped from #12 back into the top 10, landing at #6 for his post-Grammy week on the charts.
As we continue to revel in the the season that is Yeezy, it's hard to not consider Kanye West’s body of work as a whole as nothing short of amazing.
Mixtape Corner is a place where we take a closer look at some of the mixtape releases that weren't necessarily big enough to garner a review, but still deserve your attention.Curren$y & The Alchemist- The Carrollton Heist
In two months, Desiigner has gone from virtual unknown, just another anonymous rapper, looking to gain any sort of foothold, to internet sensation. His breakout hit "Panda" has garnered 3.7 million plays on SoundCloud. It has earned him a record deal with G.O.O.D. Music and two appearances on Kanye West's The Life of Pablo.
Seven minutes and thirty-four seconds is a long time to spend watching a video, even if that video is Rihanna's "Work" feat. Drake. Which is why we've identified the 20+ best moments from the video and transformed them into GIFs for your viewing pleasure.
"Just download Lyft, they are bigger in presence out here" -- Lil Dicky, "Pillow Talking" ***
After the Kanye-inspired chaos of last week, the past seven days have been relatively tame in the rap world, with the twin titans of last weekend (TLOP and the substantially less interesting Grammy awards) still dominating the conversation.
Of all the talent to come out of Atlanta, Georgia over the past five years, Rome Fortune is one of the more unique artists. He's collaborated on multiple tracks with both fellow ATLien OG Maco and British electronica mastermind Four Tet. With a few mixtapes and a handful of EPs, Rome Fortune is one of the freshest talents in the game.
It was another busy week on rap Instagram, as last weekend proved a big weekend for flexing, between, All-Star Weekend, both Drake and Kendrick Lamar being presented with keys to their respective cities, and of course, the Grammys.
As soon as the "If Young Metro don't trust you, I'ma shoot you" drop appeared in the middle of Kanye's MSG performance last week, an audible "Damn..." came from the crowd seated in the theater with me. 'A Ye and Future song?!', we all asked ourselves, struggling to calculate just how many flame emojis we'd have to use when describing the track to those who missed the listening session.
If you thought the Kanye West craze would die down after a week, you were extremely wrong. The Life of Pablo is still very much a trending topic, no matter how sick you are of reports on it (and equally, we're getting a bit tired of the constant updates of will it/won't it come out).
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.
In his acclaimed movie "8 Mile," Eminem's character, Rabbit, (ultimately based on Eminem) is showcased as an absolute beast at freestyle rapping. Everyone who saw the movie surely remembers when Rabbit went in over Mobb Deep's "Shook Ones Pt. II" beat and absolutely roasted Papa Doc.
Around the time the Graduation came out, I developed a philosophy for media consumption that I called the “Kanye rule.” Its premise was simple: judge art only for the contents within, not for the extraneous actions of the artist.
What makes Kendrick Lamar such a great performer? His everyman aesthetic makes him relatable. His spiritual conviction that makes him appear possessed gives his performances the feeling of a religious ritual. His live band is fuego. And, bars.
The Billboard Chart saw a new number one this week in the form of Future, whose album EVOL is currently the top-selling album in the country. Apparently rolling it out on DJ Khaled's radio show wasn't such a bad idea, as the record has sold nearly 100k in its first week. Making way for Future's climb to the top is Rihanna, who slipped from #1 to #3 this week.
Dun Deal is the guy behind the breakout hits of both Young Thug and Migos. It’s been three years ago since “Stoner” and “Hannah Montana” both appeared on the third edition of the compilation mixtape series put together by DJ Spinz' Hoodrich Production Group, with which Dun Deal is still affiliated.
Last night, industry elites gathered in the Staples Center for "music's biggest night," the 58th Grammy Awards. Year after year, the relevancy of the award show gets brought into question, though not necessarily its entertainment value.
When Jacquees signed to Cash Money Records in October 2014, many onlookers worried that Cash Money CEO Birdman would exploit Jacquees' vocal talents and strip him of everything that made him a budding star -- his carefree demeanor, bright smile, and model good looks.
Kanye West's The Life of Pablo has finally arrived, and it's about as good as anyone could've expected. Agitated fans are starting to forgive Kanye for his ridiculous antics throughout the convoluted and unpredictable album rollout.
Tired of hearing about The Life Of Pablo yet? Kanye West's highly anticipated album only dropped about 36 hours ago, but its eventual release was preceded by several days of frustrated waiting, as his haphazard release strategy continued (and may still be ongoing) with a series of remixing, tracklist updates, and delays.
Last Thursday, Kanye West introduced The Life of Pablo to the world through a sold-out listening party / fashion show hybrid at Madison Square Garden. The event was unlike anything that's ever happened before: a collision of fashion and music to a caliber that had before been unfathomable. Listening parties don't take place in arenas, and neither do fashion shows for that matter.
When Earl Sweatshirt's music was ushered into the eyes of the mainstream, he was at a boarding school on a rural island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Following his 18th birthday, Earl came home to California and got busy recording his debut album Doris, which followed the wild success of his debut mixtape Earl.
Back in the day there was Elvis, and Elvis was sexually provocative. Then there was The Beatles, and the Rolling Stones. Then there was Michael Jackson, and what he was doing was real sexual. Then there was the 90s, when music and culture became seriously risqué, comparatively speaking.
The biggest stars in the hip-hop world were out and about this past week. It all began with Super Bowl 50, attended by rappers such as Kendrick Lamar and Jay Z, the latter whose wife would make up for the underwhelming quality of the game with her roaring halftime show, which saw the live debut of her new single, "Formation."After that, it was Kanye who would hog most of the headlines.
Hip hop might not be the most romantic of musical genres, but occasionally an MC will step up to the mic to deliver a poetic love song. Certain rappers find their niche in that style of R&B/rap crossover, while others just dabble in it one-off style for all the romantic cats out there.
It’s an incredible feat to create a great double album. It’s increasingly difficult in hip hop, where the music is typically not too time consuming.