Gates follows up two banger-filled projects with another strong release.
March has been a damn good month for Baton Rouge hip-hop, and for fans of the genre as a whole. The release of Kevin Gates' highly anticipated mixtape By Any Means comes just weeks after southern icon and fellow Louisiana native Boosie was released from prison.
In the past year, the formidable 808 Mafia production team has seen its three most prominent members splinter off to take on more solo work, which in turn has made them all household names. Tarentino now has Future's "March Madness" and Waka Flocka Flame's bombastic new track "Workin" under his belt, both of which are easily strong enough to become his calling cards in the future.
The official release of The Weeknd's sophomore album, Beauty Behind the Madness, is right around the corner. With the album hitting shelves and the e-streets tomorrow, we're taking things back today to see how well you remember some of the r'n'b singers early material.
"Playing with your parts hopping in and out the friendzone..." Father really ain’t shit, y'all. He went on tour, dropped this chill ass 12-track album appropriately titled Who's Gonna Get Fucked First? on the interwebs last week, and did not run any of this by me...'cause we were totes besties back in two years from now.
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.
DJ Premier was born in Texas in 1966, before moving to New York City during his teenage years. It was there that he would become an integral part of hip hop's blossoming in the 80s and 90s. Along with Guru, he was half of the seminal duo Gang Starr. With Nas, he produced three of the tracks off Illmatic, one of the great classic records of the golden era.
Meek Mill has stirred up a lot of feelings with his twitter rant. The rapper has people taking sides, analyzing what it means to be a rapper, and ghostwriting's place in hip-hop as a whole.
An important facet of memorable groups throughout hip-hop history is chemistry: the dynamics every member brings to the table is an essential part of a group's success. Black Hippy's rise to the top has been so prevalent and quick because each of their four main members - Ab-Soul, ScHoolboy Q, Jay Rock and Kendrick Lamar - each bring something radically different to what the crew represents.
Right now, Fetty Wap's "Trap Queen" sits at #3 on the charts, behind Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again" and Bruno Mars' "Uptown Funk." We're gonna go ahead and call it the number #1 hip-hop song in the country. Sorry Wiz & Charlie Puth--touching tribute, but it belongs on the pop charts.
Gunplay, AKA Don Logan, has had a rough ride as a rapper.
During his interview on The Breakfast Club yesterday, Troy Ave was staunch in his claim that his music is strictly non-fiction: "I don't talk about nothing I don't got, I don't even be talking about Ferraris or Lamborghinis... I don't be fucking with shit like that." Evidently, though, this desire to keep it 100 at all times doesn't extend to his interviews.
The music video is making a comeback, in a big way. More and more, we are seeing artists take the time (and the money) to invest in a visual that is truly a piece of art, or at least, a piece of cinematic creativity. This year proved to be an eventful one when it comes to hip-hop and r'n'b music videos.
With every XXL Freshman Class, there's bound to be MCs included who will eventually flop-- that's just the nature of trying to predict who will break out in the sea of up-and-coming rappers. Since the magazine began the now-prestigious list back in 2008, we've seen several former Freshmen fall off, so we've selected ten that we feel didn't live up to their potential.
“Internet rapper” has generally forever been considered a negative term. In the eyes of many core hip-hop heads, being real life-hot is always more favorable than being internet-hot. Often, however, it’s the opposite that’s true. “Bad publicity” may not even exist anymore.
You gotta love A$AP Rocky and ScHoolboy Q. Despite having contrasting styles, they also share a few similarities. While ScHoolboy possesses a rugged in-your-face demeanor, Rocky is more fluid and flashy in terms of delivery. ScHoolboy loves bathing in women, weed, and alcohol, while Rocky is a fashion savant who loves Bathing Apes.
Jay Electronica is a strange cat. The New Orleans-born MC now resides in London, where very few rappers decide to claim home.
The Game's Documentary 2 has been the subject of much buzz since its release last Friday. The west coast sound is alive with the release, as it falls in line sonically with the likes of YG, Jay Rock, and Dr. Dre's Compton. The samples help to give the record a nostalgic vibe amongst the dense production.
Rapper Fetty Wap has to be one of the biggest sensations to come out in the last few years, right behind the likes of Bobby Shmurda (remember him??). His recent debut album is loaded with a selection of hits culled from his mixtapes, as well as more than a handful of new gems.
Tupac Shakur's influence can't really be measured by any sort of numbers. Sure, he's had five #1 albums and countless singles, but his impact goes deeper than that; it even goes deeper than rap.
In its four-plus decades of existence, hip-hop has always been steadily evolving. Like all evolutionary paths, hip-hop’s hasn’t moved in a straight line. For every decision that moved the genre forward as a whole, there were artistic niches and splinter groups that either went flourished before rapidly going extinct or moved on into their own lane entirely.
Most people know of the male heavyweights in hip-hop who have inhabited the streets and hoods of hip-hop's birthing place, New York City, since the onsets of their careers. They constantly make references to their stomping grounds in their tracks, paying homage to their homies through shout outs, making sure they never take for granted where they came from.
There weren't too many big releases this past week, unless you're an Adele fan, but we've got heat coming in December from guys like Curren$y and G-Eazy, who both shared new singles off their upcoming albums.
2014 is over and done with, and we the hip-hop community are moving onto greater endeavors. After an overall mediocre year for rap albums, 2015 is destined to be different. Hip-hop's biggest names are all scheduled to release albums this year, and the timing could not be more right. Today, who better than Rae Sremmurd to kick off the new year of releases with their debut album, Sremm Life.
Although none of his albums have really been critical hits, Kid Cudi’s main appeal is using outside, atypical influences and sounds to articulate some sort of emotional journey into the tortured soul.
Drake was the first one to strike in this ongoing beef with Meek Mill, delivering a vicious combo move in the form of "Charged Up" and "Back To Back." Last night, Meek finally mustered a response, dropping "Wanna Know." Compared to the explosive aftermath of "Back To Back," and even the less-amped reactions to "Charged Up," the internet's collective response to Meek's new track has been
In 2009, when Curren$y started Jet Life Recordings, there were only two other members to the Jet Life crew: Young Roddy and Trademark da Skydiver. In the five years since, Jet Life has grown like kudzu. They’ve added eight more members, most notably, Fiend, Smoke DZA, and Sir Michael Rocks of The Cool Kids, gone on a national 35 city tour, and churned out three solid Jet Life crew mixtapes.
Kanye West isn't really a man of mystery. He lays all of his feelings out, whether that be on wax or on interview. The man has no chill, and thus often lets his emotions get the better of him-- proving just how passionate he is about the things he loves. For a loyal Ye fan, his interviews are like gold, littered with quotable gems and worldly advice.
Michael Jordan and his model girlfriend, Yvette Prieto, got married this past year, and are already working on starting their new family as the couple announced that Prieto is expecting a child. At the ripe age of 50, the consensus G.O.A.T. has been making some changes in his life. Besides his marriage to his beautiful 34 year old wife, he also put his Illinois mansion up for auction.
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.
Although the initial critical reception to the 1983 movie "Scarface" was pretty mixed, with plenty of harsh reviews, it has since gone on to not only become a rapper favorite, but cement itself as a classic. Although it was panned so hard by critics, it turned out to be a box office smash.