Behind The Beat: J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League
J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League was formed in 2003 when Rook and Colione, two established producers in their mid-twenties, teamed up with Kenny Barto, a young Full Sail University student in Tampa, Florida. Their discography hides the years of hard work each put in perfecting their craft. You won’t find obscure local artists or years of mixtape instrumentals among their early production credits. The first 3 entries in their discography on Wikipedia are Young Jeezy, Mary J. Blige, and Juelz Santana.
Review: Beyoncé's "Lemonade"
The credits on Beyoncé's new album Lemonade read like an oddly-selected history of pop, R&B, and rock music, with modern indie names like Ezra Koenig and Animal Collective sitting alongside titanic legends like OutKast, Led Zeppelin, and Isaac Hayes.
Beyonce's "Lemonade" Credits Include The-Dream, Soulja Boy, Just Blaze, Diplo & More
Beyonce released her sixth album in her usual surprise fashion tonight, as Lemonade appeared on Tidal after the HBO premiere of the "visual album" of the same name. Unsurprisingly, there is a vast array of mega-talented musicians behind Beyonce's latest work. Those who tuned in likely recognized the voices of Kendrick Lamar ("Freedom"), The Weeknd ("6 Inch"), and James Blake ("Forward").
Snoop Dogg Previews Collab With Nipsey Hussle & Just Blaze, Album Coming In July
"Motherfuckin' Just Blaze is cookin' right now, n*gga!" exclaimed Snoop Dogg in a video he put up on Instagram last night. "Ooh, and that's all for me? Oooh wee!" Yep, a few OGs reunited in the studio last night, and from the sounds of it, they created a banger for Snoop Dogg's next album. As it turns out, Nipsey Hussle also came by the studio, though he can't be seen in the below video. In the caption of the video, the Doggfather let fans know that his next album, on which they can hear his collab with Blaze and Nip, is coming in July. It will be Snoop's 14th LP.
Classic Rotation: T.I.'s "King"
Back in December, I wrote about an album that really threw open the floodgates for Southern rap. If OutKast made people take the region more seriously, Lil Wayne’s “Best rapper alive” proclamation on Tha Carter II showed us that it could be home to GOATs and kings. It only took a remarkably short three months for another Southern album to arrive with that swagger already ingrained in its DNA.
#TBT: Nas' Deep Cuts
As one of the great emcees of all time, Nas has released 11 studio albums over the course of his career. His debut, Illmatic, is almost unanimously considered one of greatest rap records ever made. Upon hearing any one of the album's 10 tracks, "classic" is the first that comes to mind. But for every classic, there are about a dozen lesser-known or virtually forgotten cuts the arsenal of Nasir Jones.
Cardo & Just Blaze Hint At Second Surprise Project Dropping Today
The internet caught fire last night when Kendrick Lamar dropped his untitled unmastered album last night with no warning. It was definitely not the surprise TDE project we expected, and the album is incredible. However, there might be even more on the way.
Kanye West, Lupe Fiasco & More Mourn The Death Of DJ Timbuck2
The city of Chicago is mourning the death of DJ Timbuck2, real name Tim Jones, who died of cancer-related causes yesterday (Dec. 20). He was 34 years old. At that young age, Timbuck2 was already one of Chicago's most established DJs. He was the host of Go iLL radio on 107.5 WCGI, which aired every Saturday night, and he was responsible for showcasing local artists and helping them break into the mainstream. "He was an innovator and pound for pound (arguably) the best DJ in the city," wrote prominent Chi-Town hip-hop blog FakeShoreDrive.
Just Blaze Plays Unreleased Music From Usher, Kanye West, Dipset, & More On Abstract Radio
On Friday night, the legendary Just Blaze served as a special guest on Q-Tip’s Abstract Radio show on Apple Music’s Beats 1. Spinning a two-hour set, the Jersey producer put together a filthy playlist full of timeless hits, coming from Jay Z, Eminem, Fabolous, and The Game, but that wasn’t all. Digging into the vault, Just Blaze decided to unleash some never before heard songs for us as well Friday night.
Just Blaze Previews Unreleased "Black Album"-Era Jay Z Demo
Those who follow Just Blaze on social media last night witnessed a rare event. Going through his old server, Blaze came across unreleased music he had worked on with Jay Z, Pharrell, and Missy Elliott, among others. He shared the tracks for his fans to see, blessing the interwebs with this unreleased greatness, before inexplicably deleting nearly all of the evidence.
Classic Rotation: Jay Z's "The Black Album"
Jay Z’s Black Album is an objective classic. When Jay announced that the follow-up to his Blueprints was going to be his last record ever, the hype reached a rapid boil. He employed all of his best collaborators for beats, and featured no other rappers. This was to be Jay’s farewell address, and despite the fact that he came back a few years later (like all the greats seem to do), that vibe is still present throughout the record.
Classic Rotation: Jay Z's "The Blueprint"
Jay Z’s sixth studio album is widely considered to be his best. The Blueprint is one of the great hip-hop albums of all time, complete with beefy drama, defiant production, and some of the best work from one of rap’s GOATs. The LP also helped propel cats like Kanye West and Just Blaze into superstardom, opening up endless amounts of doors after they produced the majority of the album’s tracks.
#TBT: Fabolous' 2001-2005 Era
At one point, there was no one hotter than NYC's Fabolous. Coming up in the Bedstuy neighborhood of Brooklyn, Fab eventually started pursuing rap in high school. DJ Clue eventually invited him to come rap on his Hot 97 radio show, which lead to Fab getting signed to Clue's Desert Storm Records.
Hip Hop Reacts To The Meek Mill & Drake Controversy
Where to begin? Last night saw people from nearly every corner of hip hop (and even some pop mainstays) engaging in a widespread online conflict, oddly enough kicked off by some tweets exchanged between Nicki Minaj and Taylor Swift.
Underrated Audio: April 11 - April 17
Underrated Audio is back on our mission to supply you with exciting new music you may have missed upon initial browsing, from artists who haven't quite broken the mainstream. The talent is there, the quality uncut.
13 Essential Jay Electronica Tracks
Jay Electronica is a strange cat. The New Orleans-born MC now resides in London, where very few rappers decide to claim home. He's released music sporadically throughout his 11 year career, failing to deliver a long-awaited full-length project despite signing to Roc Nation MGMT and rapping alongside the likes of Kendrick Lamar, Big Sean and Jay Z.
140 Bars Or Less: Tweets Of The Week (October 17)
We live in strange times — times where 42-year-old OGs beef on Instagram with Australian pop rap artists in their 20s. This ain't fiction: Snoop Dogg and Iggy Azalea were going at it. The "beef" had one artist recalling one that she had with another OG from the south. Also, one rapper tweeted his version of "Control." Yep, it's been an odd year for hip-hop.
Saigon Reveals Artwork And Tracklist For "GSNT 3"
On September 30th, Saigon will release the third installment of his Greatest Story Never Told series, GSNT 3: The Troubled Times of Brian Carenard. Today, the NY rapper has given us the album's artwork and tracklist. Check out the former in the gallery above, and the latter below.
140 Bars Or Less: Tweets Of The Week (July 18)
There was no simmering MMG beef to light up the hip-hop conversation this week and unfortunately Meek Mill is still in jail. But life still goes on in this week's 140 Bars Or Less: Tweets Of The Week.
Just Blaze Says Jay Z's "Magna Carta Holy Grail" Almost Featured "Song Cry Part 2"
Jay Z and Just Blaze are a pretty unstoppable team. Blaze is responsible for both "U Don't Know" and "Interlude," two of Jay's most punishing bangers, but also supplied the sweet, soul-sampling beat for "Song Cry". His absence from Magna Carta Holy Grail did not go unnoticed, and while many were hoping for another monstrous track from the duo, Blaze has revealed that there were plans to include another weeper on the album.