Staff Picks Playlist (August 26)
It's been a pretty wild week, kickstarted with the surprise drop of Frank Ocean's Blonde. The boy really came through. But it didn't end there. Last night, another boundary-pushing artist released his own highly anticipated project, as Young Thug attempted an artistic rebirth of sorts with No, My Name Is Jeffery, which arrived with the most memorable album cover of the year.
Behind The Beat: Cassius Jay
Jesus had Paul. Han Solo had Chewbacca. And Zaytoven has Cassius Jay. Cassius Jay actually considers himself the Scottie Pippen to Zaytoven’s Michael Jordan. Both Chicago Bulls players were members of the 1992 Dream Team, and when Cassius came by the HNHH office to share his story, he wore an emphatic grin, the grin of a man who woke up that day happy to simply be alive on Earth, as well as a patriotic red, white, and blue shirt emblazoned with the name of another Dream Team player across the chest: EWING.
Zaytoven Shares Details On Upcoming Drake & Gucci Mane Project
Right around the release of Gucci Mane's first album post-prison, Everybody Looking, the rapper's go-to producer Zaytoven revealed the next project Gucci had his sights on: a joint effort with Drake. Zay has been the main person speaking out on the project thus far, and he continues to shed light on how it transpired in a new interview with Vlad TV.
Lil Uzi Vert's "The Perfect Luv Tape" (Review)
Were Lil Uzi Vert's last three mixtapes planned as a trilogy? That much is unclear, but the connections between them are. Start off with the obvious (similar color schemes on the covers, minimal features, day-glo beats), move to the deeper ties that bind them (loose themes of "luv" rather than the trappier focus of earlier tracks like "Motorola," structures that place more standard beats in the first half and the experimental ones in the back end), and they seem to fit easily alongside each other.
Stream Lil Uzi Vert's "The Perfect Luv Tape," Featuring Future & More
UPDATE: Lil Uzi Vert's The Perfect Luv Tape can now be downloaded here!
The Best Hip Hop Songs (On Spotify) Of July 2016
HNHH recently launched a Spotify playlist called FIRE EMOJI: The Hottest Hip Hop Songs Right Now. The playlist is updated on a daily basis. It lives on Spotify and thus is inherently imperfect, because not all super-hot hip hop songs have been added to Spotify. Still, the playlist is generally representative of the best new releases in hip hop.
Gucci Mane's "Everybody Looking" By The Numbers
Gucci Mane's return home from prison was greeted with plenty of excitement, and the Atlanta trapper is ensuring he lives up to the hype with his new album Everybody Looking-- hype which is also translating into sales, thankfully enough for the ATL king.
Gucci Mane's "Everybody Looking" (Review)
I didn't listen to each and every one of the 32 projects Gucci Mane released during his three year stint in federal prison, but I can say that of the 15 or so I am familiar with, none have anything approaching how heavy the majority of his first post-prison release is. Gucci had a ton of material lying around when he went away, most of it relatively close in character to what he was doing on 2013's uneven State Vs. Radric Davis II project, and none of it reflecting his mental state behind bars.
A Drake & Gucci Mane EP Is "Definitely Happening," According To Zaytoven
Gucci Mane's comeback album, Everybody Looking, is out tomorrow, but he already has another project in the works, according to his loyal collaborator, Zaytoven.
No Sleep: Recapping Gucci Mane's 7 Weeks Of Freedom
It's Guwop season. The release of Gucci Mane from prison on May 26th was cause for celebration. No one celebrated more than Gucci himself. Largely confined to his Atlanta mansion, the big fella has spent his time marinating in the Southern sunshine by his backyard pool, chilling with his girlfriend, or cutting records in his home studio, the walls of which he has covered with raps he wrote while incarcerated. Click through the gallery to revisit everything Gucci has done since he got out. Everybody Looking out July 22.
Zaytoven Says A Drake & Gucci Mane Project Has Been Discussed
It's been just over a month since Gucci Mane was released from prison, but he's already accomplished a whole lot -- turning in collaborations with Kanye West, Dreezy, Kodak Black, and recording an entire album, Everybody Looking, which will be released later this month. One of the records on the LP is "Back On Road," a collaboration with Drake -- who has been pretty tight with Guwop following his release, stopping by the rapper's mansion a couple weeks back to take some Instagram photos and of course, talk business.
Zaytoven Confirms Drake Feature On Future's "Beast Mode 16"
Drake has been hyping up this current summer season ever since wintertime, dropping his "Summer Sixteen" single at the end of January. At the end of April, he announced a "Summer Sixteen" tour with his WATTBA collaborator Future. The joint tour kicks off later this month month, and indeed, Drake has already dropped off more than enough music to soundtrack the summer. VIEWS is still the No. 1 album in the country -- for the ninth week in a row -- and "One Dance" is still the No. 1 song.
Gucci Mane Reveals "Everybody Looking" Tracklist
The tracklist for Gucci Mane's Everybody Looking has been made available courtesy of Amazon. The album comprises of 14 songs with features from Kanye West and Young Thug.
#TBT: Early Gucci Mane
Gucci Mane's freedom after a 39-month stint in jail has been more glorious than anyone could possibly have imagined.
Gucci Mane Has Recorded "An Album And Then Some" Since Release, Zaytoven Says
On May 26, Gucci Mane walked out of a federal correctional center and right into the studio. He has seldom left since. In a conversation with The Fader, Gucci's go-to producer Zaytoven, who was featured in HNHH's most recent installment of Behind the Beat, confirmed that Gucci has recorded "a whole album and them some" in the past month.
Drake Poses For Photo With Gucci Mane: "That Ain't No Clone"
Most conspiracy theories go by without a need to be addressed, but Gucci Mane is not your average dude. The Atlanta rapper, who was released from prison after 3 years last month, decided to have fun with a Twitter theory that the Gucci that came home from the pen was actually a government clone. "I will neither support nor deny those accusations," he joked on SnapChat.
Zaytoven And Future Are Sitting On "At Least 100 Songs"
This summer could shape up to be a big one for Zaytoven. The prolific Atlanta beatmaker has been logging long hours with the recently-freed Gucci Mane.
Behind The Beat: Zaytoven
Most mornings, Zaytoven rises to take his son Xavier, 10, and daughter Olivia, 7, to school. He drops them off at 7:30 and returns to his house, looking for something to do. So he descends to the studio in his basement and starts making beats.
5 Classic Gucci Mane & Zaytoven Collaborations
Gucci Mane and Zaytoven have been working together since they both scored there first hit in 2005 with "Icy," and have developed their respective sounds together ever since. Since 2013, Gucci Mane has been behind bars, unable to record music (though constantly releasing songs from his stash), while Zay has been further fine-tuning his sound, adding his signature church-informed organ sound to mixtapes from Future, Migos, and more. Gucci was released last month, and has already released one song, "First Day Out Tha Feds," a sequel to his Zaytoven collabm "First Day Out".
Gucci Mane & Zaytoven Back In The Studio Together
Gucci Mane was putting in work even while he remained behind bars, so it's no surprise that he's really getting back to it now that he's a free man.