Weekend Rap Up: Kendrick Lamar ft Busta, Wale ft Rick Ross, 2 Chainz & Trey Songz, Red Cafe ft Trey Songz, Wale & J. Cole, Wiz Khalifa & Snoop, Sway ft Lupe Fiasco, Asher Roth, CYNE + 1982
Sorry for the hiatus, but your boy was in a little bit of a funk. And not the good kind of funk you’ve come to regularly find on the funk. Nah, this funk had me boycotting my Beats altogether. You ever just get sick of music? Shit, that’s hard for me to come to grips with, but that’s kinda how I was feeling.
Rap music really pisses me off sometimes. So in actuality, it’s not all that inconceivable to find myself needing a break. I may have been warming back up to the thought of throwing on my Beats and bingeing through all my go-to blogs to see what’s up in these streets, but then I witnessed the most obnoxiously arrogant, not to mention annoying, encore in live rap show history; Watch The Throne. “N’s in Paris” is not the most amazing song ever. It’s not even the best Jay or Ye song. Therefor, what would warrant playing it over and over as if to achieve the Guinness World Record for consecutive playbacks? The opposite of D. Rose, that’s what. I mean, the show was AMAZING (minus Kanye’s boring Amber Rose dedication set) but I literally ended up leaving the UC pissed off after that shit. It was especially disheartening to look around at the 10,000+
stans fans encouraging this type of behavior in the first place. Moving on…..
I’ve found myself with some extra downtime this weekend and decided it was a good time to get back at it. After a long discovery session yesterday, I have a good amount of new music I’ll have to share throughout the week. But let’s start off with that rap shit.
Now I’m not going to pretend like I know every new artist out there, or equivalently have heard every new song from the up and comers I’ve already been introduced to. But I do know this; Kendrick Lamar is going to be making one of the biggest leaps in the rap game coming up in 2012. Not as big as K.R.I.T., but seriously, listen to this shit. Kendrick is nice as hell.
Kendrick Lamar – Rigamortus (remix) (ft. Busta Rhymes) (right click, “save as” to dl) or @ Hulkshare
I’ve always been a big fan of the soulful scratches from Statik Selektah. Team him up with the knowledge kickin’ Termanology and there you have the underground masterpiece known as 1982. If you’re into the head nodding lyrical shit, check it out.
Never heard of these guys but immediately after hitting play for my first listen, I had to snatch this chill ass shit. I have a real love/hate reaction to short songs like this. I love them because of their simplicity, but I hate them because they always leave me wanting so much more. Oh well, repeat.
Asher and Blended Babies come together again to create that nonsensical head nodding shit Asher’s skill set adhere so well to. Another simple beat with a beautifully rhythmic flow to match.
Asher Roth – Common Knowledge (prod. Blended Babies) (right click, “save as” to dl) or @ Hulkshare
This one comes off Wiz & Snoop’s “Mac & Devin go 2 High School” soundtrack. I don’t really know the details of the movie. Are they featured in the film as well? I don’t really care, actually. I’m not that big on Wiz or Snoop, but this one seemed pretty smooth. Chill shit.
This is the opposite of chill. Following the vibe of his latest mixtape, Friend of the People, Lupe hops on this UK native’s high octane jam sure to get you a speeding ticket if left on repeat in the whip.
Sway – Still Speedin’ Reloaded (ft. Lupe Fiasco) (right click, “save as” to dl) or @ Hulkshare
And finally, we have remixes to two of my favorite commercially appealable jams of 2011 featuring some more popular names from the year. Shout out to the producers on both of these, since beats are basically 90% what we’re talking about when we’re talking commercial appeal, right? Regardless, shit is bangin’.
Red Cafe – Fly Together (remix) (ft. Trey Songz, Wale & J. Cole) (right click, “save as” to dl) or @ Hulkshare
Wale – Bait (remix) (ft. Rick Ross, 2 Chainz & Trey Songz) (right click, “save as” to dl) or @ Hulkshare
Weekend Rap Up: Chip tha Ripper, Fabolous ft Trey Songz & Red Cafe, Asher Roth, Crooked I, Main Attrakionz ft ASAP Rocky + L.S.D ft Phonte, King Mez & Charlie Smarts
Got my fantasy football draft tonight and I haven’t done any research yet, so I apologize for some of the short descriptions but I just don’t have time to get too insightful. As far as fantasy goes, I’m not too worried about my unpreparedness though, most of it is luck. And anyway, the best part of fantasy football is just gettin with the dudes during a live draft and then constantly talking shit from then on throughout the rest of the season. It helps when you have a good team but I’m really not the best fantasy manager. This is because, like music, I find it hard to draft (or get into musically) a player (artist) if I don’t like/respect them as a person. Was never very good at separating business from personal feelings….or anything and personal feelings for that matter.
Chip. tha. Rip. Reeeeeeally diggin this one right here. I’m lovin beat and especially the way Chip’s vocals match up with the overall vibe. Sounds like something to unwind to during the after-party, or maybe the opposite to kick the night off with the dudes. Probably follows a similar mantra as “Two goin’ at once. I like my girls like I like my blunts.”
“I was uncool before the uncool became cool”
(MP3): Chip tha Ripper – Great Time
This one can keep the party going as well. Fab is one of the most underrated rappers in the game. He consistently produces quality verses no matter the type of feature. The B.I.G. sample and Trey Songz hook make for an ear pleasing, easy listen.
Asher continues to impress me more and more this summer. He just went from an afterthought, to a “I’m definitely going to check out that album as soon as it comes out” type rapper in my book. Beat smooth, sample dope, rhymes tight. Real talk.
(MP3): Asher Roth – Ampersand
Slaughter in the house. I mentioned underrated earlier about Fab, but if that is the case, then Crook must be considered invisible. Even when people talk about Slaughterhouse I feel like Budden, Royce, or even Joell get the majority of the credit. While Joe Budden is close to my favorite rapper, I still gotta say that lyrically, as far as flow and punches, Crook is actually #1 out of the group. Talk about a group of rappers that really fit together on a lyrically conscious level, though.
I really have a hard time paying attention to the lyrics in this one for two reasons. One, I don’t expect to be impressed with anything rapped because these dudes are not lyricists. But more importantly, the other reason is because this sample is one of the coldest of all times. And I’m not talking the U.G.K. vocal sample, I’m talking about this Art of Noise (how creepy is this video?) beat sample. Took me a frustrating amount of time to remember where I knew it from, but the word “Freak” was the clincher that came to mind.
(MP3): Krayzie Bone – 2 Many Freaks (ft Play n Skillz & Adina Howard)….CLASSIC!
I’m not a huge fan of Little Brother, but mostly because it’s hard for me to get into 9th Wonder’s production. You know, kind of similar to the J. Dilla type shit. I know both dudes are respected to the utmost, but I just never really got into it. I still think Phonte is a sick spitter though, and while this beat is of the same soulful spectrum, this time shit’s got me bobbin’ back and forth without a doubt.
“It’s funny what a bad mood will do.” I was in one for a few weeks and unfortunately stopped searching the blogs for great hip hop like this. You get a lil depressed and all of a sudden you get trapped in those 4 walls of your head and forget to do the shit that actually excites you. Well I’m getting back to finding those jams, and therefore back to sharing it with all of you.
This song is too real. Novel’s great on the hook and Joell, Tech, and of course Bun B da provide some real dope lyrics about getting through life/the rap game. This soulful instrumental ought to get you rockin without a doubt.
“And I don’t know what the future got for me
But looking back at my past its got to be a better story
Gotta be a pit of glory on the other side
Sweet chariot swing down, let a brother ride, tonight
I understand that the world ain’t perfect
I just wanna be sure in the end that it was all worth it
Worth the struggles, worth the troubles and the pain
All the stress on my brain, puttin my days in on the night train”
Some people claim the mixtape game killed the rap game. While I agree there is a correlation to the amount of free music via mixtapes and the decline in quality hip hop, I do not believe that it was the rise of the mixtape that caused that decline, but rather the other way around. Rap music was on its way down when people started paying more attention to album sales and what the masses admired on the radio before they decided to start providing mass amounts of free music to the real fans. Record execs started denying artists creative ability to speak from the heart over head nodding beats, because the larger population of music purchasers really didn’t get into that. But it wasn’t the overall population that was into, and that really built up, hip hop from the get go. It was a small class of people who either related to/appreciated the struggles and stories of these rappers and/or appreciated the art of dope rhyming on the mic over dope instrumentals. Then I don’t really know what happened. But it seamed like the popularity of a select few in the game who were able to make their lifestyle seem really cool to a larger majority of kids who like to party and/or wang their system and look hard, left record execs with a formula to fill with ANY artist regardless of their true strengths. This left most rappers helpless to sell the music that they really wanted to share, or that they were really meant to share, and therefor had no other choice but to share it via mixtapes for free.
On the other hand, while mixtapes and the internet have done artists like J. Cole justice by providing that medium to share the real shit on their brain, and the quality music that comes from it, it’s also gave every clown out there a platform for trying to fit that money-making mold by rapping that fake shit to try and sell an image as opposed to an art.
With that said, I give you some new J. Cole who developed a following and made a name for himself by providing the true hip hop heads with dope lyricism and realness over the past 3 years via the mixtape game. Now he has an opportunity to make some money with some (still) solid raps over dope ass beats that people/radio DJ’s better fucking buy. I’ll take the album shit and the real shit off the mixtapes, thank you very much.
You don’t even really gotta pay attention to the lyrics if you don’t want to, dude’s flow is so smooth on top of the beautiful Jamaican instrumental you gotta enjoy this jam. However, if that is the case, I have no respect for your ears. The message here is be proud of who you are. That has NOTHING to do with being ignorant and hating other people who don’t share your skin tone, religious and political views, or cultural ideals. Shit makes me sick what happened over there in Norway. And shit kinda scares me the way some conservatives talk over here about not accepting other religions or immigrants in America. That is exactly what the fuck America was built on you ignorant fucking assholes! Anyway, check the previously released dope flow over Gyptian’s jam, as well. Wale that dude.
(MP3): Wale – No One Be Like You
Weekend Rap Up: DJ Khaled ft Drake, Lil Wayne & Rick Ross, XV, Game ft Trey Songz, Jay Daniles ft Royce Da 5’9”, Mickey Factz + Slaine
DJ Khaled did it again. This beat is toooo nasty. I’ll definitely be rocking out to this one on repeat for the next couple of weeks. Rick Ross (whuh!) and Lil Wayne do what they do, but Drake really is that dude. No one man should have all that talent.
Love this remix right here. I wasn’t a huge fan of the beat on the original, but that’s just the beauty of a remix. XV is the real deal, man. Even when he makes a song dedicated to drinking and smoking, he starts it off with a line that makes you look at the reasons for it all instead of simply glorifying a life of partying.
I post most of the Game joints I hear because he keeps it realer than most. I’m sure you can tell by the title, this one really isn’t on that deeper level. Just another jam calling out some women on there ho-ish ways. That’s definitely not to say he’s not still keeping it real. Good beat. Good hook. Solid joint.
Now we’re getting into my shit right here. Hip Hop about life. You know, real life. Not the image of a fantasy life “we” as consumers seem to be obsessed with. Are any of us are really living the good life ALL the time? Do any of us have the luxury of partying everyday of our lives without regret? And how many of us fuck models all the time (ever)? And I know none of us can treat money like toilet paper because we just made $50,000 just for showing up. Funny thing is, most of the time neither do these rappers. For some reason though, that seems to be all the people wanna hear. So they simply deliver the order, fiction and all.
Getting back to the songs though, you know I’m feeling this dude up next. Statik Selektah kills this shit with the instrumental but Slaine brings the reflective rhymes to make it the jam it is. I really, really like this song. Although I am slightly biased towards my fellow micks…
“I ain’t no guinea driving around in a Coupe de Ville
I’m an Irish alcoholic staring with the ruthless grill”
“I try not to hate, continue showing love
And keep on showing love when no one does”
Mickey always keeps it real. And again he’s just thinking out loud in this one. Now, no one person is the same. But I gotta believe there is a different breed of people (on a smaller scale, rappers) who can’t seem to ignore the things that are wrong with the world around them. It’s kind of like a curse almost. Like even when things are going good, there are still things that could, and should, be better that need to be addressed. Or is that just called idealism?
“I’m scared of life, how do I deal wit it
I guess I’ll take a mic, and just reveal wit it”
Going off what I was I was saying earlier, I actually prefer listening to songs about the artists’ struggles before they “make it” and then the money and the lifestyle takeover. At which point it is possible that they may not have much more to talk about other than their…..what’s the opposite of struggles?
Weekend Rap Up: The Dean’s List, Chip Tha Ripper, Big K.R.I.T., Fashawn ft J. Cole, Nike Nando, Young Dro ft Trey Songz, Killer Mike ft T.I.
Finally got through a bunch of mixtapes I’ve been sitting on the past couple weeks and in turn have some quality shit for ya’ll in this weeks “rap up.” Kicking it off is this group called The Deans List. Normally I pick out my favorite track from a mixtape to include, but I could barely narrow it down to two songs from this masterpiece. If you haven’t checked it out yet, go download “The Drive In.” I really like the direction these guys are headed.
The Dean’s List – Dear Professor (right click, save as to download)
The Dean’s List – Light Up The Sky ft Dani Ummel (right click, save as to download)
Next up we got this Chip joint off the recently released “Gift Raps.” Pretty mellow project, and this feature right here is no exception. Super smooth and super dope. Chip was the biggest snub when XXL mag released their 2011 Freshman Class without him included. I don’t really take that list very seriously, but I would imagine it’d be a cool feeling to be included, and Chip deserves that. Seriously though, OJ Da Juiceman made it in 2010….
Chip Tha Ripper – Plural (prod. by Blended Babies) (right click, save as to download)
Big K.R.I.T. did however make the XXL list. Probably could have shut that magazine down had he not. If you’ve followed anything I’ve posted, you know how high I am on this dude. I don’t think he will be losing that swagger anytime soon. This one come’s off “Hometown Here: The Best of Big K.R.I.T (presented by KevinNottingham.com).”
Big K.R.I.T. – Swagger Back (right click, save as to download)
Damn, J. Cole keeps putting in work in every direction. I posted the “Smallville” joint he produced for XV a while back, and that was the first time I was introduced to dude’s production skills. Here’s another jam in which he provides the hook for as well. Thoroughly impressed again. This one’s off Fashawn’s recent release “Higher Learning 2.” Fashawn got mad skills himself. Real talk about real struggles.
“Wonder why my young brother stuck on reefer
Because the state refuse to pay good teachers
While the rich kids watch from the bleachers
I ask Jesus, let some light creep in”
Fashawn – Nothin For The Radio ft J. Cole (prod. by J. Cole) (right click, save as to download)
Here’s a solemn, introspective joint from the up and comer Nike Nando. I don’t want to try and compare my struggles to any of these rappers because comparatively speaking, my life has pretty much been a cake walk. Still doesn’t mean I can’t hear their words and relate it to my own situations. This one comes off “Love Day.”
“I give good advice but I cant manage to take it
I develop foolish pride due to those situations
A bit emotional, I use to be ashamed
of what I looked at in the mirror, drive myself insane”
Nike Nando – Born To Lose (right click, save as to download)
This next one comes off Young Dro’s “Equestrian Dro.” Not a fan of this project at all, honestly. I’m kinda over this type of shit, but I still like something upbeat to get down to every once in a while. Dro usually can be counted on to fill that void. There’s obviously still a large demand for these types of jams, cuz of all the artists I’ve featured so far, Dro is the only one really getting paid.
Young Dro – Strip ft T.I. & Trey Songz (right click, save as to download)
Love this beat + sample. Killer Mike is a beast and T.I. always adds some quality hype. Rock this one loud with the bass up and you might cause a scene. That’s how I roll.
Killer Mike – Ready Set Go ft. T.I. (right click, save as to download)
Another great mash up from the White Panda. Mash ups seem pretty simple, you just strip the vocals from one song, and add em to the beat of another. But a lot of mash ups sound like shit. It takes some skill, and a lot of creativity to make it work well. The White Panda has pretty much perfected the craft. The Hood Internet is solid too, but these guys are my favorite by far. The first mix I heard from them was Ice Chrome Paint Job, followed em ever since. As part of the Sunday Bundle, I’ve included some of my favorite tracks over the past year and a half for you to get acquainted with.