Posts in Category: Hip-hop Industry

The Tussle for Supremacy between Hip-hop and R&B

As an integral part of culture, music genres borrow heavily from one another. In this case, the history of hip-hop has largely been about absorbing and conquering the other genres. In fact, there is no genre that has dissolved others in a greater scale in the music industry the way hip-hop has done.

 

Taking Over the Music Scene

 

At first, hip-hop sampled the elder genres and this provides the intellectual justification for its place in the legacy of soul genre, where it eventually pushed soul music to the fringes. Later on, hip-hip music gave birth to its own crop of singers, characterized by smooth-edged tough talking who softened the samples, while they addressed simpatico themes. Eventually, these rappers did away with middlemen and started inputting melodies into their own verses.

 

A Fierce Backlash

 

Interestingly, former hip-hop artistes such as Drake have been instrumental in stopping the genre from overriding others. In his transition to R&B, Drake has invariably softens the blow that Hip-Hop had dealt the genre. In this way, R&B has refused to take hip-hop’s infiltration without a fight. In particular, the male R&B singers are devising new approaches for invigorating the genre.

 

For a long time, the success of Robert Kelly’s music was based on his infusion of hip-hop attitudes into R& Blues. His new album that was recently released titled The Buffet sold poorly. R Kelly complained that black audiences were no longer supporting his music. While that could be true, R Kelly’s strategy overlooks the current crucial trends. For one, the lovers of R&B are presently better off served by hip-hop instead of R&B and that he too is not the standard bearer that he previously was.

 

As generation of musician emerge so will the genres of music continue to fuse while other new ones emerge. Hip-hop may not have lost its luster but then its influence is undoubtedly at test.

 

 

Worldstar’s Founder Dies at Age 43

Worldstar Hiphop has been a staple in the hip-hop industry since its inception back in 2005. Sadly, its founder and CEO, Lee “Q” O’Denat, passed away at age 43 due to heart attack while asleep on January 23. The site started as a platform to promote underground mixtapes, but grew to show music videos, fight videos and other outlandish footage. Though Worldstar faced criticism for a lot of the videos they posted, no one can deny the impact Q had on the community.

 

In an interview with New York Times back in 2015, Q said, “Hip-hop is for the sex, the drugs, the violence, the beefs, the culture…. That’s the competitiveness of hip-hop, so I felt like the site needed to be R-rated.” Thus his site reflected exactly what he dreamed. After all the success he saw, MTV2 is set to have tv series based off the site called “World Star TV,” which will be a sketch comedy debuting on February 3.

 

Q’s death has been felt throughout out the world of hip-hop with many taking to Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms expressing their condolences to his friends and family. Charlamange Tha God, host of New York’s radio show, “The Breakfast Club,” said on Instagram: “RIP to my guy Q@worldstar we got some years in. Great, Great, Great Dude!!!!!! One of those moments where you don’t cry because it’s over, you smile because it happened. SMH. Brother was already up but he had some phenomenal things cooking.”

 

Q will surely be missed, but remembered as the great entrepreneur and pioneer he was.

 

A$AP Mob Rise To Prominence Through Television

Recently, hip-hop group A$AP Mob performed “Cuckoo’s Nest” on the “Late Show,” a television program that regularly features performances from up-and-coming hip-hop acts. This group first came to prominence due to the success of A$AP Rocky, the group member who has achieved the most critical and commercial acclaim so far.

 

In this television performance, A$AP Mob demonstrated a fertile collective imagination and plenty of old-fashioned rhyming skills. The quirky performance featured a sensibility reminiscent of “One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest,” the early Jack Nicholson film set in a mental hospital. If this Harlem group’s latest songs are any guide, this collective has a good chance of establishing a huge fan base. Hopefully, the band will become known as more than an A$AP Rocky side project. Each one of these artists is talented enough to succeed through a full-fledged solo career. Groups like A$AP Mob demonstrate that hip-hop is far from a spent art form. With all of the diversity of the English language at their command, conscious rappers will continue to create profound art into the indefinite future.

 

It’s no secret that tumultuous political changes roiled the political landscape in 2016. Though troubling in many respects, the divisiveness of this nation’s political scene may provide fertile ground for self-expression through music. Though A$AP Mob songs always feature plenty of humorous lines, this group certainly has the potential to play a vital role in the serious debates that are emerging in this nation’s cultural life. It should prove interesting to watch this group evolve and develop over the course of the next four years.

 

Drake takes the Throne

2016 was a really big year for artist Drake. It seemed like you couldn’t go more than a few days without hearing some news about Drake’s latest record. The record, which goes by the title of Oh My Klub, has produced some very exciting news for Drake. Over the past year, Drake has broken or tied roughly TEN RECORDS! In a single year, that’s an amazing amount in and of itself. Of course, no one can really question Drake’s relevance lately. After all, the man has been on the playing field since his acting days back during Degrassi. But even after 2016 was over, he couldn’t help but slap on one more record to the list, just to really stand out from the crowd, and this time he had a little help.

 

The news was just released that Drake and Future’s latest tour, Summer Sixteen grossed $84.3 Million dollars last year! While this is impressive in and of itself, what makes it more impressive was that it managed to take the top slot and become the highest grossing Hip-Hop tour of the year. It’s previous holders Jay-Z and Kanye West, managed to score about $75 Million with their tour, Watch the Throne, which is no small feat, even for two of the biggest names in the business. In light of this, it seems that Drake really took the top spot as 2016’s biggest artist in the genre.

 

Of course, this is just the latest record to join the others he took last year. Alongside the highest grossing tour, he tied with 50 Cent on his record of heading both the Billboard 100 AND 200 boards at once. He also beat out Justin Bieber as the most streamed artist EVER on Spotify, and Michael Jackson’s record for the most nominations at the AMA awards as well, by about 2 Million Nominations! Well done Drake, people are looking forward to seeing what 2017 brings you.

 

Sia, Miguel, and Queen Latifah Come Together for a Historically Inspired Soundtrack from Hamilton

Hamilton is a popular musical, featuring hip hop-fusion tracks, that depicts the life of Alexander Hamilton. The play has received a lot of love and praise from critics, celebrities, and Broadway lovers alike. Hamilton debuted off-Broadway in February 2015 and made it to Broadway in August 2015. Among the many awards Hamilton has won so far, the 2016 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album is one of them.

 

Lin-Manuel Miranda, the mastermind behind Hamilton, is releasing a Hamilton mixtape on December 4, 2016 featuring a wide array of talented vocalists and rappers. Sia, Miguel, and Queen Latifah teamed up for a remix of the Hamilton track Satisfied, which is something you definitely want to look out for.

 

The first track on the Hamilton mixtape is a rendition of Satisfied, one of the best vocal productions in Hamilton. Satisfied, from Angelica’s perspective in the musical, relays the story of watching the man you love marry your sister. What makes the song more heartwrenching is there’s no animosity between the sisters and it was Angelica’s choice to let him go.

 

The remake of Satisfied by Sia, Miguel, and Queen Latifah has recently been revealed, so you can listen to it on Spotify before the mixtape’s official release. If you listen to the original Satisfied, you’ll see that Sia, Miguel, and Queen Latifah did it justice and effectively portrayed the emotion while adding their own style to the song. Hamilton’s mixtape will be worth listening to in full when it comes out on December 4.

 

A Tribe Called Quest Salutes Phife Dawg

A Tribe Called Quest Performs and Salutes Phife Dawg on SNL

 

Hip-hop legendary band A Tribe Called Quest got together to perform on the latest Saturday Night Live episode.

 

A Tribe Called Quest made their debut on the nightly weekend show with their show being a mix between lively, hype and more serious. The serious part involved the group bringing on Busta Rhymes and Consequence, a frequent Tribe Called Quest collaborator for their song called “The Space Program,” while at the same time paying tribute to deceased member Phife Dawg with the song “We The People.”

 

Both of the songs were fresh off of the album “We Got It From Here….Thank You 4 Your Service,” which turned out to be a surprise album release and also the band’s first LP release in 18 years. Dave Chappelle, who was hosting the show for the night, introduced the group who earned a thunderous applause from the audience. The song “We The People” was backed by producers and DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad, MCs Q-Tip and Jarobi White and featured heavy and serious topics including xenophobia, racism and homophobia in the modern society.

 

During Phife Dawg’s verse on the song, the group revealed a banner that featured the rapper’s face on the art, while his verse was playing in the background. Jarobi and Q-Tip danced their way onto the stage to round out the performance. The group’s surprise album was released on Friday and features Andre 3000, Jack White, Elton John and Kendrick Lamar.

 

Drake Secures His Place in Music with Thirteen Stellar Nominations

The music industry is huge and few recognize the extensive hours and work that is put into producing worthy tunes. Though it seems the list of award shows is endless when it comes to giving artists the credit that they deserve for their songs and general talent, it is important to note that these shows happen for a reason, even though you may get fairly annoyed by seeing them constantly.

 

Musical talent is to be found around the world, but the United States is noted for having a very diverse music scene. Even the artists who produce music within the same genre are immensely different and it is essential to note that from time to time. With the MTV Video Music Awards and The Grammys out of the way, it is time to prepare for the American Music Awards and the artists who have broken records, thus far, including Drake.

 

Now there is no denying that Drake radiates talent through every shout in the microphone, but few recognize just how noted he is in the industry. Currently, the rapper is up for thirteen awards, which is a record-breaking victory. The only other artist to have even come close was Michael Jackson with eleven awards in 1984. With potential accolades such as favorite artist, favorite album, favorite song, collaboration of the year, and artist of the year, Drake has demonstrated that he is a lyrical God and will not let that fact subside anytime soon.

 

As the award show approaches, other names in the industry that have worked with Drake or who have shared friendships with him are ready to cheer him on, including Rihanna, Future, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Adele, Kanye West, and Ariana Grande. Sure to be a legendary night, fans of the industry and Drake will have plenty to talk about at work and school the next day.

Joe Budden Releases Another Drake Dis Song

Joe Budden has been in the hip-hop industry for many years. During this time, he has had many friendly rivalries with other well-known hip-hip artists. Budden is well-known for being feisty when it comes to dealing with beefs with artists who challenge his ability to rock the microphone.

Many of us thought the beef between Joe Budden and Drake was over. Budden continues to throw sharp lyrical darts at Drake. After releasing his classic Drake dis song, Budden takes another crack at one of the biggest hip-hop superstars around today.

Joe Budden decided to work with araabMUZIK in the studio. He wanted to come up with a catchy beat that would catch everyone by surprise. After hours of collaborating, the two came up with a creative song that starts off with a short sample from Kenny Powers. Budden shows boldness by using one of Drake’s lyrics in his song.

Rap pioneers expect new artists to show them respect for their hard work. Veterans of the industry feel they pave the way for new artists to be successful. The competitive beef started when Budden felt that Drake was not paying homage to him. Fireworks began when Budden decided to release a dis track to put Drake in check.

At this point, Drake has not responded to Budden’s sharp jabs. It will be interesting to see what will take place between the legend and new superstar in the future.