October 31, 2010

Music Video: Cyclops - Danny Brown

Skinny jeans and long braids don't exactly equate to respect in the rap game, but Danny Brown gets a pass.

Danny Brown isn't a "new boy" rapper in fact he's the exact opposite.

His unique lyrical talents have landed him on features with eLZhi, Black Milk, Guilty Simpson, Buff 1, Marv won and even dropped a few bars on the lateset Dilla project, Jay Stay Paid ... actually it's easier to pick who he hasn't worked with.
Danny Brown's affiliations with Tony Yayo have led many to suspect that the Hybrid will soon be signing to G-Unit, the rumors started getting heavy right around the release of Hawaiian Snow, a collaborative mixtape between Danny Brown and Mr. Yayo.

In the spirit of Halloween, Danny Brown dropped a new video "Cyclops" and not even going to lie, I did jump, just once. After watching that, make sure you download his [free] album 'The Hybrid' if you don't already have it.

New: Roman's Revenge - Nicki Minaj feat. Eminem

Nicki gets a lot of slack from a lot of different people.

I, for one, am not one of those people.

Where are her arms?
She has everyone from Amanda Bynes to the hoodrat down the street reciting her lyrics, biting her style and proved she was a force to be reckoned with as the dominate MC on Kanye West's "Monster" (which also features Jay-Z and Rick Ross).

You may hate her, but who else is making 50K a verse with no album out?

I'll wait.

Speaking of which, Nicki Minaj's debut album, Pink Friday, releases November 23rd and I am interested to see how it turns out.

The debut single "Your Love" wasn't typical Nicki, but catchy nonetheless.

Today a new track surfaced featuring everyone's favorite lyricist and number one MC, Eminem and produced by Swizz Beatz (seems like since wifing Alicia Keys, I'm seeing his name A LOT more, not that he wasn't around before, but never as noticeable ... at least to me).

This mix seems a bit strange but leave it to Eminem to address the doubtful:

It's Shady and Nicki Minaj, you might find this sight quite odd, but don't ask why b*tch ask why not

Here's "Roman's Revenge" - Nicki Minaj featuring Eminem (prod. Swizz Beatz)


October 30, 2010

Music Video: Real Love - Macy Gray & Bobby Brown

I know what you're thinking and frankly, I thought the same thing.

Macy Gray and Bobby Brown on one track together.

The song came out a few months ago and is off Macy's fifth album, The Sellout which released earlier this year.

I just happened to stumble across the official music video for it today.

Personally I like the record; for some reason it reminds me of a summer love.

I've said it before, but I really would kill to be a fly on the wall during this studio session.

October 28, 2010

I Get Crazy - Nicki Minaj

MaeDay MaeDay!

I've said it before and I'll say it again, Mae Day is one of my favorite MCs.


It could be because she doesn't feed into the stereotype of the female rapper or the fact that she can (and has) held her own on a track full of guys— Take the Michigan Remix to P.L.'s "Blue and Yellow" for example.

Mae Day has been in the studio working on a new project, which last I heard was still untitled but expected to release this fall/winter.

What I really admire about Mae Day is she takes her time with her music, which is something that many don't do. I asked her about it while working on the Fab Four story for Real Detroit Weekly and she said:

 I don't like to rush out material because I set the bar so high for myself, so I hope the listeners are patient with me. I'm putting my soul into this thing.
Admirable right?

She released some old tracks that aren't going to be on her next project but are definitely still worthy of a listen.

Both were produced by De Notes and I can't help but wonder: If these are on the cutting room floor* , what have they cooked up for her album.

*I know it's a film term, but for this, it works.

Music Video: This is For Us - JFin

The homie JFin was sitting quiet for lil' while after the release of 2009's Fin Is King 2.

Keyword: Was.

Earlier this month he released Paid Programming, a pre-tape and lyrical teaser for his upcoming mixtape Infinivision.

This week he dropped the music video for "This is for Us" (from my understanding it is his first music video).

Directed by Richard Taylor and features cameos by Yung GooD, Buzz Burrus and Chuck Good.

October 22, 2010

Two Cents: Cocky & Arrogant (Remix)

A while ago, a Detroit rapper by the name of Off-Rip dropped a pretty dope song—"Cocky & Arrogant"—featuring Royce Da 5'9, Joe Budden and Franchize.

Today, the remix dropped also known as My Super Sweet 16.


There are 16 lyrically talented MCs on this one track:


While all of these gentlemen possess skills that can put many other rappers to shame and individually their verses are full of  bars and punchlines,  I'm not feeling the "Sweet 16" concept.

There's a saying, too many cooks in the kitchen can spoil the broth and that's how I feel about this song.

It's kind of hard to pay attention to everyone and naturally, some verses go ignored—not by choice.

When tackling this song I suggest listening to it in spurts of four, that is, pause every four rappers.

I got a lot of love for quite a few of the rappers on this track, but it's not something I can just sit back and listen to.

Click Here to download "Cocky & Arrogant (Remix)"

Peep the video for Off-Rip's "Cocky & Arrogant" featuring Royce Da 5'9, Joe Budden and Franchize

October 19, 2010

Do My Thang - Marv Won

Detroit's Marv Won.


Brooklyn's Cortez.

No description needed, as for who won? I'm keeping my opinion to myself ...


October 18, 2010

Music Video: Whip My Hair - Willow Smith

Since it's viral debut, Willow Smith's "Whip My Hair" has been the next big thing everyone's watching.

The 9-year-old has inked a deal with Jay-Z's Roc Nation and already is surpassing her label mates in interest (Sorry J. Cole).

She's been raising brows since birth, she's the daughter of Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith, sister to Jaden and even has tinkered with acting.

The youngest Smith has also sparked plenty of conversation and some have claimed she's a budding style trendsetter.

Today, her music video for "Whip My Hair" premiered and I must say I love it.

I love the fact that this song has club appeal and is appropriate for someone my age to listen to, but the video reminds us all that she's just a kid.

Her 90's box-braided hair heart is pretty kick a** and she's clearly doing the Rihanna better than Rihanna is.

Check out Willow Smith "Whip My Hair" below:

Music Video: Undefeated (freestyle) - eLZhi


Not going to turn this into how I think he's the best rapper this side of the planet (and maybe the otherside too).

We all saw the official breakup he had with T3 over Slum Village this summer (if not check out the piece I did for Real Detroit Weekly) and many are looking forward to what he's going to do next.

Last I heard he was doing shows and finishing up the highly anticipated eLmatic.

Last week he released a Madlib produced track and today the video dropped for it.

Check it out "Undefeated (freestyle)" - eLZhi

Click here to download "Undefeated (freestyle)"

Music Video: Please Don't Go - Mike Posner

No secret I'm a Posner fan.
Part because like everyone else I've watched his career skyrocket this past year.
Part because he's insanely talented.

It was recently announced that Mike Posner is nominated for an American Music Award for T-Mobile's Breakthrough Artist of the Year. What's cool about this award is that the people can vote, so make sure you click on the image below and help support Ponser.

That's a pretty HUGE accomplishment for the Duke University Alum.

If that isn't big enough, the video for his second single "Please Don't Go" off his debut album 31 Minutes to Takeoff was released this week.

If you recall, the song was used as the theme to his mini-web series sponsored by Puma.

Check it out below.

October 13, 2010

New: 24 Bars - Royce Da 5'9

Last night was the wonderfully awesome BET Hip-Hop Awards (Did you sense the sarcasm in that wonderfully awesome?).
The awards itself was pure trash, the true gems were the rap cyphers and last night three of Detroit's most lyrical participated, G.O.O.D. Music's Big Sean, Kuniva of D12 and Royce Da 5'9.

While everyone seems to be focusing on Big Sean's cypher demolishing, I think Kuniva and Royce Da 5'9 are being kind of overlooked.

Nevertheless, I — and many of you—know how talented they both are and fortunately for us Royce Da 5'9 released a new freestyle, "24 Bars" and just guess what it is.

I love Royce Da 5'9, he's tied for my favorite rapper (yes, eLZhi is the other guy but this has nothing to do with him).

Here's Royce Da 5'9's "24 Bars"

Click to download

Music Video: War - D-Rick feat. J Stokes

The camp is Get it Done. The man is D-Rick.

Monday evening, I  and a very select few gathered at a pretty cool loft space for the viewing of this video.
Before that night I had never heard of D-Rick, after that I guess I couldn't say I hadn't.
What really made my attention stick was when D-Rick told the intimate crowd of no more than 30:

I'm not trying to win a Grammy or anything like that, I'm just trying to be good at what I do.

Today the video has officially hit the viral community and I wonder if your interest is as piqued as mine.

Enough chatter, here's "War" - D-Rick feat. JStokes

October 12, 2010

Newports - HouseShoes

A week from today will be the third Bowling Shoes, a monthly put together by House Shoes at Garden Bowl in the Majestic complex.

It's almost impossible to go wrong with beer and bowling, toss in some of Detroit hip-hop's finest and House Shoes spinning live, great way to beat the Tuesday night blues.

For all you young people that preached loud about there needing to be unity on the Detroit front, Bowling Shoes is the perfect time to make the first step.

NOT pushing your mixtape or asking for favors, but simply saying hey.

I digress.

Look, it's an awesome event, good people, great music, a bar and bowling...the simplest form of happiness.

*Oh and if you don't know who House Shoes is you have lots of Google-ing and self-face punching to do.

Date: October 19, 2010
Time: 10 p.m. - 2 a.m.
Place: Garden Bowl
          4120 Woodward Ave.

Get It In - Marv Won

I'm not one for battles, unless they're lyrical ... hip-hop makes the world go round ... spherical.

Anyone can make words rhyme, but not everyone can rap, especially in battle.

Battle rapping is a completely different sector of hip-hop, more dirty, raunchy and proof that a person's mightiest weapon is their vocabulary and slow-thinking is a player's ultimate downfall.

The past few months I've been watching more battles and after witnessing DNA's downfall at St. Andrew's for the RedBull EmSee finals, my interest has been piqued.

There are three battle rappers I pay particular attention to over others, one being Marv Won (the other two are Moe Dirdee and Quest MCODY, quite predictable right?).

URL TV  hosted one of the most anticipated battles, Marv Won v. Cortez.

Maybe you're not too familiar with why this is important, from the way I understand things, the two were supposed to battle a year ago but Cortez backed out. Well, Cortez finally accepted Marv's challenge and the two went head to head.

Here's the official trailer and the actual battle is going up October 14 at 3 p.m.

It's almost like that after school fight that was going to go down on the playground ... minus the lunchboxes.

October 9, 2010

History - Mos Def feat. Talib Kweli

 Detroit, tonight renowned hip-hop journalist, dream hampton, will be screening her documentary, Black August: A Hip-Hop Benefit Concert at the grand opening of the N'Namdi Center for Contemporary Art.

Time: 8:30 p.m. and Midnight
                                Location: N'Namdi Center for Contemporary Art 
                    52 East Forest Avenue
               Detroit, MI 48201

The documentary brings awareness to and interviews political prisoners, including one with Assata Shakur who not only has political asylum in Cuba but a $1 million bounty placed on her head by the United States government.

Since 1998, Black August,  has been using hip-hop as a way to raise global political awareness having benefit shows in Cuba, Venezuela, South Africa, Brazil and New York City.

Check out the trailer below and make sure if you're in the city and available, check out the screening tonight.

Stepped on my J'z - Nelly

True hip-hop people know that hip-hop is much more than a song, it's a way of living.
Chances are if you scoffed at that statement, you're one of the ones that think it's just a song.
From the way we talk to the way we dress and the things we do, hip-hop is definitely an exclusive culture that only people who look beyond a 16 bar verse will understand.
When it comes to style, hip-hop is just like the rest of the world with ever changing trends and a few key items that no matter how many years pass, they will still be considered classic.

Case in point, Jordan.

If you weren't that person you know that person that would camp outside their respective shoe stores ready to drop their Jordan fund savings on whatever shoe was coming out. Some people buy to collect others because it's the thing to do, but Jordan is one brand that you just can't shake.

I'm sure someone is confused, because I generally stick to music on blog, but when I saw this Jordan that was released October 2, it was kind of historic.

If you haven't heard by now, Jordan teamed up with Va$htie Kola so she could create her own Jordan (kind of cool right?), the historic part, she's the first woman to design a sneaker for the brand (#ill).

Some of you may know her as the ex-girlfriend of Pharrell Williams, creator of the clothing line Violette, director for the likes of Solange, Justin Bieber, Jaheim and a crapload of others, or the former director of creative services at Island Def Jam, Va$htie is a woman of many hats and great style.

We all know women in hip-hop are still fighting for their equal leverage, so the opportunity for Va$htie to design a sneaker for Jordan is beyond amazing.

via Va$shtie

On that same note, Levi Maestro has been doing his thing on the web series front for quite some time and in the season finale of MaestroKnows he and Va$htie hit the streets with the (then) unreleased Jordan to get some reactions, he also talks to Va$htie about her feelings on the shoe.

Flashback: McNasty Filth - Jaylib

J Dilla + Madlib = Jaylib

The simplest formula in the hip-hop world. A few months ago, I was asked if I knew who Frank-N-Dank was, I said no and got the O_o response.

Well, in my quest to discovering who they were, I also found out about Jaylib. Not that I hadn't heard about the Caltroit union (#word to Black Milk), but I had never HEARD them. Coincidentally, the first song I came across was this Jaylib joint featuring Frank-N-Dank off Jaylib's 2003 album, Champion Sound (talk about killing two birds wth one stone).

If you hate stripper girls and aluminum poles may not be the video for you, if you appreciate a damn good hip-hop track take a gander.

Flashback "McNasty Filth" - Jaylib feat. Frank-N-Dank