#NewMusicFriday: What You Need To Hear

Another Friday is here and it’s stacked as usual. We’ve got things for “real hip hop” fans, things for those who just want to turn up and those who want energy with a message. Let’s get into it.

Some Rap Songs – Earl Sweatshirt

Earl needs no introduction. After a promise of new music on New Year’s Day this year the and only performing new songs at festivals the complex lyricist returned with his third album titled Some Rap Songs. If the cover art is a little shocking to you then the production will only add to that effect. This project sounds like nothing out in the rap world right now. And, people tend to overuse that classification but this project is really in a lane all by itself.

Championships – Meek Mill

Meek is back and he’s got a lot to say. This project will be his first album since being released from prison and we can expect him to delve even more into the issue of prison reform and his new outlook on life on this album. With such a huge year for rap releases it’s only right that Meek adds his name to the list of top level artists that drop. Features on here include Kodak Black, Fabulous, Cardi B, Jeremih and more.

Street Gossip – Lil Baby

“(feat. Lil Baby)” is something you’ve come across multiple times this year. The Atlanta rapper made sure 2018 was his as his debut album catapulted him into the public eye and his collab project with Gunna showed he wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon. This mixtape shows he’ still got more in the tank and features Gucci Mane, Offset, Young Thug and more.

Stokeley – Ski Mask The Slump God

Ski Mask is one the most unique rappers out right now. With a raspy jumpy flow and silly but clever bars it’s hard to ignore any of his verses. While he didn’t have multiple features this year he’s been posting and playing snippets which fans anticipate will be on the project. They’ve been waiting for this project after the elongated legal issues from his last release which plagued it in multiple ways. Features on Stokeley Juice WRLD, Young Thug, Lil Yachty and Lil Baby. If you’re looking for something that’s gonna be fun and still slap, this is the one for you.

Bread EP – The Alchemist

This one is for those of you who are looking for REAL HIP HOP. Over the 4 track project The Alchemist is in charge of all production as soulful samples are a running theme on the album in addition to hard flows and deeper than the surface lyrics. Features here come from Earl Sweatshirt, Black Thought, Westside Gunn and more.

Streams of Thought Vol. 2 – Black Thought x Salaam Remi

The Roots lead vocalist drops the follow up to his solo debut EP with a slightly longer project titled Streams of Thought Vol 2. This one is for those people who love to say “hip-hop is dead” because Black Thought proves this to be 100% false. Rapping over aggressive boom bap sample driven beats Black Thought gets straight to the point with no filler – or filter. This is one of those projects where if your mind wanders for whatever reason you’ll miss a bar – or three. Production on this one comes from the one and only Salaam Remi who has worked with The Fugees, Nas, Miguel and many more so best believe these beats go in allll the way in and compliment Black Thought’s verses almost effortlessly.

All these projects are available on streaming services now!

TMI Presents: Beat Auction Atlanta

Atlanta’s first annual “beat auction” will be taking place November 13, 2018. Presented by TMI Worldwide, True Media Independence, will be hosting the first Beat Auction Atl, in collaboration with the Music Education Group; who’s purpose is to provide the youth with industry driven experiences to expand their career interest in music, media, and film.

Beat Auction Atlanta, hosted by DJ Holiday, Beat Auction Atl promises to be a star studded night with an all star cast of producers including Zaytoven, Drumma Boy, AnonXmous, Black Metaphor, Kenny Barto (J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League) , J White (Bodak Yellow) and J Beatzz to support a worthy cause. All proceeds will go to charity. Beat Auction Atlanta aims to set the tone for how the music industry engages with social issues for years to come.

Organizers are also expecting an audience of 200+ music industry artists, VIPs and executives, including music industry leaders from across the country to be in attendance. Attendees will be afforded the chance to meet, greet, and build successful business relationships with the industry’s best! “Our goal is to provide an opportunity to upcoming/established artists, music executives, songwriters and engineers a chance to acquire high quality beats from high demand producers that are not easily accessible while giving back to the community,” explains Khady Thiam Gueye, CEO of TMI Worldwide and Founder of The Beat Auction Atlanta.

Lil Wayne Continues Carter V Run with SNL Performance

If you’ve been living under a rock you may not know this but, Lil Wayne released Tha Carter V this year. After merchandise collabs with Wikipedia (yes that Wikipedia)  and more, he continues his promo run tonight with two performances on Saturday Night Live.

The first song he did was “Can’t Be Broken” and had Halsey performing her emotional hook live. The second one was the one we were all waiting for: Uproar. With Swizz Beatz doing his ad lib and hypeman thing and a crowd doing every dance we’ve done to the song in the background behind him Wayne killed his performance. However as per usual his outfit was unique to say the least. 

Watch both performances below! 

BET Hip-Hop Awards: Here’s What Mattered

Let’s face it. Some things on BET are just annoying, wrong or irrelevant. But, when the Hip Hop Awards come around we at least get some good to decent musical performances and some entertaining cyphers. Here’s what went down that’s worth talking about. 

Performances 

This year we got about 3 performances that were noteworthy. T.I and Yo Gotti performed together accompanied by some dancers in traditional Mexican attire. T.I. proved he could still hang despite his age and gave more energy than most of the younger artists.  We were also treated to a performance by Cardi B from Club Liv. It would appear she’s taking the Beyonce route and “sending in” performance footage instead of actually appearing. The performance was energetic however, featuring the rapper twerking on the ground which was quickly turned into a GIF by Black Twitter. We also got a performance by up and coming Brooklyn rapper Flipp Dinero in which he ran across the stage multiple times, giving some well needed energy to the stage. 

(Lil Pump, Gucci Mane, A$AP Rocky, Lil Baby, Gunna, Lil Duval, YG, Yella Beezy and Young M.A. also performed)

Cyphers 

The cyphers this year were a mixed bag to say the least. With most viewers anticipating what Vic Mensa said about the late XXXTentacion there was not much to hold us until that happened. Each cypher had clear standouts with the others being average or worse. Clear standouts were Sharaya J, Shawn Smith, Flawless Real Talk, Neelam Hakeem, Tobe Nwigwe and YBN Cordae. Each group rapped over various versions of the “Banned From TV” instrumental, which was introduced to many (younger) listeners by Lil Wayne using it on his No Ceilings  mixtape. We also got a fun freestyle from Erykah Badu herself at the end of the second cypher. 

The Actual Awards

In the two hour runtime of the show a total of FOUR Awards that were given were televised. Yep. Probably the most surprising would have to be EVERYTHING IS LOVE winning over KOD and others for album of the year. Lil Wayne was also presented with the I Am Hip Hop Award and gave an inspiring and heartfelt speech, accompanied on stage by his mother and daughter. 

Do you still think the BET Hip Hop Awards are relevant?  

6 R&B Singers You Need On Your Playlists

In the midst of “lil’s“ vs “OG’s” in the rap industry, the R&B industry has been filling up with many amazing and unique voices. We’ve taken some time to listen to 6 of these new singers and what we found blew us away so here’s some people we think you need to be playing this fall.

Masego

Self-taught musician and Jamaican born singer/songwriter, Masego made his debut in the music industry in 2016 with the release of his EP titled, The Pink Polo EP. In 2017, Masego released his hit single ”Tadow” that defines the feeling of love. With his smooth rhythms and angelic vocals, Masego is definitely the one artist you want on your playlist to give you that elegant, neo-soul, ”you kids don’t know anything about this” feeling. This year, Masego dropped his album ”Lady Lady” with hit singles ”Lady Lady” and ”Old Age”. (@masego)

Jade Novah

Jade has been in the game for a while, in fact, longer than you think. Back in 2003, Jade sang backup on Missy Elliot’s album ”Not A Test!” and has been a vocalist and songwriter for multiple artists. Early 2018, Jade released her debut album ”All Blue” with singles such as ”The Earth Is Flat” and ”Cosmic Love”. (@jadenovah)

JoiStarr

Grammy nominated singer/songwriter JoiStarr has emerged in the music industry as the soulful artist who uses her craft to tell her story. Her latest project “Cocoa Butter” tells a story about being in a dark place and emerging from that hidden space and coming into yourself – while being in the midst of healing yourself.

Rayana Jay

24 year old, Rayana Jay emerged in the music industry as the soul singer with transparent and honest lyrics about love and sex. Rayana Jay released her project “Sorry About Last Night” with hit singles such as “Too Good” and “Bad Decisions” that features the very talented “Elujay”. Her single “Undefeated” was used recently in the musical campaign “#NoCeilings” by Undefeated ESPN. (@rayanajay) 

V.

Mid February, artist and songwriter V released his EP “Start Vol. 1”. Now, we don’t know much about V since he keeps a very low profile but we know he is a voice you need to be blasting on a Sunday morning while you clean and sage your apartment. The four tracked project shows off V’s vocals and love for heavy bass beats. (@ve.music)

Elujay 

Hailing from the Bay Area, Elujay is a perfect mix of hip hop and smooth soul music. After dropping his first project, Jentrify in 2016, Elujay has released a number of singles, including the single “Soul Food” featuring Saba. His latest single, ”Locked In” shows off Elujay’s versatility with an upbeat, 70’s vibe. (@elujay)

Diana Gordon’s “Pure” Lives Up To Its Name

Close to two months after releasing her EP, Pure, we’ve came to the conclusion that this EP is exactly that; pure. Diana Gordon released the five tracked project on August 3rd, 2018 and since then, the universe has been balanced. 

In this short, but emotion filled project, Diana gives us a glimpse into her early life, family life, and opens up about personal experiences that shaped her into the person today. The EP opens with “Wolverine” where she sings about grinding harder than ever, keeping the faith, and her relationship with her mother. 

Similar to other transparent projects such as CTRL by SZA and Free The Real by Bibi Bourelly, Diana Gordon captures her personal life so well that it reflects the listeners life as well. Even if you didn’t share the similar experiences as Gordon, you can empathize with her as she belts out the emotional lyrics.

We can put Pure in the vault that we continue to come back to for those feels where we need to sing from the gut. Diana Gordon is definitely on our watch list for r&b. We can’t wait to see what she has in store next.