Monthly Archives: April 2012
With this being the last post on this illustrious blog and summer right around the corner, I think there’s no more appropriate way to celebrate than by coming up with a rap mix for the summer.
What’s different between this and spring? Summer is even more laid back, it’s more about having fun, and it’s even slower moving (tempo wise). It’s also focused on being happy, relaxing, and having fun. A mix of new with some old classics to fit this summer.
So without further ado, enjoy the summer of 2012 folks…
B.o.B. – So Good
Dr. Dre feat. Snoop Dogg – Still D.R.E.
Meek Mill – Middle of da Summer
Big Tymers – Still Fly
Snoop Dogg feat. Pharrell – Let’s Get Blown
The Cool Kids – Summer Jam
Wiz Khalifa – Name on a Cloud
Jay-Z – I Know
Chris Brown feat. Big Sean & Wiz Khalifa – Till I Die
Rick Ross feat. Kanye West – Live Fast, Die Young
Big Sean feat. The-Dream – Live this Life
Times have changed pretty drastically since hair bands were completely trashing hotel rooms, doing copious amounts of drugs, and having sex with everything that moves. Well maybe only the first thing has really changed… but it seems that many of the most popular artists these days are tame by comparison and much less personally destructive.
Where property destruction and lawlessness was the modus operandi of the most on-edge musicians 30 years ago… today it seems to be more of just acting like an asshole in general.
No one seems to be more of a king at acting like an asshole (and most importantly, getting away with it), than Kanye West. His ego is… quite remarkable. May I present a compilation:
Quite the collection, no? 99.999999% of people could not get away with acting like this and still be wildly liked. For that reason… Kanye is the new age rock star.
So why can he get away with this?
Because Kanye is really, really, really good at what he does. There are just so few musicians that are as advanced and talented as Kanye West right now.
So just like rock stars of the past and many of the celebrities we enjoy, we’ll let his negatives slide because he’s a once-in-a-generation talent. Many people still hate him and can’t get over how arrogant/egotistical he is (and South Park famously mocked him for this), but in the end we don’t care about every time he jumps on stage and upstages Taylor Swift as long as every album he makes continues to be as high quality as every album he’s ever made.
I salute Kanye as the true embodiment of the 2012 rock star. While he’s different than those of 30 years ago, he fits the culture as the best example of what a rock star is these days… The best way to characterize it:
Kanye West can sell out a stadium full of people who openly admit his ego is completely out of control…
… and no one minds once the show starts.
What do you think of Kanye’s stance in pop culture today? Do you agree with my points or disagree?
On Wednesday, April 3rd, with Kanye West’s label G.O.O.D. Music’s posse album due for release in the coming months (though no official date yet), the much-anticipated first official G.O.O.D. Music single dropping in just two days, and Kanye’s next solo album not expected until the end of the year, one might expect Kanye wouldn’t release any solo material.
They would be wrong.
On Wednesday, the internet erupted when out of nowhere NYC legendary DJ Funk Flex dropped this one on the air:
Kanye is officially back with “Theraflu”, produced by Hit-Boy. Why is this song awesome, it should be quite obvious, but let’s run it down:
- Kanye is back with new material, always a good thing for music (there’s a reason he’s won 18 Grammys).
- The beat is really hot.
- Early in the calendar year is normally not a great time for rap releases, this provides some excitement.
- The lyrics/shots Kanye took.
For whatever reason, Kanye is angry… and he’s not afraid to call people out on this one. His lyrics provide many examples to choose from:
“Tell PETA my mink is draggin’ on the floor…”
Believe it or not, they were not too happy about that line.
“And the whole industry wanna f*ck your old chick… The only n*gga I got respect for is Wiz…”
A reference to his former girlfriend Amber Rose and her new engagement to fellow star rapper Wiz Khalifa.
“And I’ll admit I fell in love with Kim… Around the same time that she fell in love with him…”
The Kim Kardashian/Kris Humphries “wedding”:
“Well that’s cool baby girl, do your thing… Lucky I ain’t have Jay drop him from the team…”
Kris Humphries plays for the New Jersey Nets in the NBA… Who are owned in part by one of Kanye’s best friends, Jay-Z.
Aside from Kanye’s general brashness these lines made the song the talk of the internet. This year is a lot more exciting than it would be without this song. Great
The west coast has been down for a bit on rap ever since Game’s fame has waned. Still a very strong and traditional area for rappers (Los Angeles), we’ve seen the rise of two Los Angeles-based rappers. One is notable now and one represents hope for the future.
The “hot” rapper now is Tyga. Frest off his mainstream label album debut, his song “Rack City” remains one of the hottest in the country. Devotees of this blog may remember my mention of him from the last post as he’s signed to Young Money. How long his buzz will last will be fun to follow, but for now he’s got the clubs blasting his song:
Tyga embodies the current LA movement. While his acclaim is exciting for the LA natives, the one that everyone out there is really excited about is a kid named Kendrick Lamar. Hand-picked protege of West Coast God Dr. Dre, Kendrick Lamar is much more old school in terms of being one of the most “lyrical” young rappers out. While most of the game has moved towards selling image (it always has, but even moreso), Kendrick scares other rappers by being able to make amazing songs but also having the ability to destroy them on a song. Even notched a feature on Drake’s last album for his troubles.
Last week he released his debut single “The Recipe” featuring Dr. Dre (who he quite obviously wrote for on the song) and I’m in love with it:
For those rap fans who read this blog (particularly from the West Coast), what do you think of Tyga? Of Kendrick Lamar? How do you see their careers playing out?