Jay-Z’s ‘Family Feud’ Video paints the picture of a mathriarchy

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Jay-Z wraps up the year with yet another amazing visual from 4:44. ‘Family Feud’ directed and filmed by Ava Duvernay showcases a different world some hundreds of years in the future. The Founding Mother’s led by Blue Ivy has changed the world and years later there is a shift.

The video is visually stunning and features many of Hollywoods finest. Take a look for yourself and tell me what you think.

-Precise

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Activist Erica Garner daughter of Eric Garner dead at 27

Activist Erica Garner has died due to complications from a heart attack she suffered last week. She was 27. Erica’s father Eric Garner was killed by A New York police officer in 2014 after they attempted to arrest him for allegedly selling loose cigarettes. His death was captured on video for the world to see and sparked the movement for better policing and shed light on the relationship that Black people have with officers in their communities. The officer choked Eric Garner out as Garner continuously mentions he can breathe.

Erica rose to the occasion and fought for her father and her people. She was unapologetic and fearless. She represented a constant voice for justice. I hope her death and her father’s death will not be in vain. Police brutality must continue to be attacked until it is eradicated.

Erica had been in a coma since last Saturday because of cardiac arrest. Her death was confirmed on her twitter account.

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My Top 5 Rap Albums of 2017

This year was great for the culture of hip-hop via rap music. We witnessed the emergence of women who rap, an increase in social commentary and an all-out assault on depression with an emphasis on living your best life. The five projects that made the top 5 best rap album list for 2017 encompass all of that and more. Check out the list. Let me know what you think.

1. Jay-Z – 4:44

Jay-Z continues to hold the torch and consistently moves into space where it can be argued that he is the best to ever do this rap thing. 4:44 is viewed by many as Jay’s response to his wife Beyoncé’s telling release Lemonade. Jay mentioned in an interview with Elliot Wilson on Tidal that they were working on both projects at the same time and Beyoncé’s took precedent. Regardless of how it happened, 4:44, in this writer’s humble opinion, is Jay-Z’s best work. He speaks clearly to his peers. He challenges his own sensibilities and is as vulnerable as a bragging rapper can be. The production provided by Chicago native NO ID provides a bed of lush samples and rhythms that pull the listener into the insightful bars. The most ingenious aspect of the project was the rollout. Every week a new visual was attached to one of the songs on the album tackling racism “The Story of Oj” and Black men’s mental health witnessed in the title track “4:44.”

2. Rapsody – Laila’s Wisdom

Rapsody is nobody’s female rapper. She an emcee’s emcee and her project Laila’s Wisdom forces you to take notice. The 9th Wonder produced project is a Golden Age nod with a millennial vision. Her project has been nominated for “Best Rap Album Of The Year” at the 2018 Grammys and she has a legitimate chance at winning. Rapsody does everything right. She can be miss rappity rap, give you a love song and a complete story filled with irony and metaphors. Her song “Ridin” featuring GQ feels like a ride through your nearest hood on a beautiful day. As the song rides along, Busta Rhymes comes out of nowhere to continue with the feel-good vibe. The Jamla artist has been prevalent in recent years on many of her peers’ releases and she always represents solidly. Her wordplay and the way she can stretch out a metaphor is uncanny.

3. Tyler The Creator – Flower Boy

Odd Future impresario Tyler the Creator delivered a project in Flower Boy that is sonically above his peers and musically continues to stretch the boundaries. This is not new to Tyler; however, this project feels like a culmination into what could possibly be his magnum opus. The gritty song “Pothole” featuring Jaden Smith on the chorus harkens back to the original odd futuresque style that is irreverent and bold. The song “Boredom” that was featured on Issa Rae’s hit show Insecure opened a door into Tyler’s production skill. The track takes its time and allows Tyler’s gravely deep voice to live between the sounds. The song itself is inspirational in that it compels the listener to get off their ass and get busy doing something. Live your life.

4. Kendrick Lamar – Damn 

Kendrick followed up his undeniable revolutionary classic with an introspective, honest and highly personal release in Damn. He has firmly held his ground as the thought leader of his generation. He boldly tells his peers to be humble and gives insight into his deepest thoughts when it comes to religion and love. “Element” stands out as a song where he just let’s loose and makes it clear who he is and where he comes from. “DUCKWORTH” is the most telling song on the project, as it basically tells the story of Kendrick’s life before his conception. It speaks to how life can conspire in your favor when you pay attention.

5. Big Sean – I Decided

Big Sean has been able to deliver witty bars since his emergence in rap. His project I Decided is a spiritual experience. The album starts off with an elderly man lamenting on his life and feeling like he should have taken another direction in his life. Big Sean open on “The Light” saying, “I spent my whole life trying to find the light at the end of the tunnel / I should have realized that it was inside.” Chicago crooner Jeremih fills up the space of the sparse track with a falsetto soul reminding all that no one can stop your shine. Out of all the projects that made this list, this is probably the one (with the exception of 4:44) that spoke to me the most. The Metro Boomin produced “Bounce Back” is a reminder to keep pushing even after taking a loss. Big Sean is about shining that light and spreading that positivity, and that’s what’s up.

That’s my list. It’s dope, right? What are your top 5 for 2017? Share in the comments

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(Video) Timbuck2 Forever at House of Blues

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The 3rd Annual Timbuck2Forever Tribute was held at the House of Blues in Chicago.

Timothy “DJ Timbuck2” Jones died in 2015 due to complications from cancer. The Timothy Francis Jones Foundation was created in his name. The foundation focuses on men being more diligent about their health. The night featured a host of notable Dj’s. Pete Rock, Dj Scratch, Rich Medina and Terry Hunter lent their skills to the evening. The night was capped off with a surprise performance by Raekwon the Chef from the legendary Wu Tang Clan.

-Precise

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Hip Hop trailblazer Reggie Ossé host of Combat Jack podcast has died at 48

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Photo source: instagram @reggieosse

Hip Hop trailblazer and host of the popular podcast the Combat Jack Show Reggie Ossé has passed away at the age of 48. Ossé shared his cancer diagnosis just a few months ago via social media.

Born of Haitian parents in Brooklyn NY Ossé entered the world of hip-hop as a music attorney and executive after graduating from Cornell University. His clients represent a list of hip-hop greats. Jay Z, Dj Clark Kent and Capone, and Noreaga were clients he represented. Ossé was also the former managing editor of the once so-called hip-hop bible The Source Magazine.

Ossé helped to lead the explosion of the podcast game with the launch of his show in 2010. His show focused on interviewing “legacy” artists such as Chuck D of Public Enemy, Ice Cube and Ice T. His focus on legacy artists was prominent however he still interviewed more contemporary artists like J Cole, Ace Hood, and G Herbo.

His show became the flagship of the Loudspeakers network and led the way to a podcast revolution. He recently did a special on the life and death of hip-hop mogul Chris Lighty who passed away under suspicious circumstances in August of 2012. The special was called “Mogul” and took into account the life of Chris Lighty leading up to his final days.

Ossé’s history as an attorney and executive created an atmosphere where his interviews were open and honest and the listener would always leave with more insight with regards to whomever he was speaking with.

The news of Ossé’s passing has sent shockwaves through the internet.

 

-Precise

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Live your purpose – 25 years later #TBT

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This is me, Precise rocking the mic at an Olive Harvey talent show 25 years ago. This show is the day I decided I could do this rap thing and consequently was the same day I met one of my best friends and producer Chris Rice, May he Rest In Peace. As I watched the video I felt myself being reenergized as if I was being reminded that it is time to claim my spot and do what I was sent here to do, Live in My Purpose.

What does it mean for one to “Live in their purpose?” How does that benefit the individual and the universe as a whole? All of us have been given tools and talents that are provided to us to open up doors and add value to this world. When we neglect these talents our growth is stagnated and we never fully realize why we are here and what we are here for.

We waste time in fear and doubt. It is a disservice to the creator when we don’t honor our gifts.

We find ourselves at the time of the year when we take an assessment of our lives and look to catapult ourselves into a better circumstance. We must understand that the better circumstance is waiting for us.

I recently received word from two people very close to me that they have accepted their purpose and hearing that from them paired with the surfacing of this video is a message that I hear loud and clear. GO FOR IT! God got you and you will not be forsaken.

Let this message serve as a reminder not to bury your talents. Allow these talents to grow to make a way for you and live in the fullness of your purpose.

God is Awesome and so are YOU!

Now what you gonna do?

-Precise

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Tyler The Creator performs for NPR’s Tiny Desk series and its DOPE

Tyler The Creator has been having a stellar year. His Grammy-nominated Album Flower Boy has launched him into a new space. The always eccentric and creative Tyler approached this Tiny Desk with a bit more creativity than most. Pun intended.

-Precise

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Ex-cop gets 20 years for killing Walter Scott

Ex-South Carolina police officer Michael Slager has been sentenced to 20 years for the killing of Walter Scott. In April of 2015 Walter Scott joined the ranks of unarmed Black men who were shot by the police. Scott was pulled over by Slager for a busted tail light. Scott ran and Slager shot him in the back 5 times and claimed he feared for his life. Slager pleaded guilty in May of 2017 to violation of civil rights by acting under the color of the law in Scott’s killing.

“We are hurt, and we do have some type of compassion for the Slager family, in that they have to suffer as well. And yes we do forgive Michael Slager for what he did. But yes, we did want justice for my brother and we feel that we have gotten a sense of justice.” Said Anthony Scott, Walter’s brother.

I remember watching this on social media and it was clear that Slager shot Scott in cold blood. Thank God for the person who was on the scene and was able to record this. Let’s hope this informs the Lequan Mcdonald trial.

How do you feel about this sentencing? Leave a comment.

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Jaz O and Jay Z dead their beef

Jay Z and his mentor Jaz O have reunited after years of feuding. Jay Z’s 4:44 tour made its way to Chicago’s United Center and the historic moment was captured backstage. Jaz O, NO ID and Jay Z stand side by side fully aware of the moment that they were creating.

Jaz O rose to prominence in the 90’s when he released a song called “The Originators” featuring a young Jay Z. Both artists collaborated on early Jay Z releases.

The legendary feud between them started when Jaz O decided not to sign with Roc-A –Fella. Rumors of Jaz O assisting Nas during the battle he had with Jay Z swirled around for a bit and added to the bad blood between mentor and protégée. After many years of back and forth diss songs and their careers going in different directions it would make sense that this beef would continue way into the future. However; as with most things in life time heals all wounds.

This reunion is significant because of what it means for the culture. Arguably we can say without Jaz O there would be no Jay Z. If this was the case hip hop and rap music would not be what we know today.

-Precise

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Jay Z leads 2018 Grammy nominations SZA shines

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The 2018 Grammy Nominees have been revealed. Jay Z has 8 nominations and leads the pack. Jay Z has been nominated for record of the year, song of the year, album of the year and best rap album. NO ID producer of Jay z’s album 4:44 received 5 nominations. R&B phenom SZA is the most nominated woman this year with 5 nominations.  Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino also has five nominations, all of these nominations come from an album that was released in late 2016. The Cardi B campaign continues to blaze a trail as she caps off the year with receiving a “Best Rap Song” nomination for “Bodak Yellow” 2017 has proven to be an exceptional year for music and this years nominations are diverse. Check out a portion of the list below.

Record Of The Year

• Redbone

     Childish Gambino

• Despacito

• The Story Of O.J.

     JAY-Z

• HUMBLE.

     Kendrick Lamar

• 24K Magic

     Bruno Mars

Album Of The Year

• “Awaken, My Love!”

     Childish Gambino

• 4:44

     JAY-Z

    • DAMN.

     Kendrick Lamar

  • Melodrama

     Lorde

• 24K Magic

     Bruno Mars

Song Of The Year

• Despacito

    • 4:44

JAY-Z

• Issues

   Julia Michaels

• 1-800-273-8255

Logic Featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid

• That’s What I Like

Bruno Mars

Best New Artist

• Alessia Cara

• Khalid

• Lil Uzi Vert

• Julia Michaels

• SZA

Best R&B Performance

• Get You

     Daniel Caesar Featuring Kali Uchis

• Distraction

     Kehlani

• High

     Ledisi

• That’s What I Like

     Bruno Mars

• The Weekend

     SZA

Best Traditional R&B Performance

• Laugh And Move On

     The Baylor Project

• Redbone

     Childish Gambino

• What I’m Feelin’

     Anthony Hamilton Featuring The Hamiltones

• All The Way

     Ledisi

• Still

     Mali Music

Best R&B Song

• First Began

     PJ Morton, songwriter (PJ Morton)

• Location

     Alfredo Gonzalez, Olatunji Ige, Samuel David Jiminez, Christopher McClenney, Khalid Robinson & Joshua Scruggs, songwriters (Khalid)

• Redbone

     Donald Glover & Ludwig Goransson, songwriters (Childish Gambino)

• Supermodel

     Tyran Donaldson, Terrence Henderson, Greg Landfair Jr., Solana Rowe & Pharrell Williams, songwriters (SZA)

• That’s What I Like

     Christopher Brody Brown, James Fauntleroy, Philip Lawrence, Bruno Mars, Ray Charles McCullough II, Jeremy Reeves, Ray Romulus & Jonathan Yip, songwriters (Bruno Mars)

Best Urban Contemporary Album

• Free 6LACK

     6LACK

• “Awaken, My Love!”

     Childish Gambino

• American Teen

     Khalid

• Ctrl

     SZA

• Starboy

     The Weeknd

Best R&B Album

• Freudian

     Daniel Caesar

• Let Love Rule

     Ledisi

• 24K Magic

     Bruno Mars

• Gumbo

     PJ Morton

• Feel The Real

     Musiq Soulchild

Best Rap Performance

• Bounce Back

     Big Sean

• Bodak Yellow

     Cardi B

• 4:44

     JAY-Z

• HUMBLE.

     Kendrick Lamar

• Bad And Boujee

     Migos Featuring Lil Uzi Vert

Best Rap/Sung Performance

• PRBLMS

     6LACK

• Crew

     Goldlink Featuring Brent Faiyaz & Shy Glizzy

• Family Feud

     JAY-Z Featuring Beyoncé

• LOYALTY.

     Kendrick Lamar Featuring Rihanna

• Love Galore

     SZA Featuring Travis Scott

Best Rap Song

• Bodak Yellow

     Dieuson Octave, Klenord Raphael, Shaftizm, Jordan Thorpe, Washpoppin & J White, songwriters (Cardi B)

• Chase Me

     Judah Bauer, Brian Burton, Hector Delgado, Jaime Meline, Antwan Patton, Michael Render, Russell Simins & Jon Spencer, songwriters (Danger Mouse Featuring Run The Jewels & Big Boi)

• HUMBLE.

     K. Duckworth, Asheton Hogan & M. Williams II, songwriters (Kendrick Lamar)

• Sassy

     E. Gabouer & M. Evans, songwriters (Rapsody)

• The Story Of O.J.

     Shawn Carter & Dion Wilson, songwriters (JAY-Z)

Best Rap Album

• 4:44

     JAY-Z

• DAMN.

     Kendrick Lamar

• Culture

     Migos

• Laila’s Wisdom

     Rapsody

• Flower Boy

     Tyler, The Creator

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