Precise has done it again with “The Cure” produced by Dj Tekwun. Precise’s smooth delivery and Tekwun’s hard hitting production is just what the doctor ordered. Take a listen, as a matter of fact listen to it 100 times and see me in the morning.
DJ Premier and RZA faced off in a producers battle that was one for the ages. Timbaland and Swizz Beatz launched the ‘VERZUZ’ battle series in March during the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The goal of the series is to celebrate the architects of good music.
DJ Premier of Gang Starr and RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan faced off in one of the most epic producer battles since this series has been launched. Both of these men represent juggernauts in the culture of Hip-Hop and have worked with many of greats. Jay Z, Nas, Mary J Blige, ODB and Biggie Smalls are a few of the artists both producers have worked with.
The battle was a trip down memory lane with a focus on the golden age of rap. RZA kicked it off with “Liquid Swords” from the album of the same name to which Premier followed up with “Medley: Intro” by Jay Z off of his album In My Lifetime. There were a few technical difficulties for RZA early on but after some communication from DJ Premier’s engineer it was corrected.
Both producers shared details of sessions for specific songs. When Premier played “Come Clean” by Jeru the Damaja he mentioned that LL Cool J was in the studio when he created the track for the song.
Premier also recalled the time RZA stepped to him in Los Angeles and told him that he had a song called C.R.E.A..M that would whip him.
The original battle was set to go 20 rounds but it went much longer as both producers offered up music to heal during this tumultuous time.
The overall winner for the evening was the culture of hip-hop because of how it continues to bring the world together and created a way out of no way for so many people of the world.
I scored the battle 13-7 with DJ Premier as the winner. Check out my breakdown after the jump.
Say what you want but rap and Hip-Hop would not be the same without Eminem. His skill level is amazing and he embraces the culture.
His new video for “Godzilla” is a creative venture and features the late Juice Wrld on the chorus. I’m going to spend less time explaining this and just let you watch it. Check out the video below.
Stream “It’s On Me” by Precise
G Herbo currently has one of the hottest projects to drop this year. He chopped it up with Eddy “Precise” Lamarre of rolling out and touched on his relationship with Juice Wrld, seeking therapy and PTSD.
Stream “I’m Dreaming (Don’t Wake Me)’ by Precise
Waka Flocka took to Everyday Struggle to share his thoughts on a few things. When discussing why he stopped rapping and transitioned into business he said something very surprising.Check out what he said in the video below.
Stream “That Ol’Boom Bap” by Precise
Billie Eilish has an opinion on rap. The Grammy award winner who recently made the cover of VOGUE found herself being quite vocal about rap and what rappers are saying. Eilish is known for her song writing that she characterized as works of fiction.
Her inspirations are many and she draws some of that from rap. When making the distinction between what’s real in her music and what’s real in rap she had this to say to VOGUE “Just because the story isn’t real doesn’t mean it can’t be important,” she said. “There’s a difference between lying in a song and writing a story. There are tons of songs where people are just lying. There’s a lot of that in rap right now, from people that I know who rap. It’s like, ‘I got my AK-47, and I’m fuckin’,’ and I’m like, what? You don’t have a gun. ‘And all my bitches…’ I’m like, which bitches? That’s posturing, and that’s not what I’m doing.” she stated
Many rappers have expressed this same sentiment. However; reading what Eilish is saying looks like she is justifying her work of fiction against a rappers work of fiction.
I would be the first to say that rap has a lot of growing to do and subject matter needs to level up. Just don’t use rap as your scapegoat. I’ll chalk that up as Eilish being young.
She makes good music and I’m sure she’ll be doing more rap collaborations in the future.
Is Billie Eilish right? What do you think? Share in the comments.
Stream “A Killer Joe” by Precise
The legendary hip-hop group Gang Starr released One of the Best Yet and it is a welcome addition to an overall underwhelming 2019 when it comes to new rap music. DJ Premier is the only surviving member of Gang Starr. Keith Edward Elam also known as GURU (Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal) died on April 10, 2010. This project comes 16 years after their last official release The Ownerz.
DJ Premier puts his best foot forward when paring Guru’s posthumous verses with current features. Before the official project was released, Dj Premier dropped the single “Family and Loyalty” featuring J. Cole. Guru’s voice rings prominently on the song and J. Cole steps in with possibly one of the best features of the year as he raps “J. Cole..Who’d a thought I woulda been rhyming with ghosts Guru flows forever like a diamond and most.. could never afford the precious jewels.. that’s precisely why I’m blessing you.. with clear cut messages.. I’m destined to.. invest in urban sections where depression rules.”
One of the Best Yet provides the listener with the raw boom bap DJ Premier production as a result Guru’s lyricism still cuts through even in these times. On “Business or Art” featuring Talib Kweli, Guru raps “Heres one for Spin, Billboard and Rollingstone hip-hop is so organic it will grow on its own, we watch em throw money at it with clout and power, but after a while things faded out and went sour.” Many would say that this sour space that Guru is speaking of is where we are right now. This is exactly why One of the Best Yet is so refreshing because it’s just real rap with no filler or gimmicks.
The standout songs on this album are “Lights Out (feat. M.O.P.)” “Hit Man (feat. Q Tip)” “Family and Loyalty (feat. J. Cole)” and “Get Together (feat. Ne-Yo & Nitty Scott)
Have you heard One of the Best Yet? What do you think?
Check out the video for “Family and Loyalty” off of the One of the Best Yet below
Listen to/Buy Speak Life by Precise below.
Cardi B (Photo credit: Eddy “Precise” Lamarre)
Cardi B, one of America’s most popular and ubiquitous rags-to-riches stories, has placed her foot in her mouth. An Instagram Story that Cardi posted three years ago has surfaced in which she admits to sleeping with men, drugging them and then robbing them. Cardi, who is well-liked because of her candor and bold disposition, is now in hot water because of it.
In the video Cardi speaks passionately about her past life.
“I did it myself, n—s must of forgot my n—a. The s—t that I did to mother—— survive. I had to go strip. I had to go oh yeah you wanna f— me? Yeah yeah yeah, let’s go to this hotel and I drug n—-s up and I robbed them. That’s what I used to do. Nothing was mother—- handed to me.” she said
In today’s #MeToo environment and the court of public opinion, it should be expected that Cardi B is called on the carpet because of such criminal acts that have helped her along her journey. Bill Cosby is currently serving a jail sentence after being found guilty for drugging women for the purposes of having sex. This is something he has vehemently denied, yet the court of public opinion, the #MeToo movement and the comedic memes helped to paint a picture of a man who was once viewed as America’s dad as a dirty old man.
We all love the story of someone lifting themselves out of poverty into success.
Cardi B’s rise has been meteoric. She has turned a stripper pole into Grammy gold and shows no signs of going back. However, we find ourselves at an impasse. Should Cardi be held accountable for the actions she admitted to three years ago? Of course, she should be, but most likely she won’t be because she is the world’s favorite type of ratchet.
Hypocrisy is running rampant in the land. Some are celebrated for the same things that others are punished for. If we allow ourselves to continue down this path, the grey between what’s black and what’s white becomes greater and our ability to make wise judgements becomes questionable.
Cardi has not left this latest scandal totally unscathed. A hashtag, #SurvivingCardiB, was created and many have voiced their displeasure and disagreement with Cardi’s past criminal acts.
Cardi obviously felt the heat and has issued a statement via her Instagram page.
She wrote “So I’m seeing on social media tray a love I did 3 years ago has popped back up. A live where I talk about the things I had to do in my past right or wrong that I felt I needed to do to make a living. I never claim to be perfect or come from a perfect world with a perfect past. I always speak my truth I always own my sh—. I’m apart of hip hop culture where you can talk about where you come from talk about the wrong things you had to do to get where you are. There are rappers that glorify murder violence drugs and robbing. Crimes they had to do to survive. I never glorified the things I brought up in that live. I never even put those things in my music because I’m not proud of it and feel a responsibility not to glorify it. I made the choices hat I did at the time because I had very limited options. I was blessed to have been able to rise from that but so many women have not. Whether or not they were poor choices at the time I did what I had to do to survive. The men that I spoke about in my love were men that I dated that I was involve with men that were conscious willing and aware. I have a past that I can’t change we all do.”
Cardi’s statement is one where no accountability is taken and she seems to place the blame at the feet of hip-hop culture and rap music. This is problematic because once again hip-hop culture is blamed for the criminal decisions of an individual.
How do we move forward from here?
Leave a comment below.
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The world is celebrating Aretha Franklin because of who she is and what she represents to music and Black culture. Her talent has stretched across many genres of music and affected many soundscapes. Rap music is not absent from that discussion. Many of the driving rhythms and melodic music of Franklin’s have added to the tapestry of this art form we call rap and the culture of hip-hop. Let’s take a look at the top five rap songs to sample The Queen of Soul.
While the world is singing “Respect,” arguably Aretha Franklin’s greatest hit, the song that resonates with this writer is “Rock Steady.” The rhythm is timeless and has made for one of the perfect breakbeats for rap.
EPMD sampled “Rock Steady” on their classic release Strictly Business in the song “I’m Housin.” The funk is preserved and still remains hip-hop.
Ms. Franklin’s song “One Step Ahead” is an ode to avoiding heartbreak and preserving a love.
Ayatollah produced “Ms Fat Booty” which contains elements of “One Step Ahead” for Yasiin Bey, formerly known as Mos Def, and appears on his album Black On Both Sides. This song is arguably Yasiin’s biggest hit. The song tells the story of a young brother shooting his shot to a beautiful woman.
The way Aretha addressed the subject of love you can tell that it comes from a heartfelt and emotional place. Her song “Call Me” is a song of anticipation, a song where you find a woman yearning for her love just by asking for a phone call.
The Kanye West-produced “Selfish” borrowed a bit from “Call Me” for Slum Village’s album Detroit Deli. Slum approaches their song as a moment to praise all the beautiful women they love. Kanye makes sure not to miss out on this dope production with his own verse. “This one here is a heat rock spit like a beat box the way the beat rocks new version of Pete Rock.”
On “Young Gifted and Black” we find Aretha steeped in her gospel roots. She celebrates the beauty of Blackness at time when Black Power was the mantra of the culture.
DJ Premier sampled the song for Gang Starr’s Daily Operation album on a 30-second joint called “92 Interlude.” I always felt like that would be an awesome song. Most recently you can find the vibe on the 9th Wonder-produced “Laila’s Wisdom.” It appears on Rapsody’s debut project by the same name.
“Oh Baby” is yet another song where we find the Queen lamenting over love.
The producer Ski skillfully plants her vocals across the production of Jay-Z’s song “In My Lifetime (Big Jaz Radio Mix) from The Streets is Watching soundtrack. This is rap at its essence, and the soul was able to traverse the genres effortlessly.
Stream/Buy “That Ol’ Boom Bap” by Precise
On top of being a dope MC, Precise is also into acting. Tune in Friday night for a special Friday Night Mixtape as we have him on the show. We go live at 8pm Eastern. Download the DJ Kawon App and tune in.
Listen/Buy “Speak Life” by Precise