Earlier, My Instagram notifications from all my favorite hip-hop sites had kept going off left and right. Normally I causally check them, and swipe to the left to make them disappear. However, after repeatedly seeing photos with Prodigy’s face in the notification bar, I knew something was up.
The hip-hop world just lost a legendary emcee today.
Prodigy, one-half of legendary New York rap duo Mobb Deep, passed away at age 42.
Currently, he was on the “Art of Rap” tour in Las Vegas with Ghostface Killah, Onyx, KRS-One, and other artists. Although the official cause of death hasn’t been verified, sources close to Prodigy suspect he died due to sickle cell complications, something he’s faced since birth.
A publicist for Mobb Deep sent a statement to XXL quoting this: “We would like to thank everyone for respecting the family’s privacy at this time.”
Check out THE ORIGINAL CHATMAN’s review of Bryson Tiller’s sophomore effort, True to Self.
This Friday (June 23rd), would mark the original release date of Bryson Tiller‘s sophomoric effort, True to Self. Bryson Tiller must really have the juice like that with his label RCA Records due to him dropping the album a wholeMONTHearly—May 26th to be exact.
To be honest, I really rock with Bryson Tiller. Ever since his Fall 2015 debut with the infectious T R A P S O U L lead single “Don’t”, I knew Tiller would stick around and continue making waves in the evolving world of R&B.
Let me begin with the album title: True to Self. After the first few full-length listens, it’s apparent Bryson is still adjusting to his newfound fame while still dealing with his rocky love life.
Nothing new is under the sun when rappers sing; however, when singers lay down rhymes and really well at that? Priceless. Tiller has some legit bars all over on tracks such as “Self Made”, “High Stakes”, and “Before You Judge.”
Personally, I partially feel some tracks on True to Self sound the same; however, the samples that influence the album’s best tracks (I’ll let y’all decide which songs are the best) will surprise you the most. Sample credits are included from ’90s artist like Faith Evans, Mary J. Blige, and SWV. Marsha Ambrosius and Ice Cube even make minor musical influences on the album.
Despite the various musical influences, I admit some songs have similar sounding structures which can be credited to Kentucky producer Nes. Nes produced nine of the nineteen songs from True to Self. Check out the full production and sample credits here at Complex.
What did y’all think of True to Self? Blow up my comments sections and let me know!
Pro Era Records Announces Third Annual “Steez Day” Festival. In addition to Pro Era, A$AP Mob, XXXTentacion, Ab-Soul and others will be there. This year it’ll be back in New York. Tickets go on sale this Friday.
It’s been 5 years since we’ve lost one of the greatest emcees to ever grace this Earth.
Courtney Jamal Dewar Jr., better known as “Capital STEEZ” from the Brooklyn rap collective Pro Era, was the heart and soul of the group.
To honor his passing, Joey Badass, Kirk Knight, and the rest of the Pro Era family have thrown the “Steez Day” Festival since 2015.
Today, Pro Era announced the line-up for the third annual Steez Day which will be back in New York. Check out the flyer and line-up below.
Kendrick Lamar returned to Twitter to praise Hov, Nipsey Hussle, and 2 Chainz on their recent power moves in the game.
Yesterday (June 19th) , Kendrick Lamar returned to Twitter praising all the exciting hip-hop news that happened these past few days.
First and foremost, taking a note from Hov’s Twitter, Kendrick showed love to JAY-Z (who officially stylizing his name this way according to Pitchfork) for being the first rap artist inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame last week.
Furthermore, Kendrick shouted out Nipsey Hussle for his “black business moves.” Nipsey recently cut the ribbon on his Marathon Store in Los Angeles last weekend.
Finally, Lamar didn’t mince words for Demetrius Shipp Jr.’s performance as Tupac in All Eyez on Me. Nicknaming him “Lil Meech”, Kendrick said he nailed the role as Tupac Shakur. 2 Chainz even appeared on Kendrick’s Lamar radar as he congratulated 2 Chainz for “snapping” on his new album Pretty Girls Like Trap Music.
K.Dot ended the tweet with “Rap run it 4ever!” which is pretty damn hard to argue with.
Kendrick Lamar Just Turned 30! What are your top 5 favorite songs from his catalog and why?
I know I’ma whole day late, but I have to wish one of my favorite artists out right now a huge Happy 30th Birthday–to Kendrick Lamar! You don’t know me personally; however, I can honestly say I’ve felt every word you put into every lyric. K.Dot…you changed the game for the better by putting everyone on their toes with this rap sh-t!
♠J.Chatman aka TheOriginalChatman♠
To celebrate Kendrick’s/K.Dot’s/Kung-Fu Kenny’s 30th birthday, here’s a list of my top 5 favorite songs by him—in no particular order, mind you.
Kendrick’s ode to killing your favorite rapper is a classic. It was on this particular song where he used the double-time flow he would soon perfect on various songs and other projects in the future.
2. “B-tch, Don’t Kill My Vibe” (Section.80)
*screams “BITCH DON’T KILL MY VIBE!” excitedly and carefree in the middle of a conversation*
3. “Sing About Me, I’m Dying of Thirst” (good kid, m.A.a.d. city)
A lot of his best songs are taken from personal experiences growing up in Compton, CA. Kendrick is no stranger to story telling on his albums–but this one is so important because of the perspective used to illustrate Kendrick’s childhood trauma in a dangerous environment. If you wanted to start listening to Kendrick now, I’d recommend you start with this song!
4. “m.A.a.d. city” (good kid, m.A.a.d. city)
“YAWK YAWK YAWK YAAAAWK!”
5. “Money Trees” (good kid, m.A.a.d. city)
The sample. The hook. The verse from fellow TDE member Jay Rock. Virtually everything about this song—following adolescent Kendrick’s pursuit of money as a means to escape poverty—captures Kendrick’s ability to translate his life story and transform it into someone else’s story.
On Thursday (June 15), Hov released a string of tweets giving a huge nod to his favorite artists—new and old alike. The tweets followed his induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
As a 47-year-old rapper-turned-mogul, we could all assume he has an understanding knowledge of Twitter; however, Hov admitted his thoughts were cluttered as he couldn’t figure out the reply button. He reeled us back in promising he wasn’t drunk.
Check the tweets below!
Thank you to all the people that have inspired me . Rakim KANE KRS chuck cube Jaz Em Andre Nas big PAC cole kendrick chance jayE ..wait,