New York is known as the mecca of Rap, but throughout the recent years many have felt that the city has lost its ability to produce potent spitters with an authentic east coast sound. That notion is slowly diminishing with the rapid rise of fiery, hardcore rappers such as Brooklyn's own Young M.A.
Bodega Bamz and Remy Banks are also a part of the elite group who are bringing New York back as they release a new scorching single, "Ryu x Ken." The title itself states how hard they're coming back to back with the bars (pause)!
To remain relevant in the music world, artists must continually reinvent themselves with original golden sounds that’ll have listeners begging for more.
Rising Staten Island-bred spitter Cadeem Francis, better known as YF, is more than aware of such productive scheme. This is why he deliberately took two years off to perfectly craft his art. With a fresh perspective on the game and an arsenal of new tunes, the 25-year-old lyricist has returned to the rap arena with a gruesome vengeance.
I am proud to exclusively premiere YF’s comeback single, “Scales.” Produced by Ty Goods, the boisterous banger features an undisclosed crooner who undeniably blazed the hook. I briefly spoke with the LWA (Leaders With Ambition) lyricist to gain a deeper understanding of his much awaited sonic release.
FRENDY: How did “Scales” come about?
YF: The record was made last year while I was in Austin, Texas for SXSW. One of my homeboys, Sadiq, introduced me to the singer who eventually ended up on the record. We were roommates for the week while I was in Texas. The vocalist was gone off the acid the first day we met--he was so high I wasn’t even able talk to him. We formally introduced ourselves later that evening. I played some beats and the instrumental for “Scales” stuck out. He immediately freestyled the hook and that’s how the song came about. I already wrote my lyrics; it more so needed a solid hook, which the homie 100% provided.
FRENDY: There are tons of drug references in the tune, is there a deeper meaning behind all of the intoxicating lyrics?
YF: The song came together so perfectly because the majority of the people we stayed with in Austin were hardcore Trappers. The singer was definitely speaking from a buyer’s perspective because certain drugs help him create. As for me, I’ve seen how drugs work the majority of my life. It goes all the way back to Alberta, Virginia where I would stay for the summer to hang with my cousins when I was 14 years old. My great uncle and my two aunts owned 4 trailers. I wasn’t allowed in one of them because that’s where all the “activity” took place. One day, my curiosity led me to walk in the restricted trailer. My uncle Walter was there and he showed me everything--from coke to weed, pills etc. I can get deeper but that was the overall introduction.
I witnessed my uncle sell drugs, which ultimately led him to serve 25 years in Jail. Somehow he is still making money in the box (which I discuss in the second verse). Now I’m making music and learning how to make money off of it without lifting a finger. Everything was relatable so I had to talk about it in a record. Basically, the chorus is dedicated to the users and the verses are for the dealers (haha).
FRENDY: When can we hear more sounds from you? Will you be dropping a tape anytime soon?
YF: You’re going to hear more sounds from me shortly. I recorded alot of music within the last two years. I learned to not release all my bangers at once. I’ll drop a full project depending on the reception of my forthcoming singles.
On Saturday July 23rd, Shotta Spence held a listening party at Reed Space for his debut project, Upfall. Shame on you if you weren’t in attendance because the 20 year old New Jersey bred spitter surely proved that his passion for rapping isn’t a mere gimmick.
A mélange of Spence’s hometown friends and exuberant new fans filled Jeff Staple’slower east side inferno. Unfortunately, the store’s cooling system was down but that didn’t stop Shotta’s real supporters from turning up.
The Ear Drummer affiliate’s mixtape boasts 15 original tracks, which are all produced by an assortment of outstanding beatmakers. Spence’s awesome story-telling ability and melodic flow compliments the instrumentals greatly, making his very first effort into the hip-hop scene a commendable one.
I recently sat down with the rising star to discuss the inner workings of Upfall and plans of leaving his mark in the game. Check out our conversation below:
FRENDY: I’ve known you for about 8 years through BAPE. I truly didn’t know music was a passion of yours until you pleasantly surprised me with a freestyle at the shop, one year before my 2015 departure. When did your love of rhyming actually come about?
SHOTTA SPENCE: I’ve been writing poetry since middle school and I started fucking around rapping in high school with my track teammates. I gave up on recording music sometime during high school and devoted more time to track and making clothes, but I continued to write throughout college whenever I had to get shit off my chest.
FRENDY: What propelled you to take the craft seriously?
SHOTTA SPENCE: When I was growing up I used to really look up to my boy Chino who was a rapper and like the flyest dude in my town. He was shot and killed in 2012 and that shit really pushed me to turn up with everything art-related that I was pursuing. Fast forward to 2014, I was in college struggling to keep my grades up while still designing, modeling, styling, doing whatever I could to get my name out there while looking for places to record. I was desperate to find a path out of school because I wasn’t going to last four years in that bitch. So school was fucking me up and then boom, I meet Mike Will while styling a Rae Sremmurd video. This was around my 19th birthday, which is how old Chino was when he passed, and I looked at it as a sign. I remember thinking, “you wanna do music? Here’s yo chance.”
FRENDY: Initially, Fashion was your creative outlet. You built your very own "Spencer Lee" clothing line from the ground up, and even modeled for brands like PUMA and Yeezy. Was it hard to leave behind your budding career in the fashion industry to fully concentrate on being an artist?
SHOTTA SPENCE: It wasn’t hard at all because music is really what I wanted to do. I viewed everything as stepping stones though. Doing all of the other shit helped me meet the right people and grow as a creative all around. What was hard though was leaving all of the people that I had been building with in order to focus more on my self.
FRENDY: What’s the inspiration behind the name of your very first sonic compilation?
SHOTTA SPENCE: The project is about greed, grinding selfishly and how it can cause you to lose sight of what you truly stand for. It’s also about how death can humble you and remind you of what’s really important, like the friends, family and hometown that’s supported you since day one. The project is really a story of falling off of my prideful throne and thinking it was my downfall, but realizing in the end it brought me closer to the things that really matter. Now I'm truly “up”. Also pay attention to all the times I say “fall” or “up” during the project.
FRENDY: The rollout for Upfall was executed flawlessly. It’s quite an impressive feat for a rapper who seemingly fell from the sky. How long did it take you to fully complete the project?
SHOTTA SPENCE: I can’t really say. From 2015 to now I was just writing and recording nonstop and these are the ones that fit together for the project. Most of the records on Upfall were made in 2015 and a few were made this year.
FRENDY: How did your relationship with Mike Will Made-It come about? Was he helpful in the process of developing your debut?
SHOTTA SPENCE: I met him while styling the Rae Sremmurd “Up Like Trump” music video. I got that opportunity from Max Hliva, the video director for Ear Drummers, who went to the same high school as me. At the shoot I remember meeting Mike and how we clicked from our first conversation. I remember him saying “damn you remind me of a young version of me bruh.” I was showing him all the clothes I put on Sremm for the video and explaining how I handmade most of my shit. So from that point on he knew me as a creative and he was bringing me with them to all the shows in NY while they were out there. Through Mike I met Aubz, who is the Eardrummer A&R and now my manager. One night in the club we were all twisted and Aubz caught me drunk freestyling and was like, "bro you should be an artist.” Nobody really knew that I was already making music then. I didn’t even tell Mike until one day he called me singing one of the songs I had did over a beat Aubz sent me. I was so gassed cus I remember when he called I was recording in my boy’s basement like “damn how can we make some shit good enough to show Mike.” Since then I just been going in and developing myself as an artist and I always look to Mike for his opinion and guidance on whatever I make. I wanted to do my first project on my own, so me and Mike don’t have any songs on Upfall, but I definitely soaked up a lot of knowledge and sauce just being around Mike and observing how he move and how he creates. I wouldn’t have been able to level up my music if I never met Mike.
FRENDY: Where did you find all of the talented producers featured on the tape?
SHOTTA SPENCE: Ducko Mcfli (White Collar), Childish Major (Hot Head/Momma’s Boy), Mike Larrry (Up) and Von Vuai (September) I met in Atlanta through Aubz. I never actually met Murphy Kid (What’s the Word, Nothing 2 Lose) but I got those beats from him through Aubz as well. Me and Kakuyon (Throne, All the Wrong Things) been close friends since elementary school and we ran track together in high school. I’ve also been close friends with Mohntra (Big Body, Getcha Own, Our Glass) since elementary school. All of the producers are ill and I can’t thank them enough for working with me. Producers are often under-appreciated and they deserve as much credit as the artist, if not more.
FRENDY: What was your favorite track to make and why?
SHOTTA SPENCE: Probably September. I made it on Chino’s death anniversary (9/27) so I really felt it while I was making it.
FRENDY: Describe your particular sound in one word.
SHOTTA SPENCE: Spirits.
FRENDY: What are you planning to do now since you finally released Upfall? Already working on a new project?
SHOTTA SPENCE: Yeah just working on the next projects. Other than that I’m gonna get some videos done for Upfall.
FRENDY: I am proud of the man you are becoming. Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
SHOTTA SPENCE: Making better music, traveling, winning awards, packing out stadiums, putting my friends and family in great positions, doing charity work and continuing to work on my craft.
Congrats to Swizz Beatz for landing the new role as Bacardi Limited's 'Chief Creative for Culture.'
Swizz will not be appearing in any ads, according to a Bacardi spokeswoman, but the go to hitmaker will definitely be involved in all aspects of the liquor company-from brand marketing and adverstising to innovation and new selling platforms.
First Alicia Keys, now this. Swizz will never lose!
There's no better way to celebrate the 45th birthday of deceased Rap legend, Tupac Shakur, than by watching the trailer of his much awaited biopic All Eyez On Me.
The Benny Boom directed film will depict Pac's humble beginnings all the way down to his infamous drive by murder in 1996. Fresh-faced actor Demetrius Shipp Jr. will portray the fallen genius, while NOTORIOUS star Jamal Woolard will revive his role as Christopher Wallace aka The Notorious B.I.G.
Other notable actors in the movie are: Kat Graham who plays Jada Pinkett, Stefon Washington takes on Puff Daddy, and Dominic L. Santana as the menacing Suge Knight.
Look out for its release on November 11th, which falls not too far from the 20th anniversary of Tupac's devastating assasination. For now, peep the eye-opening teaser below:
A$AP Rocky is currently Rap's "jiggy n*gga". His undeniable talent, infections charm and style has won over the harshest critics not only in the music arena but the fashion field as well.
The Harlem spitter's latest venture is with one of his favorite brands J.W.Anderson. Back in January, Rocky was seen wearing the Irish designer's pieces at theJ.W.AndersonA/W 16 Menswear show. He even sported a high neck zip jumper from Anderson's A/W 15 collection in his “Jukebox Joints” music video. It's apparent that the love is real!
Their collaborative JWA x AWGE capsule collection can be pre-ordered today on the J. W. Anderson website and will be available from the Shoreditch Workshops store on Monday. Prices ranges from $275 for a beanie to $1,300 for one of the Teddy coats.
Drake is notoriously known as the "singin' n*gga" that bodied a street rapper but now he has officially destroyed one of his own.
Yup, Drizzy just beat fellow superstar Canadian Justin Bieber to become the most-streamed artist of ALL TIME on Spotify!According toBillboard, Aubrey has been streamed 3.18 billion times while JB is at an impressive 3.17 billion.
As Jay-Z infamously stated, "Men Lie, Women Lie, Numbers don't", so all praises must go to the 6 God.
The latest publication that he's topped (pause) is men's culture magazine titled Johnson. It's second issue featuring the ice grilled spitter releases this summer, but Editor In Chief Rob Meyers exclusively provided HighSnobietywith a comedic clip that displays Rocky freely talking about everything from his celebrity crush to favorite movies.
Not only unleashing a fire new freestyle for A$AP Mob's Wavy Wednesday series, the Harlem spitter was announced as the host forMTV 's upcoming Woodie Awards.
Today, Rocky continues his dominance in the form of an appearance on Tyler, The Creator's own surprising freestyle utilizing Kanye West's "Freestyle 4 " beat. It's been a hot minute since the Golfwang frontman blessed our ears with some new bars, so this semi-braggadocious banger was much needed.
Check out the video for "What The Fuck Right Now" below:
Wiki, The front man of NYC rap group Ratking, just released a heroic new video for his addicting single "Livin' With My Moms" featuringWorld's Fair's own Nasty Nigel.
It's obvious to infer what the Black Noi$e produced tune is all about. The visual playfully accents the song's theme with aggravated feats by the two new york bred spitters saving their beloved mothers from evil!
I'm a bit late in reporting this but kudos to the broski Kyle for unleashing such a vibrant new music video for his single "Really? Yeah!". If you didn't know, the pioneer of 'happy rap' is scheduled to release his studio album SMYLE on October 2nd. To pre-order, head over to smylekyle.com.
Tyga has been receiving all sorts of backlash but it seems to be fueling his passion to deliver potent raps. Kylie Jenner's boo just released another banger in the form of "Don't C Me Comin" featuring his woe A.E.
Shit, if drama is enabling Tyga to heat up in the booth then keep it coming! Check out the lavish clip below:
Underneath all the hoopla of Meek Mill & Drake’s rap beef, artists who may not be on your radar are releasing notable jams. Detroit bred rapper Amir Obe has been grinding for years and is now finally receiving the praise that he much deserves. From touring with PND to working on the 6 God’s latest record-breaking mixtape IYRTITL, the stylish spitter is surely on his way to the top.
I was initially acquainted with Amir at the BAPE store about 3 years ago. As a matter of fact, during that time he went by the rap moniker Phreshy Duzit and I would always feature his numerous bangers on my old blog. It’s a treat to see that he has reinvented himself and making even higher caliber music!
Rock out to not one but three of Amir’s latest sounds below:
I am pleased to showcase part 2 of Julian Mitchell’s interview with Dion “No I.D” Wilson. The intimate sit-down is a part of the talented writer’s column titled The Code on Forbes online magazine where he conducts conversations with today’s biggest names in entertainment.
During this segment, the multi-dimensional music producer speaks on sitting with Kanye West and creating the blueprint for 808's and Heartbreaks, his meetings with Rick Rubin that led to accepting the helm at Def Jam Recordings, the downfall of genres, and what works for artists like Iggy Azalea and Jhene Aiko.
What’s good everyone! Allow me to present a new section on the blog specifically created for Artist Submissions. I took a huge break from acknowledging tons of up and coming artists I personally knew simply because the love shown to them was hardly reciprocated. With the site’s rising popularity, I thought it was best to return to my charitable ways but in a more professional, business manner. If you’re interested in being featured, simply shoot me an email to Frendy@FRNDYLMRN.com describing your body of work, providing pictures and any links pertaining to it. I’ll then dish the necessary information (fee) to continue our venture. Looking forward to hear what y’all got cooking up!
The very first artist to be showcased goes by the name of Darrell Branham better known as MeloD. I was introduced to the rising Rapper by the homie James Stephens-Anderson who’s been supporting me heavily ever since our initial encounter at BAPE earlier this year. The West Atco, New Jersey raised lyricist began his craft at the age of 13. He states, “my boy Chris Brown used to bang the pencils on the lunch tables and me and all my boys would rap. I then started putting the flip phones up to the computer speaker to record myself. I remember my boys had me on they ringtones off the Bubba Sparxx “Bojangles” Instrumental (haha)”.
At the age of 11, MeloD moved from his hometown to Sicklerville, NJ. Four years later, he met Malik Holland who introduced him to the streets of Camden. “I fell in love with the city life and the vibrations of music. Sitting in the studio on top of a barbershop on Haddon Avenue listening to my cousin Ace "Ace Groove" mixtape. I started off watching him and my bro Leek record and I sat back and learned the craft. I just loved being amongst the people feeling the energy and from that point on I just knew if I could get good enough I can make a name for myself out here”.
The time has come for MeloD to shine! Check out his latest offering below:
The homie Kyle had one hell of a night! Not only did his first national television performance air on Skee TV, the multi-talented Rapper is featured on an incredible project that surprisingly released the same evening. The album, curated by Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment, was released free via iTunes.
Chance The Rapper spearheads the eclectic musical group but shared the spotlight on Surf with tons of your favorite lyricist including J. Cole, Big Sean, Quavo, Jeremih, and Super Duper Kyle (as stated before) who is featured on a song called “Wanna Be Cool”.
Yesterday, hoods across the globe celebrated the birthday of Hip Hop’s Waviest king Max B. The Harlem hustler is currently in jail facing a 75-year sentence but that doesn’t stop his legacy from flourishing. Erick Shaw, my former co-worker at BAPE, paid a tribute to Biggavelli (his first cousin) by showcasing a very rare picture of them on Instagram. He captioned, “happy birthday Charlie, I miss you more than you even know. But I got a strange feeling God’s conjuring up something for you soon, I can feel it”.
Four days before Max’s birthday, one of his close friends Chinx Drugs was fatally shot in Queens. Revolt TV caught up with the incarcerated lyricist to get his feelings on the unfortunate passing:
The senseless violence truly has to stop and with the elevated conscious of former street legends change can actually occur.
To read my exclusive sitdown with Erick on the personal memories with his iconic cousin, click HERE.
Everyone knows IBN Jasper is the elite barber that finesses the shit out of Kanye West’s hairline. In reality, their bond goes way deeper than clippers and rubbing alcohol. Style publication Bevel Code conducted an amazing interview with the sensational groomer to discuss his upbringing, fashion inspirations and the initial acquaintance with Yeezus.
Aw man, much love to the homie Remy Banks for finally unleashing his long awaited debut solo Rap project coinedHigher. It takes an incredible amount of patience to fully complete a godly body of work and thats the challenge a true artist is willing to undergo. As the Jigga man himself stated, difficult takes a day, impossible takes a week!
Rem’s mission is to bring back the essence of true New York rap with his slick Queens vernacular. This is truly commendable start.
We’re less than half way into 2015 and KYLE is surely proving that he’s here to stay. Not only selling out of hisKing Wavy tour dates, the bi-racial lyrical bomber is putting out a slew of playlist-worthy tunes back to back to back to back!
KYLE’s latest sonic effort is rightfully titled “It’s Lit” and features his California comrade Iamsu. This shit slaps! Check out the M-Phazes produced banger for yourself below:
Rising Bay Area rapper Marty Grimes has teamed up with the homie KYLE to present a spacey new love song titled “Die For Me”. The tune literally just premiered on Diddy’s Revolt TVso I took it upon myself to provide it to you all (like the true giver of all things dope that I am, haha).
It’s pretty incredible to witness the formidable fellowship amongst California’s thriving talents. From G Eazy, IamSu all the way down toAtlantic Record’s latest signee Kehlani! You can place your highest bet that they all have one song together….or at least have interacted.
Hopefully New York artists will get their act together. While we wait for that long shot, indulge in the Christoph Andersson produced jam below:
Earlier today, I paid my good friend Gus a visit. As we caught up on each other’s lives he told me about his festive evening at NYC hotspot Up & Down. He stated “I know A$AP Yams passed away (RIP) but one of the guys in The Weeknd’s entourage looked alot like him”. After hearing that unique description I automatically knew that it was Ahmad Balshe better known as Belly.
I was first introduced to the potent Palestinian Canadian rapper a couple weeks ago on Merlin Bronques’ snapchat where he presented exclusive behind the scenes footage of Belly’s forthcoming music video for “White Girls” featuring Travis Scott. With only a couple seconds of hearing playback, I knew this dude had some fire!
Luckily, Re(belly)us just dropped a full project titled Up For Days that the whole world can intake. It features his XO superstar comrade, Coke Boy French Montana, Dipset’s Juelz Santana and obviously La Flame.
Not too long after his public speaking duties at the Red Bull Music Academy Festival in NYC, the self-proclaimed Pretty Flacko unleashes an absolute banger titled “Everyday”. The ferocious tune features the unlikely yet sonically intact pair of Miguel and every mother’s favorite crooner Rod Stewart.
Unfortunately, Rocky recently stated that his album At.Long.Last.ASAP will be pushed back all the way to June 2nd. Hey, at least we won a great consolation prize with this Mark Ronson produced scorcher!
“I’m the definition of Half Man, Half Drugs!” is the infamous proclamation made by Diddy in his 2001bangerBad Boys For Lifeduring his P. Diddy Days (yeah, the “P” isn’t there anymore). It’s been quite some time but the statement still holds firm ‘til this day as he is ranked #1 on Forbe’s Top 5 Wealthiest Hip Hop Act’s list.
To keep it clean, I thought Dr. Dre was going to headline the landmark list due to his lucrative Beats deal but it’s apparent that the colossal business move doesn’t stand a chance next to Mr. Comb’s numerous dealings. You name it and Diddy’s got it. Spanning from liquor partnerships, clothing line, all the way down to a multimedia network! The Jigga Man himself just bought and re-launched Scandinavian streaming company Tidal but with every new venture there are still some kinks to be worked out. Growth is definitely needed in that department to propel Jay Z once again in Forbes' top Rap food chain!
Check out the list below. For more information, click HERE.
Drake is an international mega star trumping all of his peers in the world of music. It’s only right that he takes his unprecedented power into other realms! Recently, the 6 God unleashed the lookbook for the 2015 spring collection of hisOVOline.
To keep it clean, I’m not really sure if Drizzy is going to extend this endeavor into a bigger fashion entity but it’s definitely not your average artist “merch”. The boy bringing velour back (as well as ‘Ye) so let’s definitely give him a round of applause (haha).
Last Week, Elliott Wilson sat down with ASAP Rocky during the Tribeca Film Festival happenings to conduct hisinfamousCRWN questionaire series. In the two part interview, Mr. Wilson dives head first (pause) into the PMF's world of music, fashion and hallucinogens!
According to Billboard, Nas is prepping to unleash his first album in a whopping 3 years! Over the weekend during a concert in Orlando, the Queensbridge God MC gloriously announced that he will be releasing a studio project during the summer of 2015.
It feels like yesterday when I attended a Hot 97 sponsored event headlined by Mr. Jones during his Life Is Good campaign (circa July 2012). Even though he hasn’t released any concrete body of work since then, Nasir has been making a slew of calculated power moves that include a performance in the recent NBA All-Star game. Furthermore, he even launched the indie label Mass Appeal Records in 2014.
We could only wait and see if Nas’ no-named album really does drop in a couple months. I’m sure it won’t disappoint as always!
The homie Remy Banks of the infamous Queens Rap collective World's Fair has just unleashed a celebratory club-banger titled "N1go". The slick talking New York spitter actually played this joint to me during my last few weeks at BAPE NYC. Upon first hearing I automatically knew it was going to be a serious fan favorite!
It's obvious that Remy's love for A Bathing Ape apparel cuts deeper than a shark bite so one could infer that the song's title was inspired by the General Nigo himself. Uhmm maybe? Here's what he had to say about the tune's meaning to BillBoard, "To me, N1go is the one. Like Neo was the one in the matrix, he's the one when it comes to the fashion I'm drawn to. He's that n---- and when I'm out functioning (which is rare), I feel like that n----!".
With that said, Indulge in the Black Noi$e produced jam below:
"Oh U mad unh?!?" That is the infamous question asked on Vic Mensa's collosal new track featuring his Wolves' partner Kanye West. The answer to this inquiry is most certainly "yes" from the haters of course. They want to see you do good but never better than them but Vic as well as the homie Stefan Ponce (who co-produced this track) is surely kicking their sonic competitor's ass!
Right on the heels of landing a second coveted Complex Magazine cover, Harlem's Golden (grilled) Boy A$AP Rocky unleashes the money gettin' anthem rightfully titled "M'$". No, it doesn't stand for 'M Dollas' but rather "Millions n*gga! ".
The Honorable C.N.O.T.E and Mike Dean produced hit can most likely be found on rocky's forthcoming albumA.L.L.A. Shit, with Mike being in the scheme of things I won't be surprised if Yeezus finds a perfect track to bless on The PMF's body of work.
Danny Seth has risen from his musical slumber to unleash a video for his stimulating single titled "I Arise Because". I remember my U.K Bredren performing this exact tune during his last NYC trip at Santos and it banged! Extremely happy to see that song's visual counterpart is just as potent.
The Nick Walker directed cinematic clip takes us through Danny's mental from ghost whippin' butterfly door'd BMWs to wandering in a forest filled with unearthly blossoms. Yeah, it's surely a trip that you'll enjoy.
Grab your kettle-cooked kernels and indulge below:
Aww man, I'm totally way too late posting this song but you already know how I do. Never on time but always delivering hits! For those not in the know, about 2 months ago 'Birthday Sex' crooner Jeremih unleashed a soaring banger rightfully titled "Planes" featuring J. Cole.
The concoction of Jeremih's smooth vocals and Cole's raunchy raps will surely make your girl have an eargasm upon hearing. Strap up and indulge below:
The Albanian Ghostface Killa Action Bronson has just released the visual for his soothing yet somber new single titled "Baby Blue" fittingly featuring Rapping/Crooning extraordinaire Chance The Rapper. The Lil Chris directed clip serves as an ode to Eddie Murphy's legendary film Coming To America.
It just so happens that Eddie's Birthday is coming up next month. Hopefully the original Prince Akeem reaches out to Bam Bam to thank him for his stellar depiction!
Prominent African American Director Rick Famuyiwa (famous for 'The Wood' & 'Brown Sugar') is back with yet another groundbreaking coming of age story titled Dope which received insurmountable praise at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival.
The motion picture takes place in Inglewood, California featuring a group of 90's enthused nerds who ironically transform into drug dealers (sounds awesome doesnt it?!). The cast includes newcomer A$AP Rocky, Chanel Iman, Zoë Kravitz, Forest Whitaker, Quincy Brown (Diddy's son) with the lead characters being portrayed by Shameik Moore, Tony Revolori and cutie-patootie Kiersey Clemens. What's even doper (pun intended) is that Pharrell Williams serves as the composer for the film's sountrack!
This is surely a movie that I would of loved to audition for If I was still acting....might have to get back to it. Indulge in the trailer below:
Ohio's very own lyrical menace Stalley has just unleashed the music video for "Chevelle", one of myfavorite cuts from his recently released studio albumOHIO. The groovy metaphorical track features vocals from exceptionally smooth crooner Rashad.
Ryan Wick served as the visual's director capturing the MMG star living his lavish life with mostly one thing in mind...his beloved old school chevrolet (haha). Indulge below:
I know it's a tad late in presenting this song but it's my blog and I could do whatever I please (haha). Plus, Im sure you won't mind listening to it just one..more..time.
Kanye West took it upon himself to release a single dedicated to his adorable baby girl North West titled "Only One" with assistance from The Beatles's own Paul McCartney (no big deal, whatsoever). The sentimental jam all started as an improvisation while the two were working on jams together early last year.
It even includes background vocals from the light-eyed, dreaded up bandit himself Ty dolla Sign. Talk about unexpected mash-up right? It's all good though because the outcome was heavenly.
Happy New Year everybody! Last night as you were getting ready for the NYE festivities, A$AP Rocky took it upon himself to unleash the much awaited single "Lord Pretty Flacko Jodye 2". As most of you know, the Nez & Rio produced banger was teased in Flacko's "Multiply" video a while back ago so it's awesome to finally indulge in the full version.
Hope most of y'all were able to attend his shinding last night in SoHo, looked crazy out there!
Merry Christmas everyone! Y'all been rocking with the kid for quite some time now and my appreciation runs deeper than Richie Rich's stocking full of gifts. To commemorate such blessed occasion, allow me to present a special piece on Charles Wingate better known to the hoods of the world asMax B.
For years now there has been tons of speculations surrounding the Harlem street legend but as you know there's two sides to a story and then the truth. It is my pleasure to introduce the homie and fellow BAPE employee Erick Shaw who just so happens to be related to Biggaveli.
Below is the transcript of our brief sitdown pertaining to his immortalized cousin:
Frendy: You've been working at BAPE for about a year now and it was only 2 months ago that I found out you were related to Max. I'm assuming only a few individuals know about your relation to him?
Erick: Yeah. It's funny how people come across or figure it out lol. I usually do a good job of keeping it a secret. The only people that really know that I'm related to him besides my family obviously is my closest friends. They actually got to meet him. For those that don't know and aren't aware, he and I are 1st cousins. His mother and my mother are sisters. My mother being the baby and his mother being the eldest female out of 8 kids. We make up 10 grand-kids so it's a big family lol.
Frendy: What's your fondest memory of Max?
Erick: I have a few fond moments of my cousin and I. It's funny because he considers me his favorite so I take that to heart. One memory I have is when I was little, his sister and I used to always come home from school and play Super Mario on Nintendo. We'd get to the last level and no matter how hard we'd try we could never beat it. Charlie would come from outside doing whatever he was doing in the street and we'd tell him to help us out. He'd beat Bowser in 2 minutes flat! Made it look so easy lol. Another memory that I have with him is when I graduated High School and he surprised me by showing up. Everyone was so shocked to see him. Here I am carrying a normal convo with him as if it's nothing while everyone's jaws are dropped. That was a pretty cool moment for me.
Frendy: For those who don't know, explain Max's relevance in Hip Hop and how did his nickname "Biggaveli" come about?
Erick: Well, that name comes from 3 artists. Bigga is Biggie and Jigga is Jay Z and of course Veli at the end for 2Pac. Those were the artists that he looked up to coming up and that's how the name came together. He does everything to the max so "Max Biggaveli". He's responsible for alot of the lingo in New York including the iconic word "Wavey" and "Owww". Max put out hood classics like the "Public Domain" series, the "Domain Pains" series and of course mentoring French Montana into what he is today. And to think, he was primed to be something big.
Frendy: Did you know much of his street life?
Erick: I was still pretty young to comprehend his street activities. As I got older, I started to piece things together. He spent alot of time in and out of jail with his two brothers Michael aka "Mike Murder" and Eric (who was murdered). Charlie was the only brother out of the three to have both parents around (for the most part) but the streets still called his name and majority of the time he answered.
Frendy: To be honest, I really don't know the set of events that led to Charles' arrest. Can you elaborate on that situation?
Erick: Basically what happened was, there were two desperate parties attempting to rob the same person/persons and claimed that my cousin was the mastermind behind it all. Mind you, he wasn't even present at the time. If my knowledge serves me right, he was doing shows when it happened. If I'm correct, Max was found guilty for 9 out of 11 counts for Manslaughter and Conspiracy to commit robbery. SMH, It truly hurt me because before that he was in jail facing a 2 million dollar bail that was later paid. To just have him home and then I gotta see him go away......sucks alot.
Frendy: Any update on when he'll be free?
Erick: There are alot of dates people are giving out. From what I know, he still has to do a considerable amount of time. On a positive note, he's got a new lawyer team and is fighting for a retrial. As for as release date.....that's in God's hands.
Frendy: Do you still keep in contact with Charles?
Erick: Of course! If I'm not speaking to him, I'm speaking to my aunt about him. Last time I spoke to Charlie was like a month and a half ago. He was trying to have me work with one of his engineers to make music and before that he tried to get me to work with Dame Grease. I can't front Grease was kind of a asshole lol. That's another story though...
Frendy: What's Max's biggest misconception?
Erick: People seem to think that he's this troublemaker but that's not the case. We all make bad decisions. He just tried to live his life and sometimes the company you keep can also be your downfall.
Frendy: Any thoughts of working in the music industry like your big cuz?
Erick: Like him, music is also my passion. I kinda want to take a different approach than him though. Seeing him go through all of this and watching his life change from feeling like you had nothing to having it all and then having it taken from you....that will make anyone open their eyes! It hurt me so much but at the same time it helped me realize what mistakes not to make, how to move, how to trust, and how people perceive you when you're down. I learned so much from him and we didn't even spend that much time together because of his lfe decisions. Despite it all, I still love and want to do music. If there was an opportunity to work with Charlie I would in a heartbeat! Not just because he's "Max B" but because I want to keep him close to me. Keep him out of trouble and bond more as a family, doing something we both love.
Frendy: I appreciate your time E for giving us a deeper insight into Max's life and your relationship with him. Any words you'll like to leave with the people?
Erick: I just want to say thank you to all of your loyal fans that have supported him for years. Y'all mean the world to him and myself because you guys help keep his work alive. We just gotta hope and pray that he gets his time to come home. I guarantee if he does, things will be different. He'll be staying home for good this time. But again thank you and stay wavy.