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  • Lemon

    “The truth will set you free, but first it’ll piss you off,” states the perennial legend Pharrell Williams at the very beginning of his iconic band’s comeback single, “Lemon.”

    It’s safe to say that most N.E.R.D fans were ‘pissed’ the f*ck off based on the assumption that the eclectic musical trio may have broken up due to their lack of sonic offerings since 2010.  Fortunately, the latter was false, which proves P’s point that the ‘truth’ is certainly liberating.

    The booty shaking tune features none other than Rihanna rapping (her flow was pretty dope). Its Todd Tourso and Scott Cudmore directed visual finds a bodacious, bald-headed babe twerking her life away (tastefully, of course).

    Check it out below:

  • Dat Side

    CyHi The Prynce is arguably the most lyrical rapper in the G.O.O.D Music crew, but somehow is overlooked by the masses--even Kanye West at times. Well, all rumors of beef between the two label mates can now be put to rest as they both appear on a bouncy new track.

    Titled, “Dat Side,” the single is a fresh sonic offering from the Stone Mountain spitter, where he and Ye boldly seperate themselves from all the groupies and fakes. "Assault riffle with the peephole/ It go A-B-A-B-B-B, Mortal Kombat cheatcode/ And I'm in here with my chico/ Might get you whacked, you standing three close," CyHi wittily raps.

    Cyhi's Yeezy-assisted banger will appear on his forthcoming debut album, No Dope on Sundays, which will also feature Travis Scott, Pusha T, 2 Chainz and more.  

    Check it out below:

  • Old Skool Olive Gum

    During this frigid time of year, flashy colors are somewhat of a dub.  Since Vans are well aware of this fashion faux pas, they have unleashed an uber smooth “Olive Gum” colorway of their Old Skool shoe model that’ll perfectly match any cozy attire.

    Cop yours today for only $60 at select sneaker retailers near you.

  • MR. RAGER Merch

    What’s good everyone?  I apologize for my lack of posts these past few days, but your boy needed a break from tic tac'n on the laptop.  I’m doing my best to deliver the most potent, inspirational stories and it takes a bit of brainstorming to do so.  In any case, I’m back!

    Speaking of epic returns, the Man on the Moon aka Kid Cudi has awakened from his intergalactic slumber, as he is currently on the road painstakingly slayin’ demons with the utmost passion (saw what I did there, though?). When an artist is on tour you already know their merchandise game has to be proper, that is why Scott enlisted Virgil Abloh to design a collection aptly coined, “MR. RAGER,” commemorating his latest group of shows.

    Included are four unique long sleeves, each with the Cudder's branding, two photos of an eerie forest and one abstract drawing on the back of the tops.

    The collection was offered at Tyler The Creator's Camp Flog Gnaw on October 28th ahead of Cudi's headlining performance the following day.

  • Frendy's Flashback Friday

    On October 27th, 1954 Walt Disney's first TV show, "Disneyland," premieres on ABC.

    Hosted by Walt himself, the program featured cartoons and other material from the Disney library, in addition to Disney movies edited down to one hour or broken out over two one-hour episodes.  The show was quite the Nielsen success, ranking 6th and 4th in its first two seasons on the air, drawing over 12 million viewers.

  • Mans Not Hot, He's Scorching

    British Comedian Michael Dapaah's fictional character, Big Shaq, is more poppin' than your favorite soundcloud rapper!

    After a riveting freestyle performance on Charlie Sloth's BBC Radio 1Xtra's Fire In The Booth segment, the British Born Christian has finally unveiled the official video for his accidentally fiery chune, "Mans Not Hot."  The big budget visual finds Shaq spitting bars in some of the world's hottest cities, including Miami, Toronto, Miami, Amsterdam, and of course New York City (Times Square, to be exact), while rocking his signature faux furred parka.

    The clip already has over a whopping 3 million views in just one day!  Check out why for yourself below:

  • Calabasas Collection 2 Zine

    Damn, it must feel great to be pals with the gawd Kanye West. The multi-talented artist is never shy when it comes to sharing the spotlight with his carefully selected group of friends, and this time around is no exception.

    Ye has unveiled the latest Calabasas zine (courtesy of Dazeddigital.com) featuring No Vacancy Inn’s own Tremaine Emory--better known as Denim Tears--and his boo Melissa Collett of the fledgling luxury brand WORME. The creative couple is seen canoodling in a Calabasas, California gas station (and pumping gas, duh) casually rocking the line’s second collection, which consists of comfy branded sweatpants, long sleeves, hoodies, shorts, socks, caps and the much-anticipated YEEZY Wave Runner 700 trainers.

    The official lookbook was sent to the lucky customers who were able to pre-order the kicks.  Check out the Jackie Nickerson photographed images below:

  • Kaws x Peanuts x Uniqlo Part 2

    Brian Donnelly, better known as Kaws, is set to release yet another collaboration with classic American comedy strip, Peanuts, and Uniqlo.

    The Fall items include hoodies ($30), graphic t-shirts ($15) and crewnecks ($30) all featuring Snoopy looking cool as ever rocking a "Joe Kaws" branded top and on his skateboard (the dog is male right?, just want to make sure).  Furthermore, similar to the trio's prior release, a Snoopy plush doll ($20-$45) will be offered, this time in black.

    Look out for these items to hit Uniqlo store shelves on November 24th.  Damn, Too bad my lil' brother doesn't work at the Japanese retailer anymore.  I'm sure my chances of actually copping something from the collection are slim to none!

  • The Silent Shooter

    Timothy Smith is a man of few words, but he has a sh*t load of captivating flicks to make up for it. Like most of my creative comrades, the Brooklyn bred lensman and I met at BAPE NYC - where we hardly spoke, yet had great mutual respect for each other.

    I haven’t seen Timothy in about five years, so it was a pleasant surprise when he followed me on Instagram last month.  What shocked me even further were the glorious editorial shots featured on his feed, which he photographed himself. I am not in any way, shape or form attempting to downplay Tim’s artistic prowess, but I was Stacey Dash clueless about his exceptional photography skills.  As I mentioned earlier, we never had a conversation that lasted more than one minute - let alone discussed his interest in the visual arts.

    This Original Stories series has provided me with the perfect opportunity to have a sitdown with the silent shooter to find out more about his background, passion for picture taking and path to success in the photography industry. Check out our dialogue below:

    FRENDY:  It’s a pleasure to finally have a thorough convo with you after all these years *Laughs*. Why didn’t you tell me about your love for photography back in my early BAPE days?

    TIM:  I was in my early stages, still insecure about my work. Not very confident in showing my work to others, and also still finding my voice. Like, all of my early work was of cats, street style, carts, landscapes *Laughs*. I was all over the place.

    FRENDY:  I respect that, you’re excused *Laughs*. Where were you raised in Brooklyn?

    TIM:  I grew up in the East Flatbush/Brownsville area. At the age of 11/12, my grandparents lost our house so I moved over to Queens to live with relatives for a while. When I first moved to Queens I stayed in Ozone park in my great uncle’s basement, then bounced around from Laurelton to South Ozone Park, then eventually landed back in Brooklyn.

    FRENDY:  Crazy.  I lived in East Flatbush for most of my life as well.  Which schools did you attend growing up in Brooklyn and Queens?

    TIM:  Yeah, it’s funny, you used to actually go to the gym with one of my best friends from childhood over in the BRC I think? I know you guys used to work out together, but I can’t remember where. Well, I will say this, I was fortunate enough to go to “good” schools. I attended Saint Catherine of Genoa in Brooklyn, then I finished my 8th grade year in Saint Teresa in Queens. For high school, I attended Christ the King over in Middle Village.

    FRENDY:  Damn, it’s really a small world. Ok nice, those are definitely great schools to attend.  Were you always into photography growing up?

    TIM:  *Laughs* Yeah, real small world. My grandparents made it a priority to send me to catholic schools because they believed it was much safer and a better education. I remember not having any lights or heat because my grandparents would have to pay 4 months of back owed tuition, because they truly believed I could do something when I got older.

    Funny thing is I always wanted to be a photographer because of Spider-Man! I used to think Peter Parker was f*cking amazing. I used to get all my Spider-Man toys and create “movies” with cereal boxes as video cameras *Laughs*. Cornflakes boxes to be exact!  It wasn’t until my grandmother passed that I really thought about taking photography seriously. I literally spent my student refund check in 2012/2013 to buy a canon 7D, to actually shoot short films, and record myself reviewing video games.

    One day I took a photo and all of the feels of being Spider-Man came back to me all at once. So I decided to sell my car to fund my photography addiction, I took an internship back home the summer before I graduated at Management Artist in Chelsea. It was legit the best experience of my life being around all that amazing photo work, it trained my eye very quickly to distinguish good photography from bad photography. It was an amazing summer, I slept on a living floor the entire time and enjoyed everyday of it!  

    FRENDY:  Which college did you attend after Christ The King?

    TIM:  I attended Saint John's University for one semester, then got kicked out because they didn’t believe my financial situation, regarding to financial aid. So pretty much even with a partial scholarship I couldn’t afford it. Then I took some time off and went to Nassau. After a while, I decided I had to leave because if not I would have gotten in so much trouble and other dumb shit.

    So then I went to a small HBCU in North Carolina: ECSU and got my Bachelors. After getting my degree, I came back to Canarsie because my mom ended up getting breast cancer and I wanted to help out the best way I can, and to build a relationship between us. After that, I finally got home and applied to grad school for photography and ended up attending School of Visual Arts in NYC.

    FRENDY:  Wow. First off, is your mom alright now?  Also, what kind of trouble would you have gotten yourself into at Nassau? I don’t see you as a troublemaker.

    TIM:  Oh yeah, she’s fine now! Thanks for asking. Not really me getting in trouble at Nassau, it was more so I was still hanging around all my friends that always did dumb sh*t. Like I’ve never been a tough guy or whatever, but I’m also a very loyal friend, plus my house was always the hub for all my friends. So I just remember one day playing call of duty and looking around at what my friends we’re doing and was like “bro, I gotta go.” It’s all good though, they always said I shouldn't be about that ‘life’ and they respected my decision.

    I would like to give a special thanks to one of my best friends/brother, Fred because when he saw I was serious about photography he gave me a f*cking brand new 5D mark II with flashes and lenses. Like, that's the type of bond me and my friends have - I'm still trying to figure out a good gift for him *Laughs*.

    FRENDY:  That’s the definition of true friendship right there. Were you studying photography when you were schooling in NC? Or you started taking photography classes while attending SVA in the city?

    TIM:  SVA.  I did a broadcasting class in NC and tried to get funding for a short film, but it never worked out *Laughs*. I did have three extremely amazing teachers; Professor Bright, Professor Washington, and Latoya Monique. They definitely helped me shape my creative vision by giving me the freedom to experiment as much as possible.

    FRENDY:  How’d you enjoy SVA?  What did you do after receiving your Master’s in Photography there?

    TIM:  SVA was cool, I made some really good friends there. If I had to be honest, you don't really need school in order to become a photographer. I learned so much in my first year of freelance, and assisting.  So right after getting my Master’s I assisted some amazing photographers like; Bon Duke & Yulia Gorbachenko. I still help Yulia out from time to time, but more the most part I’m completely freelance.

    FRENDY:  Yeah, one of my great friends, Erick Hercules, is doing his thing without any schooling. Hard work, of course, is the cause of his success in the photography field.  So you said you’re a freelancer, how did you get connected prestigious publications like Vogue Italia, WWD, Vulkan Magazine etc.?

    TIM:  Yeah, hard work and networking is the key to photography now - especially with social media being so important. Yeah completely freelance, so I pretty much do all of the leg work with getting jobs etc. Although I finally have an agent, and she has been awesome so far. She actually has been more of a therapist if anything so far *Laughs*.

    Let's tackle magazines first.  Every magazine I shot for, so far, I’ve been denied about 100 times when I first started.  I had to constantly practice and figure out my vision. Then finally after harassing everyone I finally got through, and now magazines would reach out to me for work. That’s how I’ve been able to shoot celebrities, etc. The best word a photographer can hear is “no,” because it drives you to get better and it lets you know that there is still room to grow.

    So yeah, once you get your vision and your skills up, people will gravitate towards you for your style which is very important.

    FRENDY:  Yes, an artist’s style, no matter what field they’re in, has to be unique to stand out. I’ve heard “nos” all my life, which is why I’m doing my own thing in the writing world. I’m blessed enough to have met some great people along the way who are helping me materialize my vision.  All we can do is be kind to ourselves and move forward with grace.

    TIM: Exactly and you’re doing fucking amazing right now, like legit you’re killing it!  I would also say one more thing: I encourage people to surround themselves with good energy and like-minded individualds. Like, for example, my queen Dominique Drakeford (melaninass.com) is hands down my best friend ever, she supports my visions, goals etc, and we can always just sit back and talk about dope sh*t.

    My friend from college and artist Malcolm Rolling (www.725studios.com) was the one who actually trained me to think like an artist, and encouraged me to be one. We would legit not go to parties and sit in the room and study light and catch up on art history - that sh*t was amazing and very pivotal to how I think now. My brother Jameel Murray who taught me how to endure the journey and to realize that no hard work goes unrewarded. (Fun Fact: before his mom passed away, we were months away from being legal brothers by adoption.)

    FRENDY:  Thanks my man, I really appreciate the kind words. Who’s your favorite celebrity to shoot?

    TIM:  Oh man, thats a funny question *Laughs*. So everyone offered a unique experience: YG took me by surprise because of how down to earth he was - still hella gangsta though. Omari Hardwick has become a mentor/big brother figure to me, we still talk to this day. Mack Wilds and I spoke about f*cking Street Fighter, he legit has an Akuma tattoo *Laughs*. Bobby Brackins was super chill, and Marianne Mirage was super fun with great energy. Oh Yeah, Ozuna was also cool, even though he had like an intense security squad.

    FRENDY:  Do you ever get starstruck?

    TIM: Beforehand sometimes, but never on set because my job is to connect with them and bring out the best emotion possible for the image. They are used to everyone treating them a certain way because they are famous - most of them actually just want to have a regular convo with regular human connection.

    FRENDY:  Makes sense, for sure.  How often are you shooting for publications?

    TIM:  Around three to four times a month.  Honestly, as a professional photographer you spend more time out reaching and securing clients than shooting. Compared to everything else I have to do, shooting only takes up 20%.

    FRENDY:  Are you particular about shooting on location? What do you look for in a setting?

    TIM: I do actually prefer shooting on location, only because it keeps budgets lower for certain clients. The studio gives you maximum control over everything. I think to be successful you do need to be well versed in both.

    FRENDY:  What are you currently working on Photography wise?

    TIM: I’m trying to secure a few campaign and lookbook jobs, also thinking about doing a photo project based on people in brooklyn.  I’m working out the details, but I'm looking for funding for that because I want to have an exhibition and have the kids in the neighborhood get involved, get them exposed to the arts.

    FRENDY:  You mentioned earlier that you aborted your short film due to funding. Are you willing to complete it at this stage of your career?

    TIM:  Ah man! Yea totally - I actually just got the most expensive piec. I brought a cinema camera recently, and now working on the rest. I’m starting to create the storyboard for it and hopefully can start producing by the top of 2018. 

    FRENDY:  Would it be a spoiler to tell us what the short is going to be about?

    TIM:  Yeah, all I can say is it will be a relatively short fashion film. Two to five minutes long and it's inspired by Nocturnal Animals.

    FRENDY:  Where do you ultimately see yourself in this ever expansive photography universe?

    TIM:  Living photo legend, decent cinematographer *Laughs*, director, and running a non-profit for underprivileged kids to get into the arts in an early age.

  • New YEEZY Kicks

    There’s really nothing better than a woman who wholeheartedly supports her man! No matter what harsh sentiments you may have for Kim Kardashian, you’ve got to at least give her some props for standing by her megastar hubby, Kanye West, through thick and thin.

    Kim’s latest supporting act finds her sporting a second brand new pair of YEEZYs!  Last week, Ye wore a never-before-seen silhouette of YEEZY high top kicks. Now, his bodacious boo is stunting in a new low top model, which features an all-white color way throughout its upper and sole.

    I must admit, the shoes are looking proper.  Too bad there's no release date for them yet.

  • Morning After

    Although DVSN is pronounced "division," there is nothing divisive about their soul-catching and hip thrusting induced tunes.  The OVO Sound duo is furthering their R&B reign by releasing their much-anticipated sophomore album entitled, "Morning After."

    Daniel Daley and producer Ninteen85's latest sonic masterpiece consists of 13 songs that truly serves as the ideal soundtrack for the 'morning after' a romantic evening with your significant other. ( Sorry, no side boo music here, folks.)

    Stream the full album below...preferably while pillow talking:

  • Chicken Beef

    All hail the Burger King!

    The Jacksonville, Florida-originated fast food chain has reached new levels of greasy pettiness as it plans to sell spicy chicken nuggets after Wendy’s discontinued the savory item earlier this year.

    It doesn’t seem like Burger King committed a flagrant offense, right?  Guess again. Not only did BK deebo (look that up in the urban dictionary, one time) Dave Thomas’ brainchild’s most clutch offering, the burger joint is slated to gift one 10-piece order of their chicken nugget iteration to all customers named “Wendy ”- savagery I tell ya!

     

    The unorthodox giveaway will commence on October 13 at all participating Wendy’s for a limited time in New York City, Los Angeles, and Miami.  If you aren't legally named “Wendy,” make sure to have some chunk change on deck for the nugget’s $1.49 price tag.