January 24, 2013 |
** 1/2 (out of four) Rockie Fresh likes cars. He likes buying cars ("In 2013/I plan to buy too many cars"). He likes talking about cars. He likes driving cars, and he likes driving metaphors: both of his higher-profile mixtape releases were named as such: last year's popular “Driving 88” and now, “Electric Highway,” his first release after being signed to Rick Ross's Maybach Music Group, a rap label named after the luxury Maybach automobile....
March 5, 2014 |
Common, Big Boi and eight other hip-hop artists have teamed with HBO to create "Catch the Throne: The Mixtape," a compilation of songs inspired by the hit show "Game of Thrones. " "'Game of Thrones' centers around battles for power, and rap is definitely a battle for power," Common, the Chicago hip-hop artist and actor, says in this video from Vibe Magazine. The video shows a sampling of his rap, which seems to echo the sentiment: "I sit and think when I'm in my zone / This life is like a Game of Thrones.
February 11, 2014 |
Say what you want about Martellus Bennett, at least he's consistent. The Bears tight end has released a new mixtape of original raps with the clever title of "Year of the Orange Dinosaur. " This release follows 2011's "Fast Food. " If you're concerned that this new venture will be a distraction, fret not: Bennett took to Twitter to let everyone know not to expect a long rap career from him. "I am not a rapper or musician nor do I want to be. I'm just c reative trying to express myself in as many ways as...
August 20, 2012 |
DJ Drama may have the most famous shout in hip-hop, if not all of music. The Atlanta DJ, whose Gangsta Grillz mixtape releases with artists like T.I., Young Jeezy and Lil Wayne helped define the modern hip-hop distribution model, has shouted his boasts and observations over the music of many of the biggest stars in hip-hop and R&B, often right before they broke through into mainstream success. Recent projects bearing the familiar “Gangsta Grizz-ills” and “DRAMATIC” drops include Meek Mill's “Dreamchasers 2” mixtape, the most downloaded release...
August 12, 2012 |
Kiara Johnson did not plan on a rap career. In fact, she had never before rapped on record when her cousin, Donta Moye, 23, who produces music under the name Block on da Trakk, asked her to record a track at his house last summer. Johnson, then 18, of Bronzeville, was eager to give it a shot. Block thought the local music scene needed a new female voice, especially in the aggressive Chicago rap subgenre known as drill music. He had the perfect beat and wanted to help his cousin get away from some of the dangerous behavior and influences with which she was involved.
October 29, 2012 |
*** (out of four) In the first verse on his debut album “Dreams and Nightmares,” Meek Mill notes that he “did it without an album.” Indeed, by one measurement Meek Mill is the most successful rapper currently working: His “Dreamchasers 2” mixtape, released earlier this year, holds the record for the most downloads ever from free mixtape site Datpiff at well over 3 million. By all traditional metrics, Meek Mill is a pure genre artist with relatively little crossover appeal.