The fantasy of NYC I had been contriving in my mind for the past 22 years couldn’t possibly hold a candle to the concrete, realism I was about to experience over the next 30 days. And I’m not talking about around me — but in me.
Everything they say about the city is true. The humidity is a bitch. The air and the streets are foul. The people are blunt, uncompromising, and in a hurry. The food is of God. And the spirit of the city is otherworldly.
And when you’re in a city when everyone is as uncompromising as…
I’ll give you a hint, it has everything to do with the internet.
Coming off of one of the biggest hits of last year, Cardi B has returned in 2021 holding no punches.
Just a few weeks ago, “Up” became her fifth №1 on Billboard, prolonging her record as the first female rapper to do so.
And while the song is undoubtedly a smash, I can’t be the only person wondering how an artist still in the former half of her career has managed to accomplish this feat 5X over?
Ungodly Hour is beyond ethereal, inviting us into a sonic universe where black women are nothing less than the epicenter. Defined by saintlike harmonies, futuristic production, and a taste of old-school R&B, Ungodly Hour echoes the past, while blueprinting the future. At a glance, the sophomore album of the undeniable duo seems to be a coming of age story, telling the tale of losing a first love, while finding yourself in the process. But in reality, Ungodly Hour is a love letter to the songstresses themselves.
“Baby girl, It’s your world, baby girl/Do it for the girls, all around the…
New week. New Music. New Takeaways. Let’s dig deep and discuss what hip-hop’s newest drops uncover.
Artists using old wins to propel new ones is nothing new, but nostalgia in these times undoubtedly hits different.
Anniversary and Savage Mode II epitomize “playing up the past”, serving as anticipated sequels to two beloved albums, and surely beloved times.
For Bryson, Anniversary is no Trap Soul — but it isn't supposed to be. It’s the ideal evolved effort. …
Ho,Why Is You Here?, defines confidence as the ultimate capital for black women.
“Flo Milli Shit, Ho”. The recurrent tag of the Alabama-bred rapper only serves as a preview to the abundance of credence and conviction that makes up her sound.
From blowing up on Tik Tok with the infamous “Beef Flo Mix”, to being embraced by her peers in the rap game almost instantly, Flo Milli’s arrival not only illustrates the increased value of digital virality for emerging artists, but is further proof to an end of the “catty” and “competitive” trope of female rap.
Controversy. Backlash. Hashtag. Change? How the flawed framework of cancel culture is taking on a drastic metamorphosis, possibly for the better.
Before we dissect the evolution of cancel culture, we must understand why it even exists.
Like many other phenomena, cancel culture is only a natural output of our relationship with the internet. The structure of social technology only mirrors our need to voice opinions, give unsolicited advice, feed into debate, and engage with a community of people who favor us. …
This past week, the digital space has given voice to the outrage, grief, trauma, anger, and resiliency within the black community. It has unified us, activated our allies, and demanded action, but not without a price. And while there’s no question that social media is a powerful activism tool, we must recognize it’s difficult complexities in order to move forward.
The practice of activism online has allowed black people to mobilize in a truly unprecedented way. We have created spaces for black people to engage in dialogues that do not exist in the physical realm, brought language to the emotional…
As the quarantine era begins to cultivate a new normal, there is no doubt digital content creation is the thread stringing us together, as we continue to stay apart. From the boom in Tik Tok dances, IG lives, and the new digital frameworks brands have adopted to connect with audiences, the digital playground the pandemic has created is uncovering both the progressive and problematic culture behind “why” and “how” we create online.
The art of creating content has technically been democratized ever since the smartphone, but the truth is, not everyone has always been welcomed into the space. Between older…
With an undeniable influence, hip-hop is the cultural movement every brand is trying to tap into. But whose doing it, and whose doing it right?
Over the past 40 years, hip-hop has transformed from an underground niche to a mainstream powerhouse, becoming the defining beat in the sound of pop- culture. Most recently, hip-hop has made historic strides, surpassing rock as the most consumed genre and accumulating a purchase power of $453B amongst its’ diverse and youth-driven audience (Gen Hip Hop Study). Why wouldn’t brands want to connect?
However, the desire for brands to connect with hip-hop often results in…
An independent release, Got It Made manifest as a true tale of resiliency.
Embodying the spirit of East Oakland, Kamaiyah is authenticity and vigor on display. Newly departed from Interscope Records, the rapper is commanding control over her career, releasing Got It Made under her new independent label GRND.WRK, a partnership with Empire.
While Got It Made is rooted in Kamaiyah’s 90’s west coast sound, the lyrical content is revamped, proving she has bars. …