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The black man's CNN

What if the Tea Party was Black? Jasiri X raps about radicalism and racism. Inflammatory and simplistic, maybe, but the best rap polemic since George Bush Doesn't Care About Black People. Jasiri X responds to critics here.
posted by klangklangston on Oct 13, 2010 - 138 comments

Yo' Mama so fine....

Stop Looking at My Moms! (YT) Boy-rapper The Astronomical Kid demands you show his mother some respect.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero on Oct 11, 2010 - 37 comments

hippie to the hip hip hop to welcome to new york

The History of Rap w/Jimmy Fallon, Justin Timberlake, The Roots. (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by sexymofo on Sep 30, 2010 - 49 comments

Feminism in Effect!

Jenny Hagel has a three part YouTube series about "a dumpy women's studies professor [who] transforms herself into a ghetto fabulous rap star to convince people to care about feminism. When she's finished rapping...they still don't care." Parts 1, 2 and 3.
posted by Kattullus on Sep 29, 2010 - 33 comments

How is mixtape formed?

Mixtapes have been a way for rappers and producers to promote their music and have it heard for pretty much the entire history of hiphop, and they're still called mixtapes even though most have abandoned tapes for CDs and, in turn, CDs for mp3s. But there's such a glut of stuff on the market - Atlanta's Gorilla Zoe, for instance, released a mixtape a day throughout February - that it can be difficult to have a clue what's going on. One site I've found useful for just barely keeping up with things is DatPiff. [more inside]
posted by Dim Siawns on Sep 28, 2010 - 11 comments

Pen and Pixel: A Retrospective

Pen and Pixel are well known for the outlandish covers they created for Southern rap labels Rap-A-Lot and No Limit. It's been about 12 years since their heyday, so people are now looking back at the artistry present under the surface of these covers. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Sep 17, 2010 - 39 comments

Guess that's why they broke and you're so paid

Famous Rappers and Their 20th-Century Literary Counterparts
posted by Houyhnhnm on Sep 7, 2010 - 51 comments

Snoop Dogg Joins the War on Cybercrime

Snoop Dogg and Norton Announce 'Hack is Wack' Video Contest To Raise Cybercrime Awareness
posted by finite on Sep 1, 2010 - 71 comments

Homeboy got a mind that a map couldn't find

The Rap Map is a mashup of notable places and geographical lyrics in rap and hip-hop. It's brought to you by Rap Genius, a site that explains rap lyrics like "I'm getting jacked, I'm breaking myself" (Warren is getting “jacked” (robbed) and “breaking himself” (generally befuddled)) and "One day you're cruising in your 7, next day you're sweating, forgetting your lies" (Street life can be tough — one day you’re riding high in your BMW 7 Series luxury car, the next day you’re arrested and cracking under pressure. The rest of this verse is a classic warning that the hustling lifestyle is not for everybody)
posted by desjardins on Aug 21, 2010 - 43 comments

I Guess He's an X-Box and I'm More Atari

Gnarls Barkley vocalist Cee-Lo Green has emerged as a music interview show host and a soloist with a distinctly funk style. His cover of Band of Horses' No One's Gonna Love You was featured on the Twilight soundtrack and his new single Georgia was featured in a recent episode of This American Life. His newest single is called Fuck You (lyrics NSFW, obviously).
posted by l33tpolicywonk on Aug 20, 2010 - 85 comments

The Rap Guide To Human Nature

The Rap Guide To Human Nature is an album exploring the theories and controversies of evolutionary psychology through the medium of contemporary rap, by a guy named Baba Brinkman. (Previously.)
posted by acb on Aug 5, 2010 - 9 comments

We're so bad, you know we're good.

With the 25th anniversary of the Super Bowl Shuffle rapidly approaching, perhaps the time has come to take a look at its inimitable legacy - one of state-of-the-art video editing, fluid rhymes, stunning choreography and brain-breaking pastels. Will either sports or music ever reach these dizzying heights again? Hopefully not. [MLYT]
posted by Toby Dammit X on Aug 1, 2010 - 26 comments

Alvin Greene is on the Scene

"When I say Alvin, you say Greene." - So begins a promotional rap video* endorsing United States Senate candidate Alvin Greene (previously).
* - Link to Countdown segment on MSNBC that includes the video [more inside]
posted by ODiV on Jul 26, 2010 - 46 comments

But that would make me MJ / So motha fuck all y'all

Stand up comedian and Community star Donald Glover made Internet waves as an unsuccessful candidate to play Spiderman, but his fans may miss his rap career as Childish Gambino, where Glover addresses his struggle to be taken seriously as a musician, the perils of wealth, growing up a nerd, and being in love. Rap lyrics and stand up NSFW. [more inside]
posted by l33tpolicywonk on Jul 22, 2010 - 17 comments

Jack Parow, Cooler than You...

Jack Parow is a South African rapper known for the oversized bill on the hat he wears, unlike Die Antwoord (Previously) he raps in Afrikaans almost exclusively. [more inside]
posted by schyler523 on Jul 13, 2010 - 32 comments

Leslie Hall

Gravel In My Shoe, Tight Pants / Body Rolls, Blame The Booty, and Craft Talk are the four most recent YouTube videos from Leslie Hall (previously, via)
posted by finite on May 29, 2010 - 23 comments

I BIN NET SO DEPPAT!!!

Die anen foan noch Ibitza die ondren noch Udine
Wir bleiben im Parkbad machen Party in Kabiene
Hallo geile Biene gemma no a bissal schwimmen
i brauch nur mei Handtuch no des in der Kabiene drinnen


Wiener Hip-hop? Vollig Geil! [more inside]
posted by dunkadunc on May 23, 2010 - 34 comments

Last night a sample saved my life

50 Greatest Samples in Hip-Hop History with full original tracks. (via)
posted by gwint on May 14, 2010 - 51 comments

Beyond Comprehension

Guru of Gang Starr - Keith Elam, has died from cancer. His passing is complicated by the sometimes bizarre actions of his business partner Solar (not to be confused with MC Solaar) during Guru's seven week hospital stay. [more inside]
posted by cashman on Apr 20, 2010 - 72 comments

In February, it is good to know a plow guy

Granite State of Mind - an ode to New Hampshire by SuperSecretProject, copping the blueprint from Jay-Z's Empire State of Mind
posted by not_on_display on Apr 10, 2010 - 16 comments

Supreme Clientele – 10 Years Later

Supreme Clientele – 10 Years Later [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Apr 2, 2010 - 25 comments

Release early, often and with rap music.

The Free Art and Technology (F.A.T.) Lab is an organization dedicated to enriching the public domain through the research and development of creative technologies and media. You may know them from such projects as How to build a fake Google Street View car, public domain donor stickers, internet famous class, the first rap video to end with a download source code link, or their numerous firefox add-ons (such as China Channel, Tourettes Machine, or Back to the future). FAT members have been hard at work standardizing various open source graffiti-related software packages, including Graffiti Analysis, Laser Tag, Fat Tag Deluxe and EyeWriter [previously] to be GML (Graffiti Markup Language) compliant. Fuck Google. Fuck Twitter. FuckFlickr. Fuck SXSW. Fuck 3D. FAT Lab is Kanye shades for the open source movement.
posted by finite on Mar 13, 2010 - 8 comments

Get in the van. Do your thing. Get out of the van.

From the Borough of Brooklyn comes Dollar Van Demos: a showcase of talented musicians, rappers and comedians performing inside a dollar van with real passengers. [more inside]
posted by Drexen on Mar 13, 2010 - 7 comments

Paying Wade is Better Than Paying Lebron

A Common Misunderstanding of the Lyrics of Jay-Z's "Empire State of Mind: The intricacies of rap lingo dissected by the intelligentsia, with predictable results. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Feb 18, 2010 - 45 comments

Is this a rap battle, sir, or another bug hunt?

The Anomalies are back, with a 10-minute rap summarizing Aliens (SLYT).
posted by Shepherd on Feb 2, 2010 - 35 comments

"I'm like all these different people fucked into one person."

Die Antwoord is a "next-level rap-rave krew" from South Africa. Their incredible video, Enter the Ninja, is probably the best introduction to the group. The group consists of a white MC named Ninja, his mulleted wife Yo-Landi Vi$$er, and DJ Hi-Tek (aka Leon Botha), a painter who at 24 one of the oldest living sufferers of progeria syndrome. Further viewing: Zef Side. [more inside]
posted by meadowlark lime on Feb 1, 2010 - 68 comments

They stylin' on you...

Seamless rap in 5 Languages (SLYT)
posted by cuban link flooded jesus on Jan 4, 2010 - 27 comments

Rock, rap, metal and folk music from Sápmi

SomBy were the winners of the Liet International 2009 song contest for minority european languages and cultures. Sámi rock, you say? But wait, there's more! There's Alit Boazu from the Norwegian side, and Tiina Sanila, a Skolt Sámi singer from Finland. And yes, there is Sámi metal, from the band Intrigue. There are plenty other Sámi musicians across Sápmi and outside of the genre of rock, of course. There's Amoc, an Inari Sámi rapper from Finland; Adjágas who are folky and bluegrassy at times; Niko Valkeapää, who is more ambient and electronic; and of course, Mari Boine, recently knighted for her long career of artistic work (translation). [Sound, MySpace warnings] [more inside]
posted by taursir on Dec 25, 2009 - 5 comments

m(n,m)

Eminem's "Lose Yourself" re-envisioned as a high school math course. The math and film departments of Madison East High School collaborate on a video, starring math teacher Philip Galarowicz. Not to be confused with The Rappin' Mathematician (hear "The Number Line Dance" here), or these high school math rappers, or the rap battle of TI-83 and Fitty Slope. The quadratic formula, rapped. The quadratic formula, rapped again. The quadratic formula, rapped, strangely compellingly, by a teacher in a tie.
posted by escabeche on Dec 5, 2009 - 28 comments

Do You Like Bright Lights?

Izza Kizza - I'm The Izza Kizza (lyrics nsfw) by Yoram Benz of Decon Media (YouTube channel). [more inside]
posted by battlebison on Dec 2, 2009 - 18 comments

The Hamilton Mixtape

Tony Award nominated actor Lin-Manuel Miranda presents a rap about Alexander Hamilton from the perspective of Aaron Burr titled "The Hamilton Mixtape." [more inside]
posted by America on Nov 18, 2009 - 31 comments

Russell Jones, aka The Ol' Dirty Bastard, aka Ason Unique, aka Osirus, aka Big Baby Jesus, aka Dirt McGirt, aka Joe Bananas, aka Ol' Dirt Schultz. Always for the children.

Five years ago today Russell, also known as The Ol' Dirty Bastard, passed away in a recording studio in New York City while finishing what was to be his final album. [prev] He is remembered by those close to him. [more inside]
posted by paisley henosis on Nov 13, 2009 - 46 comments

NO HOMO

No Homo! Current's "That's Gay" addresses a hip-hop trend. (NSFW Language).
posted by hermitosis on Nov 10, 2009 - 285 comments

It's rap, old chap.

Mr B the gentleman rhymer introduces chap rap. (SLYT)
posted by handee on Oct 25, 2009 - 32 comments

The Real Slim Worf

Klenginem does Eminem songs in Klingon. SuvwI'pu' qan tu'lu'be. Also heavy metal.
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Oct 23, 2009 - 21 comments

Prisencolinensinainciusol - Ol Raight!

Sung in incoherent pseudo-English, Adriano Celentano's Prisencolinensinainciusol (1973) could be thought of as an early example of rap.
posted by dunkadunc on Oct 22, 2009 - 64 comments

Bill Cosby's Rap Album

Bill Cosby Presents the Cosnarati: State of Emergency The project includes songs about frustration, incarceration and .... [more inside]
posted by Jenny is Crafty on Oct 20, 2009 - 14 comments

when hip hop arrived

It was 30 years ago today... October, 1979: Rapper's Delight by the Sugarhill Gang was released. A few days later, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five gave us the tighter and catchier (IMHO) Superrappin'. Hip Hop had arrived. Here's a charming interview with a New York City paramedic who, as a very young photographer on the South Bronx scene back in the day, was the unofficial photo-documentarian of the birth of hip hop.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Oct 14, 2009 - 32 comments

The birth of hip hop

R.I.P. Mr. Magic. Mr. Magic's Rap Attack on WBLS was the first and for some time the only commercial radio outlet for hip hop. On October 2 Mr. Magic, John Rivas, passed from a heart attack. Previously 1 2 3.
posted by caddis on Oct 7, 2009 - 16 comments

How the Fuck I'm Losing the Battle to Tyrese?

Doomsday vs. Lyric (YT). From Rhyme Spitters 2006, a documentary of an annual Chicago tournament of freestyle emcee battles – completely improvised verbal battles between two rappers where insults are brought to a lyrical form that's often hilarious, often very politically incorrect, and usually NSFW. It's usually not taken personal by either party – in fact, it's not unusual in these battles to see a rapper smiling in appreciation of a particularly well-crafted insult that just came from their opponent. See also Rhyme Spitters 1, 2, and 4, each hour-long documentaries online at Vimeo featuring tons more battles.
posted by WCityMike on Sep 27, 2009 - 36 comments

I can't blab such blibber blubber! My tongue isn't make of rubber.

Fox in Socks with beatbox
posted by ardgedee on Sep 23, 2009 - 24 comments

Shakespeare in music

Amazing to see how differently Shakespeare's work has been dealt with in music: there is Jerry Lee Lewis doing a blues on Othello. David Gilmour, former Pink Floyd lead singer, guitarist and songwriter, turned Sonnet 18 into a touchingly beautiful ballad. The Metal Shakespeare Company wrote a heavy metal song about Hamlet (III/1), "To bleed or not to bleed". And yes, there is Shakespeare rap, too: William Shatner (the very same!) raps about Caesar and British rapper Akala thinks he is a reincarnation of the bard. Last but not least, the Beatles tried their luck at Shakespeare, too (no music this time): they did a skit on the famous Pyramus and Thisbe scene from A Midsummer Night's Dream (very rare footage!).
posted by Matthias Rascher on Sep 22, 2009 - 37 comments

It’s on and on and on on and on like the hot butter on the what? Popcorn!

Mark Skillz, hip hop historian of a sort and an occasional writer for Wax Poetics, represents the old school of hip hop and lets others tell their stories on Hip Hop 101A. From Eddie Cheba recalling his time as a top DJ in the small world of hip hop in 1977, to the life of Sparky D, who took up the good fight for UTFO and started the Roxanne Wars, one of hip hop's first rap battles. Read up on the fall of funk and the rise of Planet Rock, and reminisce with Reggie Wells about the birth of hip hop from black club deejays in Manhattan who were refining a slick style of talk over disco records to open hip hop jams in the park. As a bonus, Wells throws out a playlist straight from Club 371 (videos after the break). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 18, 2009 - 23 comments

More false stories in the news

Roxanne Shanté, considered by some to be a queen of hip hop, got Warner Music to pay for her PhD in psychology. Except, a Slate investigation says it never happened. [more inside]
posted by movicont on Sep 2, 2009 - 72 comments

Christmas in Hollis

Hip-hop has another warrant of bourgeois respectability to place on the shelf: Run-D.M.C. have had a street named after them in Brooklyn.
posted by shothotbot on Aug 31, 2009 - 37 comments

Sampling =/= Stealing

Jason Derulo's song "Watcha Say" which debuted at 54th on the Billboard Hot 100 and is currently 5th on the Itunes Top 100 list prominently samples Imogen Heap's song "Hide and Seek" without giving her credit. Sampling in rap music has a long and controversial history.
posted by kylej on Aug 26, 2009 - 46 comments

210 songs in 10 minutes

Last week, Eddy Temple Morris, a DJ on UK radio station XFM, challenged Twitter to remix as many songs as possible into 10 minutes. The previous record was held by Wizard of Deekline and Wizard - it is now held by rapper, producer and all-round renaissance man Akira the Don, who managed to fit a staggering 210 tracks into 1/6 of an hour. He's just put together a video to accompany the mix - watch it here
posted by muggsy1079 on Aug 26, 2009 - 22 comments

A critical analysis of 'Regulate'

If you were a child of the '90's, then Regulate by Warren G and Nate Dogg was probably your jam. Here is a critical analysis of the song by comedian Sean Keane. If only all gangsta rap had such deep meaning.
posted by reenum on Jul 30, 2009 - 63 comments

When keeping it real(ist) goes wrong

Back when he was younger, Jay-Z was a merciless, ruthless killer in the "beefs" which define hip hop politics. [...] As Jay-Z got older and more powerful, the marginal benefits of such battles declined and the costs increased even as the number of would-be rivals escalated. Just as the U.S. attracts resentment and rhetorical anti-Americanism simply by virtue of being on top, so did Jay-Z attract a disproportionate number of attackers.
Marc Lynch compares international relations to rap feuds, with Jay-Z as the hegemon and up-and-comer The Game as the "insurgent." [more inside]
posted by aheckler on Jul 22, 2009 - 16 comments

All that glitters ain't shit

Why hip-hop sucks in 2009. by Dr. Lawyer Indian Chief of FreeDarko [more inside]
posted by AceRock on Jul 21, 2009 - 113 comments

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