It had already been a long day by the time I arrived at the Chicken Shop inside Chicago’s Soho House. Continue reading STRETCH & BOBBITO: RADIO THAT CHANGED MY LIFE
It’s no secret that Chicago is squarely on the map in the lexicon of the national hip-hop conversation. The proliferation of talent in the ‘Go was a central theme in a feature we ran last week, and this week we unpack the sort of ripples that such a movement in Chicago has helped to establish. Midwest cities such Detroit, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Minneapolis and St. Louis have long been a breeding ground for underground talent. However, there currently stands a select number of truly talented and unique acts across the breadth of the country’s heartland that are largely pacing music on the national scale and beyond and deserve a fair amount of attention. Continue reading 10 BUZZING ARTISTS FROM THE MIDWEST YOU NEED TO KNOW
Man, Spike Lee might want to stay away from Chicago for awhile.
On Tuesday, the trailer for his much talked-about film Chi-Raq was released online, immediately sparking quite a fervor on Twitter and beyond. While we definitely can’t make brash judgements on the film’s concept as a whole given we’ve only seen a two minute and 31 second trailer, there are some questionable aspects of this first glimpse of the comedy that seem ill-suited for the subject matter. Continue reading SPIKE LEE’S “CHI-RAQ” TRAILER JUST ANGERED AN ENTIRE CITY
Last week, it was reported that ISIS member Denis Cuspert was taken out by drone strikes in Syria.
What does this have to do with hip-hop? One headline for the story read: “German-Born Rapper Who Joined ISIS Was Killed In U.S. Airstrike.” I immediately clicked the link, scanning the story for any mention of an actual affiliation to music, and unsurprisingly I found none. As has been the case for years, media outlets love to use the genre of rap and rapper as an occupation to push an agenda associated with violence, anti-government and mayhem. Continue reading TO PIMP A GENRE: HOW RAP IS DEFINED IN MEDIA
Earlier this week, Chance The Rapper and his Social Experiment band unveiled “Angels,” a new single with special guest Saba, on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. The performance was a moment to remember as D-Low and DJ Oreo joined for footwork support, the push toward Chance’s much-anticipated third solo release officially underway. While the brevity of a fully independent act debuting a song on national television wasn’t lost on most, there was one element of the performance that was tucked away yet in full sight. Continue reading COULD CHANCE THE RAPPER’S LATE SHOW PERFORMANCE BRING CHANGE TO CHICAGO RADIO?
Three years ago things were just getting exciting around Chicago. Chief Keef had just made the country take a collective gulp as he shoved guns into the lens of a Handicam protected by his thick mop of locks, Kids These Days had just dropped Hard Times and were preparing their proper full-length and a kid named Chance was beginning to get some attention for his recent 10 Day mixtape. The spotlights were on their way, quickly tearing themselves from Atlanta long enough to get entranced by the almost creepy sound of drill, packed full of real-life assertions that played on America’s penchant for struggle behind glass. Fresh off of journalism school I arrived in Chicago, the local scene seemed set for big things and I was at the center of it, reporting at the time for the Chicago Sun-Times. Continue reading THE STATE OF CHICAGO HIP-HOP: NO END IN SIGHT