There are a lot of good hip hop albums coming out in the next few weeks. I’m about to be broke buying all this music!
I know…it’s weird to hear that people still buy music these days, but I like to show my support for the independent artists (or those who are in the mainstream, but are still very different from most of the other artists you hear on the radio).
Don’t get it twisted though, I’ll bootleg the hell out of a Jay-Z or Kanye album — they already have enough money.
9/18: Brother Ali “Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color”
9/25: Lupe Fiasco “Food & Liquor 2” and Murs & Fashawn “This Generation”
10/2: Bambu “…One Rifle Per Family”
10/9: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis “The Heist”
10/16: Dumbfoundead “Take the Stares”
"Rap and Hip-Hop isn't meaningful or complex!"
- 2Pac: And since we all came from a woman, got our name from a woman and our game from a woman, I wonder why we take from our women. Why we rape our women, do we hate our women? I think it's time to kill for our women, time to heal our women, be real to our women. And if we don't we'll have a race of babies that will hate the ladies that make the babies. And since a man can't make one, he has no right to tell a woman when and where to create one.
- Jay-Z: Silly rappers, because we got a couple Porsches, MTV stopped by to film our fortresses. We forget the unfortunate. Sure I ponied up a mill, but I didn't give my time. So in reality I didn't give a dime, or a damn. I just put my monies in the hands of the same people that left my people stranded. Nothin' but a bandit, left them folks abandoned. Damn, that money that we gave was just a band-aid, can't say we better off than we was before.
- Kanye West: Is it genocide? 'Cause I can still hear his momma cry, know the family traumatized. Shots left holes in his face, 'bout piranha-size. The old pastor closed the cold casket, and said the church ain’t got enough room for all the tombs. It’s a war going on outside we ain’t safe from, I feel the pain in my city wherever I go. 314 soldiers died in Iraq, 509 died in Chicago.
- Mos Def: When the average minimum wage is $5.15, you best believe you gotta find a new grind to get cream. The white unemployment rate, is nearly more than triple for black so frontliners got they gun in your back. Bubblin crack, jewel theft and robbery to combat poverty and end up in the global jail economy. Stiffer stipulations attached to each sentence. Budget cutbacks but increased police presence. And even if you get out of prison still livin join the other five million under state supervision. This is business, no faces just lines and statistics from your phone, your zip code, to S-S-I digits. The system break man child and women into figures. Two columns for who is, and who ain't niggaz. Numbers is hardly real and they never have feelings but you push too hard, even numbers got limits. Why did one straw break the camel's back? Here's the secret: the million other straws underneath it - it's all mathematics
- Lupe Fiasco: I really think the war on terror is a bunch of bullshit. Just a poor excuse for you to use up all your bullets. How much money does it take to really make a full clip. 9/11 building 7 did they really pull it. And a bunch of other cover ups. Your childs future was the first to go with budget cuts. If you think that hurts then, wait here comes the uppercut. The school was garbage in the first place, thats on the up and up. Keep you at the bottom but tease you with the uppercrust. You get it then they move you so you never keeping up enough. If you turn on TV all you see’s a bunch of “what the fucks”. Dude is dating so and so blabbering bout such and such. And that aint Jersey Shore, homie thats the news. And these the same people that supposed to be telling us the truth. Limbaugh is a racist, Glenn Beck is a racist. Gaza strip was getting bombed, Obama didn’t say shit. Thats why I aint vote for him, next one either. I’ma part of the problem, my problem is I’m peaceful. And I believe in the people.
FAVORITE ALBUMS OF 2011
Just because it’s already March doesn’t mean that we still can’t talk about last year, right? Anyway, I’m lagging as always, but for my new readers/followers, I do this “favorite albums” thing on an annual basis. Also, I don’t know if I just took more time to search for new music in 2011, but out of all the years, this was definitely the toughest list to decide on (even with the Honorable Mention section). As usual, there’s a lot of hip hop, but the top choices are from a different genre.
1. Jeff Bernat - The Gentleman Approach
The closest thing I can come to describing this album is saying that it reminds me of 90’s R&B. The brotha is just smoove widdit (see previous post).
Favorite Tracks: Just Vibe, Ms. Seductive
2. Adele - 21
Even though this album came out in the beginning of the year, I didn’t get my hands on it until the last few months of 2011 (I’m slightly embarrassed to admit that this was actually the first time that I really listened to any of her music). That woman can sing!!
Favorite Tracks: Someone Like You (I know…it’s played out), He Won’t Go
3. J. Cole - Cole World: The Sideline Story
A lot of my homies have been J. Cole fans for awhile now, but this is another artist I slept on. I’m pretty selective with the hip hop content I listen to and this album doesn’t really fit the mold, but I found myself bumpin’ this…a lot.
Favorite Tracks: Sideline Story, Lost Ones
4. Blue Scholars - Cinemetropolis
This was a much different sound from their previous albums. Although I was feelin’ the lyrics, this album gave me a newfound respect for Sabzi (the DJ/producer) — he’s definitely one of the most versatile beat makers out there.
Favorite Tracks: Marion Sunshine, Yuri Kochiyama
5. Lupe Fiasco - Lasers
Upon my very first listen, I wanted to delete this album from my iPod. I was extremely disappointed with it and thought it was so watered down and tried too hard to have mainstream appeal, but considering his previous track record, I gave Lupe the benefit of the doubt. I still think a lot of the hooks are really lame and cheesy, but this album really grew on me and was actually one of my top contenders for most of the year. The lyrical content was still on point, which is ultimately what matters most to me.
Favorite Tracks: Words I Never Said, ‘Til I Get There
6. Murs - Love & Rockets, Vol. 1: The Transformation
I’ve said it many, many times before, but Murs is one of my favorite MCs and I think this just might be his best album to date.
Favorite Tracks: Eazy E, Animal Style
7. Mayer Hawthorne - How Do You Do
What can I say? The dude is just smoove with it. I’m diggin’ this more than his first album too.
Favorite Tracks: Get to Know You, Dreaming
8. Prometheus Brown & Bambu - Walk Into A Bar
Two of my favorite MCs, Prometheus Brown (aka Geo of Blue Scholars) and Bambu (formerly of Native Guns) doing a collabo project together?! Yooo…I damn sure couldn’t sleep on this one! Yet another solid release from the Beatrock Music label.
Favorite Tracks: Nowhere, National Treasure
9. Phonte - Charity Starts at Home
Kind of like with the Lupe Fiasco album, this one really took some time to grow on me. I thought it was just aight at first, but was actually a little disappointed. I think he’s one of the dopest and wittiest rappers in the game right now, which is why I had really high expectations that weren’t immediately met. I’ve been bumping this a lot and the dude really touches on some good subjects while still having an original flow. This will be in heavy rotation for a long time to come.
Favorite Tracks: The Good Fight, Sendin’ My Love
10. Childish Gambino - Camp
This is probably the most “commercial” sounding album on my list. It’s similar to the J. Cole album in the sense that I might disagree with a lot of the content, but I’m still feelin’ it (see previous post).
Favorite Tracks: Outside, Hold You Down
HONORABLE MENTION (in no particular order):
1. The Roots - Undun: I have a strong feeling that this one will grow on me a lot over time, especially considering that it’s a concept album.
2. Krystle Tugadi - Time EP
3. Dumbfoundead - DFD
4. re:plus - Ordinary Landscape: Shout out to my FlowEthics fam for their Japan to CA collabo!!
5. Little Dragon - Ritual Union
6. Zee Avi - Ghostbird
7. Charles Bradley - No Time for Dreaming
8. Mikey Manifest - Collection Fifteen
9. Stic.Man - The Workout
10. Digital Martyrs Remix Beatrock
Jay-Z & Kanye West - Watch the Throne: I had really high expectations for this one but was pretty let down. I’m not saying it was a horrible album, I just wasn’t feeling it as much as I thought I would.