Drake, Lizzo, A Tribe Called Quest, Mac Miller & More Flourish On Obama’s 2019 Summer Playlist

Former president Barack Obama is back with his annual summer playlist and this year is just as diverse as ever. Obama tweeted out a screenshot of the 44-track sonic adventure on Saturday morning (August 24).

“With summer winding down, here’s a sampling of what Michelle and I have been listening to — some new, some old, some fast, some slow. Hope you enjoy.”

From Drake’s “Too Good” collaboration with Rihanna and The Spinners classic “I’ll Be Around” to Beyoncé, JAY-Z, Childish Gambino and Oumou Sangaré’s “MOOD 4 EVA”and Lizzo’s “Juice,” Obama’s tastes are all over the place.

Obama, who’s always been outspoken about his love for Hip Hop, also included Lauryn Hill’s classic “Doo-Wop (That Thing),” SZA’s “Go Gina,” Mac Miller and Anderson .Paak’s “Dang” and — yep! — Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus’ massive hit, “Old Town Road (Remix).” 

And for those Hip Hop purists, A Tribe Called Quest’s “Can I Kick It?” and Erick Sermon’s “Music” featuring Marvin Gaye is on the list as well.

Check it out above (obviously).

Hasbro Toys Now Owns Death Row Records

Death Row Records has reportedly been acquired by the Hasbro toy company, the same entity responsible for several classic toys such as Mr. Potato Head, My Little Pony and G.I. Joe.

According to Rolling Stone, Hasbro announced on Thursday (August 22) they had purchased Entertainment One, a multimedia company that owns the children’s franchises Peppa Pig and PJ Masks.

eOne also has a music division, which just happens to be one of the largest independent labels in the industry. During this year’s first quarter, the company took in $30 million worth of revenue.

“Hasbro will leverage eOne’s immersive entertainment capabilities to bring our portfolio of brands that have appeal to gamers, fans and families to all screens globally and realize full franchise economics across our blueprint strategy for shareholders,” CEO Brian Goldner told Deadline. “We are excited to welcome eOne’s talented employees from around the world into the Hasbro family.”

eOne has owned Death Row’s catalog for several years. The company spent roughly $280 million to buy it in 2013, seven years after the legendary Hip Hop label was forced to declare bankruptcy.

Toys Against The World?

50 Cent Expresses Amazement At Busta Rhymes’ Fitness Results Once Again

As you may remember, last year, 50 Cent and Busta Rhymes got in a bit a spat. It all started with 50 clowning Busta for having the “strongest neck in hip hop“. Despite this being a relatively innocuous comment and 50 Cent being the biggest instigator in hip hop, Busta did not take 50’s odd compliment lightly. This led to a series childish back-and-forth jabs, with the latest development being 50 genuinely commending Busta on his progress in the gym back in April. But course, when it comes to 50 – who can be as petty as a cartoon villain – it’s hard to tell whether he’s praising someone or taking a subtle shot. 

For this reason, 50’s latest Instagram post about Busta’s physique has us on our toes. In regards to a photo an incredibly hefty-looking Bus-a-Bus, 50 wrote, “Damn it man, Busta arms the size my leg. LOL WHAT TF is going on BUS”. While this can be interpreted as amazement at his strength, the “LOL” and laughing emojis might stir this semi-friendly feud in the wrong direction. Busta probably won’t be too happy when he finds himself as the butt 50’s joke once again. Considering Busta’s ever-increasing size, 50 still making these comments shows that he is truly afraid nothing and everyone is merely a pawn to be used for his own amusement. 

Common Explains Why He Decided To Never Use Homophobic Lyrics Again

Common is paraded as being a social activist who accepts people regardless their life choices, however, over a decade ago the rapper was called out for his lyrics. He had fans who championed his causes and appreciated his cultured worldview, however, there were some in the LGBTQIA community who didn’t appreciate his choice to use homophobic terms.

On his song “Heidi Hoe” he rapped “Homo’s a no-no, so f*ggots, stay solo” and on “Dooinit” he said, “N*ggas hate you, they ain’t paying you no attention / In a circle f*ggots, your name is mentioned.” In 2007, Common vowed to never again use words that were fensive to the LGBTQIA community, and during a recent interview with Clay Cane on SiriusXM Urban View for The Clay Cane Show, the rapper clarified the events leading up to that decision.

“Two guys who were gay came to me after a show and they said, ‘Common man, we love your music. We love your music. Your music touches us. But the fact that you using the word f*g is like, man, that hurts us,'” he recalled. “It was just like an awakening because it humanized everything that I was saying. I was only using the word ’cause it was part a culture that I grew up in. This is what we said. I didn’t even think about what the word meant and how it was affecting other people.”

Although it was common vocabulary in the culture he was raised in, Common said he had to rise above how others around him were speaking and behaving. “I had to grow into the courage and the strength within self to be like, man, I don’t care what my homies saying. I don’t care what these cats in hip hop saying, this is where I am with it. I’m not homophobic. I embrace people who are gay, who are a Christian, Muslim, Jewish. I’m open to human beings and life. So that being said, that was a real pivotal moment for me and changing my perspective. I went on to do a song called ‘Between Me, You and Liberation,’ actually, I did that song pre-2007. I just created this story how one my friends told me he was gay and how I had to deal with it and grown no matter what I still loved him as my friend and I felt like that was all apart the conversation I had with those gentlemen.”

Atlantic Records Makes 6-Figure Donation To Nipsey Hussle Foundation

Los Angeles, CA – Atlantic Records gave a generous gift to the Neighborhood Nip Foundation reportedly in the sum of over six figures. The exact amount of the donation was not disclosed though payment was confirmed through Nipsey Hussle’s business partner and friend, Karen Civil to HipHopDX.

The announcement comes on the eve of his Puma signature shoe release scheduled in September — a deal he had in place before his untimely demise.

The Hip Hop Icon began a partnership with Atlantic Records in 2017 along with his All Money In label when he signed a multi-album deal.

“Nipsey is not only an extraordinary MC, but a true visionary and innovative entrepreneur,” Atlantic CEO Craig Kallman and COO Julie Greenwald said in a joint statement after his signing in 2017.

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All$IN X @atlanticrecords 🏁

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They continued, “Over the past seven years, he has built an incredible brand that reflects his independent, non-traditional approach to what it means to be a creative artist in the modern music marketplace. We are thrilled and honored that he has chosen Atlantic as his label home.”

Since the Los Angeles prodigy was murdered in front of his Marathon Clothing Store in March, many fans have paid homage through supporting his clothing business.

The enterprise has amassed over $10 million from then. The physical location is temporarily closed while a Nipsey Hussle Tower is being constructed.

DJ Muggs & Meyhem Lauren Drop Video For "Balance"

DJ Muggs has spent years as a mainstay within underground Hip Hop through his two years old Soul Assassins series of albums alongside his work with pioneering West Coast group Cypress Hill.

Most recently DJ Muggs dropped his Soul Assassins: DIA DEL ASESINATO project featuring guest appearances from Freddie Gibbs, MF Doom, Raekwon, Kool G Rap and more.

For the single and video for “Balance,” DJ Muggs recruits Action Bronson associate Meyhem Lauren. The two already collaborated on this year’s Member’s Only project. Fans in LA can also catch Mayhem September 11 at Cafe Fais Do-Do with ETO.

#DXCLUSIVE: Holly Reveals How Gunplay Ended Up On His "On Me" Single

In 2013, Miguel Oliviera wasn’t known as Holly and wasn’t even making music of his own yet, but was inspired by former Maybach Music Group member Gunplay.

Since then, Holly has made a name for himself worldwide as an EDM turntablist, was named one of the top producers of the year by DJ Mag and Run The Trap, and now, he has a song with Gunplay and OKAY! KENJI called “On Me.”

“Gunplay has been one of my favorite rappers since I first heard “Ghetto Symphony” in 2013.” Holly said in a press release.

“It’s crazy how I used to listen to his music before I even began making music on my own, and now we’re on the same record together. I can’t thank OKAY! KENJI enough for helping bring this track to life as well.”

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Back in July, the 24-year-old Portuguese producer/DJ unleashed his thunderous “Til I Die” single featuring A$AP TyY and Vancouver producer NXSTY, from his forthcoming EP, Alameda 1000.

Much like “Til I Die,” “On Me” fuses the inherent boom-bap bounce synonymous with sounds in today’s 808 tinged Hip Hop production with brain-scrambling EDM style drops and bridges.

Holly communicated with HipHopDX over Email about how the track came together and his approach to producing from both an EDM and Hip Hop perspective.

HipHopDX: Your techniques sound more Hip Hop-based than a typical EDM turntablist. What equipment do you use?

Holly: Thanks! I use FL to make beats and Ableton for live shows. I do almost everything inside of both DAW’s and actually, don’t use much gear besides a MIDI controller!

HipHopDX: Gunplay always makes for an interesting guest choice. Why him?

Holly: My homie that is also featured on the song, OKAY! KENJI had this unreleased acapella from a Gunplay studio session that he used to work at in Atlanta. When he showed me that, we started working and building out an instrumental around his vocals. I’ve been a huge fan of his music for years so it feels really great to have him on my record.

HipHopDX: Are you aiming for a trap classic with the EP? Explain what makes this particular project unique.

Holly: I’m just aiming to blend a series of different sounds that I’ve been working with since I started making music, which is exactly what makes this project unique. I’ve been taking electronic influenced music and mixing it with Hip Hop & rap vocals to create a totally different sound from what so many producers are doing right now.

Holly’s Alameda 1000 is currently set for release Insomniac Records on September 13.

Stream “On Me” above.

Royce Da 5’9 Slams Lord Jamar For Eminem Slander: "I Don’t Want To Have To Fuck Nobody Up"

Lord Jamar is one of Eminem’s most outspoken detractors and VladTV has provided the perfect platform for the Brand Nubian MC to spew his vitriol at Slim Shady for years.

But Royce Da 5’9 has evidently had enough. On Thursday (August 22), the Slaughterhouse alum went on a nearly 10-minute diatribe slamming both Jamar and DJ Vlad for continuing to criticize Em.

“If people knew how much money he made off this shit they’d probably look at it different,” Royce begins “Especially Lord Jamar. You a legend in the game, you part of a legendary group. You going and sitting in this man’s couch, sitting in this man’s chair, and you running up these views cause you got so much controversial shit to say about one fuckin’ person. [Vlad] walks away with the cheque and you walk away craving attention. I don’t even like seeing niggaas in that space. I don’t like seeing you in that space brutha.

“Talking about Em like ‘real niggas don’t listen to his music. First of all, you not the measuring stick of who’s real, who’s cool. I don’t know what you think about us over here, or you think about me. I understand you said you respect 50, but the other niggas know who I don’t respect. I don’t care about none of that shit. You don’t have to respect me just don’t disrespect me. I don’t want no problems with nobody and I don’t want to have to fuck nobody up.”

Royce also questions when Jamar became the metric for what people listen to in the hood.

“You’re not cool to me, you’re not tough to me, you’re not the measuring stick of what street niggas listen to,” he continues.”I don’t look at you like no type of street nigga. I look at you the same way you look at Marshall [Mathers]. You say he talk about a bunch of shit he don’t do? I feel like you rapped about a bunch of shit you never did, and you still ain’t doing. What’s really the difference?”

He then challenges Jamar to highlight one bar from his rap career that gives him the right to rip apart a gifted lyricist like Eminem.

“Please tell me one line you have said in your career that qualifies you to critique a top tier lyricist?” he says. “I don’t give a fuck if you don’t like his music, the muthafucka is in everybody Top 5. You don’t get there just by being a white rapper.”

Nickel Nine also disagrees with both Nick Cannon and Jamar’s claim that nobody bumped Em in the streets.

“There’s a small community of muthafuckas that went to the Hip Hop shop before we got on,” he explains. “We was the backpack niggas. All of us, we listened to Em’s album. Everybody in the hood was listening to Em’s album that was into lyrics.

“Every real nigga ain’t street and every street nigga ain’t real. Every nigga in the hood ain’t a street nigga that only want to listen to Jeezy. Every nigga that sit his broke ass on DJ Vlad couch don’t qualify to speak for real niggas. Ya’ll niggas ain’t fuckin’ cool man, ya’ll goofy as fuck!”

The 42-year-old wraps up his comments by touching on JAY-Z and his alignment with the NFL while wondering why he’s the only Hip Hop billionaire.

“It ain’t never been about no tough guy shit,” he concludes. “It’s about what can yo offer the culture? What can you do that’s gonna make you last? Are you gonna make a classic album? I don’t give a fuck about your radio song. I don’t care about that dog. I’ve been here for 20 years. I’ve seen niggas come and go.

“Would you rather make $700,000 for 20 years straight or would you rather make $2 million for two years straight and then fall off? That’s depression and suicide waiting to happen.”

Trae Tha Truth Shares "Exhale" LP

Trae Tha Truth has released a new album titled Exhale. The project is the veteran MC’s first studio LP since Hometown Hero, which dropped in March 2018, and the follow-up to last summer’s 48 Hours Later mixtape.

The Houston Hip Hop stalwart’s latest work is comprised of 12 songs. The ABN leader keeps it a truly solo affair with no guests featured on the album.

View Trae’s Exhale stream, cover art and tracklist below.

Trae Tha Truth Shares "Exhale" LP

1. Exhale
2. Not in the Mood
3. Same Ol Love
4. How It Go
5. Even Tho Its Hard
6. Run Away
7. I Gotta Get It
8. Slidin
9. Yo Anthem
10. Nipsey
11. Letter 2 Truth
12. Feelin Dat

Soltau NYC Drops Visual Fall 2019 Lookbook Featuring Col3trane & GoldLink Music

Los Angeles, CA – Directed by Hip Hop video director ThirdEyeRaz, NYC-based fashion house Soultau NYC has released their fall 2019 with a visual twist.

The concept, which ThirdEyeRaz tells HipHopDX he describes as “visually pleasing art” also sports music from Col3trane featuring GoldLink with their recently released track “Superpowers.”

Check out the Soltau NYC lookbook above and revisit the aforementioned record down below.

Ja Rule’s Kids Really Don’t Want Him To Do A Second Fyre Festival

As we all know, Ja Rule was a major part the best festival that never happened when he lent his name to The Fyre Festival before it turned into a major scam that has gone down in history. While the “Mesmerize” rapper has apologized for his involvement in the festival, he’s still planning on bringing back the party for a successful second round. 

While Ja Rule may be excited, his kids have a different opinion on the matter as we’ve seen in the latest clip  Growing Up Hip Hop: New York. “I’m nervous about my dad recreating another festival,” Ja Rule’s daughter Brittney said, E!. “It does make my heart drop to my stomach. I feel like it could get very messy very quickly, and it can go really bad.” 

Ja Rule's Kids Really Don't Want Him To Do A Second Fyre Festival
Dia Dipasupil/Getty s

Ja Rule’s son Jeff explained how kids showed him numerous memes the incident at school and agreed with his sister about being worried about their image being tarnished – something Ja Rule shared some wisdom on. 

“I will say this: You can’t always control in life what happens,” he explained. “You can control how you react to it, and the outcome that. We here, we doing the f–k we doing. Iconic Fest here we come baby!” 

Would you go to a Fyre Festival put on by Ja Rule?

Interview: Murs On The N-Word, P-Word & Tupac’s Profound Influence

Murs is waiting for his wife to go into labor on her due date, August 11, when he picks up the phone. The irony isn’t lost on the veteran MC that August 11 also marks Hip Hop’s birthday. “How cliché would that be?” he says with a chuckle.

It’s good to hear Murs laugh considering he’s just come through one of the most challenging periods of his life, something he was brutally honest about on 2018’s A Strange Journey Into The Unimaginable, his last album for Strange Music, Inc.

As part of the highly personal project, the Living Legends MC rapped about his still-born child, divorce, paralyzing grief and the pain he experienced as a result. With those dark times in his rearview, Murs is not only awaiting the birth of his third child but also celebrating the release of his new album, The Iliad Is Dead and the Odyssey Is Over

Produced by 9th Wonder and The Soul Council, the project reunites the Hip Hop super duo, resulting in the magic chemistry that was present on 2004’s Murs 3:16: The 9th Edition.

In Part 1 of HipHopDX’s interview, Murs explains why making A Strange Journey Into The Unimaginable was necessary, his views on women, stance on the n-word and why he’s got mad love for his English teachers.

HipHopDX: So baby coming any minute, huh?

Murs: Yeah. It’s a whole thing. Honestly, it’s a bittersweet thing. It’s a triggering experience for us. One success and one failure, so there’s two feelings, you know? It’s just hard to battle. 

HipHopDX: I was going through your catalog and I was thinking about your last record, A Strange Journey Into the Unimaginable, specifically the song “Melancholy.” I was thinking about everything that you’ve had to go through to get to this point. Now that you’ve kind of purged that out of your system, did you feel a different vibe when you recorded this new one?

Murs: Yeah, definitely. I was in a different place. I was able to just make music again and be fantastic, not in the modern sense of the word, but in the literal sense of the word — just make shit up, tell stories and be in the moment with the music. I wouldn’t have been able to do that without making that last record. I’m sorry to fans if it feels like I forced that mood on them. It’s just what comes out and that was right on top of whatever theme was going to come out.

HipHopDX: I think that record was right on time, and I think it’s something you definitely needed to do. I love hearing more about the personal side in what you’ve experienced. There’s definitely things on there I relate to and I also think it can help make people a little bit more courageous when it comes to maybe talking about their own shit.

Murs: Right. Yeah, that is super important. 

HipHopDX: How does it feel to have the album out there and back with 9th Wonder again? That must’ve been quite the experience.

Murs: It always feels good to put it out. It’s getting a great reception. It’s the best reception I’ve had for a record in years. And I probably spent less money than the last couple records. I’m glad it’s resonating. It felt good to hook up with 9th Wonder again. Everything’s changed for us. We stayed the same, but we’re still solid.

HipHopDX: Yeah, that chemistry is there. As soon as you get back together, it’s like, “Oh, yeah. This feels good.”

Murs: Yeah, yeah. I guess it’s really when you know your family and that’s how we’ve always approached it. I think that’s why, you know? To me, I trip out on it because I am able to record where someone has seen so much success and is, to me, one of the greatest producers of my generation. It’s a blessing and something I didn’t take lightly, so I was definitely trying to rap my ass off.

HipHopDX: You did, yeah.

Murs: See, 9th only did three beats on the whole thing.

HipHopDX: Oh, he only did three beats?

Murs: Yeah, he only did three. The rest was The Soul Council. Eric G did two, Kash did two, Khrysis did two, Nottz did two and 9th’s daughter, JDEAFBEATS, did one.

HipHopDX: Yeah, that’s right. And she’s 15 years old, right?

Murs: Yeah. So sweet. She smashed it. I’ve known her since she was born. So it’s ill to have someone you’ve known as a baby making a beat for your record. But she suffers from profound hearing loss. She’s just like [9th]. She loves basketball and music, and she found a way to be great at both. She’s an amazing basketball player and her dad sponsors her team. It’s called Carolina Dream. She’s an amazing young woman.

HipHopDX: So there’s a few songs on here that really stand out to me – “My Hero,” “Night Shift,” “High Noon” with Rapsody and “Give Me a Reason.” I’ve wanted to talk to you about this for awhile. On one hand, I feel like you have this immense gratitude, respect and love for women. Then, a song like “Unicorn Glitter” totally throws me off. Is it the two sides of Murs? Is it simply the complexities of the human condition? What is it?

Murs: I think it’s … I mean, it was all Tupac because Tupac could make “I Get Around” and “Keep Ya Head Up” on the same record. Nobody’s view of anything is 100 percent. I think there’s a lot of social justice warriors that want to pretend it is and they can’t. To me, that’s when it erupts in something and you find out, “Oh, such and such activist has sex with all of the girls at the protest,” you know what I mean? When you try to be this person that no man is … It’s different with men of God, but even the men of God I’ve talked to, they admit they have lustful thoughts, you know? I don’t feel like I’ve ever, in any of those songs, maybe used the word bitch more than once.

HipHopDX: Right.

Murs: Especially with something like “Unicorn Glitter” or “Freak These Tales” where I guess I’ll say I’m condoning these stories of womanizing or whatever it’s called. To me, it’s about balance. I’ve made lots of “Love and Appreciates.” I’ve made “Dark Skinned White Girls.” So, it’s just doing the whole spectrum. And even in “Unicorn Glitter,” I’m really being educational, and it was maybe a metaphor for women who think they’re better than other women because I see a lot of powerful things happening. No woman is better than any other woman. There’s so many things going on that I feel like are really great for women. But some women are so preoccupied with hating on all other women.

HipHopDX: What does your wife think?

Murs: She’s a very in-tune woman. She really knows her body. I’ve dated other women who just … I’ve had to tell girls, “Your bra is too tight, you probably haven’t tried a new bra size since high school. You probably should do that, it’s not good for you.” You know, breast cancer. Because I grew up with a mom who was very open about it — cramps, her menstrual cycle and everything that was going on with her body. So when I went on a date, I was more familiar.

A lot of people’s mothers don’t feel empowered, so they don’t tell their daughters certain things about their bodies. If a girl has a lot of sex, that doesn’t mean her pussy is loose. These are myths, but a lot of women believe these things. Men talk about pussy so much, why not say something that could be helpful to women?

HipHopDX: Right. But do you think that the young women really want to hear about it? I don’t, personally. You can’t think all women talk that way. It makes me cringe when you said that.

Murs: I think it’s a personal thing. I don’t like the word Peter. I was dying to have sex with a girl for at least a year and a half, and she finally was about to have sex with me and she said, “Oh, your Peter is so whatever.” I literally got out of the bed and walked out of the house and never tried to have sex with her again. So I did that. I don’t think it’s a one-way street, you know what I mean?

HipHopDX: Yeah, that’s a good point.

Murs: 9th listened to that song and was like, “Whatever,” but then one of my hardcore fans from New Mexico — she’s a young lady who’s been coming to my shows since she was 16 — she DM’d me and said, “This is my favorite song.”

I’ve had women say, “This offended me,” and I’m like, “Well, you know what? I’ve performed this around women. I’ve had women tell me they love these songs.” So, I can’t base what I do off the opinion of making one woman uncomfortable because I know I make music that resonates with women and there are not many rappers that can say that. 

HipHopDX: Right, totally. I listened to “My Hero” and then it’s like, whoa, I get a totally different feeling from that one. I love how you approached the topic though. I thought it was beautifully done.

Murs: I make real music for women who are, in a way, like me. I like backpack rap, but that’s not who I am. I love gangsta rap. I grew up in the inner city. I’m an inner city kid that appreciates those rappers as well, but they don’t speak my truth. Atmosphere doesn’t speak my truth, but I love Atmosphere. But DJ Quik speaks more to my life experience, but I love them both. And I think that that’s kind of what you can … You know how I said that women who listen to and love “My Hero” and “Unicorn Glitter,” and that’s who I speak to. And I think the best part about it is, for someone like you who doesn’t care for that song, we don’t have CDs or tapes anymore, so you don’t have listen to it [laughs].

HipHopDX: That’s smart, yeah. I’m not saying it’s not well done, it’s just I couldn’t get through the whole thing.

Murs: I mean, I think it’s for the women who can … what’s the band? Oh God, the Russian group.

HipHopDX: Pussy Riot.

Murs: Yeah, Pussy Riot. I feel like that’s … like a unilateral thing like the n-word, I’m like, “Alright, I don’t want to say it anymore.”

HipHopDX: What is your stance on the n-word?

Murs: I think I use it way too much on this record.

HipHopDX: Yeah? Did you listen back and you were like, “Damn, oops?”

Murs: I listened to it and I listened to it with my son. I let my son curse. My son’s seven. I curse at my kids and I let my kids curse around me — not at me. I’m not ashamed of playing music for my kids, but the n-word does make me cringe. I’m like, “You can’t say that word.” And it’s the only word that I say that I don’t let my kids say.

HipHopDX: It’s become such a part of this generation’s lexicon. It’s crazy to me that word has been normalized and I’ll admit, it can make me uncomfortable.

Murs: Yeah, it doesn’t make me uncomfortable to say it or to listen to it. But to me, it makes me uncomfortable around my children. It’s the only word that if they say it back to me, I’m like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa.” So my wife is always like, “Don’t say that,” and I try. That is something that’s going to change. I can do it more in my music than I can in my real life.

I’m the same way with saying ‘cuh’ in my songs. That’s a term that’s only used by Crips, and I’ve never been a gang banger in my whole life, but I’ve grown up around Crips my whole life. It’s almost a cultural thing. And I’m like, “Yo, I’ve got to stop saying it.” The n-word, I can turn it off and on when I’m in the right settings. The same thing with saying ‘cuh.’ Even I say it to dudes that are Bloods. I was around rappers the other day doing the Eric Andre Show and there was a Blood rapper there and I kept saying it. I had to step aside and say, “Hey, bro. If you feel some kind of way, I’m sorry.”

When the camera is on or I’m at a job interview, I could turn it off. But if you catch me at home with my brother or talking to my kids, I’m going to say it. Cuh and nigga is like, “blah, blah.” Cuh, part of it represents genocide, but it also represents brotherhood and the positive aspects of tribalism.

HipHopDX: I just premiered a track from Black Ink Crew’s Phor. He actually wrote this song called “Whole Lotta” and he made it clear, “This isn’t just about gang life, it’s just about the brotherhood that comes from it.” For some people, that’s their only family.

Murs: Yeah, it’s a code. I don’t want to let it go, but at the same time, I actually have friends that are real Crips that are like, “Don’t say that to me if you’re not a gang banger” or “I’m cool with you saying cuh, but you’re not even in a gang.” I’ve had to deal with all of the fallout of it. Those are just two words that I’m really working on desperately.

HipHopDX: That’s cool of you to even recognize that in yourself. I think that shows a lot of maturity and that you want to grow as a person. I think that’s all we can really do as people. What was your upbringing like? I know you grew up in Los Angeles, but I don’t really know too much about the real Nick [Carter].

Murs: I definitely talked parts of the truth here and there. In my eyes, I come from a good family, but it depends on who you ask. I grew up in mid-city L.A. for the most part. I lived in Lynwood, which is near Compton and Watts. Then we moved to the Valley. I came up in Los Angeles at the beginning of gang banging. There was always gangs, but I came up in the crack era, where it was really bad. Colors was about my neighborhood type of shit. I didn’t see Colors until I was 20 years old. It came out when I was 8 or 9, but my mom didn’t let us see it because we were living it. She married not the best guy to help be able to move us out of that type of environment. And so I got to live in the Valley with white kids for three years. Then she got divorced and I had to move back to L.A.

That three or four years kind of changed my life because I learned how to relate to white people and learned that there’s something outside of my neighborhood. And then I went to a really great high school. One of my English teachers just hit me on IG and commented on my album because I named it The Iliad is Dead and the Odyssey is Over.

HipHopDX: Yeah, I’m sure they assigned both those books.

Murs: They’re like, “What a title, Nick!”

HipHopDX: That’s so cool. My English teacher actually showed up to my mom’s memorial event in June, and she was the one who really encouraged me to write.

Murs: Oh, wow.

HipHopDX: Yeah, she showed up and she sent me a card, and I was like, “Oh, my God. You don’t understand how you impacted my life. You changed the entire course of my life.” My English teacher man, shout out.

Murs: Shout out to English teachers, man.

HipHopDX: For real [laughs].

Murs: Man. Yeah, he put me onto so much. I think I’m going to DM him and tell him. He assigned a book by Thomas Pynchon called Gravity’s Rainbow. I read it and it was super confusing, but he helped me understand it. And based on that book is how I made a connection with El-P because he’s into Thomas Pynchon. I took an IQ tested in elementary school and it was on the high end. I skipped a grade and got to be in the Magnet program. I had AP English with Dr. Smolin, a [Grateful] Deadhead who sat on top of the desk. And that was my 12th grade AP English teacher. He was amazing.

I thought about the day when he did that and I was like, you know what I hated most about school? — and this is the opposite for a typical kid — I hated the kids. I loved my teachers and I hated the kids. Because I was like, “Man, I should probably give a shout out to the few teachers that were awesome.” And I started thinking of my teachers. Every single teacher I’ve had, I fucking loved them.

HipHopDX: In 3rd grade, I transferred from public to catholic school. I didn’t fit in really, but I loved my teachers. I had a tough time with some of my classmates.

Murs: Yeah, that sucks. I guess one thing where I’m stoked about being a parent is, hopefully, I can raise kids that are kind. Fuck language and fuck curse words, I just want to raise my kid to be kind.

In Part II of the Murs interview, he pinpoints a moment in time that changed the course of his entire life and more. 

Generate Crypto With "Mithril OReDER: The Mixtape Vol. 1" Featuring KXNG Crooked & MORE

Guardian Digital Music has announced an exciting way to support Hip Hop and jump into the cryptocurrency craze. By streaming Mithril Order: The Mixtape, Vol. 1, listeners can generate crypto and take their money into their own hands.

Boasting contributions from Snoop Dogg, KXNG Crooked, Spice 1, Canibus, Rappin’ 4-Tay, Chino XL and Ras Kass, the 24-track effort highlights the crypto movement with the help of several notable Hip Hop legends.

Mithril Ore token (or MORE token) can be held by both artists and fans ( www.coss.io exchange) and allows fans and artists to support one another. When listeners stream the project through commercial streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music, they’ll be able generate cryptocurrency the advanced mining Mithril Ore token.

Guardian Digital Music has pledged to convert all of its streaming royalties to Ethereum and donate them to the Ethereum backing Mithril Ore Token.

In addition to the mixtape, a 13-minute and 11-second massive megamix featuring 14 MCs called “Where The Coins At?” will arrive on October, a song that explores the existential question plaguing mankind since the dawn of time: “where the coins at?”

Generate Crypto With "Mithril OReDER: The Mixtape Vol. 1" Featuring KXNG Crooked & MORE

In the meantime, check out the Mithril OReDER mixtape stream, cover art and tracklist below, and find more information on MORE here. 

Generate Crypto With "Mithril OReDER: The Mixtape Vol. 1" Featuring KXNG Crooked & MORE

1. Computer Money f. Shoestring
2. More Coins f. Canibus & Pyrit
3. Mithril Money f. Ras Kass
4. 2021 – f. Canibus & Pyrit
5. Get out the Way f. G Battles & Snoop Dogg
6. Mith Lore f. Canibus
7. Thin Line f. Spice 1 & G Battles
8. Bankrupt – (feat. G Battles)
9. Get Tokens – (feat. Jamo Gang)
10. The Core – (feat. Larm Clock)
11. Nu Money – (feat. Suga-T & B-Legit)
12. Mithrilvania – (feat. Chino XL & Vherbal)
13. Digital Money – (feat. Shoestring)
14. Mith Money – (feat. Consequence)
15. Coinz-n-My Piggy Bank – (feat. Family Bvsiness)
16. Moredore Muzik – (feat. Chino XL & Vherbal)
17. More – (feat. Kxng Crooked)
18. Bought a Cadillac – (feat. Kxng Crooked & Rappin’ 4-Tay)
19. Millions of People – (feat. Chino XL, Rappin’ 4-Tay & Vherbal)
20. Menace – (feat. Chino XL)
21. Easy Come Easy Go – (feat. Chino XL & Rappin’ 4-Tay)
22. Wreck – (feat. Canibus & Pyrit)
23. The Ally – (feat. G Battles)
24. Mith Real Ore – (feat. Shoestring)

Joell Ortiz Pays Homage To The Culture In "Before Hip Hop" Video

Ahead of his forthcoming album, Joell Ortiz drops off a gritty black-and-white visual for his Hesami-produced single, “Before Hip Hop.” Inspired by Craig Mack’s classic “Flava In Ya Ear (Remix)” music video, the Devon Johnson-directed clip finds Ortiz looking straight into the camera while he spits candid bars.

“The ‘Before Hip Hop’ video is black and white by design. I didn’t want to dress it up. I wanted it to remain as cut and dry and honest as possible,” Ortiz said in a press release. “I wanted the camera in my face so the viewer could look in my eyes and see that it’s pure.”

While the song reflects on how Hip Hop changed Ortiz’s life, the video pays tribute to fallen childhood friends, as flashes of their photos continue throughout the clip.

“Before Hip Hop, I was a different person. I grew up in a rough environment that made me behave, respond and live in a certain way,” he continued. “I lost childhood friends way before I could even fully comprehend death. Yet, I found ways to smile, have fun and enjoy the hood with the homies almost every day. A simple video for the simple truth of a rapper from Cooper Park House in Brooklyn, NY. I’m just happy to be here.”

The ex-Slaughterhouse rapper’s 9th studio album, Monday, is expected to arrive August 30 and will feature vocals from Blakk Soul and vocals and production from Big K.R.I.T., as well as additional production by Nottz, Apollo Brown, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League, The Heatmakerz and more.

Check out Ortiz’s video for “Before Hip Hop” above.

Blac Chyna & A1 Bentley (With His Crazy Hair) Complete Viral DMX Challenge

As you know, it’s nearly impossible for us to go an entire week without hearing about some new craze that’s taken the internet by storm. Right now, everyone is debating on whether Popeye’s or Chik-fil-A has the better sandwich and as we rush to both restaurants to compare the two, women around the country are submitting their entries into the DMX Challenge. Last night, we posted about the trend, which has taken the world by surprise, in which women show f their multiple transformations, flexing different hair colors and styles to the tune DMX’s “What These Bitches Want.” Blac Chyna ended up submitting her video and surprisingly enough (or not really…), A1 Bentley Love & Hip Hop fame also joined in.

With the number looks Blac Chyna has pedaled through over the years, you just knew that she would be providing us with a crazy version the DMX Challenge. She didn’t disappoint either, cycling through all her most fabulous looks and rocking a different wig in each one. Later in the same night, A1 Bentley decided to have some fun, posting a series his more recent hairstyles and getting the fans riled up in his comments. His video was a repost from another account but it’s just as effective, showing f his craziest looks the year.

Who has had the best DMX Challenge video so far?