Scary Funny: How DaBaby Remains Intimidating While Cracking Jokes

DaBaby is hilarious. In his videos he’s cosplayed Chuck Norris’ character from Walker Texas Ranger, told a cop to download his mixtapeplayed a mailman, and given an in-depth explanation for why he only flies private. He wore a diaper as a publicity stunt at SXSW 2017. When Nardwuar did his signature freeze pose after interviewing DaBaby, the rapper put a ski mask on him and covered him in money. He’s rapped about pulling up to his old school and fucking all his teachers. He’s got an iced out Stewie from Family Guy chain. Dude is a comedic genius.

DaBaby’s also not someone you want to fuck with. Sure, he boasts on-record as much as any other rapper, but unlike most he has the stats to back it up. Last year he shot and killed another man in a North Carolina Wal-Mart, which courts have since ruled was in self-defense. In a more viral and less violent event earlier this year, he absolutely beat the shit out a rival rapper who dared taunt him in a Louis Vuitton store. There’s also a video out there him clocking a fan while performing, knocking dude over between bars. 

On paper, these two sides DaBaby seem out step with each other. If you see DaBaby in public, is he going to crack a joke or throw a punch? Comedians and gangsters are two very different fixtures in our culture, but it’s not like they’ve never overlapped before. You ever seen Goodfellas?

In the 1990 mafia classic, Joe Pesci’s character, Tommy DeVito, is both the most wise-cracking dude in the gang and the most trigger-happy. When you’re around him, the situation’s liable to go from uproarious laughter to bouts gunfire in the drop a hat, as it does when the character Spider chooses to disrespect Tommy during a previously-good-natured hangout in the infamous scene above. In Goodfellas and other mob standards like The Godfather and The Sopranos, many times the scariest guys are also the funniest ones. 

This phenomenon’s not just limited to film though— we’ve seen plenty it in hip hop. While the majority the most notorious so-called gangster rappers— Scarface, The Game, Dr. Dre, Big L, everyone on Griselda, Kevin Gates, to name a random few— are rarely even seen cracking a smile, let alone a joke, there are plenty who do. Just look what the man who’s ten credited with creating gangster rap, Ice-T, spends his days tweeting. Look at what Snoop Dogg— who lest we forget, had a pending murder case similar to DaBaby’s in 1993— is doing on GGN these days. 50 Cent was once legendary for getting shot nine times; now he’s best known as an Instagram comedian. As anyone who’s seen a slasher flick or Tarantino movie knows, violence and comedy aren’t mutually exclusive entities.

Scary Funny: How DaBaby Remains Intimidating While Cracking Jokes

DaBaby at the HNHH fice – image by HNHH

In DaBaby’s case, his newfound humor and notoriety have given his career a noticeable boost. Obviously, he’s a phenomenal rapper (just watch his XXL Freshman freestyle if you don’t believe me), but he’s been rapping for over five years now, and just blew up at the beginning 2019. Previously, his biggest claim to fame was making a decent-but-unremarkable ode to his local NFL team, the Carolina Panthers, as they were on the verge being Super Bowl bound at the end 2015. On it, he showed a small sliver his sense humor, and on other tracks from that period, he showed his tough side. But they were half measures— he didn’t lean fully into either one.

It takes confidence to be funny, and it takes even more confidence to be tough. But maybe it’s easier to be funny if you know you can cold clock your audience; maybe humor fers an escape from a violent past. 

Hip Hop Week In Review: JAY-Z’s NFL Deal & Nicki Minaj Vs. The World

This week in Hip Hop, JAY-Z made headlines by agreeing to a partnership with the NFL. Also, Nicki Minaj started all sorts of drama on Queen Radio and The Joe Budden Podcast. Lastly, NBA YoungBoy was released from jail after serving time for a probation violation.

JAY-Z Announces Partnership With NFL

JAY-Z sparked lots of debate this past week after getting into business with the NFL. Hov announced a deal with the league, which will use Roc Nation as its “live music entertainment strategist” and have JAY contribute to its social justice initiative Inspire Change.

The deal has been met with praise, criticism and some wait-and-see approaches. But the rollout wasn’t smooth at all with Hov coming under fire for the handling of former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who’s seemingly been blackballed by the league for starting the national anthem kneeling protest.

JAY claimed he spoke with Kaepernick prior to announcing the deal. However, Kap’s camp — including his girlfriend and attorney — said no such conversation took place.

Since the partnership was announced, a report has surfaced claiming JAY is going to become the co-owner of an NFL team.

Read more about JAY and the NFL here.

Nicki Minaj Starts Drama With Joe Budden, Rick Ross & More

Nicki Minaj played instigator by speaking her mind on Queen Radio and The Joe Budden Podcast. The Black Barbie took aim at Budden for allegedly lying about her and more, but the rapper-turned-podcaster was far from her only target.

Rick Ross also felt the fury of Nicki’s wrath, getting chastised for dissing her on “Apple Of My Eye.” Rozay didn’t seem too offended though, playing it off during an appearance on The Breakfast Club.

Speaking of the Breakfast Club, Charlamagne Tha God was another person who landed in Nicki’s crosshairs. Although he denied starting the “hate train” for Nicki, she zeroed in on the radio host and claimed she was banned from his popular show.

Check out more about Nicki’s drama here.

NBA YoungBoy Gets Out Of Jail

YoungBoy Never Broke Again a.k.a. NBA YoungBoy is no longer behind bars after serving about 90 days in jail for a probation violation. The controversial rapper stepped out of incarceration sporting a new look too.

The mustachioed artist showed off his facial hair in a brief clip uploaded on social media. While he’s out of jail, YoungBoy will remain on house arrest for the next 14 months.

Read more about YoungBoy’s release here.

DX Reviews

Rich Brian – The Sailor
YBN Cordae – The Lost Boy
Comethazine – Bawskee 3.5
NF – The Search
E-40 – Practice Makes Paper

#DXCLUSIVES: Big K.R.I.T., Maseo, Yo-Yo & Obie Trice

Big K.R.I.T. Explains How Stepping Back From Production Allowed Him To Have Fun On K.R.I.T. Iz Here

HipHopDX caught up with Big K.R.I.T. to discuss his new album K.R.I.T. Iz Here, what it was like working with Bun B and more. During the conversation, Krizzle talked about how much fun he had making his latest LP.

“It’s amazing to finally be able to have fun, just doing what I love to do,” he told DX. “It kind of reminded me of being in my grandmother’s house and I was just whipping up a beat; I got a sample and I’m just jamming it all day long. It didn’t matter whether anybody heard or not, but I knew what it was. I feel like this album in itself is me just having fun.

Check out the entire Big K.R.I.T. interview here.

Maseo Recalls Naughty By Nature’s Treach Letting Rats & Snakes Into Tommy Boy’s Offices

De La Soul member Maseo recently chatted with DX about his group’s dealings with Tommy Boy Records. While reflecting on his situation, the veteran artist recalled an infamous moment involving the label and Naughty By Nature MC Treach.

“Once upon a time, Treach did go up to the offices and let out a bunch of rats and snakes,” Maseo noted. “This was the mid-90s when Tommy Boy was still on 86th Street. Treach went in the office and let out rats and snakes all throughout the office. They had to shut down. That’s what also led to them moving downtown. That is also the reason why most record companies have security up there.”

Read what else Maseo had to say here.

Yo-Yo Says Joining Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood Season 6 Was A “No Brainer”

West Coast pioneer Yo-Yo spoke to DX about her participation in the Love & Hip Hop franchise. Although the reality series is known for its wild antics, she made it clear she has no problem being associated with it.

“It’s who I am,” she stated. “I’m always in the middle of some nonsense. I work with the youth. I’m teaching kids literacy and I work with the Intelligent Black Women’s Coalition. Parents call me when their 13 or 14-year-old daughters are messing up. I’m in school with the kids when they’re calling people ‘bitches’ and spitting on their parents. It’s no different for me.”

Check out the full Q&A with Yo-Yo here.

Obie Trice Returns With “92” Single & Weighs In On Eminem Vs. MGK Beef

Longtime Eminem collaborator Obie Trice has re-entered the Hip Hop landscape and talked to DX about why he’s back. In addition to touching on Shady’s beef with Machine Gun Kelly, Obie reflected on how different things are for him now in the music industry.

“All the hype is gone for me, you know? That’s the thing — we’ve been there, done that,” he explained. “I feel like I had an album done and I wanted to release it. I want to get back out here and see what the world think about it. That’s it.”

Read the rest of the article here.

Busta Rhymes Sends Off Another Son To College

Busta Rhymes‘ son is f to college and the rapper has captured the adorable moment before the send-f. This will be Busta’s second child heading f to acquire his higher education and evidently, the legendary rapper could not be any more proud. The captured moment was shared Busta Rhymes’ ficial Instagram account and so with his 1.9 million followers. In the photo, we can see Busta kissing his son on the forehead in the middle what appears to be a college dorm hall. The son is seen laughing, slightly embarrassed by his father, in the emotional moment. The photo was tied to the following caption: “Another young King mine, f to begin the next chapter. Congrats @originaltrillian. The World is Yours young King. #LincolnUniversity.”

To note, Busta Rhymes has a total five children which includes three sons T’Ziah, T’Khi and Trillian all born between 1993 and 2001. The Hip Hop mogul also has two daughters, each respectively born in 1999 and 1998. Recently, the rapper sent f T’Khi to college and now Trillian is the last and youngest his sons to enter this next, important chapter his life. A big congratulations to both Busta and his son Trillian.

Charlamagne Tha God Calls Out The NFL For Editing His Questions, Supports Jay Z

A polarizing topic that has permeated social media this week has been the announcement that Roc Nation and the NFL have joined forces. There has been much speculation as to what moves Jay Z will be making with the league in this upcoming year, but on Friday, news circulated that the hip hop mogul would soon become part-owner an NFL team.

The NFL’s Commissioner, Roger Goddell, sat down with Jay Z and various reporters to discuss the partnership, and in the room was The Breakfast Club‘s Charlamagne Tha God. In a leaked clip, Charlamagne questions Jay and asks him about Kaepernick’s future in the NFL. However, the talk show host took to his Instagram to share that there were many other topics that he directly asked Goddell that were carefully cut.

“Let the record show the @nfl edited all my questions to Roger Goodell,” he began. “I asked Goodell was Kaep blackballed and he said ‘No, owners can sign him whenever they want.’ I also asked him about people saying this partnership is disingenuous because Kaep doesn’t have a job, and I told him the best PR move the @NFL could do is to sign Kaep but all that’s on the cutting room floor somewhere but this post isn’t about me, it’s about the conversation being had. Like I said In a previous post…..Kaep’s protest worked and continues to work. Awareness has been raised and after awareness comes action.”

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I asked Goodell was Kaep blackballed and he said “No, owners can sign him whenever they want.” I also asked him about people saying this partnership is disingenuous because Kaep doesn’t have a job, and I told him the best PR move the @NFL could do is to sign Kaep but all that’s on the cutting room floor somewhere but this post isn’t about me, it’s about the conversation being had. Like I said In a previous post…..Kaep’s protest worked and continues to work. Awareness has been raised and after awareness comes action. In order to be successful and sustain any process meaningful change both awareness and action are necessary. I don’t see why anyone would think Jay is doing this for any reason other than he thinks he can make a real change. Has he not shown us he knows how to move in a room full vultures? NFL shady it needs to be taken over! It may work, it may not work but why root against it when so many brothers playing in the league and communities they care about can benefit from it? If not this way then what’s the plan?? We don’t have to have the same course action we just need to have the same goal but don’t listen to me tho!!!!!! I have on a #PaperPlane hat with a #ImWithKaep t shirt right now so I can’t be trusted……

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He added that regardless the backlash that Jay has been receiving for this deal, he’s going to stand by the rapper’s power move. “In order to be successful and sustain any process meaningful change both awareness and action are necessary,” he wrote. “I don’t see why anyone would think Jay is doing this for any reason other than he thinks he can make a real change. Has he not shown us he knows how to move in a room full vultures?” Charlamagne’s question is a direct nod to Jay’s hot song, “Izzo (H.O.V.A.),” as is his follow up sentence. “NFL shady it needs to be taken over!”

Wyclef Jean Shares Story Of Notorious B.I.G. Calling The Fugees "Geniuses"

In his short, 24 years life, Christopher “Notorious B.I.G.” Wallace impacted hip hop with his talents in a way that has been unmatched. The New York emcee didn’t receive the opportunity to explore a lengthy career because an unknown assailant gunned him down on the streets Los Angeles, but his music lives on and he’s considered one the GOATs hip hop history.

There have been many Biggie stories shared over the years from artists who interacted with the Life After Death rapper, and recently Wyclef Jean added his name to the list. The former Fugees member chatted with The Source about one his many memories Big, one which was at a time when the Fugees were a lesser-known opening act for the rapper. “I remember coming from Jersey and going to Long Island where he was playing,” Wyclef said. “We get there, and I remember Biggie coming to the dressing room because — ok, there was a myth about the Fugees: don’t play with the Fugees because, if they go before you, nine times out 10 we’ll murder it Laughs]! What I would always do with the performer that I’m playing before is do 20 seconds their songs.”

“So yeah, we did a show with Biggie and Puff, and I remember — Puffy knows this story, too!” he said while laughing. “They were amazed because they had never saw anything like that. Biggie comes in the dressing room and was like, ‘Man, you motherf*ckers go out there and y’all be bangin’ them symbols and sh*t! This sh*t is just not fair Laughs]! Y’all motherf*ckers are geniuses – I wish I could play the instruments!’”

On a more serious note, Wyclef added, “He has always possessed a cuddly, teddy bear-like personality. He was very funny up the gazoo, and most importantly very real. I always say him and Tupac Shakur] got caught up in the ring and became casualties war. They were like GoodFellas.”

JAY-Z Reportedly Poised To Become NFL Team Co-Owner

JAY-Z raised a few eyebrows earlier this week when it was announced he and Roc Nation have decided to partner with the NFL for a music and social justice campaign.

According to TMZ Sports, the Hip Hop billionaire is poised to become a co-owner of an unspecified NFL team “in the near future.”

Sources close to the situation state Hov is not only a “huge fan” of the NFL team but also wants to continue to be a “change agent” for the professional football league. They added, “Jay is not an NFL agent and does not take part in the operations of the NFL players in Roc Nation.”

Jay drew criticism from some people who see it as a slap in Colin Kaepernick’s face. The former San Francisco 49er quarterback attracted national attention when he started kneeling during the national anthem in protest of police brutality and racial injustice.

But as reported by the New York Times, Hov plans to contribute to the league’s Inspire Change initiative, a campaign created after multiple players followed Kaepernick’s lead. Despite Jay’s intentions, Kaepernick’s girlfriend and radio personality Nessa expressed her disappointment.

“I don’t mind you doing a business deal – but I do mind you wrapping it in social justice when you’re working with an organization that denies someone an opportunity,” she said during her Hot 97 show.

In an Instagram post, she added, “It’s typical for the NFL to buy different PR looks to cover up their dirt – that’s nothing new. But what is disgusting and disappointing is Jay-Z let them use him.”

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We will never turn our backs on @kaepernick7 because your idols decided to work with the same organization that is actively keeping Colin unemployed all because he peacefully protested against social injustice in black and brown communities, specifically police brutality. So really, how can Jay-Z and the NFL utter social justice in their partnership while keeping Colin unemployed because of his social justice work? • • It’s typical for the NFL to buy different PR looks to cover up their dirt-that’s nothing new. But what is disgusting and disappointing is Jay-Z let them use him. Whether Jay-Z knew it or not (I don’t doubt his intelligence-so I would think he knew) he helped the NFL bury who he said is an iconic figure, Colin Kaepernick. • • Don’t tell me there’s a “master plan and wait for it” because the ONLY reason anything would ever change is because THE PEOPLE are loud and clear and won’t let the league buy their loyalty with their disingenuous moves. The people are letting the league and anyone who works with them know that they aren’t buying the bs. • • Thank you all so much for showing Colin so much support and love. I know for myself, I can’t thank y’all enough for loving my family. • #imwithkap #nokapnonfl ❤️❤️❤️ • • #RP: @kaepernick7: ‪You never turned your back on me or the people, even when the nfl tried to silence your voice & the movement. You’ve never flinched or wavered. I love you Brother! Let’s get it! @E_Reid35‬ ‪ And to the people – I see you, I hear you and I love you! Thank you for having my back!!!✊🏾‬ • • 🎥: @relrelrelrel @djtonedef

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Nessa (and Kaepernick’s attorney) also denied Hov ever spoke to Kaepernick prior to striking the deal.

“THIS is a lie,” she wrote. “COLIN never spoke to Jay-Z and NFL ahead of that deal being done. They NEVER included him in any discussion.”

Maseo Recalls Naughty By Nature’s Treach Letting Rats & Snakes Into Tommy Boy’s Offices

Miami, FL – By now, it’s well documented De La Soul and Tommy Boy Records’ founder Tom Silverman aren’t seeing eye-to-eye. The legendary New York Hip Hop trio has been in a battle to take control of their first six albums for what feels like an eternity.

Last week, Posdnuos, Dave and Maseo revealed negotiations had stalled, and there was no resolution. According to one of De La’s Instagram posts, Silverman flatly stated he’s “not in the business of giving artists back their masters.”

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Well friends, after 30 years of profiting from our music and hard work… and after 7 long months of stalled negotiations, we are sad to say that we’ve been unable to reach an agreement and earn Tommy Boy’s respect for our music/legacy. With some helpful consulting and long careful consideration, we’ve decided we will not do our 30+ years the disservice of settling on Tom Silverman’s terms. Tommy Boy says they are “not in the business of giving artists back their Masters.” We realize, there is a process in reclaiming ownership but we do not trust Tommy Boy in this process after so many years of disappointment. Therefore, our catalog will not see the light of day by way of our involvement or consent. This means, if you see De La Soul music/albums available for streaming or purchase anywhere, BE AWARE, all parties involved WILL profit but De La Soul WILL NOT benefit or earn deservedly/fairly. We really tried. More details to come. Nevertheless, our fans have/will keep our legacy alive! We appreciate and ask for your continued support. Onto new things, new music and more amazing respectful business relationships. #dontpressplay #respectourlegacy #respecttheculture #tommyboycottcontinues #4080

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But in a recent interview with HipHopDX, Maseo explained that while he understands that’s often part of the business, he noted they were so young when they got into it that it was easy for the powers that be to persuade them into signing something that might not have been in their best interest.

“I was young,” he tells DX. “First of all, the way it was presented to me at the time, you know, it was presented in a manipulating manner when I think back. You’ve got your lawyers, and your business manager … when you’ve got all these people and here it is, they already have ongoing relationships with one another prior to it, you kind of get coerced to do something that appears to be customary.

“I actually spoke about this with Dave the other day. I was like, ‘Dave, man we were coerced to do those certain things.’ I was like, ‘After going through the trials and tribulations and gaining knowledge of this whole thing, people give you a perception like things are just customary.’ When publishing advances were offered, it was like this is what’s customary to take because they definitely wanted the publishing, you know?”

Maseo does say they received writer’s credit but that well eventually ran dry.

“At the end of the day, we did get publishing advances and we got writer’s credit,” he explains. “Writer’s credit means we’ll get paid for the songs we played, but we have no ownership. Records do stop playing, so when they stop playing, you stop getting paid. But overall, the catalog still holds some value.”

Although Tommy Boy didn’t literally say, “fuck you guys,” it was essentially implied, at least that’s how Maseo perceived it. He’s also baffled by the fact Tommy Boy attempted to release their first six albums on all streaming platforms on the 30th anniversary of 1989’s seminal De La Soul album, 3 Feet Hight and Rising. 

“In much nicer words he said, ‘I’m not in the business of giving artists back their masters. Period,’” he says. “You know, at the end of the day, it’s like come on, man. I deserve my masters based on the value that I give to sustain myself and my group.

“There must have been a reason to celebrate all of this on our anniversary. You could have actually released an entire Tommy Boy catalog that you got back and waited for your anniversary. Why are you not trying to do this on his anniversary?”

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Thank you friends and fans. Your kind positive words mean a lot and your support goes even farther. As frustrating as it is and as crazy as it may sound, your act of NOT purchasing or streaming anything musically De La Soul, falling under the Tommy Boy banner (until further notice) helps us immensely and can possibly aid others experiencing these similar woes. Thank you @nas …thanks Pete @bittenbender and @massappeal for your committed support and promising business relationship. We’re in the stew working on new music and will continue to celebrate this wonderful journey we’ve been blessed to experience. Thank you @djpremier and @realpeterock for your diligence and support. 30 years is a helluva milestone. We’re so proud to be able to share our celebration with you all. Look out for our 30 year commemorative release coming very soon #delacoinz Your support will directly fund future endeavors and projects…. Just to put the final nail in the coffin. We wish Tommy Boy no ills but we do call for a boycott of anything bearing the name. Karma will do the rest… that old enslaved record label contract dinosaur is long dead and gone, but unfortunately still stinks. For those who may not have had a similar experience with Tommy Boy, be thankful, be wise and stay alert… the devil does not rest and is never satisfied. Peace. Plug 1,2 and 3 Seek and check out these De La Soul releases: Impossible Mission mixtape #grinddate De La Soul: Are You In? Nike + Original run #smelltheda.i.s.y. #andtheanonymousnobody Tom Misch feat. De La Soul “It Runs Through Me” @djshadow feat. De La Soul “Rocket Fuel”

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This isn’t the first time Tommy Boy has been at the center of controversy. Naughty By Nature’s Treach once unleashed a small army of vermin and reptiles into their former New York City offices, which Maseo says is the reason most major labels have security.

“Anybody who gets into this kind of situation, you’re definitely angry, you’re in a rage,” he admits. “You really want to hurt somebody. You go through these emotions that … in Hip Hop, most rappers will act out. You know what I’m saying? But I’m gonna wait.

“Once upon a time, Treach did go up to the offices and let out a bunch of rats and snakes. This was the mid-90s when Tommy Boy was still on 86th Street. Treach went in the office and let out rats and snakes all throughout the office. They had to shut down. That’s what also led to them moving downtown. That is also the reason why most record companies have security up there.”

Maseo says there was a period when Silverman welcomed the drama.

“Tom, once upon a time, even used to like artists hitting the label,” he recalls. “He’d always think the good and bad helped sell records, really the artists talking shit about the label, that’s good for record sales. He would say stuff like that. Now it’s kind of taboo because you’re looking like you may not be able to do normal business in the future.

“But let’s be clear, they fell off. They’re trying to make a comeback. They’re too busy trying to say we’re not relevant when they’re not relevant. We’ve had continued success without Tommy Boy. Let’s close the coffin on this so we can really get back to work.”

De La is currently cooking up two new full-length albums, including a third installment of the Art Official Intelligence series. DJ Premier and Pete Rock are providing beats for the projects. They will serve as the follow-ups to De La’s 2016 Grammy Award-nominated album, And The Anonymous Nobody.

#DXCLUSIVE: Too $hort Hops On DJ E-Clyps’ "FVCK U" Single

HipHopDX Premiere – Gucci Mane’s former tour DJ and rebel house producer DJ E-Clyps has joined forces with Too $hort for a new single called “FVCK U.”

Throughout the track, the “short but funky” Short Dog dances over the beat with his iconic wordplay and unabashed attitude.

“FVCK YOU” is intended to be a modernized take on “Hip House” that pulls at the roots of early Hip Hop and house music.

“Being that my roots are in Hip Hop, I strive to always keep those roots in making my records,” E-Clyps tells HipHopDX. “Getting the opportunity to work with Too $hort made this one special just because of his pure body of work as an artist. I grew up listening to his music.

“He’s also one of the kings of the club bangers, so having him on it was a no-brainer. I wanted him to do what he does best. I didn’t request anything specific, but to just treat it like any other Too $hort record, not write to it like a house record.”

E-Clyps, who grew up in both San Diego and Indiana, draws inspiration from artists such as Green Velvet/Cajmere, Todd Edwards and Masters at Work as well as Dr. Dre, Timbaland, Snoop Dogg, Battlecat, Busta Rhymes and Nas.

The idea was to meld these worlds together into one track.

“It had to have that real Short Dogg feel to it for it to work,” he adds. “The goal was to make a house record that appealed to more than just the house music listeners, but also to draw the ears of Hip Hop/rap heads, too. I feel like we pulled it off, but that’s for the listeners to determine.”

Listen to “FVCK U” above.

#DXCLUSIVE: Obie Trice Returns With "92" Single & Weighs In On Eminem Vs. MGK Beef

Detroit, MI – Obie Trice was waxing his first-ever boat on a sunny day in Detroit when he got on the phone. The former Shady Records signee, who hasn’t released a proper studio album since 2015’s The Hangover, was in a noticeably good mood and happy to talk about his upcoming album The Fifth. 

Ahead of its release, Obie has shared a snippet of the project called “92.” As the title suggests, the song is dedicated to 1992, a pivotal year for the now 41-year-old MC.

“’92 for me, that’s when I really, really started seeing these cats are getting money out here that’s my age,” Obie tells HipHopDX. “It was like a real crazy year. That’s when I kind of got in the game and things of that sort. So, it was the year I became an adolescent and started doing things that I normally wouldn’t do when I was in middle school and just figuring out the ‘ching-ching.’ how the dope game go and everything like that.”

Obie was captivated by Hip Hop culture at a young age and started rhyming when he was 11 after his mother gave him a karaoke machine. He explains multiple artists influenced him to pick up a mic.

“I can’t even just name a particular MC,” he admits. “We’d go on for days, you know what I mean? I just liked the culture back then when I was younger, and it was just a bunch of people. It’s not just one MC. Definitely the 808, the whole style of MCs, the different backgrounds and where people were coming from.

“I loved being able to see the world from your living room by just turning on videos, buying cassette tapes and listening to what people are saying from different places. So that was dope for me.”

Although “92” effortlessly retains that throwback feel, Obie says The Fifth is multidimensional.

“It’s different things,” explains. “I’m not going to give it away, but it’s different things on the record. ‘You & Her’ is a whole different vibe. It’s just a party vibe, end of the summer, twerking vibe for the ladies to dance to and have some fun with.”

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After almost 30 years in the business, Obie’s priorities have naturally shifted. He’s got children of his own and is about to become a grandfather. At this point in his career, he puts out music when the timing feels right.

“I’m just making sure my daughters are good and that I’m getting ready for my grandson,” he says. “That’s all I’ve been doing. I tour when I can and make music along the way, that’s all. I’m 41 years old so I make music and put it out when I feel like it. It’s no rush for me.

“All the hype is gone for me, you know? That’s the thing — we’ve been there, done that. I feel like I had an album done and I wanted to release it. I want to get back out here and see what the world think about it. That’s it.”

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An Obie Trice conversation wouldn’t be complete without asking the “real name, no gimmicks” rapper about the Machine Gun Kelly and Eminem beef that popped off last year.

“You know I’m going to always go with Eminem — period, point blank,” he says. “I will say that Machine Gun Kelly was probably the best record that I heard that ever dissed Eminem. He’s been in a lot of diss records with other people. I think that was probably the best one that came out.

“But as far as a controversial thing, definitely Marshall [Mathers]. I gotta go with the home front forever. You know, that’s forever. So, I’m a little biased. You might want to be asking somebody else that, but you know, it is what it is. It’s forever Shady for me.”

He adds, “The whole thing was so long ago, man, I haven’t even been in that zone. I don’t even remember everything that was going on that time, what he did and how he did it. I’m really just focusing on my record and focusing on my boat right now to get this shit going.”

The Fifth is expected to arrive next Friday (August 23). In the meantime, check out “92” above.

Ice Cube Isn’t Worried About Forbes Lists Or Bragging About His Wealth

Melle Mel. Ice-T. Chuck D. KRS-One. Rakim. During a recent visit to Nick Cannon Mornings on Los Angeles’s Power 106 radio station, Ice Cube dropped who he considered to be his top five rappers all time. These lists, course, are subjective, but hip hop enthusiasts Cube’s generation tend to favor artists that came before them or rose to fame with them. The 50-year-old rapper is considered to be an icon himself, ten included in top ten emcee lists from fans and fellow artists, but his name is ten missing from one list that many work diligently to be on: Forbes.

The hip hop mogul has his hands in many cookie jars as his business portfolio includes music, film, television, sports, fashion, endorsements, and more. He’s amassed an empire worth over $150 million, but his accomplishments aren’t celebrated within the coveted Forbes lists that hip hop artists hope to find their names on. That’s just fine with Cube who told Cannon that he doesn’t mind because “that shouldn’t matter.”

“It ain’t all about what I got, it’s all about what I can give you,” he said. “What I can produce that you can be a part ?…Do it make you happy? Do it make you feel good? Did it make you feel like you didn’t waste your time and waste your money? To me, that’s what it’s all about. It’s not about how much this one got or that one got, or this one don’t got or that one don’t got. How much product are they producing? What are they doing that’s dope? How many things are they leaving on the earth when they’re gone that will still be here to entertain people? That’s really what it’s all about.”

Ice Cube Isn't Worried About Forbes Lists Or Bragging About His Wealth
Michael Loccisano/Getty s

Elsewhere in the interview Cube shared that he always felt out place bragging about his wealth as other artists did because he knew that most his fans would never be able to relate. “Hip hop is a braggadocious, boisterous-type …,” he said. “I thought it would make me seem out touch with my audience. Even though I know everybody wants those things, everybody don’t have those things. I’m the kinda dude where you gotta notice me wearing it, but I’m not about to tell you I got it on…Certain things don’t have to be said. When you say them, it makes you look small. It doesn’t make you look bigger. I makes you look smaller. You flossin’ on anybody…people that don’t got it.”

E-40 Supports The Next Generation Of Rappers: "Let’s Get This Money"

There aren’t many artists who are not only veterans in the rap game, but who are also considered icons, respected by their peers, and continuing to make music. The Bay Area’s E-40 has been releasing albums for 30 years, the most recent which was his 26-track, 26th studio album, Practice Makes Perfect. We live in a time where many veteran emcees struggle to keep up with the new generation hip hop artists as the game, and the sounds, rap changes, but E-40 decided to work with new blood instead against them. 

The 51-year-old hip hop mogul’s latest effort was a feature-heavy project, many whom were young artists. E-40 told Billboard that because he remembers the struggle being an up-and-coming rapper, he supports the next generation as much as he can. “I’ve got a big heart and I believe in good karma,” he said. “I can’t save the world. I can’t help you if you don’t want the help. I just try to play my position. There’s a special place in my heart for up-and-coming talent. They can also help me. I can be introduced to some other fan bases, too. But it’s mostly just how I am. If I like you, I like you. Let’s go, let’s get this money. There’s enough money out there for everybody.”

E-40’s name isn’t always included in the “Top Rappers” lists, but that’s something that’s he’s said he isn’t bothered by. However, he definitely doesn’t believe he’s given the just due that he deserves. “I’m definitely underrated. By far. By far, far, far,” he said, adding that he’s motivated by being undervalued. “The game is goy. They’re squares. If you ain’t from it, you might never comprehend me. If you’ve never been through what I’ve been through, if you ain’t had to adapt the way I’ve had to adapt, you may not feel me. If you woke, you gon’ love E-40. If you snoozin’, listening to mediocre rap, you trippin’. Get with a rapper that’s trying to teach you something, who is painting pictures with his lyrics. I come with so many styles and flows, I have a uniqueness. I just bring super dumbass slaps.” Make sure to check out E-40’s Practice Makes Paper here.

50 Cent Eggs On Nicki Minaj Versus Rick Ross

50 Cent is a busy man — Power and his various business endeavors appear to take up the majority of his time. On Wednesday (August 14), however, the Hip Hop heavyweight found the calendar space to hop on Instagram to weigh in on the Nicki Minaj and Rick Ross drama that popped off earlier this week.

Fiddy shared an audio clip of Nicki’s recent appearance on The Joe Budden Podcast where she called out Rozay for dissing her on the 2017 Rather You Than Me cut “Apple Of My Eye.”

50 is evidently here for it.

“Nicki be blacking out on these niggas,” he wrote in the caption. “LOL and she will have the Makks on they head.”

Ross responded to Nicki’s comments during an interview with The Breakfast Club on Thursday (August 15) and took the high road.

“I mean, if somebody went to meet Obama with you, she is a keeper until you find out otherwise,” Ross said. “She was around me a few times but other than that, she was a huge talent but she was playing a very important position at the time. She was in between Meek and Drake at the time. And what she don’t know, and what she might not understand coming from a big homie like myself, playing that position, that was a very fragile role. And it would be very easy to put that responsibility on her. But that ain’t what I tried to make it to.

“But most definitely when I seen it go sour, it would be easy to assume she may have had something to do with that and if somebody tells you they didn’t, they’re lying. But everybody moved forward. She moved forward, she doing her thing. I’m happy to see her do that. Meek doing his thing. Drizzy, they doing they thing.”

BROCKHAMPTON Shares "GINGER" Album Release Date, Cover Art & Tracklist

America’s favorite boy band, BROCKHAMPTON, announced that their fifth album, GINGER, will arrive next Friday, August 23. This album will mark their second release through their own imprint, Question Everything Inc., under RCA Records. 

The hip hop collective has been dropping tracks and accompanying music videos every Wednesday for the past three weeks. Yesterday’s fering, “Boy Bye”, sees the group dabbling in their usual themes  depression, trauma, anxiety. “Boy Bye” – along with their other two recently-released songs, “If You Pray Right” and “I Been Born Again” – are listed on GINGER‘s tracklist. 

GINGER is said to be the second installment in a trilogy albums – last year’s iridescence being the first. BROCKHAMPTON accumulated a vast and loyal fanbase through their SATURATION trilogy and managed to score their first no. 1 album with iridescence. GINGER’s cover art follows BROCKHAMPTON’s precedent featuring group members on their covers, as this one shows Joba in an embrace. The group has already started promoting the album with several merch drops that can be bought through their website


No Halo
Boy Bye
Heaven Belongs To You
St. Percy
If You Pray Right
Dearly Departed
I Been Born Again
Big Boy
Love Me For Life
Victor Roberts


Magic Johnson’s Favs DJ Khaled & Drake Tease New Collaboration

Drake may be in “album mode,” but two new posts from DJ Khaled suggest the duo may be cooking something up to hold fans over. Khaled and the 6 God — Magic Johnson’s No. 16 and 19 all time Hip Hop artists, respectively — posed for a photo this week accompanied by two tease-worth captions.

“Be Patient it’s coming,” Khaled captioned an Instagram video of Drake pointing to his watch on Thursday (August 15).

View this post on Instagram

Be Patient it’s coming 👋🏽 🦉 🔑

A post shared by DJ KHALED (@djkhaled) on

Moments later, Khaled shared a second post, captioned, “It’s called YOU KNOW WA GWAN @champagnepapi x KHALED link up A ting called Family ting.”

A new collab from the two would follow up Khaled’s Father Of Asahd album and Drake’s Care Package compilation album, which premiered at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.

Drake and Khaled last teamed up in 2017 on “To The Max,” featured on Khaled’s Grateful album.

Guapdad 4000 Says His Star-Studded "Dior Deposits" Album Is The Biggest Scam In The World

Hollywood, CA – Guapdad 4000 had probably narrated the tale of him scamming Grammy Award-winning artist Drake out of $100,000 a million times by the time I spoke with him, but I asked anyway.

“I usually book him on some homie shit,” the 27-year-old disclosed while chilling on the rooftop of Earthgang and J.I.D’s crib as the sun’s rays gently evanesced behind the hills of Hollywood.

The plan was to have the biggest star in the world make an appearance at San Francisco City Hall after the Aubrey & The Three Migos show. Drake was expecting a small intimate crowd, however, when he showed up it was clear there was a lot more going on.

“On my end, things were spiraling out of hand,” Guap further revealed to HipHopDX. “The mayor of San Francisco was there. It went from the club to city hall to me needing a police escort. People were buying $30,000 tables.”

The price for tickets started at $99 with VIP tickets going for $149 and $20,000 for a private table and bottle service with the expectation that Drizzy would be putting on a full show.

The crazy part is, Guapdad wasn’t even there when Drake arrived. They linked up to the following day after Drizzy’s show.

“He agreed to it, but he didn’t know what it was so he was really mad,” Guap recalled. “He left as soon as he got there.”

In the end, despite reports stating otherwise, Guap confirms that Drake did get paid.

“He was a good sport,” Guapdad asserted.

As the Scam God successfully finessed the 6 God into showing up to an event last year, he definitely has more scams up his sleeve like the follow-up to 2017’s Scamboy Color project, Dior Deposits, which he describes as the biggest scam in the world.

“I got all the top streaming artists in Hip Hop on it for free and they gave me their best verses,” he explained. “Chance the Rapper, Tory Lanez, 6LACK, G-Eazy…They did it for free out of love and fucking with me. We got good energy.”

Today (August 15), he released a fresh track titled “First Thing First” featuring fellow Bay Area native G-Eazy and buzzing artist Reo Cragun.

In spite of “finamming” Drake, the two are actually very cool and began their friendship around the time of Scorpion‘s release. Before they ever made contact, the “No Guidance” artist knew exactly who Guapdad 4000 was and even made a bet with him for the 2019 NBA Finals.

“If you’re a rapper in the game, you knew who I am before I started rolling out music,” he explained. “All the rappers knew who I was because I be kicking it with everybody and I influence a lot of people indirectly with how I dress and talk. I get to say stuff that rappers don’t openly get to admit, so they gravitate towards that. By the time we were talking on Instagram, he was completely aware of who I am and we been homies ever since.”

They became so close, Drake invited Guap and his parents to his New Year’s Eve soireé. That’s the night Guapdad met J. Cole. After sorting out where he and Drake should go for some after-the-club eats, they finally settled in on a restaurant Cole just so happened to be at.

“We walk in, and J. Cole was there,” he recounted. “I wasn’t going to say anything to him but somebody I knew was talking to him so I was like fuck let me go over and go speak. Then he was like, ‘Oh nah you Gaupdad 4000, I know who you are, you hard as fuck. I just listened to some freestyle you put on Instagram hella people were sending to me. Bruh, you’re funny, you can fucking rap.’ I was like thanks man I appreciate it, you’re J Cole. When I was about to leave, he was like, ‘Aye take my number down.’ I took it down and texted him 30 minutes later. He texted back hella fast, like, ‘Got you locked in and it was great to meet you.’ I was like fuck, J. Cole either really bored or like really fuck with me. And then a couple of days later I got the invite through my team.”

He spent four days at the coveted Dreamville camp for the creation of Revenge of the Dreamers III and landed on three tracks: “Don’t Hit Me Right Now,” “Costa Rica” and rambunctious fan-favorite “Wells Fargo.”

“Man, me and that drunk ass nigga downstairs [referring to J.I.D.],” Guap recalled of the making of “Wells Fargo.” “J.I.D., Buddy and Olu. It was the definition of movie magic to me. It happened so fast we couldn’t even process it at the time. We did it all in 15 minutes or less. Buddy already started freestyling a verse and J.I.D. had a cadence for the hook.

“I remember saying Wells Fargo because, you know, scam shit,” he continued. “Then it just kind of spiraled into ‘Wells Fargo.’ I just remember our arms around each other and looking at these niggas like, damn I really fuck with these niggas. It was like a summer camp thing. It’s crazy to think about now because it was on the Billboard Hot 100. It was magic and people feel that magic.”

If the rap community wasn’t taking Guapdad 4000 seriously before, even after Drake’s “Flossin” endorsement, Revenge of the Dreamers III serves as a wake-up call that he’s more than just promoter who scams and pimps. He’s a rap star too and it’s always been in the plan.

Guap’s success hasn’t been without some trials and tribulations, though. After some healing, he opened up about losing his West Oakland childhood home due to gentrification.

“White people come, and move into a neighborhood, they start complaining about certain things, they start making changes in the neighborhood because it needs to be up to their standards but those changes might not necessarily be affordable for everybody else in the neighborhood,” Guapdad said.

“The bank gets wind of this energy and they raise up the mortgage,” he explained. “Everybody in low-income areas are usually on an adjustable-rate mortgage so it’s really whatever the bank wants it to be. My success hadn’t reached the extent to where I could fully take over. It was a really emotional thing for me. I never had to lose a house.”

According to Guap, the cover art for Dior Deposits will likely be a photo of his childhood home.

“I feel like I’ve cried enough about it to where I can talk about it with you and not break down or some shit because it was too heavy,” he continued. “I was avoiding it for a while. On the last day, we threw a big ass party.”

2019 has been bittersweet for Guap and the focus has consciously transformed into elevating his brand towards legendary status.

“I want niggas to look at me like how I look at Childish Gambino, Tyler, The Creator, Pharrell and Kanye West,” he revealed. “I’m just the Oakland one. I’m the Sasquatch, I’m the phoenix, I’m the fucking alien.

Similar to the lyrics contained in the Scamboy Color cut, “Freeband Phoenix.”

“That’s me,” he continued. “The phoenix is reborn from his own ashes. When I was hustling and scamming, you can hit rock bottom hella fast and then you gotta come back on top. It’s been a couple of phoenix moments, like me losing the house, but I got one out here now.”

Presently, Guap has a spot in San Fernando Valley’s wealthy enclave of Woodland Hills so the push for Dior Deposits is in full effect and is expected to hit streaming services this fall.