Archives

In 1995, Mack 10 Made An Introduction Built To Last Foe Life (Video)

Throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, Priority Records' distribution delivered some of the finest Hip-Hop and Gangsta Rap albums to the masses, even if fans might not have realized it. Bryan Turner's company, which historically found its first pivotal success backing the California Raisins claymation act, would go on... Read more

Do Remember Snoop Made Some Of His Best Music In The 2000s (Video)

In the ears and minds of many Rap fans, Snoop Dogg's 1993 debut may always be his album to beat. A keystone in the G-Funk movement, Dr. Dre and Doggy Dogg made a masterpiece while with Death Row Records. Doggystyle showed Snoop's Rap peers some new moves on how to... Read more

20 Years Ago, Mobb Deep, G Rap & Alchemist Made 1 Of The Realest Collabos (Audio)

Mobb Deep has released two highly-acclaimed albums in the mid-1990s. Prodigy and Havoc's sophomore set, The Infamous, is one of the most beloved LPs of all-time. A year and a half later, they delivered Hell On Earth, a menacing follow-up that stayed the course. By the close of the 1990s,... Read more

In 1997, Jeru Rapped For The Love Of Hip-Hop, Not The Paper

In the mid-1990s, Brooklyn, New York was steadily delivering legions of the lyricists to the Hip-Hop masses. From seemingly every section of the borough, representing just about every style of Rap, names like Biggie Smalls, Busta Rhymes, GZA, Buckshot Shorty, JAY-Z, RZA, M.O.P., Foxy Brown, Non-Phixion, AZ, East Flatbush Project,... Read more

Do Remember One Of Tupac’s Hardest Cautionary Tales About Life In The Streets

The year was 1993, and Tupac Shakur was tired of knocking on the door asking someone to let him in. Fresh off of his debut album, 2pacalypse Now — a socially conscious effort that revealed strong ties to the Black community with singles like “Brenda’s Got A Baby,” “If My... Read more

In 2010, Big K.R.I.T. Updated A Souls Of Mischief Classic For A New Day

Big K.R.I.T. began his Rap journey almost 15 years ago. He recorded mixtapes for years, navigating a scenic country road into the industry. In a 2011 interview with Nardwuar, the Meridian, Mississippi native revealed he recorded his seminal K.R.I.T. Wuz Here standout "Something" in his bathroom. It was proof that... Read more

Do Remember The Lady Of Rage Rocking The Mic Rough With Her Afro Puffs (Video)

It was a monumental year when Dr. Dre released The Chronic on his Death Row Records imprint in 1992. The multi-platinum album was a street sensation that marked a new era of Rap. It delivered G-Funk to the mainstream, with videos that displayed the laid back vibes, set against menacing... Read more

Biz Markie’s 30-Year-Old Springtime Anthem Is Still Fresh (Video)

Across the globe, temperatures are rising this week. In less than seven days, spring is officially here (March 20). While for many Mid-Atlantic and northerners, that is no guarantee that snowfall is done for the time being, it is a reminder that the coats, gloves, and scarves can usually go... Read more

Do Remember Paperboy’s Ditty That More Than Delivered The Goods (Video)

When Mitchell “Paperboy” Johnson thought of the concept for “Ditty,” he couldn’t have possibly imagined it becoming the seminal hit that it did. In fact, when he later penned the lyrics and shared the concept with his circle, it was introduced as a dance – for girls who like to... Read more

Tommy Boy Has Agreed To Negotiate Better Terms With De La Soul For Their Music

This week, De La Soul publicly revealed that their first six albums are becoming digitally available for the first time in history. Reportedly, the plan was for the catalog to go live today (March 1), part of a 30th-anniversary celebration for the group's highly-acclaimed debut, 3 Feet High And Rising.... Read more

MC Breed & Tupac’s Message Is Still Relevant. It’s Time To Get Yours

Tupac Shakur was born in New York City. He spent his teens in Marin City, California, following a brief but meaningful stop in Baltimore, Maryland. Pac's life is one of extremes and contradictions. At a time when Shakur was portrayed to be condemning the East Coast Rap community, he was... Read more

De La Soul Are In A Bitter Negotiation About Their Streaming Rights & Stakes Is High

It has been 30 years since De La Soul released its debut album, 3 Feet High And Rising. That 1989 Prince Paul-produced work has since achieved platinum certification as well as monstrous critical acclaim for its clever rhymes and innovative sampling techniques. In addition to more than a million shelves,... Read more

20 Years After Big L’s Passing, This Rarity Showcases The Man Behind The Punchlines

Twenty years ago today (February 15, 1999) Big L was fatally shot just steps from his childhood home at 45 West 139th Street in Harlem. It was the block he prophetically deemed the "The Danger Zone" in his early songs. On that fateful Monday night, Lamont Coleman was struck nine... Read more

In 2011, Murs & Tabi Bonney Made A Proper Song Celebrating Love For Hip-Hop

Whether or not it always seems it, love is at the core of Hip-Hop. Whodini made "One Love." Common looked back at the challenges of his affair with "I Used To Love H.E.R." Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth reminded Heads that "Lots Of Lovin'" was necessary to make any good... Read more

In 2008, Posdnuos, Oddisee, & J-Live Came Together To Upgrade Hip-Hop

Twenty years ago, MC/producer/DJ J-Live was putting the finishing touches on his debut album, The Best Part. During that time, the talented artist was heard on DJ Premier's New York Reality Check 101 compilation. The Brooklyn, New York-based English teacher was also putting in acclaimed work with Prince Paul and... Read more

How OutKast Begrudgingly Made One Of The Best Christmas Rap Records Of All-Time

Twenty-five years ago this season, OutKast released their first single, "Player's Ball." Big Boi and André 3000 had appeared on TLC's remix to "What About Your Friends" as teenagers in 1992. Like that opportunity, "Player's Ball" was birthed out of LaFace Records trying to cross-promote its fledgling Rap duo. For... Read more

Do Remember When EPMD Teamed With Red & Meth For A Rap Symphony (Video)

Def Jam Records had made some of the most iconic Hip-Hop albums of all-time during the 1980s. After some sluggish years in the early 1990s, the label started by Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin rebounded in a major way in 1998. That was the same year that the imprint forecast... Read more

Take A 25-Year Ego-Trip Back To One Of De La Soul’s Best Videos

De La Soul's third album celebrates 25 years of being on planet earth today (September 21). Of all the LPs from the Plugs, it can sometimes seem easy to lose Buhloone Mindstate in the lights of a discography as consistent and far-reaching as any in the Rap genre. Many Heads... Read more

In 1989, Kwamé Rocked Polka Dots With Style & Rhythm (Video)

Back in 1989, just 16 years old and just at the peak of his adolescence, Kwamé released his debut album titled Kwamé The Boy Genius Featuring A New Beginning. The new Atlantic Records artist found himself a hit on the Rap and R&B Charts with the aptly-titled second single, "The Rhythm."... Read more

When Stakes Were High For Hip-Hop, De La Soul, Common & Mos Def Got Down To Bizness (Video)

De La Soul has always stood for raising the musical bar. Celebrating its 22nd birthday this week (July 2), the trio's 1996 album Stakes Is High parlayed the group into its second era of prominence. Three years since their last LP, the work also proved that they were able to... Read more

Do Remember When Pete Rock & Black Thought Breathed New Life Into Black Star (Audio)

In September, Hip-Hop will celebrate the 20th anniversary of Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star, the album which launched Talib Kweli's solo career and spawned one of the most beloved unions in Rap music. Two decades later, the Rawkus Records masterpiece will be the star of a handful of... Read more

Big Mike Showed Pimp C Had More Thangs Than Rhymes. His Beats Banged Too (Video)

1994 was a pivotal year for southern Hip-Hop. OutKast released their monumental debut album Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik while Scarface's five-mic-certified The Diary showed that Georgia and Texas were both in strong Southern stride. Additionally, Memphis, Tennessee was also starting to really make statements thanks to releases from Three 6 Mafia and 8Ball &... Read more

25 Years Ago, The Roots Showed They Had Skills Even Before Questlove Had His Fro (Video)

On May 19, 1993, The Roots self-pressed and released Organix. Before the Grammys, The Tonight Show and international super-stardom, the Philadelphia crew frequently went by "The Square Roots" and its drummer spelled his name with a "?," and sometimes he even rapped. Back then, Malik B., Leonard Hubbard, Josh "Rubberband" Abrams, Kid... Read more

Do Remember When DOOM Was Just An MC With Peachfuzz On His Chin (Video)

MF DOOM is a master of disguise. However, he was not always known by his modern moniker, and did always cover his face. Back in 1988, as Zev Love X, the London-born wordsmith created the Rap group KMD, along with his younger brother DJ Subroc and Rodan (who would later... Read more

30 Years Ago KRS-One Carried BDP’s Torch By All Means Necessary

In the late 1980s, Boogie Down Productions was one of Hip-Hop's most exciting new groups. KRS-One and DJ Scott La Rock carved their lane with early 1987's Criminal Minded. The B-Boy Records LP was combative to Mr. Magic and Marley Marl's Juice Crew (especially MC Shan) and planted a flag... Read more

25 Years Ago, ONYX Knew Just How To Make Heads Back Up & Slam (Video)

On Friday (March 30), ONYX's debut album Bacdafucup turned 25 years old. The LP is quintessential Big Apple "tough-guy Rap" and perhaps one of the more hardcore Hip Hop albums of all-time. Back in 1991, the group sent a demo of some of their earliest music to Jam Master Jay,... Read more

Phife Loved Hip-Hop, But Hip-Hop Needed Him (Video)

Today (March 22) marks two years since the passing of one of Hip-Hop’s grandest luminaries, Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest. While his legacy and imprint on music is still unfolding and carving out its place within the Rap history books, his efforts on the microphone maintain their relevancy... Read more

Heather B. Told The Rap Game To Put Down The Guns Decades Ago (Video)

In light of the gun violence that has plagued our nation and culture, Ambrosia For Heads is in the midst of a pledge to not play any music that glorifies gun violence for one week (beginning the past Monday, March 5). Today, March 8, is International Women’s Day, and in the... Read more

OutKast Has Forgotten Songs On Soundtracks That Are Better Than Most MCs’ Catalogs (Audio)

"Imagine being able to control your own destiny. Shape your own future. And then, one mistake take all that away. The reality of it is, you do control your own destiny and future, and one mistake will take all that away. Think about it." - Big Rube, "Benz or Beamer." In... Read more

Do Remember When AZ & Pete Rock Made A Gem That Was Rather Unique (Audio)

Almost exactly a year and a half after his show-stopping appearance on Nas' Illmatic, AZ Tha Visualiza released his debut album, Doe Or Die. In October of 1995, AZ carefully refrained from any further features between his 5-mic debut and his solo set-up. Fans were starving, and the East New... Read more

GZA & Inspectah Deck’s Cold World Lyricism Still Causes Chills (Video)

Summer may be Hip-Hop's most treasured season. Cookouts, drop-tops, park jams, and "just hangin' out" have spawned plenty of beloved playlist hits. However, the winter section of the year has inspired some incredible Rap music in its own right. Bundled up bars about construction Timbs, 4x4 Landcruisers and Jeeps, skull... Read more

MC Lyte, Bahamadia & Yo-Yo’s Pete Rock-Produced Cut Still Speaks Today (Audio)

It’s not all that uncommon for a soundtrack to outshine the movie it was created to accompany. Twenty-one years ago, when the Ice Cube flick, Dangerous Ground was released, the exclusively Rap soundtrack may have stood a bigger test of time than the film itself. Although Cube’s “The World Is... Read more

Stezo Used Funk & Fly Dance Moves To Take Rap Music To A New Place (Video)

In 2017 Connecticut's Hip-Hop scene includes the likes of Apathy, Chris Webby, and Blacastan, among others. These MCs represent different towns in "The Constitution State." Not far from New York City is the city of New Haven. The home of Yale University and famed "clam pie" pizza made a statement... Read more

20 Years Ago The Beatnuts, Big Pun & Cuban Link Broke The Bank Off The Books (Video)

Two decades ago, The Beatnuts brought Big Pun and Cuban Link to Wall Street. In the video for the Queens, New York group's 1997 single "Off The Books," the men representing various Latin-American identities performed in the heart of America's financial hub and in so doing made a tongue-in-cheek statement... Read more

Tha Dogg Pound’s First Death Row Release Was Poetic And Hard AF (Audio)

On Halloween of 1995, Tha Dogg Pound opened up their can of Dogg Food. Kurupt and Daz Dillinger were the third artists with an album released by Death Row Records. Following their mentors, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, this Long Beach—rooted duo was much rougher than its teammates. Like the... Read more

Long Before DMX, JAY-Z & Ja Rule Were Murdering MCs, They Had Time To Build (Audio)

In the late 1990s, DMX, JAY-Z, and Ja Rule came together for two incredible collaborations. On Jay's Streets Is Watching soundtrack from early 1998, "Murdergram" showed that these grimy, overly irritated MCs hit their marks when they were together. In pivoting to Ja Rule's 1999 debut Venni Vetti Vecci, "It's... Read more

Slick Rick’s Most Cautionary Tale Was His Own, Told Over Warren G Funk (Video)

Slick Rick is a master storyteller with quite a tale to tell from his own life. The Ruler maintains a unique physical aesthetic which consists of Kangol caps, eye-patch, designer wardrobe, and enough gold jewelry to make Mr. T blush. His signature look was as magnetic as his laconic delivery,... Read more

Wu-Tang Clan & ONYX’s “The Worst” Was 1 Of The Best Crew Collabos (Video)

When Wu-Tang Clan emerged with their debut album Enter The Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers in 1993, it warned the Rap world to protect its neck from the collective's chokehold. ONYX did the same when they "slammed" anything and anyone in their way. Five years later, in 1998, Wu-Tang and ONYX reached... Read more

Bumpy Knuckles Once Overpowered KRS-One On His Own Song With A Ruff Verse (Audio)

The guest feature is a powerful position in Hip-Hop. From Nas to AZ, Snoop Dogg to Lupe Fiasco, lyrical legends have made key introductions through pivotal appearance on others' songs. One of the artists who put down key blocks of his legacy through features is Freddie Foxxx (later known as... Read more

GZA Once Sliced Apart A Dre Beat Using His Verbal Liquid Swords (Video)

In 2002, GZA was fast at work on his fourth solo album (the third since the '93 sonic-boom of the Wu-Tang Clan). At the time, 1995's Liquid Swords was well on its way to eventual platinum status, while 1999's Beneath The Surface was his second consecutive Top 10 release, grabbing... Read more

20 Years Later, Missy Elliott’s Groundbreaking Video Is Still Supa Dupa Fly

On June 1, 1997, Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott's iconic music video for "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)" made its television debut. Visually, it was a delicacy, offering up fashion-forward treats for the senses. It also served as the Portsmouth, Virginia's rapper's solo introduction by way of her debut album, imbuing her... Read more

Impeach The President Got Top Billin’ From Audio Two (Video)

Turn on a lot of American newscasts right now, read the blogs, or encounter a "water-cooler" discussion, and one may likely hear the word "impeachment." Over the last 20 years, this word has re-entered the lexicon in a major way, through several US presidencies, quite obviously including the current. In... Read more

20 Years Later, Timbaland, Missy Elliott, Aaliyah & Magoo Still Boogie Down (Video)

With their platinum-selling 1997 debut LP Welcome to Our World, Timbaland & Magoo invited millions of music fans into their native Norfolk, Virginia, a city (not to mention, a state) that had not made the kind of splash in the culture as had other Southern cities. With Timbo's innovative, electronic style... Read more

Six Years After His Passing, We Still Have Much Love For Nate Dogg (Video)

Six years ago today, music lost a true talent in Nathaniel Hale. The singer better known as Nate Dogg has one of the richest voices of the last 25 years. Alongside Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Ludacris, Fabolous, Pharoahe Monch, Eminem, and his right-hand-man Warren G, the crooner within Tha Dogg... Read more

As Eve, DMX, Swizz, Drag-On & The LOX Plan A Ruff Ryders Reunion, Here’s The Scenario (Audio)

This week, the Ruff Ryders announced their reunion homecoming, planned for April. The Hip-Hop collective (which began first as a party promotions company in the late 1980s) is largely responsible for the careers of DMX, Swizz Beatz, The LOX, Eve, Cassidy, and others. Approaching the turn of the millennium, the... Read more

Do Remember When Soul II Soul Took A Classic Hip-Hop Beat & Kept It Movin’ (Video)

In 1989, Soul II Soul's unique blend of R&B, Dance, and Hip-Hop music not only crossed oceans from its British origins, it had everybody crossing the dance-floor to find a partner. Before "Back To Life (However Do You Want Me)" would be a pillar of "acapella-cool," another Club Classics, Vol. 1... Read more

Nas, Ice Cube, Jadakiss, T.I. & Bun B Teamed Up For A Hip-Hop Grand Finale (Audio)

In 2004, Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz released their fifth and final album, Crunk Juice, which featured a host of Rap's elite. Snoop Dogg, Nate Dogg, Pharrell, Ludacris, and Suga Free all made appearances, as did 8Ball & MJG, Gangsta Boo, Jazze Pha, Lil Scrappy, Usher, R. Kelly,... Read more

20 Years Ago This Week, Wu-Tang Clan Bombed Atomically In A Rap Triumph (Video)

1997 was an interesting year for Hip-Hop music. Death Row Records, coming off of an empirical reign, had fallen, and fast. Tupac Shakur was dead. And while Makaveli and Snoop Dogg's Tha Doggfather dominated the charts, Tha Row's two founders were not anywhere close to the label's steering wheel. Dr.... Read more

Blahzay Blahzay Still Sounds Great From The East…To The West (Video)

In 1996, Hip-Hop was in the middle of a shift, especially in New York City. The rugged, construction boot days were yielding to the shiny suits. Just as the Big Apple's reigning Rap star The Notorious B.I.G. had transformed from an "Unbelievable" entrance to a "Get Money" mantra involving Cristal,... Read more

Cypress Hill, Def Squad & MC Eiht Made Us All Throw Our Hands In The Air (Video)

For more than 25 years, Cypress Hill has bloomed from pure Hip-Hop to mainstream appeal. B-Real, Sen Dog, and DJ Muggs created a sound that made Hip-Hop fans feel the daily angst of gang-controlled Los Angeles, California juxtaposed with the euphoria of medicinal relaxation. In 1996, after three albums (eventually... Read more