Edmonton, AB – Taking a break from social media over this past weekend was the best thing I could have done for myself. It gave me time to reflect on last week’s tragic events. It made me think of my love/hate relationship with Facebook and the realization that only a small percentage of like-minded allies are on my “friends list” (694 and deleting). It gave time to re-evaluate who I need to surround myself with moving forward. Much needed change is about to come.
There’s a global obsession with hip-hop and black culture. Our music, our dancing, the way we dress, our slang, our hair etc. Yet it’s “interesting” how quickly that obsession disappears when WE need you the most. When we need you to stand up, your backs are against the wall.
Ottawa, ON – It started out as sour news, but some will argue that it’s grown into an even better situation for this year’s RBC Bluesfest. A few days ago it was announced that hip-hop representation would be down an act because Freddie Gibbs had to cancel his gig due to some legal matters overseas. Today we’ve learned that Bluesfest organizers had been keeping their hip-hop fans in mind from the start, lining up a more than suitable replacement to fill the void.
No offense to Freddie Gibbs, we were looking forward to seeing his show and the reputation of his live performance precedes him, but his cancellation opened up a slot for Jazz Cartier to add Bluesfest to his already hectic tour schedule. Cartier is arguably one of the most exciting artists in hip-hop right now, let alone Canada. The 2-time long-listed nominee for the Polaris Music Prize is currently promoting his Hotel Paranoia project which was released back in February, and his new single, “Lil Wayne,” which was co-signed by the YMCMB head honcho himself.
Cartier will be taking the BlackSheep Stage at Bluesfest on July 14 at 9:30 p.m. You can also catch him later this month at Osheaga 2016 on Saturday, July 30 at 9 p.m. Click here for more information about Osheaga.
Mississauga, ON – After building an initial buzz with an OVO Sound Radio feature last Saturday, PartyNextDoor has officially dropped his new single “Like Dat,” featuring Lil Wayne and Jeremih. The Murda Beatz-produced single is either expected to appear on PND’s new full-length album, P3, but it could just as easily be featured on his forthcoming collaborative project with Jeremih which was announced back in June. The young OVO talent celebrated his 23rd birthday on July 3.
Toronto, ON – Prompted by the recent killings of Alton Sterling, 37, and Philando Castile, 32, Toronto rap group Connected by Blood release a new track speaking out on the continuous slaying of unarmed black men in at the hands of law enforcement. You can check out the Lanek Beats-produced song below, and the statement released by the group after the jump.
Others are speaking out against the lack of artists speaking out. In particular, the legendary Chuck D of Public Enemy, who tweeted: “In the past the industry saw RAPPERS do their thing. Every MC regardless always did that 1 positive song on their albums. Eventually….zero.”
Mississauga, ON – Devon Tracy keeps the new music coming. His latest offering is the heartfelt Joel Mclaren-produced single “Brothers,” declaring his loyalty to his crew. You can stream it now below via Devon’s SoundCloud profile.
New York, NY – Jay Z has never been the type to bite his tongue, and the recent high profile killings of two unarmed black Americans has prompted him to speak out. Coming with his first new release since Magna Carta Holy Grail (July 2013), Hov released a new single titled “Spiritual” exclusively to the Tidal subscription-based music streaming service.
A statement was included as the song’s artwork that revealed “Spiritual” was recorded over a year ago, but he never had the chance to finish it. He also indicated that it had almost come out after the death of Mike Brown – at the encouragement of Punch from TDE – but eventually decided not too.
You can listen to the song and find the full statement, including a quote from African-American social reformer, and abolitionist Frederick Douglass, below.
Calgary, AB – Earlier this month, Calgary artist Cassius Flame$ of Flamecity Music Group (FMG) released a video for his track “Deep In The Game” (produced by Menace). I’ve never actually heard of Cassius before but I’m really feeling this.
Cassius delivers a street anthem about hustling to the point where he’s found himself deep in the game. We don’t see too many of these tracks out of Calgary. And when we do, they’re usually mad corny jokes.
Cassius can actually sing. So I’m loving how the guy switches things up by singing the hook and rapping his verses. And while he spits about getting money, dealing with egos, and staying on his grind, Cassius also takes the time to fire shots at the friends who didn’t stick around as friends: “Lost a lot of love for friends that I never kept/ Aim for the head/ I know that goof n**ga got a bulletproof vest.”
Toronto, ON – “Bill Up” rapper Skrilla Ghad drops off the first single off his forthcoming mixtape, Ghadzilla. “Who Dat Boy” is HipHopCanada’s Song of the Day.
The post also contains Skrilla Ghad’s “One Dance” remix, dubbed “Fine Boy Remix” with A1 Perico. Skrilla’s mixtape debut, Skrilla Harden, premiered right here on HipHopCanada and is available to check out here.
Toronto, ON – The Swave Nation kingpin Tory Lanez (aka: Argentina Fargo) just kicked off the weekend by dropping remixes of Drake’s “Controlla” and DJ Khaled’s “I Got The Keys.”
The Internet jumped on the “Controlla” remix right away because it seems to be yet another shot fired at Drake from Tory. Fans have already taken to Twitter comparing the Tory remix with Drake’s original. Some fans are claiming Tory does Drake better than Drake.
Toronto, ON – Catching up with one of the hottest new podcasts online, The Faculty, “the place where sports, art and culture come together.” Since we last caught up with hosts Jonathon “Bizz” Brown and Shane Stirling a couple of months back, the pair have released 3 new episodes offering a range of engaging and entertaining subject matter.
In the latest release, Episode 4, they discuss a variety of current events and debate whether the fix is in with NBA officiating. They examine social media, mainly IG and Snapchat’s intergration into the modern day artist’s game plan “to diversify their appeal” and trade stories about G-Unit from the 50 Cent glory days. You’ll have to click the jump link below to see what you missed in earlier episodes.
Welcome to The Faculty / Co. season 1 episodes 2 through 4.
The Faculty – Episode 4
With your hosts Jonathon “Bizz” Brown and Shane Stirling