Kendrick Lamar

  • Blogs

    September 18, 2014

    Six Songs About NYC That Make People Hate NYC

    There have been thousands, maybe millions, of songs written about New York City. You'll receive no argument from me that it's a special, special place. It's captured the imagination of imaginative young people around the world, and is responsible for something like a quarter of all the quintessentia ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 19, 2014

    On SZA, Ferguson, and the New Black

    When Pharrell coined the term "New Black" earlier this year, he clearly didn't anticipate the backlash. Sitting across from billionaire Oprah Winfrey, riding the success of a worldwide number one record and a couple Grammy wins, the singer/producer was eager to dismiss the idea that being black had ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 2, 2014

    Hot 97 Summer Jam & Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival: Which is Right For You?

    "Hip-hop was set out in the dark/ They used to do it out in the park" begins MC Shan's classic 1986 single "The Bridge." Yes, it was a mere 30 years ago that the biggest hip-hop events of the year would go down in New York public parks and block parties. Fast forward a few decades and the neighborho ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 3, 2014

    Did Beck's Band (and Hat) Upstage Him on SNL?

    We all get by with a little help from our friends, but surprise cameos during the musical guest performances on Saturday Night Live don't happen all too frequently. The Imagine Dragons/Kendrick Lamar reprise was a welcome one when they played SNL last month, and that had more to do with Kendrick sav ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 3, 2014

    Save Kendrick Lamar: Imagine Dragons on SNL

    By all accounts, Imagine Dragons are having a very, very good week. They began it with their performance with Kendrick Lamar at the Grammys last Sunday, which was one of the most lauded of the evening. They took home the statuette--or the Blue Ivy Sippy Cup, as it's now known--for Best Rock Performa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 30, 2014

    Your Guide to This Week's Super Bowl Concerts

    If the cold's kept you inside, you might have missed that our fair city's come down with a widespread epidemic of Super Bowl Fever. Having this year's big game between Seattle and Denver in our backyard at MetLife Stadium has brought the spirit of the World's Most Important Event into all of our hea ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 30, 2014

    Kendrick Lamar's Surprisingly Calm Grammy Snub Reaction, Translated

    XXL Magazine tried to do some Erin Andrews instant-reaction journalism yesterday, releasing part of an interview done with Kendrick Lamar shortly after his unexpected loss in every Grammy category that he was nominated for. But Kendrick was perfectly cool, calm, and collected about the whole thing i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 27, 2014

    The Official 56th Grammys Viewing Party with Adrian Grenier - Marquee - 1/26/14

    Better Than: ODB interrupting Soy Bomb The Grammys, "music's biggest night," was last night and oh how the stars came out to shine. The City of Angels hosted the ceremony this year that saw Macklemore, Ryan Lewis, Madonna and Queen Latifah marry 33 gay couples on stage while sweeping the rap catego ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 23, 2014

    Is the New BeatsMusic Worth It?

    By Brando A year ago, Beats by Dre headphone giants Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine announced the next step for their brand was to launch a digital-subscription music service. The news was not met with the greatest approval. After all, the existing marketplace--crowded with streaming leaders such as Pan ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 20, 2014

    Homeboy Sandman Friends - Gramercy Theater - 1/18/14

    The New York rap renaissance, such as it is, has been widely placed on the shoulders of young crews like Harlem's A$AP and Brooklyn's Pro Era crew. But four performances Saturday night at the Gramercy Theatre showed how deep New York's new rap wave truly is, in a showcase for three talented New Yor ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 29, 2013

    Drake - Barclays Center - 10/28/13

    Better Than: Bad decisions If you're Drake, and it's your birthday, and you're celebrating with a sold-out show at Barclays Center with "friends and family" that include Busta Rhymes, Jamie Foxx, and the A$AP Mob, and your mottos are YOLO and HYFR, you can do whatever the fuck you want. Which is ex ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 14, 2013

    The 10 Best Concerts in New York This Week, 10/14/13

    For more shows throughout the week, check out our New York Concert Calendar, which we update daily.

  • Blogs

    October 10, 2013

    Which Female Country Star is Your Favorite Rapper?

    Earlier this month Phonte dropped much knowledge about which rappers correspond to which classic television shows. To wit: Jay is The Wire; Nas is Breaking Bad; Kanye is Lost; East Bound and Down is Action Bronson, etc. etc. It's a fun game, and anyone who thinks too much about hip-hop has definitel ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 16, 2013

    Metta World Peace, Published Author and New York Knick, Tweets New Original Work

    Last night published author and newly-minted New York Knick Metta World Peace treated Twitter followers to a new original story. The as-yet-untitled work is a vaguely threatening, sometimes funny, utterly confounding work of magical realism. It's like an onion: with each tweet, the reader pulls ba ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 15, 2013

    Killer Mike and El-P - Webster Hall - 8/14/13

    Better Than: That time Killer Mike rapped about Scooby Doo with Matthew Lillard The final night of Killer Mike and El-P's Run the Jewels tour finished up last nightt in the city 3/4 of its featured acts call home. Kool A.D. (formerly of Das Racist), Despot, Mike and El all looked to finish strong a ... More >>

  • Music

    June 26, 2013
  • Blogs

    June 24, 2013

    Let's Take a Look at Some of the Great Hip-Hop Being Overshadowed This Year By Ye and Jay

    Now that 2013 is nearly half-over, it's clear the year's two biggest hip-hop stories eclipsing everything else are Kanye West's album/baby/stunts and Jay-Z's sudden commercial announcement about his new album. While they are rightfully big news, some really great stuff--from impressive new-comers, p ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 11, 2013

    The Six Stages of Waiting Six Hours to See Kanye West Live

    With headliners at music festivals you have to be of supreme dedication to get to the front row. Being dedicated means waiting by the barrier all day just to stay close and be in the middle of it all. With Kanye West, who played Sunday night's headlining spot at Governors Ball, his unpredictabilit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 17, 2013

    Talking Louis C.K., South Park and Popcorn With Talib Kweli

    Editor's note: In Tweets is Watching, Phillip Mlynar asks local artists questions based solely on the contents of their Twitter timeline. Talib Kweli is gearing up to release his fifth solo album, Prisoner of Consciousness, on May 7th. The project features collaborations with Kendrick Lamar, Curren ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 11, 2013

    Five Other Failed Rap/Country Experiments

    The hubbub this week regarding Brad Paisley and LL Cool J's controversial duet "Accidental Racist" has, among other things, given a sign that the world might still not be ready yet for a full blown country and hip-hop crossover. While rap has been above an attempted crossover, no matter how poorly c ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 21, 2013

    Nearly All the Big Acts Playing Lollapalooza 2013 Have Played Lollapalooza Before

    Thanks to Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune, Lollapalooza's headliners have been revealed, and it appears that Perry Farrell & Co. are dipping into the past few years of the Chicago-based festival's lineup history for a little inspiration. Mumford & Sons, Vampire Weekend, Phoenix, and the Killers have ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 18, 2013

    Chvrches Are Getting the Hang of this "Blowing Up" Thing

    With nothing more than an EP, a smattering of superlative endorsements from the international press and a forthcoming debut record they haven't even mixed yet, Chvrches are set to become your new favorite band--and this is a phenomenon the Scottish electropop trio is still adjusting to. "We're takin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 15, 2013

    Ralph McDaniels Celebrates 30 Years of Video Music Box

    New York is not only the birthplace of hip-hop culture, but the home of the first television program to broadcast rap videos. Video visionary Ralph McDaniels launched "Video Music Box" 30 years ago and now, three decades and a global phenomenon later, the hip-hop nation is ready to celebrate. Among ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 8, 2013

    Shlohmo/Rustie - Output - 3/7/13

    Better Than: Spending six hours in a live action arcade game. Last night, from 10 p.m. until 4 in the morning D33J, Jackmaster, Oneman, Rustie and Shlohmo played to a high-spirited Williamsburg crowd which braved terrible weather to support some of the most exciting rising stars in electronic music ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 4, 2013

    Jason Aldean Stops in NYC: One Hip-Hop Fan's Terrifying First Country Show

    I had no idea who Jason Aldean was when I was asked to cover his sold-out Night Train tour. I'm a hip-hop head and aside from seeing Taylor Swift one time live -- she was awesome, by the way -- country is probably my least favorite genre right behind Gregorian chanting and Broadway show tunes. So of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 2, 2013

    "We Won": Producers Daedelus and Salva on the Rise of Electronic Dance Music

    As the boundaries that separate genres continue to dissolve, hip-hop and dance have formed an alliance that's bringing electronic producers to the forefront of popular music. For artists like Daedelus and Salva, who've been working with multiple genres for their entire careers, this evolution has be ... More >>

  • Music

    January 16, 2013
  • Blogs

    January 7, 2013

    Juelz Santana on His New Album: "It's Time To Follow the Leader Again"

    A decade ago, Juelz Santana burst onto a rap scene that didn't know it needed him, rapping about trapping out of Harlem crack spots and moving weight for the goon demographic (and delusional, escapist hipsters too) but he also made pop friendly, sing-along raps for the MTV and the now defunct 106th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 4, 2013

    Ten Big Deal Albums We're Hella Excited For

    Hey: Albums! In case people still care about these things, here's a batch of potentially interesting releases arriving in the coming weeks and months:

  • Blogs

    January 4, 2013

    12 (More) Big Deal Albums We're Hella Excited For

    Hey: Albums! In case people still care about these things, here's a batch of potentially interesting releases arriving in the calendar year.

  • Blogs

    December 21, 2012

    How Do We Remember Things That Happen In The Past Without 'Best Of...' Lists?

    The minute December 1st was upon us, the Internet and print media alike began to fill its shelves and papers with content-heavy, link-heavy and rank-heavy lists, all of which give the reader some sort of guidance as to what actually happened over the past 365 days. Of course, we here at the Voice we ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 19, 2012

    The Ten Best New York City Rap Albums of 2012

    There's been a repetition about year-end New York rap round-ups for a while now. They usually involve noting how the city isn't the commercial powerhouse of hip-hop it once was (shocker!), and then speculating on whether a few artists might be somehow bringing it back (from precisely which era is ne ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 18, 2012

    The Best Albums Pitchfork Hated This Year

    Since Purity Ring, Death Grips and Tame Impala didn't exactly take off this year like Arcade Fire or Animal Collective, Pitchfork's cultural influence might be cooling off, which is bittersweet since their writer stable is probably better now than it ever was (some of us don't miss those novelty rev ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 17, 2012

    The Antlers, Grizzly Bear, and Sleigh Bells - Terminal 5 - 12/14/12

    Better than:Cinderella "It feels amazing to be here tonight," the Antlers' Peter Silberman announced to a packed Terminal 5 on Friday night. "This is such a well-put-together event." It felt pretty amazing for me, too, since up until an hour previously I didn't think I was going to get on the press ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 17, 2012

    11 "Minor League Rappers" We Want To Hear on Hot 97

    Last week Hot 97 Program Director Ebro Darden offered a weak explanation about his stations narrow playlist and why they don't play up-and-coming locals, saying--in so many words--that artists not getting spins on the station simply aren't ready for them. They're too underground. They haven't worked ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 13, 2012

    Frank Ocean, the Weeknd, Miguel: Who Will Be the Token Black Guy on Year-End Best of Lists?

    There's an intense race going on right now. A race not a lot of you may know about. A race that even the people involved may not know they're a part of. But it's a race, and it's happening: the race to see which r & b singer will end up on most critics' top-ten lists at the end of the year. It's a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 5, 2012

    The Top 5.33 Hip-Hop Songs Of The Week

    The "b word" has been a staple of hip-hop for decades, although there's some linguistic shading as far as its use: women that aren't particularly awesome are called "bitches"; really awesome women are "bad bitches"; respected dignitaries like moms are "ladies" and "females"—unless they're the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 30, 2012

    Q&A: Nitty Scott MC On Moving To New York, The Boombox Diaries Vol. 1, And Blurring The Line Between Mainstream And Underground

    Nitty Scott MC is fresh out of her teens and she's already had three career changes, though she's remained a writer throughout. Within the last few years she's made a name for herself among New York's tough crowds as a legit MC who only includes organic hip-hop ingredients in her dishes. Nitty ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 23, 2012

    Eight Revolution-Inciting Takeaways From Lupe Fiasco's Album Listening Session

    Last night, Lupe Fiasco took a break from attempting to set the record for uses of the word "bitch" on an MTV station to preview tracks from his upcoming album to a small bunch of journalist types. That album, Food & Liquor 2: The Great American Rap Album Part One, is due out on September 25; SOTC w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 16, 2012

    Hot 100 Roundup: Taylor Swift's Kiss-Off To Country, Mumford & Sons' Folkie Rave, And More

    Editors' note: Each week in this space, chart-watcher Robert Myers will offer his reactions to all the new entries on the Hot 100, Billboard's big board for popular songs. Late August on the pop charts used to be what I called the summer doldrums—almost the entire music industry went on vacat ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 14, 2012

    Let's Imagine What DJ Khaled's Kiss The Ring Will Sound Like

    Despite every living rapper seemingly being just a phone call away, Miami radio personality/record executive/professional shouter DJ Khaled has never once put out a good album. He's been 0-for-5 (yes, DJ Khaled has released five albums), and Kiss the Ring, his sixth record, is on the horizon. Khal ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 2, 2012

    Seven Must-Dos For The Modern Young Weed Rapper

    Wiz Khalifa is in love with weed. The Pittsburgh-raised rapper has established himself as a hip-hop superstar by making songs that are largely hooked around getting high. While it's not all that a unique pastime—the likes of Snoop Dogg and Cypress Hill ushered in the first great rush of weed r ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 22, 2012

    Live: Ab-Soul Turns In A Gutsy Solo Performance At S.O.B.'s

    Ab-Soul S.O.B.'s Thursday, June 21 Better than: Watching the final fourth quarter of the 2011-2012 NBA season. For a crowd full of Thunder fans, Ab-Soul provided a much-needed distraction last night during his first New York headlining gig. In subtle contrast to the mighty LeBron James, Ab debut ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 5, 2012

    Nicki Minaj, Summer Jam, Pop Fans, And What's "Real": A Few Thoughts

    Last night on Hot 97, Nicki Minaj called in to Funkmaster Flex's show to chat about the sliced brisket that led to her peacing out of Sunday's Summer Jam. A brief recap: Hot 97 morning guy Peter Rosenberg called out "chicks waiting to sing [Minaj's poppy single] 'Starships' later," then called the s ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 26, 2012

    Q&A: Flatbush Zombies On Thug Waffles, Longtime Friendships, And The Meaning Of The Zombie Lifestyle

    The word "Brooklyn" conjures up images of all types of illy shit—gold fronts (not grills), bubble coats, designer "wears," dreads smoking bud like it was legal. Newcomers Flatbush Zombies managed to incorporate all of the aforementioned BK traits into their music and its accompanying visuals w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 9, 2011

    Q&A: Drake On Battle Rappers, A$AP Rocky, And His Five-Figure Bet With Nelly

    Courtesy Young Money Entertainment​When I spoke with Drake last Friday, it turned out I was just missing the chance to fully discuss his album Take Care, which leaked over the weekend. But this left lots of time to dig into other topics, from his Canadian perspective on racial identity to his ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 8, 2011

    Peter Rosenberg's What's Poppin' Vol. 1 Takes The New York Hip-Hop Scene's Pulse

    ​New York City rappers have been cast as something of the rap world's whipping boys for more than a few years now. Not only is it fashionable to paint the city's scene as still stuck in the '90s—that's, er, despite the man who effectively runs rap, old man Jay-Z, being pretty proud to ha ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 9, 2011

    Ten Trends That Watch The Throne Could Kickstart

    ​It's way too early to have a critical judgment on Watch The Throne; didn't you read the rules? But since Kanye West and Jay-Z's colossal collaboration plopped into the raging waters of Internet opinion early Monday morning, I've been watching for ripples. Here are ten new things that Watch Th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 20, 2011

    Live: Donald Glover Gets Emo as Childish Gambino During SXSW

    photo by Nate "Igor" Smith I Am Donald Tour (Donald Glover/Childish Gambino) Red 7 in Austin (SXSW) Saturday, March 19 Fuck Rap Cool. If there was any message Childish Gambino, the rap alter ego of actor/improv comedian/joke writer Donald Glover, wanted to relay to the audience at Red 7, it was ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 1, 2010

    Ranking XXL's Freshman Class at the Highline Ballroom Last Night

    ​In what has become an annual tradition, the minds over at XXL magazine recently unveiled the elite class of fresh-faced rappers they dub the Freshman 10. Mostly products of Internet buzz and/or critically acclaimed mixtapes, the Freshman class issue has risen from a gimmicky excuse to put non ... More >>

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