This Week in Hip Hop
Foxy Brown out of the hole
When you get locked up, no matter how much of a cool cat you are, you have to show the other inmates you’re not the one to be messed with. Foxy Brown, who is serving a year at Rikers Island for violating her probation, went a little overboard and tried to show and prove last month by getting into a shoving match with another inmate (along with various other infractions) and got 76 days in solitary confinement. But she was let out of the hole this week after only 40 days for her good behavior. Her manager told Billboard she spent those 23 hour days answering “each and every fan letter. She also told me she wrote some pretty hot songs while there.”
Kanye and Knievel settle suit
A year ago, Evel Knievel saw Kanye West’s video for “Touch the Sky” and was pissed. In the video Kanye calls himself “Evel Kanyevel”, dresses up in similar outfits and tries to propel himself in a rocket over the Grand Canyon. Knievel filed a multi-million lawsuit against Kanye saying the video tarnished his image by using "vulgar, sexual and racially questionable content". Well, after a face-to-face meeting with the rapper, the legendary stuntman dropped his lawsuit and settled their differences out of court. "I thought he was a wonderful guy and quite a gentleman," Knievel told TMZ.
Lil Wayne’s daddy arrested for weed possession
Lil Wayne’s surrogate pops, fellow rapper, and Cash Money Records CEO Bryan “Baby” Williams aka Birdman was arrested this week after their RV was pulled over in Tennessee and cops found a pound of ganja in a trash can. They also found guns in the vehicle and said some people were carrying hefty wads of cash, ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 and totaling $12,000 to $15,000 among the entire crew. Ahh, the luxury of a rapper’s life. All 16 people on the RV were taken to the clink. The next day, Baby was released on a $1,500 bond.
Nas album pushed to February
There’s been controversy surrounding Nas ever since he announced that his new album would be called “Nigger”. In the midst of the post-Imus/Michael Richards worlds of racial sensitivity, everyone and their momma is making a stink over use of the “n-word.” Ask Dog the Bounty Hunter. Anyway, the Nas album was supposed to hit shelves next month, but the rapper said to expect the album in February; perfect timing for Black History Month. “[The album] is not an attack on white people at all," Nas told MTV. "It's knowledge; it's understanding for all people. It's not an attack on any race."
Believe it or not, we have a plethora of talented rappers right here in Colorado. Lately they’ve been gathering at 303 Ink Tattoo, 4845 Morrison Road, every Friday for the Box State Battle Series where local rappers convene to battle each other. The prize? Just props. Might not be worth much from some local cats, but at least participants are sharpening their skills. Check out video of last week’s battle:
New releases this week
Miami rapper Pitbull celebrates his Cuban-immigrant/Miami hustler culture with his fourth album. Expect appearances from Lil Jon, Twista, Trina, Trick Daddy, Jim Jones and others.
You can’t get more underground than Cunninlynguists, and with their new album, it looks like it’s staying that way. The album features apperances from fellow Atlantans Big Rube, Witchdoctor, Phonte (of Little Brother), and Devin the Dude.
This Is Me Then: The Best of Common
For those of you who didn’t hear of Common until recently, this collection is for you. While not actually “the best,” the album features select songs from Common’s first three albums. Lauryn Hill, Erykah Badu and Q-tip all contribute.
-- Quibian Salazar-Moreno