Archive for the 'Lists' Category

XXL’s 2015 Freshman Class

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015


DeJ Loaf, Fetty Wap, GoldLink, K Camp, OG Maco, Raury, Shy Glizzy, Tink, Vince Staples and fan selection Kidd Kidd of G-Unit are the 10 MC’s filling out XXL’s 2015 Freshman class. The magazine will be rolling out freestyles, interviews and more from the group over the next several weeks, so be on the look out for that and check out some behind the scenes footage from the cover shoot below.

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Diggin’ In The Crates: Twelve Jewelz (Volume 5)

Friday, May 29th, 2015


Words by Daniel Isenberg (@StanIpcus)

Yeah boooyyyy. We’re back with a brand new Twelve Jewelz, our NahRight series dedicated to gems from rap’s yesteryear. For Volume 5, we’ve collected yet another batch of remixes, rarities, B-Sides, mixtape exclusives, and unreleased bangers from the ’90s and early 2000s, featuring everyone from Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg to Showbiz & A.G. to Mobb Deep. I went digging for some old demos as well this go-round and actually found some good stuff I had never heard before.

Take a breather from the onslaught of new music and read/stream below. And as always, we’ve included a download link to the entire dozen at the bottom.

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Jay Z’s Top 15 Actual B-Sides

Friday, May 8th, 2015


Words by Daniel Isenberg (@StanIpcus)

There’s been a lot of buzz surrounding Jay Z’s newly announced Tidal B-Sides concert, and though it’s not gonna drive me to cancel my free, three month Spotify Premium account (thanks Sprint!), I must say I’m enthusiastic about the idea of seeing Hov perform the lesser-celebrated gems in his discography. But are the songs that everyone keeps saying they hope he performs actually B-Sides? For the most part, not really.

To examine the actual B-Sides Jay Z has released during his double-decade rap career, we put together a Top 15 list of Hov songs that once appeared on the flipside of a Hov vinyl single or promo—literally. Let’s count ‘em down, shall we?

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Kanye Covers Time’s 100 Most Influential People Issue

Thursday, April 16th, 2015


Kanye joins the likes of Apple CEO Tim Cook, Bradley Cooper, Christopher Nolan and his own wife Kim Kardashian on Time’s 2015 100 Most Influential People list. Elon Musk wrote a short blurb about Ye’s influence:

Kanye West would be the first person to tell you he belongs on this list. The dude doesn’t believe in false modesty, and he shouldn’t. Kanye’s belief in himself and his incredible tenacity—he performed his first single with his jaw wired shut—got him to where he is today.

Hit the jump to watch a clip of Ye speaking to Time and check out the full list here.

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NahRight & UpNorthTrips Present: 0 To 14 / The Wrap Up

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014


Words by Daniel Isenberg (@StanIpcus)

2014 was truly an unorthodox year for rap music. Some argue that it was the worst year for the genre since its inception, citing a lack of classic material and platinum-selling album releases. But others rejoiced in its evolution, saying that rap is in better shape than ever thanks to the wealth of underground drops that made noise beneath the surface. Regardless of what side you’re on, I think we all can agree that after all the crazy shit that’s been happening these past few months, we’re ready for this year to end. But before we close the door on 2014, it’s a must that we take a moment to wrap things up and give it a proper send-off. And who better to join us in the festivities than our like-minded brethren at UpNorthTrips. Let’s break down 2014′s hip-hop highlights from 0 to 14, real quick.

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To “A Better Tomorrow” and in Celebration of 21 Years: The 21 Greatest Wu-Tang Clan Albums

Thursday, December 4th, 2014

Wu-Tang Clan

Words by Paul Meara (@PaulMeara)

No group in the history of hip-hop music has released more classic albums than Wu-Tang Clan. And while it may be unfair to compare them to any other collective of emcees (they had 9+) there is no doubt their influence on hip-hop music was mad heavy. Their classic LPs spawned classic LPs.

After over two decades of releasing material and teaching the children that they ain’t nothing to fuck with, Wu-Tang and its aura is unquestionably unique. But that wouldn’t come without risk. During the time of the group’s inception RZA took a lot of chances and even some close to the camp would often question just what he was trying to do. The complex waters of each of RZA’s 36 Chambers were hard to grasp until you heard the music. The embattled chess match that each album presented (especially early) only added to the group’s intrigue and ability to stand out. From “Protect Ya Neck” to the Clan’s newest singles, Wu-Tang’s brand has grown thoughout the 90s, spilling into the 2000s and even lasting to the present day.

In honor of the 21 years since Wu-Tang Clan donned their debut album (and the release of their seventh group studio album, A Better Tomorrow) Nah Right has compiled as many albums, ranking them from 1-21. Only albums created by members of Wu or affiliates were included (sorry Wu Block and Blackout). Enjoy and always remember to “Protect Ya Gawdamn Neck!” as GZA would say. Continue reading this post…

Happy 75th Birthday Queensbridge: The 75 Greatest QB Rap Songs

Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

nas QB

Words by Paul Meara (@PaulMeara)

Queensbridge Houses was infamous long before any hip-hop gatekeeper donned it such. The harrowing hallways of North America’s largest housing projects were a refuge for drug dealers, stick up kids and mob figures long before Marley and Shan touched a 4-track or mic and broadcasted about it. Opening in 1939, The Bridge has a long history of housing the hard-stricken. Those who famously made it out did it either with a basketball or a microphone.

There’s no doubt the crack epidemic affected the surroundings of those who would choose music. Pioneering clique The Juice Crew’s earlier rhymes didn’t typically assume the gangster element but those who spawned from them couldn’t help but represent what they saw. The youngest member of the 80s mega posse began to take it exclusively to the streets. Intelligent Hoodlum, and his debut self-titled LP, was one of the first in a long succession during the 1990s to represent QB’s dark street vibes while incorporating a wiser message. And this trend continued with nearly everyone who followed. Nas would be next. Up to that point in Hip-Hop’s history, nobody had ever come across an 18-year-old with such a firm command of the English language and rhymes imparted with a wisdom beyond his years. Mobb Deep would release their peak project at the tender age of 19 soon after. Tragedy Khadafi disciples Capone-N-Noreaga would keep the fire burning two years later with another Big Apple classic. No other neighborhood in hip-hop music’s history released more quality in a shorter amount of time. It was legendary and heavily influential in not only New York’s rap makeup, but also the genre’s.

In honor of Queensbridge’s 75th year in existence (and Nas’ recent release of Time is Illmatic), Nah Right has compiled and ranked as many songs. The greatest QB hip-hop cuts of all time. You know, the joints that scream grimy. The ones that take you straight to 41st and Vernon. The jawns that helped shape the legacy of Queensbridge and were important in its musical vibrancy. This list isn’t the greatest songs from artists who happen to be from QB. Nah. This is that diggin’ though crates for unreleased white labels shit. That dun lingo laced crack that brought you straight across the 59th Street Bridge into the valley of tough cats and rhymes just as thoro. Or as Mobb Deep would call it “Hell on Earth.”

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The Songs on The Blueprint, Ranked

Thursday, September 11th, 2014


Today marks 13 years since Jay dropped The Blueprint on the same day that the towers fell. Prompted by the homie Lowkey’s question from earlier about which song people believe is the best on the classic LP, plus our own internal NMC debate, I decided to toss this list together.

This is neither up for debate, nor written in stone: I reserve the right to change this order tomorrow.

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The Lone Swordsman: RZA’s Best Solo Songs

Wednesday, August 27th, 2014


Presented by Dr Pepper

Words by Daniel Isenberg (@StanIpcus)

Staten Island-bred hip-hop icon the RZA has enjoyed a fruitful career in the music industry. Of course, he is best known for his work with the Wu-Tang Clan, producing and rhyming on their untouchable group albums like their debut Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) and their follow-up double LP Wu-Tang Forever, as well as the many five-star solo albums under the Wu umbrella (Raekwon’s Only Built for Cuban Linx, GZA’s Liquid Swords, and Ghostface Killah’s Supreme Clientele to name a few). He’s also collaborated on joints with everyone from Cypress Hill to The Notorious B.I.G. to Kanye West. But truth be told, the RZA is quite capable of making classics on his own. In fact, some of his finest musical work has been done when he’s gone for self. Read about and listen to RZA’s Best Solo Songs below, and be sure to check out RZA’s One of a Kind Studio Sessions EP courtesy of Dr Pepper.

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Video Vault: 10 Classic ’90s Common Music Videos

Sunday, July 13th, 2014


Words by Daniel Isenberg (@StanIpcus)

I was sixteen when Common released his classic sophomore album Resurrection. I admittedly slept on his first joint, but Resurrection held me down so hard my junior year of high school, and I still bang it regularly when I need a jolt of purity. In fact, I’ve been playing it all weekend, and it’s as dope as it was the day I first listened to it, start to finish, no skips, just pure lyricism and skill over a soulful collection of banging No I.D. beats. Now twenty years later, Common is getting ready to drop his 10th album, Nobody’s Smiling, via Def Jam on July 22nd, and I’m super-psyched about its release, because it once again pairs him with Resurrection producer No I.D. The first single “Kingdom” with Vince Staples is a banger, and his recently released Big Sean collabo “Diamonds” knocks too, so there’s no doubt in my mind this LP is going to be special.

After listening to Common’s interview with Combat Jack earlier this week, I got all fired up and decided to put together this collection of classic ‘90s Common music videos for our latest Video Vault. This is a return to Common’s foundation, which you will see from the visuals is deeply rooted in his hometown of Chicago. From the singles off his debut album, to the breakout clip for “I Used to Love H.E.R.,” to collabos with Lauryn Hill, Sadat X, Black Star, and more, enjoy these 10 Classic ’90s Common Music Videos.

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