Here Philadelphia rap vets Freeway and Young Chris rhyme over one of the best beats of the season, made by Willingboro, New Jersey producer Carl "Cardiak" McCormick for Meek Mill's song "Lean Wit It." Meek Mill, who is also from Philadelphia, is a good rapper, elevated by the wiry urgency he always carries in his voice. Young Chris is just fine, too. But, man, listen to what Freeway does when he comes on! (That's at the 1:48 mark, if you don't have the 3 minutes and 11 seconds it takes to watch the whole thing. Which, I sympathize. It's a busy world we live in.) While the [...]
Last week, we watched Cyhi Da Prince rap on DJ Tony Touch's radio show and discussed the evolution of the term "freestyle." As if in response, Tony had Talib Kweli and Awl fave Freeway on yesterday, and they performed in the style that the legendary Big Daddy Kane would call off-the-dome, "when you don't write it and just say whatever comes to mind." Needless to say, rhymes off the dome are usually not as good as those more carefully written. (Freeway, displays this by starting off ad-lib, but finishing with memorized material.) Either way, as Talib says at the end, "What a treat, man."
The terrific Philadelphian rapper Freeway is set to release his next album, The Stimulus Package, through the independent Rhymesayers Entertainment in February. There are lots of reasons to be excited about this. Freeway's voice and rhymes and flow on the lead single, "You Know What I Mean," for example. And that great beat. In fact, the entire album is being produced by the guy who made it, Seattle native G-Unit veteran Jake One. This is extremely rare in rap these days. Most albums (those that ever actually come out, that is) are assembled by cobbling together tracks from various producers-which often makes for a less organic listening experience. In [...]
Do you ever think to yourself: man, there's no more good rap music! You're mostly right. But only mostly. For example, this new song, from Philadelphian MCs Freeway and Young Chris (both late of Jay-Z's Roc-A-Fella Records), is excellent. It sounds like the two are sitting on a stoop a nice summer day, snapping their fingers and rhyming into the breeze just for the fun of it. "You can try me," says Freeway, "But you're gonna fail harder/Lock me/I'll get the bail and go hella harder/I am what's happeningÃ‚Â without Nell Carter and Freddie Stubbs!" Oh hey, wait?
Six Alternates For Time's "Person Of The Year," Five Good Rap Videos, And One Great Heavy Metal Video
People that would definitely not be named "Person of the Year" by Philadelphia rappers Black Deniro and Freeway: 1) The "Twitter Thug" 2) The "Fake Baller" 3) The "Bougie Chick" 4) The "Phone Gangster" 5) The "Goon Rat" 6) The "Sneaky Groupie"
Everybody's favorite heavily bearded Philadelphia rapper Freeway has a new song out. Here he is, beneath Kent Twitchell's huge Julius Erving mural on the corner of Green Street and Ridge Avenue. The track was made by frequent collaborator Jake One, whose subtle, unadorned beats are always a nice backdrop for Freeway's jittery, animated voice. Does anybody rhyme out the side the mouth better? Does anybody have a better whisper?
So Jay-Z's booked to perform "Empire State of Mind" before the opening game of the world series at Yankee Stadium. Hard to beat something that makes that much sense. A big, bombastic anthem about the bright lights of the big city to match the big, bombastic Bronx Bombers and the bright lights of their big new stadium. (Even as that googolzillion-dollar monument to avarice and ostentation is already falling apart.) Alicia Keys on the chorus and everything. A-Rod's bound to pop a boner. The Evil Empire is stacking the deck.
How's Philadelphia-a place already afflicted with a severe second-city complex-supposed to compete?
"The Philadelphia Muslim community has its own charm to it. They’ve got this in-your-face and unapologetic pride in being Muslim. What also stands out is the community’s heavy influence from street culture. It’s not uncommon to see someone with a long beard and traditional Muslim garb accessorized by gold teeth and an iced-out watch." —New York blogger Aman Ali has observed Ramadan this past month by traveling the country with his friend Bassam Tariq, and documenting the experience for their blog project, 30 Mosques in 30 States. My favorite post is from Day 24, last Friday, when they accompanied one of my favorite rappers, Freeway, to [...]
Awl fave Freeway, out of Philadelphia, proves he can rap better than you on two new songs from his upcoming mixtape, The Beat Made Me Do It. An official album, The Stimulus Package, is due in January. (He'd better hurry up with that. Since the talk on the increasingly long unemployment line says the recession is already over, didn't you know.)