What's going on with Atlantan trap rap? ("Trap" is regional slang for the drug market. Trapping is selling drugs. Trap rap is rap music centered around and focussed on the drug market.) Well, first of all, OJ Da Juiceman is never going to catch those sneaky kids who steal the money from his dice game while he's wearing so much gold. He can't run fast enough if he has to hold all his chains against his chest to make sure they don't fly around and hit him in the face! (This is reminiscent of the old I'm Gonna Git You Sucka joke about people dying from "O.G." or [...]
Twelve years after Ghostface Killah talked about switching up his accent to convince people he was from Paris, pretty much the entire rest of hip-hip seems to be taking his lead. Thanks in part to the luxury travel itineraries flaunted by the likes of Puffy and Jay and Kanye, the City of Lights has become the new rap Mecca. (Where is MC Solaar through all this? He should be ringing up guest appearances.) It's especially striking to see someone like Atlanta's Waka Flocka Flame, whose considerable appeal relies so much on everyday, down-to-earth, streets-of-his-hometown approachability, rapping about splurging at the Louis Viutton store in [...]
Bay Area rapper Lil B's "cooking" dance seems to be reaching full-fledged ubiquity. We've seen Justin Beiber make reference to it, P. Diddy did it when he introduced Lil B's performance at South by Southwest last week, and lots of other rappers are doing it in their videos. (Above, Atlanta's OJ Da Juiceman gives it a go.) The basics of the dance are mostly hand-and-wrist motion, like you're holding a pot and stirring its contents. It's meant to mimic the actions of cooking crack.
Hooray! I was thinking he'd been oddly quiet throughout the past two weeks' "Aflockalypse." (Apparently, he was having some legal problems unrelated to all the birds dying, and also maybe planning a reality show.) But Waka Flocka Flame has returned. And with gangsta with him. His new mixtape is called Salute Me or Shoot Me. (Which, oy, please, let's everybody just salute him, okay?)
I am very much anti-gun in real life. So it's always disturbed me just how much I enjoy shoot-em-up gangster movies or war movies or rap songs. I'm not like a fetishist, for the weaponry itself. I don't have posters over my desk of women in bikinis firing Uzis or whatever. But I do like some tough-guy talk at the end of a barrel-on screen or through some speakers.
Awesome! Atlanta rapper Waka Flocka Flame goes back to the glory days of the old Pen-and-Pixel designs for the cover to his new mixtape, Lebron Flocka James Pt. 2. Here is Flocka, headband in place, superimposed upon the NBA superstar's body, dribbling a basketball out of a fiery explosion in space (a microquasar, perhaps?), between a packaged brick of illicit-looking product and a large mound of cocaine, which seem to have been left, rather cavalierly, at center court of a basketball arena. There's nothing left to say, really, except thank you. Thank you, Waka Flocka Flame. Thank you. Here, to better appreciate the details:
I think I might know who robbed that guy in a chicken suit from yesterday.
I like this new video for this Low song. But I think it could have been better. Rather than a sped-up video of NYC's bustling subway system, I kinda think a single shot of someone waiting for twenty minutes for the F Train to show up at the East Broadway stop, all frowning and sighing and sweating through his or her clothing, before finally noticing the sign posted on the column down the platform that says service has been cancelled. That's more of what I get from the song. But regardless, it's pretty great. Low are the best.
Another very enjoyable new video is one from Berkeley rapper [...]
Proclamations that a certain era is "good" or "bad" for music are always specious. There's both good and bad music being made all the time, of course, in all different genres, and that's been true even during eras accepted as either "golden" or "dead" for whatever style you might be talking about. What's easier to talk about, what I think people are actually assessing when they talk in this way, is what's popular at a certain time in history—stylistic characteristics of the music that happens to be selling the most, or being played on popular radio stations. Of course, people often disagree about stylistic characteristics, too, whether they make [...]
"That man is a mind-game genius. I read the Machiavelli war-tactic books, his biography, everything. That man is just like sticks and stones, bad. You see Waka Flocka, what do you think? Negativity. You read Machiavelli? Negativity. My brain, I'm so sharp, I can play stupid on the camera and they think I'm dumb. So really, you just playing yourself. I'm so ahead of y'all. That's for the bloggers." -You think Waka Flocka Flame's lyrics betray a lack of erudition? You thought he looked a bit flumoxed when questioned about education and voting on 106 and Park? Perhaps his name itself led you to question his intellect? [...]
Man, it really seems like everyone has had a pretty crappy summer, doesn't it? Everyone's just in a foul mood. The thing about Atlanta's Cee-Lo, though, is that even when he's in a foul mood, he can make music that sounds as joyous and terrific as this most recent single from his forthcoming Lady Killer album. Enjoy! And here are five other songs from this summer that similarly express very similar feelings: A full handful of musical middle-fingers!
If you only watch one video trailer for a forthcoming issue of a magazine today (and you should only watch one video trailer for a forthcoming issue of a magazine today), let it be this: Waka Flocka Flame promoting his appearance on the cover of next month's XXL. It seems funny, a trailer for a magazine. But Waka Flocka is Waka Flocka: honest, down-to-earth and very difficult not to love. And this video ends up being a lot like the video for LCD Soundsystem's "New York I Love You, But You're Bringing Me Down." (Except with less sadness, and more immolation.) Wait till you see the trailer [...]
"Gucci Mane, recently released from prison for the umpteenth time, sounds no worse for wear here, managing impressive nimbleness with his mealy mouth. He has more gears than most rappers do, a versatile stylist with nothing so old-fashioned as a commitment to structure and the integrity of words. He prefers sounds." —Awl pal Jon Caramanica's review of the new Gucci Mane and Waka Flocka Flame album in today's Times brings up a good point about rap. There are important elements to it other than the lyrics. Sometimes these other elements get overlooked. This is the case with Hua Hsu's review of the new Jay-Z and Kanye [...]
Fans of rap and of organization will really enjoy this Grand Taxonomy of Rap Names tree chart made by the poster-design duo Pop Chart Lab. It's terrific, and definitely worth falling into for a few minutes today. But, sadly, it does not include the newest addition to the all-time great rap names pantheon*, Riverdale, Georgia's Waka Flocka Flame. A member of Gucci Mane's Brick Squad crew who's found recent success on the strength of singles like "O Let's Do It" and "Hard in the Paint," Flocka would have fit nicely into the "Rhyme" category of the "Wordplay" branch, or started any one of various possible new groupings: An [...]
So last we checked on Gucci Mane's crony Waka Flocka Flame, it was to marvel at the cover art of his latest mixtape, Lebron Flocka James Pt. 2. What's he been up to since? Well, the Atlanta rapper has had some success with his single "O Let's Do It." He appeared on The Mo'Nique Show last night to perform it. And he surely enjoyed the peekytoe crab salad at Gucci's welcome home party last week. But also, and unfortunately, while filming a video with Gucci on their city's West side, Flocka was confronted by a group of local guys-one of whom was very vociferous in [...]