Robert Grasper has been an unsung pillar of Hip-Hop. He’s been quietly collaborating and remixing jazz-influenced Hip-Hop for years. And even though classic Hip-Hop is supported less by Black people and more by the Hipster community these days, it feels good when artists from other genres show their love to the foundation. #salute
In the vein of The Internet, Moonchild and Kaiyote Hiatus, The Do Yo Thangs have their own distinctive style of soul music. I found their 2016 debut One Plus One a little late, but it still felt new and fresh. Their new album, Mind Full will be dropping May 25th and I can’t wait.
I’ve always been a big fan of Royce Tha 5’9″. But I always thought his beat selection was a little sparactic.. solo and with Slaughterhouse. But when he teamed up with DJ Premier to from PRhyme, that talk was over. Their first major release was epically dope, and judging from this video, their sophomore release is going to be even doper.
In 1998, the neo soul movement was near its peak when a collective of like-minded artists came together to push the wave even higher. They called themselves the Soulquarians, and before the decade ended they’d help birth some of the modern era’s greatest recordings.
There’s a halo of reverence around J Dilla, a producer and beatmaker from Detroit who made some of the most fascinating and influential beats in Hip-Hop history. Before his early death in 2006, J Dilla worked with countless artists and producers – from Erykah Badu and Janet Jackson to Busta Rhymes and Madlib – and developed an off-kilter style of rhythm and sampling that transcended the machine he used to create music, the Akai Midi Production Center, otherwise known as the MPC.
— Taken from Vox Youtube
I don’t want to jinx anything, but it’s starting to feel like soul music is coming back. After R&B’s over-exposed obsession with Trapp music, there seems to be some young up and coming vocalists who are pulling their style back from the fringes and producing nice, melodic, modern soul music that both young and older heads can enjoy. Artists like H.E.R., BOSCO, Snoh Aalegra, Soia and more are quietly seeding music that captures the feel of vintage soul but wraps that sound in a nice, shiny, new package. The latest artist that’s captured my ears is Miami songstress Sabrina Claudio. One of my twitter connects sent me a link to her recently released project, About Time, which feels so fresh, yet harkens back to the style I use to love in the 90’s. Yet another emerging creative from the Soundcloud Revolution, Ms. Claudio’s previous EP “Confidently Los” is just as soulful and impactful. You need to add her to your list of “Must Listens”.
It’s been hard to find good modern ‘soul’ music, that isn’t filled with trap beats and mumble rap guest rappers. I nearly missed Niia’s “I” project in a sea of noise on iTunes. But then I heard her sultry voice on the self-destructive single “Hurt You First” and I was hooked. The 2017 album sounds incredibly mature with a lot of mellow styling, yet feels fresh and modern at the same time.
I pulled out The Infamous earlier this week. I had totally forgotten how iconic that album was. Even in 1995 when there were incredible releases by Raekwon (Only Built 4 Cuban Linx…), The Pharcyde (Labcabincalifornia), Old Dirty (Return to the 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version) and others… Mobb Deep’s sophomore album still stood out. They established themselves the standard for East Coast ‘grimy’ Hip-Hop. You could even say they were the Right Coast answer to West Coast’s ‘gangsta‘ trend. Best believe, if you don’t have Shook Ones Pt. II or Survival of The Fittest on your tops tracks of ’95.. something is seriously wrong with you. Peep this episode of Mass Appeal’s ‘Open Space’.