Entries in Jay-Z (37)
24. Lupe Fiasco-Double Burger with Cheese
Lupe once again chooses to rock over a Justice instrumental and the results are once again excellent. The subject matter of choice is 90's-era gangsta films(Boys In The Hood, Juice, Menace II Society, South Central), and with that, he presents a lyrical exercise in film history like few others can.
23. Lykee Li-Unrequited Love
This almost sounds like an old gospel hymn. She got busy on this number. Yes it's another getting over a break-up song, but the rawness of this one allows an almost spiritual feeling when listening. Soulful, confessional, simple, and sweet this is fireplace/campfire type music right here.
22. Big Sean ft Chris Brown-My Last
I am not going to kid myself and pretend that I didn't recognize that this was basically Kanye's Good Life-lite. NO I.D creates a similar backdrop to one of Yeezy's hits that still connects as an anthem for good times. Stadium status on this one.
21. Beyonce- Love On Top
I was watching her performance of this song from the 2011 MTV Video Awards and any time the cameras focused on other female artist in the crowd(Katey Perry, Adele, Lady Gaga, Niki Manaj), they were smiling singing along word-for-word and this wasn't even a single yet. In other words This is a jam! Especially for those whose born date is 1986 and lower, who probably heard an R&B hit on the radio with similar style of production. Oh, and of course Miss B did here thing on here with all those vocal climbs.
20. Jay-Z & Kanye West ft Frank Ocean-Made in America
Frank Ocean stole the show on this. His hook is killer. Might not be everyone's cup of tea as far as the beat goes, but Ocean get's his Marvin on for sure. Also this is probably the least 1% moment of the and Jay-Z's you get Jay-Z's best verse and most introspective moment on the album. One of the better executed songs the two have done in recent memory.
19. Frank Ocean-Dust
This is that dude this year. Sophisticated songwriting in a genre that severely needed a shot in the arm. It's almost as if this was the year that the light side of The Force returned to shine a little. A not so subtle song about fallen in love with a girl, from a more mature point of view. Go ahead and get your grown man on Frank.
18. Tanya Morgan-In The City
Donwill's verse resonates close to me, and I am sure it does with Bobo and others who have had this feeling as well. The one where you want more than life than the place you currently reside at has to offer. On the other side of the coin Pea contributes a tale of NYC pre-Gilliani and compares and contrasts with the city today to ultimately reach the conclusion; that though it may seem better, ain't much changed. Another addition to the ever growing superb catalog of Tanya Morgan.
17. Rapheal Saadiq- Moving Down The Line
When you get really good at something people just begin to expect greatness from you. Which is about one of the few problems(if you call it that) that Saadiq has now days. The man has it down, and this is yet another testament to all that is good about music. Here is another song that will get your fingers snapping.
One the most anti-being cool tracks this year came from a tiny woman with a huge voice. Calling out all these people frontin like they tough over the sounds of tribal like war drums just sounds so fierce. This might be one of the most non-hip-hop, hip-hop songs this year.
15. Mr J Mederios ft Kyle Gregory-Shower Curtains
The amount of things that make me like this song all begin with the words. One of the dopest verses this year. Powerful; is the only word I can utter when I listen to this track. A must listen.
14. Marsha Ambrosis- Late Night's & Early Mornings
She can make a song like this in her sleep. Check her resume, you will see that the she kills these type of tracks. Though I doubt this song has anything to do with actually sleeping, it's also arguably one of her strongest to date.
13. Tiron & Ayomari ft BJ The Chicago Kid-Her Theme Song
Fellas, insert the baddest one you ever seen in your life name here, and play this as the song that was in the background from when you first saw her. Yeah, the title of the song says the rest. Ladies, enjoy, this ones for you.
12. Phonte- Sendin My Love
My experience in a long-term relationship is very limited at this time of life. So a song like this, shouldn't appeal to me. It does though, if anything it really does capture some of the positives despite within the negatives that one could look forward to. Honest, grown-man music right here.
11. The Weekend-Wicked Games
Dude got his Prince-lite on for this number. What I like about this one, is how violent it sounds. What I mean by that, is in a world where most songs like this are written for boys and girls who mindset is still 18 & under, this crashes against. When he says “Tell me you love me!” he is demanding it, not asking. It's aggressive, there is not a hint of indecision what so ever. This is music for adults, it's the uncomfortable; comfortable. Prince was the king of this, and The Weekend does justice to that legacy.
Two tracks basically become one on off of The Greatest Story Never Told. A somber almost Chronic 2001-esque style beat begins the chronological tale of who learns they ultimately trust the streets. The surprise comes at the end of the song where the sample gets sped up to a more traditional Just Blaze fashioned beat(horns included) banger, resulting in one of the best moments on the album.
9. Frank Ocean-We All Try
Show don't tell with Frank. Instead of just writing some sappy song about how he is trying to make things work, he breaks talks about how all of existence itself is flawed, and because of that we must all still try. Now that's some of cold game right there.
8. Tiron & Ayomairi-Perfect
Trying to understand why a women does, exactly what she does, from the point of view of a man. Yeah that never works out. But that's what Ron, and Mari fully admit to in on here. We don't get it. Not only that they ask why don't we don't notice when a lot of things they do everyday is to meant to get us to do just that, notice.
7. Mr Mutherfucken Exquire ft Despot, Das Racist, Danny Brown, & EL-P-The Last Huzzah
That is a long ass title. This guy's album cover had me ignoring him up until I saw the video for this The Last Huzzah. The best posse cut this year by a mile and a half comes from as someone elsed named them in a comment section somewhere on the Internets:“crew that looks like they kick it at Gamestop(hilarious I thought at least)”. Pretty much every one nails their respective verses, with standouts from Danny Brown, Das Racist, and El-P and Exquire himself. If you love hip-hop music, then you must hear this joint for sure(the video is pretty fresh as well).
6. Shabbaz Palaces-Swerve..The reeping of all that is not Worthwhile(Not withstanding)
Another one of those songs in which upon first hearing, time freezes. What starts off as a nice mid-tempo bounce number, morphs suddenly into a Jazz/R&B moment. Hip-Hop has never sounded so alive.
5. Bon Iver-Holocene
The vocal arrangements are heavenly on this one. I had to include it for sure. It's just that nice. Plus like I always say, I am always a sucker for brass arrangements, no mater how subtle they might be. I would love to have him and Kirk Franklin collab actually. Wonder where that would go? Speaking of which...
4. Kirk Franklin-Hello Fear
Yes on a predominately hip-hop oriented list Kirk Franklin gets some shine. My later adolescent years and up the mans music has been a huge part of my life. Whether you believe in religion or not, the man creates great music. This song arrived in a time in the world where fear itself is working at an all time high. An encouraging message that fear, need not hold a permanent place in our life. And backed by some of almost most heavenly arrangements in the universe, the message has never sounded better.
3. Blu ft Jimetta Rose- Spring Winter Summer Fall
I have never heard anything like this. I have listened to lot of music this year and there are very songs where I can say after a first listen, lack anything familiar. By far one of the best songs I have heard this year. Blu delivers a pair of verses that will allow him to enter Mt Olympus for the rest of his days.
2.DJ Quik-Killer Dope
Epic. Quik might be the Little Richard/Chuck Berry of hip-hop, he will most likely never get his proper due. The fact that he continues to create masterpieces like this after 20 years in the game despite the lack of recognition is something to be admired. The horns are something that the 300 of Sparta might march in to town to. A true testament of his new sense of rediscovered confidence. He has never sounded more alive than now. One of the best produced songs this year.
1. Lupe Fiasco-All Black Everything
My favorite song of 2011 is taking the idea of a re-imagined society where slavery never existed. A radical concept indeed to think about, and is handled very well by Lupe. The Fred Astire line in the song always brings a smile. Great song, challenging the way we think about race relations, and history, without coming across too preachy either. I would love to see a TED video just having him talk about this song.
49.Theophilus London ft Dev Hynes- Century Girl
Theophilus has the type of lyrical content that Big Sean specializes in, which is about 80% nonsense. But when it clicks like this, it works. Don't know why he didn't put this on his album? It could have easily have been another single for sure.
48.Tiron & Ayomari-Back 2 U
For the foreign situation where you don't know if you are going to see that someone again, send them this song.
47.Phonte ft Elzhi-Not Here Anymore
New Tigallo-Tigallo-Tigallo! When it was announced that 9th Wonder would be working with Phonte again I really didn't know what to expect. I had at this point grown accustomed to that non-9th collaboration point of Te's career, and to be honest there wasn't too much that I had heard in the recent memory that had me begging for more 9th Wonder. Well, when I heard this jawn, you pretty much consider all those former thoughts invalid. The beat is beautiful, Phonte delivers two hip-hop quotable worthy verses, and then Elzhi takes us home with a fierce verse as well making this one hell of a trailer to one of this years best albums.
46.Tyler The Creator ft Frank Ocean-She
Two of the more well-known members of OFWGKTA link up for on one of the weirdest songs available to public this year. Yet, everything that makes this song abnormal, makes it that much more enjoyable. The off-time drums, weird lead synths, creeper like verses from Tyler, and another golden hook sung by Frank, all work together to create a strange, yet still wonderful jawn.
45.Beastie Boys-Make Some Noise
These dudes still can rock it. It's on some skateboarder type youthful music though despite their age. This one will set the crowd into a frenzy for sure.
44.Frank Ocean-songs for women
What goes around comes around is the theme for this song about an R&B singer who sings songs to get at a girl, then finds out that the very girl who he was singing about is singing a new song. Kind of has a post-modern Mowtown sound to it.
43.Tanya Morgan ft Napoleon & Che Grand-Gotta Get Over It
I actually came back from a Friday evening walk downtown and this has been playing on repeat since shuffle brought it to my attention. The perfect song for a day like such. All the obligations for the week are done, everybody in a good mood outside, Christmas lights are up everywhere you look, great scene. The music is perfect for this in environment. Also I would include family get-together's, and summer barbecues as well. Tanya has supplied a jam for anywhere good spirits are present.
42.Pusha T-My God
Easily the first track this year that had folks on that screw face. Pusha is at home over these type of eerie sounding productions. My God!
41.The Roots Ft Dice Raw & Phonte-One Time
Glad to see that Phonte making another cameo with the The Roots crew. He sounds right at home here on this beat, and This kind picks up where How I Got Over Left off production-wise, left off. I can't wait to get back home and get the LP so I can read more up on this album.
40.Lupe Fiasco-WWJD He'd Prolly LOL like WTF!
Best song title this year. Beyond that though, Lupe does what he didn't do enough of on LASERS and spits more of the complex introspective raps that originally turned heads on. This introspective look at consumerism is worth every replay.
The song is only clocks in at a little under a minute and a ½, but a song's length only matters if you're aiming for Clear Channel(radio) now days, besides since when did size matter? Anyways, this short jam on catching feelings is perfect for those afternoon hangout's and such. Doesn't hurt either that it's written by composed by Blu either.
38.Big Sean-So Much More
This beat is so nice that it doesn't matter that only 60% of Big Sean says on here is semi-interesting. NO I.D really did his thing this year on the beats. It's so soulful, I actually appreciate the part more when Sean is just talking at the end where he sheds the artificial and actually just gets real.
37.Lykee Li-Follow Rivers
Homegirl is so fresh! Songs like this continue to make my case. I hate using this term as it is something that the new school is more familiar with; swag. What I like about this is it has a swing to it than most indie music which allows you to groove a lot more than usual do to the hip-hop/r&b influence.
36.Beyonce- Rather Die Young
From the opening lines of this one, you know that B' is about to bring it. She sings with so much of the passion that I thought was lacking on a lot of the last two releases of hers. This is her track, it's not like I can sit here and think;oh _______would've killed this track.
This cut right here was vintage. A Neptune's produced song that was left off the cutting room floor of The Lady Killers(why?). The two had collaborated before back on Cee-Lo's second solo venture ...Is The Soul Machine and had me thinking Al Green back then. Now, my thoughts are further cemented by this one. Casual fans of Crazy, and F*&K You might not have flocked to, but for fans of soulful music, this is a cut that will bring goodness to your ears.
34.Jay-Z & Kanye West-Murder to Excellence
One of the few moments on the album were the two take a look outside their window finally. The production on this one is dope. Can't believe I am actually saying this two years in a row now about something featuring co-production by Swizz Beatz. What is this world coming too?
33.Kendrick Lamar-Ho'd Up
Kendrick Lamar is definitely a talented artist. The problem for me is sometimes his beats aren't the most creative for someone with such a fluid style. Though everyone might of went crazy over ADHD, or HiiPower!!! This song is the one that showcases all his talents the best.
32.Pharohe Monch ft Styles P & Phonte-Black Hand Side
This is on the real song. Nothing flashy, a hard look on the reality of the modern African-American struggle, and critique on artist who neglect to tell this story in their music. Accompanied by Phonte's beautifully sung hook, Pharohe Monch and Styles P trade reality rhymes.
31.The Cool Kids ft Mayer Hawthorne-Swimsuits
Summer Jam! Fresh to def, radio formatted, and ready to lock and load. This was the song that would of had folks dancing for sure. I don't know if the clubs were playing this cause I wasn't in a place where hip-hop music was getting burn. I do know that this is some feel good, have fun music none-the-less and Mayer on the hook is gold!
30.The Roots Ft Big K.R.I.T-Make My
The Roots and K.R.I.T??? Yeah, never would've seen this collabo coming in a million years. This is a kind of blues-based track though and you don't have the Blues with out the South. KRIT, makes the most of his opportunity and delivers a great performance on the mic, next to one of the best in the game. A beautiful track, that was the first peak to the instant classic album Undun.
29.DJ Quik ft Dwelle- Time Stands Still
Grown folks music right here. What can't Quik do at this point? This might be one of the best songs that Dwelle has ever appeared on. He really should enlist some more production services from him. On that smooth tip, grown man tip for sure.
28.The Dream-Body Work/F#*! My Brains Out
The first half of this song isn't all that different from his normal sigle aimed music. But when we get a little pass the half-point, the song gets really interesting. From a slowed down bridge the speed almost instantly picks up to something that owes a lot to Prince, but also get's reaaaal nasty in here. Almost ten minutes of music that you shouldn't be listening to around kids.
27.Tyler The Creator-Yonkers
My first intro to the universe known as OFWGKTA(Odd Future for short, not writing that all the way out again). I don't want to get into the video since what I am doing here is talking about actual songs. So let's start with the amazing production. The jazz chords, are what gets to me the most, and then you have Tyler whose flow on here is crazy. It's dark, it's raw, it's explicit, in your face, and everything that you wouldn't want your young kids to listen to. In other words it's just what rap needed this year... A walking paradox
Nas does these type of songs in his sleep now. He is JUST THAT GOOD. I don't know how people could even try to compare him and Hov? Besides making Ether the bar which all battle rap responses had to measure up to from that point forward, he has recently been over this year been seen commiting genocide on tracks left and right. Nas is the Chuck Norris of rap(in terms of bad ass, not ridiculousness).
When I was a Freshman in high school there was this one Senior guy who would always be messing with me. On one of his last days of school he snuck up on me before I was able to use my 4.5 evasive combine speed and instead of throwing me to the ground, putting me in a headlock, or taunting me, he explained to me why he had tormented me the whole year:
He said: “Don’t run man, I ain’t going to do nothing to you. You know why I always was messin with you right?”
I looked at him as non-scared as I could, fearing there was some sneaky ill-fated plan behind the way I chose my answer, and answered: “No”
He said: “so after I am gone you wont be letting all these fake dudes step to you, make you tougher”
A good lesson in hindsight, I was a arrogant dude who thought I could just come in and run game.When in reality I was maybe a a buck twenty-three, standing at maybe 5’5, with a loud mouth and no backbone yet. I needed some older dudes showing me whats up so I could truly takeover.
It was a good thing that happened, cause next year there were these incoming freshmen who were trying to be hard and all gangster-ish. They stepped to someone in my crew mistakenly, and I called them out, not letting off from that point on.
Over the last few years I have been watching Toronto’s rap sensation Aubery “Drake” Graham on the come-up. As successful as he has been, his whole persona reminds me of of those very incoming freshmen. A lot of posing, tough talk, and no back-bone. No older homey ever told him what was up, so he goes chameleon mode, and just hops on trends (Two years later those same tough-guys were skaters) trying a little too hard to be semi-cool.
The evidence is clearly in my favor in the case of the State of Realness vs Aubery Grahm. Not to mention dude was a teen actor, so most likely he perfected his chameleon abilities in this profession early on. Still, allow me to present a few shreds of evidence to the jury.
When I had first started peeping dude back in the 00’s, dude had beef with Toronto’s other famous MC Kardinall Offishall(who would destroy Aubery if it went to wax). Why? Well it seems as if Kardi got on one of Drake’s mixtape tracks and dissed some other resident Maple Leaf rapper whose name I can’t recollect. And instead of Drake being a man about the situation, dude tucks tail and runs to this other said rapper, and says he is cool with him and has nothing to do with Kardi dissin him(though it was his mixtape and he could of removed the song).Yeah that is some sucka shit**.
**yeah he pretty much just pulled a classic bitch move. Much like the one he pulled this year when the love of his life Weezy got on Hov and he went once again went Backpedal Mcgee on the situation again.**
I was cool with Drake when I first heard him. He had some tracks I felt could get some radio love, nothing too corny about em’, no love lost. Then he singed a major label deal (to this day I still think he should of kept it indie but dude needs someone to hold his hand most likely) and when he released Thank Me Later’s 1st single Over...you remember this one? With “classic” lines such as.
"what am I doing(repeat), I’m doing me(repeat)" (pause)
Yeah he just said that.
"bout to set it off in this bitch, Jada Pinkitt" (pause)
A reference about a movie featuring four women robbing a bank? OK, that one is a little less (pause) worthy since he didn’t say: “bout to Jason’s Lyric in this” . That would ended all, if he said that.
Not to mention how forced, and contrived the song sounded as well. Yet I thought to myself, maybe that’s just a rare misfire.
I will not speak too much on this song. For I am not 14 years old and am not a female. I don’t know how anyone over the age of 18 would consider making this. Is this what he meant by the game being “Over”? If so, in every wrong way it would be over soon if nonsense like this kept circulating the airwaves.
Then came this tough talk new single Headlines
K, your a tough guy now? Going to body some guys now? Real?
Yet you still sing/rap on the track?
This is as bad as Hammer making that diss video with background dancers, for Jay-Z.
My last article of evidence I will introduce to the jury, is the recent Phonte words about Drizzy, dedicating the songwriter of the year award to Tigallo. Aubery has been up & down shouting out 9th Wonder and Phonte in the public eye for a minute now. Yet, he has yet to do a song with either? That is on some sideways type shit. Like it’s almost like he is trying to prove that he is cool with them in the public eye for the sake of him knowing that he is cool with older established homeys. What bothers me even more is that this is not the first time this has happened with a artist and him.
Danny! was supposed to be featured on his debut album, but for some reason Drizzy(and his handlers) wasn’t having that, and took him off(only evidence that remains online) the album.
This says a lot of the mans character. Or lack there-of I should say. Guy is quick to big-up someone, yet the actual possibility comes of doing something with said artist...dude ducks out and gets real funny style. Glad that Phonte called him out on it though, might be the big homey treatment he has been lacking in his circle. You know Wayne isn’t putting him up on game( remember that single , no grown man can tell me anything if he made a song like this ) for sure.
Bottom line is dude is major suspect. Definitely not someone you would want standing in your corner. Might as well have a cardboard cut out of him if that’s the case. It would provide essentially the same service(or lack of). That’s how much credibility Drake has shown up to this point, and it especially comes across in his music as well. Where for every one good song I hear of his, I hear probably five other ones lacking any identity, much like himself. Dude is phony.
So what is it? Is Drake Harvey Dent? Or is he Two-face? One thing for sure is Drake is on one.