In this exclusive interview feature, Wiz Khalifa discusses partnering with Flat Fitty Luxury Headwear to create his new Wiz Khalifa Collection. Wiz also shares his thoughts on style and fashion inspiration; and speaks on how his life has become a real life Blacc Hollywood!
Bay Area icon, The Jacka, and Space Age Entertainment's Dubble-OO team up for the release of their collaborative project, “Futuristic Mob” which promises to have the perfect mixture of The Jacka’s signature Mob sound that his fans have grown to love and Dubble-OO’s spaced out-futuristic style which speaks to the younger generation that just wants to have fun. The two blend the generational and musical styles perfectly.
London based Hip Hop artist, Just P, has released the official music video to his latest track, Change of Scenery. The track features a soft, key based instrumental which, was produced by talented producer Smiley Smuggler, and P uses to make a track about going on holiday to escape his stresses. The cinematic video was directed by talented UK emcee Ruthless and was partly shot by P in Stuttgart, Germany.
“Inspiration always knocks on the door when you’re trying to get some sleep. That’s the only explanation I’ve got for returning to being a recording artist after my well-documented and firm retirement from the music business in 2009. I didn’t think there was a snowball’s chance under Paula Deen's ass that I’d ever make music again. I’m returning to an uphill climb: bloggers and tastemakers half my age, general relevance that has gone from minimal to nearly non-existent and the viral phenomenon has replaced the slow burn method I’ve become accustomed to. But every Jay-Z needs a broke cousin counterpart like J-Zone to return to a (much) more modest rap arena after sworn retirement.
Like my turbulent ups and downs in the music biz inspired my book (Root For the Villain), the rollercoaster ride of life-altering decisions and expectations that have come with post-rap life (and one’s 30s in general) have inspired my first J-Zone solo album in nine years, Peter Pan Syndrome. Of course it’s somewhat of a concept album; I had to ask myself (and the general public) “Do rap artists ever have to ‘grow up?’” If so, what does that entail?
As a rap artist who at one point was able to survive on modest earnings, but not big enough to really stack money and become a household name, I’ve landed in an odd position. I never formally entered the workforce until my mid-30s and my lack of “real world” experience has made a career search a grim, albeit hilarious ride. Bringing home $50 a day after taxes and expenses with no room to advance (and eventually working a total of 80 hours per week to make it $150!) was hardly ideal, but that was my reality for a good while and if I couldn’t produce something entertaining out of that quicksand jog, I’d be wasting both the experience and my sense of humor. It was also pretty funny to literally be laughed out of an employment agency earlier this year for my “unverifiable” work history in the rap game. Then all this talk about lacking “experience” and my peers saying I can’t be walking around with a retro haircut if I’m serious about finding a nice, secure, dead end job. The nerve!
So how did I respond? In the most un-adult manner possible: I eschewed grad school and instead spent my money on old drum kits and learned how to play a little bit, giving a different edge to my production. I turned every blog I was preparing to post on my platform at Ego Trip into a rap song and gave select moments from my book got the same treatment. I called up some old friends (rappers Al-Shid, Celph Titled and Breeze Brewin and cameo-makers Prince Paul, R.A. the Rugged Man and Oxygen), some new ones (rapper Has-Lo and multi-instrumentalist Hot Sugar) and my alter egos (unemployed shit-talkers Chief Chinchilla and Swagmaster Bacon) to help me create the most honest record of my career, yet still by far the most vulgar, lowbrow and juvenile, considering my age. Wish me luck, because if this doesn’t work, I’m gonna start doing slip-and falls in different Whole Foods locations across America for money. Anything to never join a site like monster.com again, and keep getting e-mails for shit I’m not qualified for.”
J-Zone’s “Peter Pan Syndrome” will be released in Digital, CD & Cassette (limited to 200 total in 2 different tape shell colors) formats; and Vinyl coming later in the year; you can pre-order the LP now at j-zone.bandcamp.com.
Ariano Releases "We Will Be" Feat. Thoughtsarizen + Prod. By Kelly Dean
Courtesy Ballin PR.
LA emcee + singer Ariano is releasing the second single "We Will Be," featuring rapper ThoughtsArizen and Smong Records producer Kelly Dean. The track is off his forthcoming release, The Collection Vol 1 on Technicali Sound,, a collection of released and new material.
Video: Ads Antalik f/ AF Rome, Palermo Stone - "Coming Right Back"
Courtesy R.A.R.E. Nation.
The lively, exciting Ads Antalik recruits label-mates Palermo Stone and AF Rome for crisp visuals to "Coming Right Back." The song, produced by Samuel Whitney, finds the three talented emcees in a reflective yet celebratory mood. Ads Antalik is currently preparing his debut project as a R.A.R.E. Nation artist.
You may know A-1 from his internet-famous debut mixtape After School Special or his equally well-received 2011 follow-up The Book Of Adam. After releasing his latest mixtape The Thurl Tape last fall, A-1 is back with a new video. The video for "Retinas," featuring singer Xiomara, tells a narrative of a relationship's gradual descent and eventual collapse with A-1 rapping all the verses but speaking from the point of view of himself for the first half of the song and from her side for the hook and final verse.
The mixtape draws inspiration from the storytelling element of the 90's, an era to which the title of the tape refers. "I wanted to bring back the 90s," says Dizzy, "I feel like people appreciated music a little more in the past. In 2013 our flow should be developed and mixed with substance. We should be talking about something, not wasting any bars. The most important thing is substance." Some of this substantive content comes directly from Dizzy's notorious "smoked-out" conversations with fans and friends around him but sometimes he simply lets the mood and feel of a beat draw out subject matter. His artistic process is continually evolving and growing.