HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! That’s right…it’s 2014 and that means it’s time to get back on the music blogging grind. So let’s start the year off with a little West Coast Hip Hop, shall we? Here’s a new entry from L.A.’s DUBB, recently featured on Nipsey Hussle’s Crenshaw mixtape, specifically on the song “Don’t Take Days Off”. Here’s he’s at D.J. Carisma of Power 106 in L.A.’s Blue Room freestyling his a$$ off. Again, don’t take my word for it…just peep the vid online and tell me I’m lying! DUBB has his new mixtape, Never Content, dropping on January 14. Be sure to take a listen!
25 years ago, Hip Hop was in a different place. In terms of becoming a global popular music phenomenon, the genre had come a long ways from the Bronx where it was created and was beginning to permeate throughout America as the new voice of disaffected and disenfranchised youth. One of the groups that would become synonymous with the rebellious braggadocio of Hip Hop was N.W.A., and their debut album and song of the same name, “Straight Outta Compton”, was their magnum opus. When I first saw Dr. Dre, MC Ren, DJ Yella, Ice Cube and Eazy-E in the video at 7 years old, I thought to myself, “Damn, it must be dangerous as hell in California!” From the block-savvy tough guy image they portrayed (big sunglasses, all black attire, gold rope chains) to their stand-offishness in interviews, it was clear that N.W.A. looked to put themselves as a group in the light of being real gangsters (even though they weren’t even close.) This sample-driven, siren-screeching, drum-heavy composition, with its lyrics filled with ball-grabbing machismo arrogant mocking of lesser foes, is one of the most controversial Hip Hop songs of all time. One of the stories behind both the song and the album is that it caused none other than the F.B.I. to send a letter of condemnation to the group and subsequently its record label, which only helped to fuel N.W.A.’s popularity on a larger, mainstream scale. Soon enough they would be filling stadium seats while kids from both the city and the ‘burbs chanted along with their lyrics. So, thinking about it, maybe Hip Hop wasn’t in THAT different of a place 25 years ago.