Tag Archives: Blu

The Hip-Hop Dojo [Vol. 2]

Welcome back to the Hip-Hop Dojo! It seems just like yesterday we put up the first edition of this humble playlist, but we have all this awesome music to remind of us the time that’s passed. This week’s lineup features some true lyrical wordsmiths, from veterans like Talib Kweli and Ras Kass, to youngsters like Kendrick Lamar and Joey Purp. Although we’re only in our second week, a few artists are already making reappearances like the aforementioned Joey Purp, as well as STSSahtyre, King Chip, and Termanology. Since last week’s post ran a little lengthy, we’ve tried to shorten things by highlighting some of the standout material.

We start things off this week with a more conscious vibe. While up-and-comer Eddy B sheds light on some of his harsh realities growing up, Talib and R.A. The Rugged Man take us for a tour around the globe, exploring atrocities many of us may not have been aware of. Meanwhile, ¡Mayday! frontman Wrekonize also provides us with some insight to personal struggles of his own, and the reasons for his “Anxiety Attacks.”

Toning things down in the next section, we’ve assembled a nice collection of songs to share with your other half. One of the most notable items is “Natural Spring Water” from 2AM Club, who flaunt their roots in multiple genres alongside Wichita native, XV. We also have a few recognizable faces in here too. With Tyga & Chris Brown‘s “Fuck For The Road” comes a story of redemption and renewal, while The World Famous Tony Williams and his (arguably more famous) crew of Kanye WestKing Chip, and Freddie Gibbs, assemble together for a remix of his ode to that special someone. Lastly, we have a new cut from some TMN favorites, THEBLKHANDS, who utilize a brilliant sample of The xx‘s “Angels” to introduce us to the darker side of love.

The next section just features some good old-fashioned trash talking, a language that’s clearly spoken worldwide as evidenced by our inclusion of London-based ItsNate on the remix of his hit record, “WSLTA” which stands for “Where She Learnt That At.” We also get some outstanding verses from the likes of Joey Purp, GQ, Rapsody, Rocki Evans, Blu, and Smoke DZA along with his new R.F.C. crew. Old-fashioned wasn’t just a figure of speech either, as just about all of these tracks have some ill, old-school vibes to them.

As always, we also have a few cuts ideal for listening between 4:19 and 4:21. B.I.C.‘s spaced-out “DOPM” is definitely a standout in that category. Credit is definitely due to Chuk Le Garcon, who creates a trippy, ethereal beat for the boys to spit on. We can’t forget to give props to Ras Kass for coming up with the possible line of the week on Termanology’s “We Stay High,” spitting, “I’ll put a rapper in a wheelchair like Degrassi.” Sahtyre‘s got a real banger for the second week in a row, with his powerful new single, “Gettin High.”

Speaking of bangers, we’ve got a real treat for you with our next two songs, both featuring prominent samples. While STS definitely does his thing over Kavinsky‘s “Odd Look,” Zak Downtown and Murda Mook absolutely tear apart TNGHT‘s “Higher Ground.” Finally, we decided we’d wrap things up with some uplifting music. “Jordan vs Bird” is a triumphant song from Puck, a unique rapper, who proves he won’t let being resigned to a wheelchair prevent him from taking the court.

I hope you guys enjoyed our second edition of The Hip-Hop Dojo. As always, if you have any suggestions or submissions, feel free to send them over to baseer@themusicninja.com.


’Eddy B – Hope’
’Gee Watts – Watts R.I.O.T. Ft. Kendrick Lamar (Prod. by Sounwave)’
’R.A. The Rugged Man – Learn Truth (ft. Talib Kweli)’
’Wrekonize – Anxiety Attacks’
’2AM Club – Natural Spring Water feat. XV’
’Tyga – Fuck For The Road ft. Chris Brown’
’Tony Williams – Another You (Remix) ft. Kanye West, King Chip & Freddie Gibbs’
’THEBLKHANDS – In Love (Feat. Kembe X)’
’Joey Purp – Don’t Stop (Prod. Thelonious Martin)’
’GQ – I Know Feat. Rapsody & Rocki Evans (Produced by Khrysis)’
’Smoke DZA – Ghost Of Dipset (Prod. Thelonious Martin)’
’R.F.C. (NYMLo, Den10 & Smoke DZA) – Slave To The Wave (Prod. By 183rd)’
’ItsNate – WSLTA (Remix) Feat. G FrSH, Catch’Em x Phaze One’
’Blu & Bombay – Dre Day’
’Termanology – We Stay High (Feat. Ras Kass & Wais P) (Prod. Statik Selektah)’
’B.I.C. – DOPM (Prod. By Chuk Le Garcon)’
’Sahtyre – Gettin’ High’
’Zak Downtown – Don’t Blow My High ft. Murda Mook’
’STS – Odd Look’
’Puck – Jordan Vs Bird’
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[Video] L’Orange – Alone (Feat. Blu)

Alone feat Blu

We may have missed out on L’Orange‘s Blu-assisted cut the first time around, but after seeing the new black-and-white video we won’t make that mistake again. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a video that so vividly translates a song from audio to visuals as this one. Director Ashton Blessing is really able to take advantage of the vintage aesthetic prevalent in the beat’s sample and chorus, when bringing this song to life. Filmed from separate but mirroring perspectives of day and night, the video for “Alone” really encapsulates loneliness from the perspective of two distinct yet acutely intertwined individuals. The single can be found on L’Orange’s excellent The Mad Writer EP, available for purchase here.

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[Hip-Hop] Pac Div – Cross-Trainers (ft. Kendrick Lamar & Blu)

Continuing to gain momentum for their upcoming album, LA-trio Pac Div let loose one of the most anticipated tracks. The wobbly, hard-hitting and 808-driven single brings in some extra Los Angeles flavor featuring the man of the hour, Kendrick Lamar, and veteran lyricist, Blu, to give us an encompassing portrait of the re-ascendence of west coast hip-hop. “Cross-trainers” carries the playful bravado of Pac Div (think “Automatic”) simultaneously capturing the unique and differing styles of both Kendrick and Blu.

Check out this impressive taste of the city of angels below and make sure to grab Pac Div’s GMB, due out on November 27th.

’Pac Div – Cross
Trainers (ft. Kendrick Lamar & Blu)’
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[Hip-Hop] Blu – Lemonade (Prod. Beat Make Jake)

Isn’t it refreshing to hear Blu and Exile working together? Almost as refreshing as lemonade on a hot summer day, right? Featuring a sample from Gang Starr‘s “DWYCK,” this new track serves as a reminder to us that lemonade is just as popular as it was back in the 90’s. While Beat Make Jake is behind the boards on this one, Exile adds some more flavor to this sweet track through his scratches, helping to provide that classic boom-bap 90’s vibe. Coupled with some ill raps from Blu himself, this track is bound to be a classic. If you’d like a vinyl copy for yourself, you better hurry, because they’re available in limited quantity from Jakarta Records.

’Blu – Lemonade’
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[Hip-Hop] Danny Brown – Change (Prod. Blu & Mainframe)

Detroit’s Danny Brown is one of the most unique and eclectic emerging rappers grabbing the attention of artists and fans of all genres with his refreshingly wild flows and odd content. Always open to collaboration, Brown is teaming up with the dope underground rapping/production duo Blu and Mainframe, also known as Johnson&Johnson, for a full length project, which, from the sound of the first single, might give us a glimpse into DB’s more laid back side.

“Change” departs drastically from Danny’s regular sound as he matches the smooth instrumental with slightly more conventional and reflective raps concerning his recent success and progression. The motorcity native pulls off the more classic feel flawlessly once again proving his artistic versatility and impressive lyricism. Stream this uncharacteristically mellow cut below and look out for the collaborative Danny Johnson album out soon via New World Color.

Danny Brown - Change

P.S. Hit the “Read More” to check out a hilarious animated video featuring Danny Brown as a crack-dealing cat courtesy of Pitchfork TV.

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[Hip-Hop] Closed Sessions Vol. 2 (Mixtape)

Just like they did with Closed Sessions Vol. 1, SoundScape Studios teams up with RubyHornet.com to provide us with some sweet unreleased music recorded in their Chicago studios. The project includes local artists like Sir Michael Rocks, GLC, L.E.P. Bogus Boys, and Rockie Fresh, as well as some other prominent names like Raekwon, Action Bronson, Freddie Gibbs, Blu, CyHi The Prynce and many many more. With phenomenal production provided by DJ Babu, Thelonius Martin, and a few others, this is definitely the perfect hip-hop project to wind down the last days of summer. You can catch a few samples down below, but make sure to grab the full project over at the Ruby Hornet SoundCloud page. Also, if you’re interested in getting an inside look on these closed sessions, head on over to RubyHornet.com to watch some of the documentaries.

’Keep It Politics feat Raekwon (prod by DJ Babu)’

’Good For Me feat CyHi The Prynce (prod by Nascent and QB)’

’Comfy In The Truck feat Blu (prod by DJ Babu)’

’Something New feat Freddie Gibbs and YP (prod by Million $ Mano)’

’So Stupid feat Sir Michael Rocks and Vic Mensa (prod by DJ Babu)’

’Game Face feat Scheme and Alex Wiley (prod by Thelonious Martin)’

’Dear Heather feat Action Bronson, Rockie Fresh, and Macie Stewart (prod by Thelonious Martin)’

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