“This is a love song, to the people who love songs.”
Rapper Trek Life dropped a kickback joint entitled “Just the Music” that makes me reminisce about the days when I used to sit on the porch, crank up the radio, and rap along with friends. Filled with a summertime vibe, this Duke Westlake-produced single reminds us why we still love H.E.R. (Hearing Every Rhyme). This track will be featured on Trek’s 14-track LP, Hometown Foreigner, set to drop April 9th.
Stream Trek Life’s “Just the Music” below.
Ashanti definitely has a crossover hit on her hands. The singer-songwriter dropped her new single entitled “Never Should Have” produced by Mansur. This broken-hearted record will be featured on Ashanti’s upcoming, fifth LP titled Braveheart. It is scheduled to drop on June 4th via her label, Written Entertainment.
Stream Ashanti’s “Never Should Have” below.
Directed by Amir Bar-Lev, Re:Generation Music Project follows five DJs (DJ Premier, Mark Ronson, Skrillex, Pretty Lights, and The Crystal Method) from different genres “as they remix, recreate, and re-imagine five traditional styles of music.” This cool approach allows them to learn about genres and records they probably would have never took the time to appreciate otherwise.
From the classical sounds of the Berklee Symphony Orchestra to that good ‘ol New Orleans jazz, these DJs create fresh tracks laced with their personal stylings and vocals from artists like Martha Reeves, Nas, Erykah Badu, and Yasiin Bey, in order “to discover how our musical past influences the future.”
After you watch Re:Generation Music Project, head over to their official film page to download the free soundtrack, featuring all the records showcased in the documentary.
Watch ”Re:Generation Music Project” below.
Duration: 1 hr. 22 min. | Year: 2012
KING is one those groups that can sing anything and it’ll still sound smooth. The neo-soul trio, comprised of twins Paris and Amber Strother and Anita Bias, premiered their new record, “In the Meantime,” produced and arranged by member Paris. Similar to their past work, this track has an ear pleasing, organic feel and shows off their musical abilities, in which their flowing vocals weaves in and out of their instrumental accompaniment. Prepare to have “In the Meantime” on repeat.
Stream KING’s “In the Meantime” below.
Brownstones to Red Dirt is a touching documentary directed by Chad N. Walker and Dave LaMattina that “captures the growth of kids from housing projects in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn and war orphans living in Freetown, Sierra Leone who are brought together by a pen pal program that will change their lives.” Brownstones to Red Dirt will definitely pull on your heartstrings.
Watch Brownstones to Red Dirt below.
New Zealand soulstress Aaradhna unveiled the Jared Kahi-directed visuals for her third single entitled “Great Man.” The concept is pretty cool. It’s sort of like a musical pop-up book, but told through a spinning vinyl. This track is from her latest LP, Treble and Reverb.
Watch Aaradhna’s “Great Man” video below.
Talib Kweli sat down with the folks at THNKR and reminisced about the beloved Brooklyn bookstore, Nkiru Books, which he was once employed at and eventually operated with fellow Black Star rapper Yasiin Bey (formerly known as Mos Def) back in 1998.
Nkiru Books was the oldest Black American bookstore founded in its city by teacher Leothy Miller Owens in 1976. The community-based shop featured literary works by Black authors and also held workshops, lectures, and open mics once Talib and Yasiin took over.
For a number of reasons, including the rise of gentrification in Park Slope and the competition with big bookstore chains, Nkiru Books was unfortunately shutdown in 2000 and replaced with a hair salon. Talib has hopes of reopening the bookstore one day. I sense a KickStarter project in the future.
Watch Talib Kweli’s sit down with THNKR below.
R&B crooner Luke James performed an a cappella rendition of his new The Runners-produced record entitled “IOU,” while walking across a roadblock late night in streets of New York City. Producer Danja, who produced Luke’s latest EP, Whispers in the Dark, chimed in by hand drumming a beat on the roadblock, eventually initiating a brief jam session. Grab your copy of the new track over at iTunes.
Watch Luke James’ rendition of “IOU” below.
Stream “IOU” below.