Category Archives: Features

Interviews, Reviews and Stories.

11 Years Running! The Annual Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival 2015

Photos and Article by Tyrone Z. McCants / Zire Photography

July 11th, 2016 marked the 11th annual Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival—a celebration of not only music but the progress of the culture in entirety. I had the honor of being present at the event, which for me is another box checked on the list. The festival was birthed in 2005, integrating some of the most revered names with a background in hip-hop.  It is vital to understand that this gathering is not merely artists gracing a stage.  This year’s Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival include the first Hip-Hop Institution conference, the Juice Hip-Hop Exhibition, the Dummy Clap Film Festival, Beats and Eats and the Big Show. The number of attendees increases every year, and the energy of the events reaches immense levels.

For those of you who have never had the privilege of attending BHF, allow me to recreate the scene.  If ever you have dreamt of a fantastical realm in which conscious hip-hop rules, let it be known that this dream exists in BHF.  The headliner was none other than Common—the renaissance man himself.  Other appearances on the set list included Mobb Deep, Freeway, John Robinson, Brooklyn natives Stro, Skyzoo, Rob Swift, and video pioneer Ralph McDaniels.  You simply cannot err with such a cast of greats.  Each performer contributed to the colorful atmosphere of the occasion. From Torae freestyling about What is Hip-Hop, to Lion Babe kicking it with the crowd, to live instrumental by the PVD band and Sean Taylor, every time the stage was blessed, the festival-goers showed nothing but admiration and respect. It was a musical love fest to the fullest.

The highlight of the 2015 Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival, for me, was Foxy Brown as a surprise performer.  Foxy remains to be one of the most respected contenders in the game. Common brought out the reigning rapper himself, which he explained to AllHipHop:

“I feel like its fly to bring her [Foxy] out because she’s fly. You can picture certain people that Common may bring out but, Foxy Brown is no another level, it’s like something unique and fresh and different.”

I concur, Common.  Known for her great panache, Fox Boogie put it down for us with “Oh yeah”, a favorite of mine.  Imagine the tide of nostalgia that descended the crowd (definitely over myself) at the commencement of that unforeseen bestowal.

Besides Foxy Brown, other surprise happenings included Consequence, large professor (another favorite of mine), and Sean Taylor taking the stage.  BHF 2015 embodied the true essence of “Hip-Hop’s Birthday in July”.  Overall, the event has become a benchmark for the continuation of striving for a cultural celebration.

The founder, Wes Jackson, received a proclamation from the Borough President of Brooklyn, Eric Adams presented by Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo.  What better testament to progression? I’d give this year’s gathering a solid “Starquake” on the Richter scale.

Photography by Tyrone Z. McCants / Zire Photography

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David Bars talks about hip-hop and his new project.

TWIHHP had an interview with Bronx NYC artist – David Bars at the famous D.I.T.C (Diggin In The Crates) Studios. David Bars talks about his view on the state of hip-hop, his roots to the culture, and his new upcoming project.

David Bars releases his first single off his upcoming project “In Bars We Trust” Set to release 1-1-18 free digital download available everywhere. Follow David Bars: Instagram @davidbars_ Twitter @davidbarsinc https://soundcloud.com/davidbars ———————————— ▶️ SUBSCRIBE TO THE CHANNEL – http://bit.ly/ZPGYTChannel ✅ VISIT THE WEBSITE AT – http://bit.ly/TWIHHPonline “The What Is Hip-Hop Project | Taking it back to Roots” by Tyrone Z. McCants | @ZirePhotos INSTAGRAM: @thewhatishiphopproject http://www.instagram.com/thewhatiship… TWITTER: @twihhp https://twitter.com/twihhp FACEBOOK LIKE PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/TWIHHP/

What Is Hip-Hop Rap by Torae

Rapper Torae does a freestyle off the top at the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival 2015

Follow Torae:
Instagram: @Torae
Twitter: @Torae

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Sir Mix-A-Lot, Tha Dogg Pound, and Biz Markie are Coming to Phoenix AZ!

The Arizona Oldschool Block Party is coming to Rawhide Event Center on October 7 with many your favorite hip-hop artists from back in the day such as Sir Mix-A-Lot, Tha Dogg Pound, Biz Markie, Digital Underground and more!

Lineup:

• SIR MIX-A-LOT
• Tha Dogg Pound
• Biz Markie
• 2 Live Crew
• Digital Underground
• Planet Patrol
• JJ FAD
• The Original Mary Jane Girls
• 2nd II None
• Rodney O & Joe Cooley
• Baby Bash
• Newcleus
• Trinere
• Candy Man
• Nu Shooz

Buy your tickets online here:

https://www.seetickets.us/event/Arizona-Oldschool-Block-Party/351671

Prodigy, was one of the illest storytellers to ever grace the culture.

Article via OkayPlayer.com

Extremely sad news, rap fans, as the legendary Mobb Deep lyricist Prodigy has passed away. According to his fellow Queensbridge rap savant, Nasir Jones, the man born Albert Johnson has shed his mortal coil. No other details have been offered and we will continue to follow along with the story as it develops.

Born in Hempstead, New York, raised in Queens, Prodigy became a member of the street-wise duo Mobb Deep. His grandfather, Budd Johnson, and his great-uncle Keg Johnson were strong contributors to the Bebop era of jazz, making Prodigy just that for music at a young age. Nas helped to raise public consciousness about Prodigy and Havoc, as the single, “Shook Ones Pt. 2,” raced up the hip-hop charts.

An album fueled by the inner city experiences of the then-young lyricists, The Infamous and Hell on Earth became hip-hop classics, studied by the likes of EminemCapone-N-Noreaga and more.

The group’s publicist issued a statement confirming the news stating:

“It is with extreme sadness and disbelief that we confirm the death of our dear friend Albert Johnson, better known to millions of fans as Prodigy of legendary NY rap duo Mobb Deep. Prodigy was hospitalized a few days ago in Vegas after a Mobb Deep performance for complications caused by a sickle cell anemia crisis. As most of his fans know, Prodigy battled the disease since birth. The exact causes of death have yet to be determined. We would like to thank everyone for respecting the family’s privacy at this time.”

Rhythm Roulette: Havoc

Video by Mass Appeal – In this episode of Rhythm Roulette, Mass Appeal linked with Havoc of Mobb Deep to show us why he’s considered a living legend.

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23 Years Anniversary – The Birth Of Jeru The Damaja’s 1st Solo Album

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A Sucker EMCEE, a one-man show from Craig “Mums” Grant | OkayPlayer

a sucker emcee

Article source: http://www.okayplayer.com/news/a-sucker-emcee-craig-mums-grant.html

In 2014, the LAByrinth Theater Company produced A Sucker EMCEE, a one-man show from Craig “Mums” Grant. Grant, a poet and actor, used hip-hop and rhymes to tell his life story, from a young boy in the Bronx to a great success in the acting field — he appeared on HBO’s OZ — to back to the Bronx again.

Three and a half years after the play’s initial run, the show is coming back, this time at the National Black Theatre in Harlem.

The show will have a limited six-show engagement. The original production team, which included director Jenny KoonsDJ Rich Medina and set designer David Meyer, are all returning, so expect the same quality as the initial show.

Tickets for A Sucker EMCEE are on sale now and cost $25 in advance and $35 at the door. The show will run from April 26 through April 30, 2017, so jump on this quickly.

April 26 through April 30th
Nationalblacktheatre.org