R.I.P. Pumpkinhead: Five Best Tracks From the Underground Rap Legend

Categories: Rap

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Photo Rob
Pumpkinhead, Legendary Hip-Hop Innovator
This week the hip-hop world was saddened to learn of the passing of one of its most prevalent cornerstones. Pumpkinhead, known in his later years as PH, was an MC who emerged near the very beginning of the New York underground movement of the mid-90s and remained an important player transcending generations and impacting and influences every MC who made a name in the five boroughs in his wake. From the Lyricist Lounge to battles to everywhere in between, Pumpkinhead created a longstanding legacy for himself that few can compare with. On the off-chance there's some listeners not familiar with his work or just looking to relive some of his finest moments, we at the Weekly have assembled five essential Pumpkinhead clips.

Fans looking to donate to Pumpkinhead's family's memorial fund can do so here.


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Should Waka Flocka Flame Really Be Our Next President?

Categories: LOL, Rap, politics

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"I'm dead ass running for president in 2016."
The Internet has been on fire with news that rapper Waka Flocka Flame wants to run for president. He actually said it back in 2012 on Twitter and even when we caught his official statement on April 20th (aka 420) that included, "The first thing that I'll do when I get in office is legalize marijuana," well, we still had a hard time believing it was true. Upon hearing from Rolling Stone (a reputable source, no?) that Waka's decision to launch a presidential campaign is in fact reality, we started thinking and questioning, how stoned was he when he thought this up? Is this "campaign" making a mockery out of the race for presidency? Will 'Murica take this satire in stride? How hard is it for a celebrity to get 5,000 signatures anyway?



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Who Would Dis Eminem?

Categories: Rap

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Soerfm via Wikimedia Commons
Eminem, Mr. Popular
When you're the biggest selling artist in the world, chances are you're going to attract some haters regardless what genre of music you're in. When you're a rap artist, those upset with you have a tendency to record dis tracks. Eminem, being a constant source of creativity and controversy, has amassed a collection of disses aimed towards him from one of the most diverse arrays in the genre's history. With the most recent one happening last month, here's a list of some of the most surprising Eminem disses.


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Own a Piece of "Wild Wild West" in Kool Moe Dee's Royalty Auction

Categories: Rap

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Jive Records
Kool Moe Dee
Rapper Kool Moe Dee, whose famous 1981 battle with Busy Bee may be the most influential moment in rap history, is auctioning off some of his royalties. Famous for legendary early '80s singles with his group The Treacherous Three as well as his unprecedented solo work in the later half of the decade that includes battles with LL Cool J as well as tracks like "Wild Wild West," the one later remade by Will Smith for the film of the same name, he's one of very few hip-hop artists to transcend the late '70s pioneer days through the explosion in the late '80s.

Moe Dee's unique perspective on the event horizon of hip-hop culture through the dawn of the rap industry has seen him also have a better understanding of the financial side of what artists are due, whether from the fledgling independent labels in the early days of rap or the major labels that put his music in every record store. Now he's looking to educate the hip-hop nation about royalties through his auction at Royalty Exchange. The auction had a starting price of $36,000 and currently has 33 approved bidders.

With the auction ending tomorrow, we spoke to Moe Dee, as well as Royalty Exchange's Vice President of East Coast Sales Preston Sullivan and Vice President of Marketing Sean Daley about exactly what is up for auction, what the winner is entitled to, and how such an auction is profitable for both the artists and the winning bidders.


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Hip-Hop Trends That Need to Stop in 2015

Categories: Rap

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Julia Altenburger via Wikimedia Commons
Iggy Azalea "Performing."
Hip-hop moves fast. Granted, life moves fast and our every increasing quicker access to media has made all entertainment move progressively faster each year, but hip-hop being a youth culture has always seemed to operate as pace that sees the entire game change three times over since you began reading this sentence. While this offers us plenty of new and exciting music on a regular basis, another less-publicized advantage of this is how quickly it means rap fads pass. Granted, we all have our favorite eras that we wish could last forever, it does mean that a lot of trends we don't like often suffer quick deaths, never to be heard from again until the inevitable nostalgia-based thinkpieces 20 years from now. So until then, here's five Hip-Hop Trends That Need to Stop 2015.


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The Best Gay Rap Songs

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Murs- Animal Style
Scrolling through our past Weekly listicles, we noticed that there is a topic that we haven't touched. Gay rap. Hip-hop is riddled with many topics, many different voices, and in case you didn't realize, some of these rhymers lacing tracks with sick flows are openly gay. So with that, we're stepping into that very arena with our breakdown of the Top 5 Five Gay Rap Songs.


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Def Jam's 5 Greatest Album Covers

Categories: Rap

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Def Jam Records
Imagine seeing this on vinyl for the first time!
This week's celebration of 30 years of Def Jam has been a reminder of how much the landmark hip-hop label has meant to all generations of hip-hoppers who've been turned on to their output in its wake. The last three decades of record stores would look quite different without Def Jam releases on their shelves. While the standard maroon Def Jam sleeve has been a source of comfort for rap fans over the years, the label's also been responsible for some of the most unforgettable album arts in the genre's history. Here's our picks for the top five Def Jam album arts of all time.

See also: Def Jam's 5 Most Iconic videos

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Def Jam's Top 5 Most Underrated Videos

Categories: Rap

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YouTube Screen Capture
Jay-Z, Bounce With Him...
Yesterday, in honor of Def Jam's 30th Anniversary this week, we brought you our choices for the Top 5 most iconic Def Jam videos of all time. As great as those are, and believe us they are, it's only right when looking back at three decades of dominance to acknowledge all the less heralded gems in the Def Jam Video Vaults that never seem to get their due. Here are our picks for the Top 5 Most Underrated Def Jam videos of all time!


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Def Jam's Top 5 Most Iconic Videos

Categories: Rap

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YouTube Screen Capture
LL Cool J's Mother Requested that He Render You Unconscious
This week landmark rap label Def Jam Records celebrates its 30th anniversary.  While the label's always been on the cutting edge of what's happening in hip-hop, tributes to the label's storied history often overlook how many iconic rap videos can be found within the label's catalog as well. It is with our glasses raised to Russell Simmons that we name Def Jam's five most iconic videos of all time.

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YG - The Observatory - September 09, 2014

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James Brunt
YG
The Observatory
9/9/14

Before doors opened for the second YG show of the night at the Observatory on Tuesday, an extensive line snakes from the front doors ending just yards shy of Harbor Blvd. People of all sects stand in their version of fly summerwear from hipster looking girls in long white Coachella-type dresses to your casual t-shirt and baseball cap-wearing dudes among the predictable concertgoers; chicks in tanks and high-waisted shorts and bros in tanks and shorts that look odd if they're not clad with anchors. Simultaneously, the venue is experiencing a mass exodus. Moments before, the first of two YG shows had just concluded and the indomitable energy lingering after a great performance oozed from early crowd.

"Y'all betta turn the fuck up when y'all get in there" demands one young lady as she heads towards the parking lot. Her demeanor resembles a young emcee looking to get the crowd hype.

One year ago, a YG show would not have been as big of a ticket. But on this Tuesday night those who may have forgone his opening performance at UCI's fall concert last year, would not miss a second chance to ride the wave. As the affinity for using the word "ratchet" whenever possible has grown, so has the chance to vibe to the tunes that accompany the trending rap vernacular.

See also: YG's Listening Party Was a Bompton-Style Rager


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