10/17/17: Celtics Opening Night An Emotional Roller Coaster #WEMAJORSPORTS

Growing up I had the opportunity of watching Paul Pierce clock in to work, and that’s been my squad since.

Gearing up to kick off the NBA 17-18 season. With new additions in the offseason, optimistic about the future, the Boston Celtics faced their rivals, the Cleveland Cavaliers.


A completely new look Celtics, only 4 players returning from last year’s roster, had a buzz surrounding them coming into the season. Signing Gordon Hayward in free agency and trading for Kyrie Irving, they started to look really dangerous within the last week as their chemistry began to gel.

Kyrie Irving, a surprise landing in Boston, crashed into Boston with the desire to create his own legacy. He began his journey back in Cleveland, welcomed this time with boos, he took the jabs and countered by scoring the first bucket of the night, a one handed shove from the free throw line.

Shortly after, he assisted a wide open Al Horford jumper from top of the key.

The next bucket came on a Horford assist to Hayward slashing across the middle and hitting the smooth fadeaway.

Then, Kyrie hit the deck to gather a loose ball, found Jaylen Brown who pushed it up to Jayson Tatum before receiving it back for a ferocious one handed slam.

This is what Celtic fans envisioned. This is what we were waiting for and why we were all excited. We were no longer a clear underdog. We were dangerous enough to be considered contenders, elite. The new look Celtics were athletic, electric, dynamic, versatile and just flat out better. Making the transition from being guard heavy to wing heavy, Brad Stevens’ switch everything defense now becomes more reliable. Out with the old and in with the new, the offense wasn’t as stagnant as it once was. The table was set. No disrespect to any of the players on last year’s roster, they were great and played their asses off, but we were no longer a team of glorified role players. We had actual star power.

5 minutes into the game, after these sequence of plays and fresh out of a timeout, a Horford backdoor screen for Hayward on the right wing led to him cutting towards the basket. Surrounded by 2 defenders, Kyrie let it fly. He went for the homerun play, the pass wasn’t there. It was a bad basketball read that led to a freak injury. Some contact, a few went on to say Jae Crowder undercut Hayward, but it was simply a freak accident.


And just like that, with a snap of a finger, all the excitement of the new season went out the window. Everyone was shook. How do you even play basketball after that?

But the show goes on, the Cavaliers began to steamroll and the new look Celtics looked rattled.

With Hayward out the picture, you had Kyrie and Horford as your clear 1-2 combo, similar to the IT-Horford combo of last year. This time around though, they were surrounded by young guys instead of vets. Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder were traded, and Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum now filled those roles. And after that shocking injury, the young, new look Celtics looked dead going into the half trailing by 16.

They needed to get to halftime. They needed the halftime speech, or whatever, to shake it off and refocus. They came into the second half with new life. Behind Jaylen Brown, the Celtics fought and clawed their way back. Their core of Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier are all under 24 years of age, but that youth didn’t show. Only the potential. They played with poise, determination, and that grit the Celtics are known for. Brown with 25pts, 6reb, 3stl, Tatum with 14pts, 10reb, 3ast, Smart with 12pts, 9reb, 3ast and Rozier with 9pts, 3reb, 2ast all helped to scrap when the game slowed down and became more physical. Not all is lost.

All of this fight gave the Celtics the edge towards the end of the 3rd quarter. They fought back to take the lead.

After sinking a corner 3 and midrange 2, with 1:30 remaining in the 4th, Brown had a wide open 3 that was a little off to the left. Lebron then got the ball, drove, hopstepped, pump faked, Jaylen went flying and scored the bunny to give the Cavs the 1pt lead. The following Cavalier possession found Kevin Love in the corner for a good look he nailed to give the Cavs a 4pt lead. Still the Celtics had a chance.

Down 4, Kyrie stepped to the line to shoot a free throw. With the ball back, down 3, they gave Kyrie the iso top of key. He drove left but couldn’t finish over Derrick Rose. 30 seconds remain, 20 on the shot clock. No foul necessary, but a stop was. They forced Lebron into shooting a 3 over Horford, Tatum grabbed the board, passed to Kyrie who threw the outlet to Brown. Smart was streaking on the opposite side of the court but Brown pulled up for 3, a good look that didn’t fall (maybe that Smart look would’ve been better). The Celtics managed to tip it out where Kyrie had a shot at 3 with Lebron running towards him to contest. He pump faked, Lebron didn’t bite, took one dribble to the right for a contested fall away that fell just short. He should’ve took the first one. This is the beginning of Kyrie’s legacy.

DMdUaHLUQAEa-we

Without Hayward to ease his transition, Kyrie is on the island alone and has to lead these young Celtics to the promise land. He has to hold it down, guide and help shape this team until Hayward can return fully healthy. An emotional roller coaster of a game, the Celtics will be alright, and even better when Hayward returns next year. All the reports I have read on Hayward diagnose him with a dislocated ankle and fractured tibia. To me this sounds terrible but according to professionals, it could’ve been worse. He could even return this season.

That’s good sign in a dark time. Now getting healthy is key. Hayward doesn’t need to return this year. The beauty of the current Celtic roster is that this window is open for years to come. When Hayward returns next year, with another year of experience under everyone’s belt? That will make his return to the court a lot easier because it won’t be instant. I actually expect him not to be back to full form until the 2019 year. What sucks is he was coming off a breakout year, and he was only going to rise under Brad Stevens. Hopefully he can make the same comeback Paul George did.

“Kyrie got what he wanted. He can fill the stat sheet with MVP-esque numbers like Russell Westbrook.” Kyrie didn’t leave a championship team because he wanted to pad his stats or any of that nonsense these non-hooping ESPN reporters are trying to push. Mainstream media across the board is dense. This is why wemajorwemajor.com exists. Kyrie left because he didn’t want to live in Lebron’s shadow. He left because he wanted to lead and become the best player he could possibly be. To maximize his potential. Here in Boston he has that opportunity, maybe now more than ever. The media will continue to blow this out of proportion saying all types of things like Kyrie is not as great as he thinks he is, look at how they’re struggling he’s not a winner, this is how he was with the Cavs pre-Lebron, but those rumbles must be muted because that’s not the goal right now. The goal is to compete and progress. All the buzz surrounding Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum’s potential, they now have ample opportunity to grow, and they will. Brown is showing flashes, and Tatum looks ready. If you thought the Celtics were going to be dangerous this year wait until next year. With more experience under the belt, just wait.

For now though, life moves on, just like the Celtics bounced back in the 2nd half, they will have to bounce back and show the league what they’re made of. We’re witnessing the start of a lot of legacies. This season will still be something to watch despite everything.

I’m not a writer but I would love to figure out how to get full games so I can cut up highlights to prove my points in the post.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

Advertisements

Memoirs Of The Summer by DONTASKGEN

Houston artist, DONTASKGEN, just dropped a project described as, “the perfect playlist of light flexes, summer flings, nights we don’t remember and strip club adventures that make you not so ready to let the summer go.”

DLKkdJpUQAAtPvT

DONTASK: Memoirs Of The Summer, probably best classified as Trap R&B, has some nice cuts from what seems to be DONTASKGEN’s debut project. Bright, tropical sounding melodies float on top of 808’s, DONTASKGEN does exactly what the project is described as.

The music is meant to ride around to, enjoying those late nights doing things that make for unforgettable stories. While Nunnadat, a definite banger, will have you feeling cocky and arrogant, a track like Titles Ruin Everything will slow it down and have you gravitating towards that chick. Summer vibes all around. Both tracks are my standouts from the project.

DLKkdJqUIAAvig6

Some hints of Drake, A Boogie and Bryson Tiller jump out at me while listening to the project, Titles Ruin Everything is that one for me. This is the track that boasts the most potential and has me curious to see where he goes next.

DONTASKGEN randomly popped up on my radar and I’m not mad. The vision he has for his brand, the visuals are always easy and appealing to the eye.

DLzfHHLUQAArECe

Check the music and show some love if you’re feeling the work. We’ll see what DONTASKGEN cooks up in the future.

I’m not a writer #LONGLIVETHEUNDERGROUND.
@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

ANXT Paints Lush Colors With New EP

6 months since his last project, Watching Paint Dry, ANXT is back with a new one.

DLvjxwpU8AEj4mg

Titled, Ain’t Shit Changed, But The Lingo, the dynamite Chicago emcee transitions from a sound that could be categorized as Lo-Fi to opening up the colors of his sound palette. Hence title perhaps (lingo being sound).

With more of a bounce, the sound of this new 4track EP is bright, colorful and lush. A bit of darkness lies underneath these layers due to either drums or lyrical content. You can say the sound of this EP is similar to the cover.

ANXT starts the EP talking that talk we’re used to hearing from him, then proceeds to lighten up a bit before closing with a strong hook.

My favorite is the intro, Halos. Drawn (as always) to the sample, once the drums and vocals slid in I hit my zone. ANXT glided all over this one.

“..eyes wide, been a min since I had sleep,

Never lacking but I never knew what that means,

A full clip half empty if you ask me….

I ain’t got a lot of time to waste,

I got money on my mind, gotta hide the safe,

Got people on both sides, gotta moderate,

I ain’t looking for cosigns Ima find a way….

Ayy, dead already,

Tell God put the Halo on my head already.”

The EP as a whole is a little lighter in mood than his previous work, and the next two tracks are the biggest examples of that.

Goodfellas is light in tone but the weight it carries is heavy. You don’t want the bad guy to boogie. Peep it, “hands high when the bad guy boogies.”

Chunky Salsa has a darker tone, thanks to the drums, but a lighter subject matter vs Goodfellas. Something for the Latinas, ANXT shows love to y’all and I extend that love. Silky hair Latinas with the Horchata skin, holla.

I’ll leave the outro for y’all. Ain’t Shit Changed, But The Lingo, show some love if you’re feeling it. The comment section is always open. Check our previous post on ANXT if you need a catch up.

Not a writer.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

Hugo Chartering Own, Opens Certified Barber + Shop Talks.. Houston Hiphop, Private Prison Scandal

Hugo Salinas, older brother of the homie Chino, has been cutting hair for over a decade and now runs his own shop, Certified Barber, located on 1034 Shaver, 77506, Pasadena, TX.

This is the first post supporting any local business in Houston, but believe there will be many more in the future.

Those who know understand how it goes. When in the chair, a wide array of topics can be discussed. Despite the vast range of topics we talk about, when I’m in the chair I always ask Hugo about business or hiphop. What do you think about so and so, or what happened with this and that, how are things going here, blasé blah. Hugo usually opens up new perspectives on business (everything) and things I have to look out for if I ever were to open something. There’s not many joys in life better than ownership.

Coming up around the time, Hugo also gives me a lot insight on the DJ Screw era, Rap-A-Lot Records and J Prince. I always understood the culture and movement Screw was able to create with his impact, however I didn’t know he didn’t want much more than what he created. J Prince wanted more, and Rap-A-Lot was working their artists into the ground.

How did Prince get in his position? He was so high up the ladder, respected and feared, I wanted to hear war stories. Simply, Prince did his dirt, came up through the streets and he had/has shooters ready to go whenever. J Prince strong armed a lot of people but wasn’t able to strong arm Screw. Being that Screw was a Crip originally from LA, he had some muscle. In the end, Screw and Prince didn’t mess with each other. Rap-A-Lot rappers were no longer on Screw tapes and that was that.

Above are a few photos of Pimp C and DJ Screw back in the days. Not sure who the third person in any of them are though. Maybe Bun B in the 1st photo. Hyperlink to a good Screw documentary if interested.

Rap-A-Lot had a reputation of holding their artists back. Pimp C would be irate because the Rap-A-Lot way was, “we’re not paying for features, we’ll exchange a verse for a verse,” but that didn’t necessarily work. The guys at Rap-A-Lot would be left on the short end of the stick because other major labels were pretty much saying fuck that. Def Jam exec, “you mean to tell me you’re not paying for this LL verse? We’re not working.”

A sad hiphop story is Z-Ro. Nicknamed the King Of The Ghetto, Z-Ro never became as big as he should’ve due to life at Rap-A-Lot. After years of restraint, which I think Prince did so Z-Ro’s buzz would die down and he wouldn’t touch the money he should since Prince wouldn’t be getting a cut, Z-Ro finally escaped Rap-A-Lot in 2013. In order to leave a free man, Z-Ro had to change his name from King Of The Ghetto to Mo City Don. King Of The Ghetto was owned by Rap-A-Lot.

z-ro-2

Is J Prince holding Houston hiphop back? The rumor is, anyone that’s popping here is either giving Prince a cut or getting bread in some other city. During that 90’s era of Houston hiphop, a label sprung up by the name of Suave House, ran by Tony Draper, rappers like Big Mike, 8ball & MJG were making some noise so Prince stepped in. Either dip or come off some artists. Tony Draper left, but Prince was able to get Big Mike. There’s a story that Big Mike was locked in a studio for two weeks because he owed Prince two albums. Mike was fed up and tried to burn down the studio. He was sentenced to 6 years but only served 3 and a half. After some research, here is a link where Big Mike speaks on the incident.

8ball & MJG, Tony Draper in the 90’s and Tony Draper with Rick Ross, who he signed. Also, here’s a link detailing some of the stuff J Prince has pulled.

Probably the biggest wow topic I’ve ever had with Hugo was the rap music/private prison scandal. It’s best you read the letter below. I came across this letter via Twitter from a guy named Lade. This dude is into hiphop very heavily. The white avi with the 90’s NY goons in hiphop thread if that rings any bells.

http://www.hiphopisread.com/2012/04/secret-meeting-that-changed-rap-music.html

Not sure how factual, but to add to the link above, I heard this cycle had prisoners printing the vinyls and CD’s that was used to destroy these communities. All the positive leaders were killed or imprisoned  during the activist era, and replaced with drug dealers due to the Reagan era, then replaced with rappers from that life, to now where it feels completely artificial. Some of these guys are either blinded by money or too drugged up to see they’re being used as pawns in today’s society.

Barbers have always been in hiphop, “it’s style,” says Hugo. The lines Kanye had in his hair originated from Vanilla Ice and MC Hammer back in the day, with slight adjustments. On some Screw tapes, known barbers like Jut, Tim and Haircut Joe were shouted out. These Screw tapes held so much weight that those shoutouts had someone in Austin believing Houston cats called haircuts, “juts.” That name actually started popping in a certain area of Austin too, “let me get a fresh jut.”

“Back in the 90’s, if you had braids or a fro, you were from the Northside of Houston. If you rocked a bald fade, you were from the Southside. And that’s just how it was,” Hugo.

Please add your thoughts on the information or correct the errors if any of it is false in the comments below, and check Hugo’s shop the next time you need a cut.

Certified Barber on 1034 Shaver, 77506, Pasadena, TX. Hugo Salinas.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

Boston On The Rise 1

For those who don’t know, I have been living in Houston the last 11 years but am originally from Boston, and for years Boston has struggled with a face of the city when it came to rap. Forever lost in the giant shadows of New York, you had a few names like the late great Guru, Benzino and… Sam Adams?

lc93r13iob22wn4pbdlp

But like Sam Cooke said, “change gon come.” Names like Michael Christmas, OG Swaggerdick, Haasan Barclay, Avenue and Cousin Stizz are now propelling Boston to new heights.

A show that featured Boston’s own, OG Swaggerdick, Jay Leano, Jefe Replay, Cousin Stizz and Michael Christmas.

Michael Christmas was the first name I seen popping around 2012-13. A funny dude whose personality bleeds through his music, he is dynamic on the mic.

His biggest song to date, and a track produced by Mac Miller.

OG Swaggerdick was the next name that crept onto my radar. Found through Michael, OG is definitely a character. Lil B seems like a huge influence to OG. Check our post on Lil B here. OG is hilarious and that carries over to his music. Fun yet clever, his tracks show major potential of a serious artist. Guys like OG and Lil B, I wish would be serious more often.

My favorite OG tune, and a cool video plus nice collab with Haasan Barclay.

Through OG, I found Haasan Barclay. Starting as a producer, he has some tracks with OG, Haasan has made the crossover to artist creating some very unique works of art.

Like I said, unique. Check Haasan’s debut album here.

Avenue is actually the last artist I found on this list but you’ll understand why I put him here briefly. Avenue, very easily, released one of my favorite projects so far this year, Mass Ave & Lenox. Something that popped in my mind while listening to this project was that it sounds like an east coast version of Kendrick’s Overly Dedicated. Doing some further digging on Avenue, I actually remembered him from a cypher I was shown in 2011. Six years later I am now a fan. Comes to show creatives how long you have to work before seeing results, it just takes that one. His project prior to Mass Ave showed this potential but didn’t have the gravitational pull sonically. Mass Ave And Lenox was it.

Cousin Stizz. Dude may very well be my favorite rapper out right now. This could be a bias statement because we are from the same neighborhood, Fields Corner, but fuck it, Stizz is my favorite rapper right now.

Outro to Stizz’s latest album. This convinced me he’s my favorite rapper.

Last October, I visited my old neighborhood and asked my guys who’s popping from the city? Without hesitation, everyone’s reply was Cousin Stizz. I have been seeing Stizz’s name on blogs a couple months before but never checked him out. That same night I decided to listen to MONDA. It didn’t make me the fan I am today, but I didn’t brush it off after the first listen. The simplicity in design as far as beats, rhyme and song structure sort of captivated me subconsciously. I just kept listening.

“You know he’s from Fields Corner? Look at all his videos,” my homies said nonchalantly. Man I got back to Houston and watched all those videos ecstatic as hell. Grinning ear to ear so proud that someone from the city was making it out. Stizz was making the noise a lot of Boston rappers in the past were unable to.

I know people do it but I am definitely not the person that can separate the music from the person. This is why wack people are in places of high influence. Not enough folks care about supporting people of good character, let’s give those people a platform. That being said, after watching Stizz’s Noisey documentary the deal was signed. This short film gave me insight on his life, Monda, and him as a person. S/o to a friend I grew up with, George, during a concert in the documentary he was on stage getting hype with Stizz. Glad you’re well bro.

Towards the end of the documentary, Stizz was posted with his boys in DYC. An old staple in our community that has long been shut down. Here he was talking about resurrecting it. This was something I wanted to do if ever given the chance. Something I’m creating a chance to do, assist the youth. DYC was a place for kids to hangout and get mentored by older guys in the community. A guy that helped my friends and I a lot was Al Ski, a former basketball player. This man gave us tickets to Antoine Walker’s camp, took us to Rucker Park in NY, trained us himself at the park, and linked us up with a kid I believe was his nephew. A young talent we called Tmac, because of his slim, slender physique and lazy eye, he lived on the outskirts of Boston. Ski would drive us out there to enjoy the day just playing ball, coaching us up and whatnot. I can’t thank the man enough for some of the things he did.

Wrapping up, Stizz’s music captivated me enough to dig and I feel I struck gold. With only 3 projects out, each have been a little different sonically but all have been consistent musically. His latest release, One Night Only, is also one of my favorites thus far this year.

Stizz is at the forefront of Boston rap but behind him is a trail of great artists. So many that I had to make Boston On The Rise into a series. Check the guys above and stay tuned for more. Show some love and leave a comment below. Part 2 on the way.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

The Notorious Dom K.. What Happened?

Dom Kennedy In Concert

One of the Westcoast’s most promising young stars, 1997 was when I became a fan of Dom Kennedy. Dom was never a true lyricist, nor did he try to be, he was simply a cool cat with fly raps. Dom could bounce from hype, to something to ride to, to something for the ladies, with little effort.

The Original Dom Kennedy, From Westside With Love I, and II were all positive steps up the ladder but something happened along that climb. For me, it was when he dropped The Yellow Album. At the peak of his career he dropped a dud. There were some beats and tracks but let’s call a spade a spade. That project was as bad as this line he boasted, “my bitch.. bad piece.. yo bitch.. got bad feet!” That line was horrendous. I mean Dom was the dude who did his thing years ago on She Needs Me RMX with a dynamite Kendrick Lamar, where did that Dom go? At this point in time (The Yellow Album), both Dom and Kendrick were solidifying their spots in the hiphop scene nationwide, and Dom Kennedy blew it. You see it now but it was subliminally shown back then. Dom’s verse versus Kendrick’s in We Ball.

Dom was known to keep his lyrics simple yet it touched the people. You pair that natural way of words with an effortless flow, and it was a match made in heaven. This time around that was not the case. His effortless flow was paired with effortless rhymes that belonged in the unreleased folder.

Since that time I quit checking for Dom. Since then, it may not have been so great for Dom either.

I recently went back to check some of his new music. When his album, By Dom Kennedy, initially dropped, I gave it a listen, and it was alright but didn’t have that same impact his earlier work did. It didn’t reel me in. He just.. didn’t sound the same.

That was 2015. About two months ago, I saw that he may have suffered a stroke. Now there’s no confirmed source, just word of mouth, but I googled for a source and all I found was a Coli thread that asked the same question. “Did Dom Kennedy suffer a stroke?”

http://www.thecoli.com/threads/forreal-tho-did-dom-kennedy-have-a-stroke-or-something.456886/page-2

If you listen to his latest record Los Angeles Is Not For Sale, it does sound like he’s off beat. Just some milliseconds but enough to notice something is off. It’s like he’s struggling to flow from bar to bar at times. His delivery also lacks that punch he used to have. Here is when I start to feel like a douche. I go listen to the Half-A-Mil 3 EP with him and Hit-Boy (should’ve stayed with G.O.O.D. Music, Hit), and here he sounded weak as well. I’m aware of cases where rappers have regressed lyrically, but to hear a rapper regress so much in delivery? Impossible, right? Being creative, understandably, can get tougher but the recording process should be easier with experience?

1e61ab_9ffe241a0f1045c1a192ff9222fc2464-mv2

Definitely feeling like a full douche at this point. Hearing Los Angeles Is Not For Sale with this new found information, who am I to judge anyone’s art. I don’t know what everyone is going through, the blood, sweat and tears that went into their work. All that time invested into perfecting it just for someone like me to swoop in and call it trash within 3 songs, man I’m trash. I wish I could just appreciate all art for what it is but I just can’t. It’s not in me. I was already opinionated, then I went to art school where it’s pounded in our heads to critically analyze everything. Art is meant to be critiqued anyways. All that said though, I will always respect a person willing to work no matter the conditions. He didn’t allow it to stop his hustle.

Though his flow can get a little rough around the edges on Los Angeles Is Not For Sale, he is actually spitting. If he would’ve did this joint instead of The Yellow Album, he would be straight. Maybe up there with the Wales, Big Seans, A$APs, JColes and Kendricks, who knows.

Sidebar, he raps about respect in the hood a lot and I believe that goes a long way in hiphop. Especially in these times where it feels so political and in-genuine. Someone with that type of respect in the streets could turn the industry upside down. If it was the right handler. Dom could’ve been the gatekeeper of the Westcoast.

Some lines from his 96 Cris track, “I’m grinning hardly as much as when I was younger, thinking they would acknowledge me, I couldn’t have been dumber, I’d still rap better than y’all if I was a plumber.” To me, that sounds like someone that knew he missed his opportunity. As time passes and people reflect on their past, sometimes you can’t help but feel some regret. He may have missed the opportunity but he’s still living the dream and enjoying life in the process.

I was once a lost fan but now I’m back. Los Angeles Is Not For Sale is solid work, and I’m not sure if this was his aim but that title sounds like what I mean with my respect in the streets/turning the industry upside down text. He’s no sellout?

Give the project a listen and show some love if y’all feeling it. This is a project I have been listening to often as of late. Please watch your health as well, it’s important.

I’m not a writer.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

Lil B Is Hiphop; Black Ken Is The Essence

Most folks take Lil B as a joke because of his music and character, but he is indeed hiphop as well as The Godfather to a lot of these newer cats.

Lil-b-2-22-17

And that’s the problem. Casual rap fans may never take Lil B serious even if he were to drop a My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. The reason for my statement stems from me being thoroughly impressed with his latest album, Black Ken. I will get into this a little later.

I first got into Lil B around 2011-12, when I was in line overnight for some Jordans at Premium Goods. Maybe 2010. I think it was a limited release for the Olympic 6’s but I’m not sure. Anyway, dude in front of me put me on because I didn’t understand how anyone could like his music. Off the strength of that conversation I dug into Lil B with a newly opened mind.

9th Wonder speaking on Lil B..

During my search, I came to find 9th Wonder praising Lil B and the following is a paraphrase of what he said, “all the serious tracks Lil B releases barely have any views compared to when he does that stupid stuff.” When Lil B dropped his controversial I’m Gay (I’m Happy) album, even Lupe came out to say something along the lines of, “he’s really spitting some shit if you listen.” After hearing his collabs with 9th, Tony Yayo and Clams Casino, I was pleasantly surprised. I now understood why people liked Lil B. They saw through the facade I couldn’t see passed previously. He was smart enough to know what worked for him, and though he may have went against the grain, he never went against his own.

Peep the reaction to the icon live in NYC…

Note, don’t come for Lil B because he will respond. That’s real hiphop. Joe Budden know (also KD haha). Lil B may be a “joke” to some in hiphop, but he made it to Sportscenter by clowning around. You really can’t deny his impact.

Getting to the new album, Black Ken, now. 

Lil_B_Black_Ken-front-large

Produced By BasedGod is the intro to his new album Black Ken. Here he has a reverse reverb effect followed by “BasedGod” as a tag. I’m not sure if that’s the actual effect but whatever. The funny thing to point out is that the homie BassRob been using that tag. I know he feels a way (lol). “I don’t want no smoke with The BasedGod,” exclaims BassRob. I believe Black Ken is self produced.

There is some “pretty boy music” in this, which is what Lil B calls some of his Based tracks, but what gets me is how hiphop this album is. I call Black Ken the essence because I can’t help but get that classic hiphop feel. 1/3 into the album and it hints early rap with lyrics, tone, delivery, constant crowd chants, constant shouts of DJ, the production, the LL, Bone Thugs and Westcoast influence? Man listen.

I played some cuts from the album for DRE and instantly, “these sounds are what my uncle used when he was trying to get in the rap game.” DRE’s uncle is now 50. “He was really into Westcoast funk and this album sounds exactly like that, this is nostalgic.”

Lil B says early on track 2, “it’s 2017 and I’m here to represent.” Represent what? Hiphop and the Westcoast. If you follow Lil B you know how much love he has for both. Later in the album he says, “I took 2 years off to perfect my craft,” the art of producing this classic hiphop sounding album. He even mentions names like Kanye, Jay Z, Charles Hamilton and Pharrell in his raps. I get the sense this whole album is an ode to hiphop. In the middle of the album, when we travel to Mexico, he has a song called Zam Bose that sounds a bit Neptunes influenced.

My House was our first offering from the album before 2016 ended. Produced by Metro Boomin, I was sad to see it didn’t make the album when they released the track list, but it makes sense. Though the direction is completely different sonically, the actual direction is not so different, if that makes sense. My House samples the classic Bone Thugs-Crossroads record. He was telling us the direction it was headed. Classic rap.

I respect Lil B. He made his own lane on his own terms, kept it real throughout, spread positivity, appreciates (and is clearly a student of) hiphop. Give Black Ken a listen with an open mind if you’re not a Lil B fan. Let us know if you get the same feeling. At the moment, Berkeley is my favorite song from the album.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

Eric Plus Teases ‘Sports’ Album

Eric Plus is a producer I have been following on Twitter for a while. Dating back to the golden ages of the underground culture (09-13). I came across Eric through a circle of creatives/hiphop lovers on Twitter during that time. If you have been checking the site frequently you know how much I love that era. The music, sneaker, streetwear scene was different, shit the people and Internet too. It’s really wack to think about but whatever, I just play that old Dom Kennedy and catch nostalgia because there’s a storm brewing.

Lord Byron and ANXT are some artists from that era. Click the hyperlinks to check our posts on them.

Above is a podcast episode that features Eric Plus and NY rapper Lijah Rios. Lijah Rios is someone Eric has been working with for some time now. Lijah released an album in July with half of the production by Eric. Check that here. A nice take from this podcast was when it was said that they’re not listening to music based on genre but how good it is. As we all should.

From the Big Apple, Eric is influenced by Jay Z, Madlib, Prince and a bunch of people that don’t even make music. I love that because for me it’s more than just the music, it’s solid people of all sorts that inspire me.

When asked about the state of hiphop Eric said, “I don’t like where hiphop is at. Every time we take a step forward, we take 20 back. Not even music but as a culture. However, I feel there’s a bunch of young thinkers that will change the direction of where it’s headed. People I hope to work with in the future.”

This is the first project I seen and the first time I’ve heard instrumentals from him in… so long I can’t remember. But apparently, there is an album titled ‘Sports’ on the way from Eric Plus. The teaser to that is below.

A mix of beats and remixes with two of the tracks within it that’s supposed to be glimpses of the album. Overall, these cuts are smooth, great to chill to and perfect to get some work done early in the morning or late in the evening.

The same goes for Lijah Rio’s album. The beats provided from Eric for that follow this same pattern. On ineed$$$, the way the drums hit when the drum fill comes in? Panning from left to right with Lijah delivering the content to fully embed you in that East Coast flavor? These dudes are definitely something to keep an eye on. I hope it doesn’t turn out like the Thelonious Martin x Evan Holt project. That was another great producer/rapper duo that didn’t manifest how I hoped.

Check the work out, show some love if you’re digging them and leave a comment. We’ll be back with some more Eric Plus in the future. Excited to hear what the album sounds like.

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran

No Lies From Justin Jermaine // Insomniac Vol 3

The man said he would be consistently out here and sure enough, here he is.

In about a week’s time, Justin drops a new mix of screwed vibes and he said it best, “I’m not going to say too much, I’m going to let the music talk.” That’s the motto here at #WeMajor. We believe in the power of the product. Indie artists, work on your craft and brand, grind harder, give it time and a little luck will come your way. Apparently, he will be blessing us with new volumes weekly. Some of the artists in this week’s mix include Mariah Carey, Tupac, Tyler The Creator, Future, Drake, Quavo, Gary Wilson, Camp Lo and Dipset.​​

Justin Jermaine chilling in the lab. Music is from Vol 2 mix.

Check the homie and show some love if you’re feeling it. We are.

Click here to hear Insomniac Vol 2.

#LONGLIVETHEUNDERGROUND #WEMAJOREVERYTHING

@wemajorwemajor

@_jackietran