The Week in Music Politics:
Big Sean, although nowhere near the best rapper out there, does a lot for his community, and that’s truly something I can applaud. He delivered water to those in Flint, Michigan, opened a recording studio for students at his old high school, and now created Mogul Prep through their Sean Anderson Foundation, which aims to help assist and educate students about the music industry, it’s various jobs, and common practices.
“My goal is to get them excited about coming to school — that’ll keep them off the streets and out of trouble,” Big Sean’s mother told Billboard. “It’ll also expose them to careers and skills that they can use in any industry. We’re using the music industry as a hook because that’s where we have connections, but kids are excited about music.” Read more about Mogul Prep here.
Fortune has included Chance the Rapper in their list of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders at#46. Read what they had to say about the musician/activist here.
The Week in Music Beefs:
On Drake’s newest release More Life, he continues to take shots at and diss Kid Cudi for his mental health, as well as the never-ending feud with Meek Mill.
The Week in Music #NoRoleModelz:
In reference to J. Cole’s track “No Role Modelz” off the platinum-with-no-features record 2014 Forest Hills Drive, the following is an account of musicians and artists that left us all disappointed with their behavior this week:
Meek Mill, someone who continually shows up in this column every week, thinks that his ex-girlfriend Nicki Minaj has been paying blogs and music sites to discredit his name.
The Week in Music Business:
The Decemberists announced their own music festival, Traveler’s Rest, at Big Sky Brewing Company Amphitheater in Missoula, Montana. The two-day festival from Aug. 12th-13th will include performances from Belle and Sebastian, The Head and the Heart, Charles Bradley, Real Estate, The Decemberists themselves, and much more. Check out the full lineup and purchase tickets here.
Nicki Minaj has officially moved passed Aretha Franklin on the Billboard 100 Chart for Most Hits by a Female Artist. 76 in total.
Drake’s newest record More Life has also broken some records. Taking over Ed Sheeran’s records from just last week, More Life has become the most streamed album on the day of its release at over 61 million streams, as well as most one-day streams for an artist at over 76.3 million. Damn ya’ll really love Drake.
The Week in Music Merch:
Gucci Mane wrote a book! It’s an autobiography titled The Autobiography of Gucci Mane, and it’s dropping in stores on September 19th. Why we have to wait that long when it’s all done, I don’t know, but rappers writing books is one of my favorite things. You can now pre-order it on Amazon.
Slick Rick’s “Children’s Story” is going to be released as an actual children’s book for this year’s Record Store Day on Apr. 22. See previews of the book over at 2DopeBoyz and check for the nearest record store that will have them in stock here.
Marvel’s newest Black Panther video series episode recounting the events of Ta-Nehisi Coates’ run of the comic features music from Bas.
The Week in Music Oddities:
Father John Misty posted a letter to Facebook that a fan sent to Sub Pop Records regarding his performance at Sasquatch Music Festival. The letter hilariously reads that the fan seems concerned with Father John Misty’s dancing writing “If Mr. Tillman’s dancing is the result of a medical condition, I apologize. If the dancing is within his control. please tell him less is more.” Read the full post here.
The new Local Natives song, “I Saw You Close Your Eyes,” can only be heard with your eyes closed. That’s right, folks. Their new website which you can hear the track from reads:
Local Natives would like you to listen to their new song “I Saw You Close Your Eyes.” In order for this experience to work best, please turn the lights off in your room and turn the brightness up on your laptop. If you’re wearing glasses, remove them for a moment. Then click the link to grant access to your eyes below, position your head about 12 inches from the screen and close your eyes when you’re ready to listen.
After hitting “Allow Access to Your Eyes,” the website utilizes your computer’s camera to check that your eyes are closed. Only if your eyes are closed the entire time will the song keep playing. Check it out if you’re interested here.
The Week in Music Obituaries:
Legendary rock n’ roll guitarist and musician Chuck Berry passed away at the age of 90. Billboard reported that his classic song “‘Johnny B. Goode’ was chosen by Carl Sagan to be included on the golden record of Earth Sounds and Music launched with Voyager in 1977… John Lennon once said, ‘If you tried to give rock and roll another name, you might call it ‘Chuck Berry.”” His posthumous record, which had been planned to be released later this year, is still being prepped and finished.
The Week in Music Releases:
- Drake – More Life
- Raekwon – The Wild
- Goldlink – At What Cost
- The-Dream – Genesis
- Mike Will Made-It – Ransom 2
- Mount Eerie – A Crow Looked At Me
- Spiral Stairs – Doris and the Daggers
Watch Sampha’s amazing NPR Tiny Desk concert here.
Also, this year’s Biennial at the Whitney Museum in NYC showcases a composition by Kamasi Washington entitled Harmony of Difference, which will be on display through June 11th.
Lastly, here’s an amazing video of a drummer who turned Charlie Day’s monologue from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia into jazz-rhythm gold: