Kosha Dillz Debuts Album At Webster

Sometimes I meet awesome artists at CMJ. Sometimes I meet rappers who are having an album release party two weeks later with a guest appearance by Matisyahu. Cue Kosha Dillz. I ran into Kosha Dillz, whose name I’d never even heard before, at a CMJ show at The Delancey. He gave me his new CD and invited…

The City is my Playground: A New Take on City Streets

In the last several years, we’ve seen hip hop share its vibes with a wide range of art forms. From fashion to grammar to lifestyles and every imaginable facet in between, the reach of hip hop culture’s influence is undeniable. London athlete, b-girl and movement artist, Nicola Geismar, aims to continue that influence through pioneering her City…

2013 Rock the Bells Hip-Hop Festival

In 2004, Guerilla Union, now one of Americas leading urban lifestyle brands created Rock the Bells, a Southern California based hip-hop festival. The first festival included performances by DJ Abel, Redman and the Wu-Tang Clan and was an immense hit, leading it to branch out from its SoCal roots to other cities around the country…

Recap: AFROPUNK FEST

This past weekend marked the yearly performance of a plethora of artists at the annual Afropunk Fest in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. For nearly a decade, producers of the festival have been working their assess off to bring the best of the afro punk world to New York (someone this year said they started in Webster…

Charlie Scott’s Circle of Life

I have to admit I’m hesitant about hearing white boys rap, and usually when one is pitched to me I go in guns blazin’ and ready to say no. Despite the likes of some of the most amazing talent I know being of Caucasian descent, I’m still a little brainwashed to think that hip-hop is…

MAD: They So…Crazy..and Talented

Not surprisingly, every New York musical act has a different story about coming together. For MAD members, Davon Vernon and Marcos Antonio, this story has a little more meat to it. Antonio and Vernon, or as they are commonly known, Marcos and Davon, met through a Brooklyn-based non-profit organization called El Puente, where both were…

Review: Broke Wide Open

Once upon a time, in a land far away, aka New York, Rock Wilk was born. What follows is a journey unlike any other. The story starts in a hospital followed by an adoption agency, and a portrait that becomes the highlight of his production while he searches for answers that define his existence: all…

Music: Proof that 2012 Didn’t Totally Suck

Some parts of 2012 definitely weren’t awesome. Hurricane Sandy blew. Literally. Recent school shootings have the entire nation up in arms about whether we should be up in arms. On a personal level, I almost died in New Jersey via sun poisoning, and I learned the hard way that OKCupid isn’t the greatest idea. But…

Hoodie Allen

Hoodie Allen, aka Steven Markowitz, from Long Island has come a long way. Starting as a child, he wrote lyrics and had a talent and passion for music. Taking the classic “American Dream” route, he graduated from college and worked at Google. He lived two lives as he continued his passion in music and working…

Emphasis on Accent

After a lengthy, unexpected bus ride through Brooklyn, this guy is sitting across the table from me at a diner reading me the most beautifully crafted, rhythmically sound, sexually provocative poetry I’ve ever heard face to face. No, that’s not a description of my most recent blind date. It’s my weekend interview with Billy Rivera, better…

Upgrade Your Music Collection

If you can imagine a five-year-old white boy boppin’ around his house rapping along with Snoop Dogg’s Gin and Juice, you’ve got a pretty good mental image of how the legend of Upgrade began.  “I’ve been rapping like…forever,” he says. “I remember the first song I was really into was Snoop Dog’s Gin and Juice. I was 5…

Kinetics and One Love. Enough Said.

Most struggling artists in New York City will agree that finding your niche, process and ultimately identity is no easy feat in the bustling city that we live in. Though Kinetics, One Love and Nitty Scott, MC agree, it’s pretty apparent that the three of them have each found their strengths and are playing on…

Afropunk Fest Takes Over Fort Greene

I don’t need to hear much more than the combination of the words “afro” and “punk” to get riled up for a two-day festival. Tell me I’ve got a press pass and give me PR info for some of the most awesome bands there, and my heart is yours. So thanks to the press rep…

Gangstagrass Introduces Bluegrass to Hip-Hop

Ever wonder what happens when a California-raised hip-hop producer meets his Oklahoma bluegrass roots? Gangstagrass happens. Fronted by musician, producer and all-around “mastermind” Rench, Gangstagrass is a brainchild that blends the unique sounds of modern, lyrical hip-hop with some of the country’s oldest music: bluegrass. Though his father lived in Oklahoma, Rench grew up in California, where…