The mid-to-late ’90s were a pretty weird time for music. Hip-hop, alternative rock, and dance music all found themselves suddenly, unexpectedly elevated from underground styles to the top of the pop charts, and it inspired a lot of musicians working in one of those styles to reach out to artists in the others. While today we take this sort of cross-genre collaboration for granted, at the time it was a fairly new concept. And as with most new concepts, there was a period where everyone was trying to figure out exactly what to do with it, resulting in a lot of awkward moments captured on tape.
Tag: Diddy (1-10 of 18)
The words “tasteful” and “Diddy” don’t often appear in close proximity to each other. But while rap artists from Waka Flocka Flame to Lil Jon have been stampeding toward the massive, transcendently un-subtle sounds of big-room EDM, the erstwhile Puff Daddy is approaching dance music through the rather restrained sounds of classic techno. Recently he teamed up with producer Guy Gerber for a new project, the enigmatically named 11 11, which finds the hip-hop mogul collaborating on dark, lean beats that seem custom-made for hyper-exclusive Berlin dance clubs or as mood music in a luxury hotel room.
Two weeks ago the pair unveiled the first track from their partnership, “My Heart.” Today they released a new track called “Tourist Trap” that’s nearly seven minutes of tense, hard-driving techno with the icy reverb and Kraftwerkian overtones of the genre’s early Detroit roots and some surprisingly hard raps from the pitch-shifted Mr. Sean Combs himself.
Hot off the heels of re-christening himself Puff Daddy, the man born Sean Combs (also known as Diddy, P. Diddy, Puffy, Shiny Suit Man, One of Dave Chappelle’s Best Impressions, and that guy who is always on top of the Forbes Richest Musicians List despite not making very much music) has a new single called “Big Homie.” It was supposed to drop on Monday, but the streets couldn’t wait, as they say.
“Big Homie” features French Montana and Rick Ross, and the latter is clearly the biggest influence on Puff’s current sound: It’s big, it’s badass-sounding, and it leans into that signature monster plod. But while Ross’ penchant for rapping just behind the beat always sounds like a conscious decision (not even the power of rhythm can move the Bawse), Puff just sounds slightly inept (which is a pretty accurate description of his career-long rhyme style). Everybody is going hard, but by surrounding himself with high-impact blasters in Montana and Ross, Puff highlights the oomph his rapping has always lacked.
Still, “Big Homie” is a reasonable enough return to form for Puff Daddy that it should spark plenty of curiosity for his upcoming album MMM. And props to him for that line “The only one that’s topping Forbes/I’m getting lonely.” Listen to “Big Homie” below.
Just when we were finally getting used to calling Sean Combs “P. Diddy,” he goes and changes his name again. Typical.
Okay, so Combs has actually been known as P. Diddy, or occasionally just Diddy, since 2001, when he decided to shed Puff Daddy to make a statement about turning over a new leaf. (At the time, he was going through a weapons trial — a convenient opportunity to say “Ignore my past!”)
The day after the Grammys is big for any music fan, so it makes perfect sense that Monday would be the first day for Sean “Diddy” Combs’ new digital cable music channel, Revolt TV, to go live with its first show, aptly titled Revolt Live.
From the channel’s new Hollywood studio, you can see the Hollywood sign perfectly framed in the background. And the setting is fitting — Revolt Live aims to be the music lover’s version of Sportscenter, giving fans the latest music news of the day as it happens; the show also features in-studio performances and interviews. For the first show, rappers Wiz Khalifa and Mack Wilds both made an appearance in the studio while Bastille, fresh off their SNL performance this past weekend, and Knicks player J.R. Smith were interviewed live from New York.
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The real winners were announced Wednesday night at the 47th Annual Country Music Association Awards. But here are a few more honors from the telecast you should feel free to weigh in on:
Best “Suck it, haters” Taylor Swift moment ever: So not only did George Strait, Keith Urban, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Brad Paisley, and Rascal Flatts — all people for whom Swift opened at the start of her career — come out onstage to present the 23-year-old with the Pinnacle Award, there was also a video including kind messages from Mick Jagger, Justin Timberlake, Carly Simon, Julia Roberts, and Ethel Kennedy, among others. Watch it below. It’s might have been the best acceptance speech of Swift’s career, as she paid respect to each of the artists onstage with her. READ FULL STORY
It’s been a nondescript, if not painful (G-Unit still has me begging for mercy), decade for the hip-hop compilation album, but it looks like Rick Ross and his Maybach Music Group have brought an end to the drought. Self Made Vol. 2, MMG’s critically acclaimed sophomore work, hit stores earlier this week, and all signs point to another conquest for Ross in his ever-so-noble pursuit of eternal wealth.
If you ask Ross about the recent praise, he’ll tell you that the album’s — and by that same token, the group’s — success is rooted in MMG’s organic feel. Now this is no shot at The Boss, but a listening of Self Made 2‘s brighter moments inspires no such feelings of purity.
Take “Power Circle,” MMG’s nine-and-a-half-minute manifesto and one of the album’s best tracks. Ross kicks things off with a head-scratching toast to the King of Pop, offers up an interesting cocaine math lesson, wraps it up with his trademark grunt, and steps out of the spotlight at the one-minute mark. (Well, we do see him walking around shirtless, but that’s beside the point.)
The next eight minutes are devoted to MMG’s young guns taking turns punishing the microphone with verbal blows in a battle royale for center stage. There’s not a catchy hook nor a consistent theme to be found. Rather, the track is carried by the lyrical talents and individual qualities of the artists: Meek Mill’s aggressive Philly flow, Wale’s crazy good rhymes, even Ross’s absurd proclamations. READ FULL STORY
During his visit to The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Diddy recalled his memories of Houston (who will be laid to rest on Saturday) and how he wound up as a guest at her 1992 wedding to Bobby Brown.
“When I was growing up in the music industry, before I had success, I somehow got on her wedding invitation,” Diddy told DeGeneres, “So I was at her wedding but I didn’t really know her — but it was one of the hottest things in town for the music industry.”
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Had he not been cut down in his prime by a (presumably) still-at-large assassin in 1996, rapper/actor/activist/poet/cultural lightning rod Tupac Shakur would have turned 40 years old today.
But on a day when we would normally be discussing his legacy—or what his creative place in today’s hip-hop world might have been had he lived—the attention has now turned instead to a man named Dexter Isaac, who gave an interview to AllHipHop wherein he admitted to being the man who shot Shakur in a famous unsolved incident outside a New York recording studio back in November of 1994.
Isaac claims he was paid $2,500 by James “Jimmy Henchman” Rosemond to take out Shakur. The New York Police Department is currently investigating the issue, and if they find the claims to be credible, they plan to speak with Isaac, who according to AllHipHop is currently serving a life sentence in prison. Will the information that Isaac has—or claims to have—have any bearing ultimately on the notoriously still-unsolved cases of both Tupac’s and Biggie’s murders? READ FULL STORY
He may not be the best rapper in the game, but boy, Diddy can throw a party.
Last Friday (April 22) he and his Dirty Money crew‘s Coming Home Tour stopped at New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom. It was literally a homecoming for Diddy, a Harlem native.
So instead of the refined and rehearsed offering several other cities likely received during the tour’s run, Diddy gave his hometown more, pulling several guests on stage and making it less of a Diddy-Dirty Money show and more of a nostalgic review of his Bad Boy Records heyday.
Diddy, along with DM singers Dawn Richard and Kalenna Harper, performed a few cuts from their Last Train to Paris early on. Diddy emerged dipped in white from head to toe and the trio performed “Ass on the Floor,” “Yeah, Yeah You Would,” “Yesterday,” and even an emotional medley of Sade’s classics, including “No Ordinary Love.”
Surprisingly, Diddy seemed a bit nervous up there at the start—as if uncertain of his Dirty Money material. To his credit, Train is an experimental hip-hop album we loved. Although as far as sales are concerned, it’s not a fan favorite (released last December, it hasn’t gone gold yet). And the audience’s halfhearted responses to their solid opening half hour proved as much.
But as he slid into the next portion of his set and the girls left, so did his nerves. After a roll call of the city’s boroughs, Diddy stopped to introduce Queens icon and A Tribe Called Quest rhymer Q-Tip, who brought the crowd to life with “Check the Rhime” and his solo banger “Vivrant Thing.”
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