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Hip Hop

First Listen: Heems, 'Eat Pray Thug'

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Binary thinkers beware: If you're the type who's uncomfortable with contradiction, or would rather deal in stereotypes than nuance, then rapper Heems and his new album are not for you.

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Microphone Check Live: 'The Spook Who Sat By The Door' Screening

Friday, February 27, 2015

In honor of Black History Month we went down to NPR's Washington, D.C., headquarters to show Sam Greenlee's 1973 film and host a conversation about its resonance.

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Soundcheck

Why Aren't Festivals Showcasing More Female Musicians?

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

When this year's lineup for Coachella was unveiled, many noticed how few women were on the bill. Feminist music writer Katie Presley explains why festivals are such a dudefest.
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Boogie, 'Further'

Friday, February 13, 2015

Now, more than ever, young standard-bearers of West Coast rap complicate the default nihilism of their forbears with complex and often contradictory emotional content.

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Rome Fortune, 'OneDay'

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Going off his bars, you could assume Fortune is playing the part of the nihilistic, narcissistic rapper. But now he's showing us that's not the case. Not by a long shot.

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Terrace Martin: 'Everything Got A Little Bit Of Funk In It'

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The producer and multi-instrumentalist on the Kendrick Lamar album he's working on, Snoop and love.

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Soundcheck

A Night Of Highs And Lows At The 2015 Grammy Awards

Monday, February 09, 2015

A mostly-tepid night of too many performances and too few surprises, the 57th annual Grammy Awards did have some highlights. John Schaefer recaps the best and worst of the telecast.
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Soundcheck

Who Will (And Should) Win At This Year’s Grammy Awards?

Friday, February 06, 2015

With the 57th Grammy Awards coming up on Sunday, Feb. 8, Soundcheck's John Schaefer scans the nominees to predict who will win big in this year's biggest categories.
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All Things Considered

'We Need Her': At The Super Bowl, Missy Elliot's Incredible Return

Monday, February 02, 2015

The rapper and producer hasn't released an album of new songs since 2005, but on Sunday night her old hits were more than enough.

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DJ Quik: 'Flamboyant? Every Now And Then'

Friday, January 30, 2015

After 24 years in the music business, the producer and rapper from Compton, Calif., knows what's going on. He told Microphone Check studio secrets, a Rick James story, and all about the funk.

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All Things Considered

Hip-Hop Collective Doomtree On Getting Seven Artists In One Room

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Minneapolis rap crew is back with the album All Hands. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with members Dessa and P.O.S.

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AraabMuzik: 'I Have So Much Music, It Doesn't Make Sense'

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Rhode Island-born producer and DJ tells the story of the father/son talk he once had with Cam'ron, delineates EDM and hip-hop and calls out the whole music industry for being flaky.

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Black Milk: 'It's Not Really A Cakewalk'

Thursday, January 08, 2015

"Whatever I feel like is missing, or whatever type of track or energy I'm trying to feel or I feel like I'm not hearing in wherever music is at that period of time, I try to create it."

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'Empire': A World Of Unbuttoned Shirts And Dishy Music Stories

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

Fox's new drama about the family behind a music mega-company is pretty standard soapy television with some nice performances and a limited understanding of music.

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Soundcheck

My 10 Favorite Unsung Records Of 2014

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dig deeper than Taylor Swift and D'Angelo, and there's so many more artists to commend in 2014: the loud and the weird; the quiet and the subtle; the noise pop and the futurist soul.
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On 'The Pinkprint,' Nicki Minaj Speaks The Language Of Love

Thursday, December 18, 2014

When she's at her most vulnerable as a woman, she's at her best creatively. The same way Mary J. Blige's pain drove My Life, Nicki's believable heartache steals the show on The Pinkprint.

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The @NPRHipHop Holiday Gift Guide 2014

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Just a guess — you're not done shopping yet, are you? Allow us to ease your load a bit with some thoughtful ideas for the hip-hop head on your list.

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Redman On Music And Marijuana: Now Is The Time For Some Action

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

"I think the audience is becoming more aware," he said backstage at the last date of his fall tour with Method Man. "Smarter."

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Soundcheck

Stream Soundcheck's Favorite Songs Of 2014

Monday, December 15, 2014

WNYC
In case you're tired of holiday staples, team Soundcheck has compiled our favorite songs of 2014 -- from soulful live performances to the gems you might've missed.
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Morning Edition

J. Cole: 'Ain't Enough Of Us Trying'

Friday, December 12, 2014

"I want to get whatever's on my chest off my chest when it feels right," says the rapper, who makes songs that turn the personal into the political.

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