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Hip Hop

Morning Edition

'Illmatic': The Making Of A Classic

Thursday, May 01, 2014

This summer Nas is traveling the world performing his debut album in full. The crowds that are coming out to see him are turning up because the 20-year-old record is an acknowledged classic.

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Morning Edition

Minya Oh: 'I Was Never Gonna Not Want To Listen To This'

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Then an intern, Oh gave Illmatic the highest rating in The Source magazine, marking it a classic. Today she's Miss Info and she talks about her review and making LL Cool J cry.

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Morning Edition

Future Wants To Change Your Mood

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Atlanta rapper who has become an influential figure in hip-hop and pop over the last couple of years says he wants to quiet the club with his songs.

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Soundcheck

Pick Three: Daniel Alarcón

Friday, April 25, 2014

The most recent novel from Daniel Alarcon, At Night We Walk In Circles, was named on many year-end best-of lists in 2013. The Peruvian-born, Alabama-raised, San Francisco-based author was recently named one of the best 20 Writers Under 40 by The New Yorker. But he's also a music fan, and shares this three-song playlist of a few of his favorite tracks.

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Nas: 'I'm Still Charged' 20 Years After 'Illmatic'

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The maker of a hip-hop classic on his audience, the next generation and how his anniversary is inspiring a new album.

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Soundcheck

Calle 13's Residente, On 'Multi_Viral,' Latin American Politics, And Julian Assange

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Rene Perez Joglar, (a.k.a. Residente), the co-founder of the beloved and divisive Puerto Rican rap duo Calle 13,  talks about Multi_Viral -- the group’s latest album which includes vocals from Uruguayan poet Eduardo Galeano and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

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Soundcheck

My Husband’s Stupid Record Collection; Liv Warfield Plays Live; Calle 13’s Residente

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

In this episode: New York librarian Sarah O’Holla is on a mission: to listen to each album in her husband’s vinyl record collection -- all 1500 of them. She’s chronicling her journey on the blog My Husband’s Stupid Record Collection, and even though it’s only a few months old, it has divided some readers.

Then: After releasing an unsuccessful first album, R&B singer Liv Warfield was ready to leave the music world behind. And then, Prince called. Now a member of his backing band The New Power Generation, she performs songs from her new Prince-produced album in the Soundcheck studio.

And: Calle 13 co-founder Rene Perez Joglar, (a.k.a. Residente) talks about Multi Viral -- the group’s latest album which includes vocals from Uruguayan poet Eduardo Galeano and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

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First Listen: Jeremiah Jae, 'Good Times'

Sunday, April 20, 2014

For a hip-hop artist who eschews commercial rap stereotypes and clichés in favor of thornier writing, the challenge is to do so without being a bore — Jeremiah Jae does this well.

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Jeremiah Jae And Oliver The 2nd: 'Take It Back To The Essence'

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The cousins have formed Black Jungle Squad, a collective of relatives and close friends. "Taking it back to the days when there was a lot more crews in hip-hop," says Jeremiah. "Like Native Tongues."

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All Things Considered

Reunited And It Feels A Little Awkward: OutKast At Coachella

Monday, April 14, 2014

The rap duo OutKast launched what may be its farewell tour over the weekend at Coachella, but the group and its fans, who have waited a decade for the reunion, might not have the same expectations.

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All Things Considered

Emicida: 'People Sample What Is Nearest To Them'

Monday, April 14, 2014

The rapper has earned a global name for fusing hip-hop, samba and Afro-Brazilian sounds with lyrics about the plight of Brazil's poor black and urban population.

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Rob Gullatte: 'I Just Can't Seem To Get These Raps Out My Head'

Friday, April 11, 2014

"I got a job. I like my job, it's cool. But I'm sitting there writing raps," says the Houstonian. "I go out to the club and I'm like, 'Damn, I got this verse in my head.'"

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E-40: 'I'm On The West Coast, Eating'

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

The Bay Area legend is widely known for creating slang, flouting the rules and knowing everybody from everywhere. He speaks about his long career, Master P, Lil Jon, T-Pain, Tupac and Too Short.

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Soundcheck

Soundcheck's 10 Favorite Musical Moments From Letterman's 'Late Show'

Friday, April 04, 2014

The legendary late-night host is retiring next year, and with him goes a stage that has hosted the biggest bands of the past two decades.
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Morning Edition

Hip Hop Academy: Inside A Beatmaker's Harvard Class

Friday, April 04, 2014

"Nobody from hip hop was supposed to go to Harvard without a degree," says 9th Wonder, a respected producer who's turned out to be a born teacher.

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Lunice: 'I Ain't Doing What That Guy Did'

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

While in Austin, Texas, the producer and DJ sat down in a sunny backyard and spoke on his performance style, learning from the greats and reading autobiographies.

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The Outfit, TX: 'Where Is That Working Man's Music?'

Saturday, March 29, 2014

The Dallas through Houston trio sat down in the Austin sunshine, cracked a few Lone Stars and opined on Texas funk, Texas weather, church and their business plan.

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Young Chop: 'I Gotta Stay Working'

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Even in the midst of SXSW, the Chicago producer was selling beats and putting in studio time. He took a rare break to talk about studying songs from the '70s and Polow da Don's snare.

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Soundcheck

Hear: Kris Bowers, Live On Soundcheck

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Kris Bowers won the 2011 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Piano Competition Award. Hear him play songs from his debut album Heroes + Misfits -- which blends together jazz, hip hop and R&B influences -- in the Soundcheck studio.

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A Rational Conversation: Lil Jon's History Of Turning Up

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Lil Jon may be best known as the king of crunk, but "Turn Down for What" isn't his first time working with a dance music producer.

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