Ali Shaheed Muhammad

Ali Shaheed Muhammad appears in the following:

Microphone Check Live: Father

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

We spoke to Father, the rapper, producer and head of Awful Records, the breeding ground for iLoveMakonnen and Archibald SLIM and Slug Christ and Ethereal and Richposlim, while we were in Atlanta in May. Our onstage conversation was ...

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Front Row: Gem Club, '252'

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Following their appearance at an All Songs Considered listening party held at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Gem Club's Christopher Barnes and Ieva Berberian, both Berklee graduates, performed in front of a live audience at Café 939. Barnes had written this song, "252," while a ...

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Microphone Check Live: Organized Noize

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

On May 18th Microphone Check went to Atlanta to interview the three-man production team behind some of the greatest songs ever: every one on Outkast's Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik, every one on Goodie Mob's Soul Food, TLC's "Waterfalls," En Vogue's "Don't Let Go," deep cuts and big hits everywhere. The people who came ...

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Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Part 1: 'I Walk A Different Walk'

Thursday, May 28, 2015

FRANNIE KELLEY: This is Microphone Check, hip-hop from NPR Music. I'm Frannie Kelley.

ALI SHAHEED MUHAMMAD: I'm Ali Shaheed Muhammad.

KELLEY: And Ali is our guest for today.

MUHAMMAD: I was gonna say, "Who's our special guest?"

KELLEY: It's you, bro.

MUHAMMAD: What up, world?

MUHAMMAD: In Austin, you mentioned ...

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Industry Rules No. 1-4079: A Conversation With Lawyer Julian Petty

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The following should not be construed as legal advice — just good advice. We asked Julian Petty, who represents Ali, Earl Sweatshirt, Vince Staples and the estate of Biggie Smalls — and at one time worked with Michael Jackson, Prince and Stevie Wonder — to come see us at Microphone ...

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Amber London: 'I'ma Show You How It's Done'

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Amber London made the trip from Houston to Austin to perform her first official shows at SXSW, which provided the perfect occasion for an interview long in the making. We tried to not get stuck on the topic of life as a female rapper, but London's experiences as, at once, ...

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Heems: 'If Someone's Got To Do It, It Should Be Me'

Monday, April 13, 2015

The Queens rapper spoke with Microphone Check about Partition, assimilation and how the Patriot Act is used. We also talked about what success does to — and sometimes for — your family:

"J. Cole's got a record out where's he talking about running around New York and doing his rapper ...

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Earl Sweatshirt: 'I'm Grown'

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

"This is the first thing that I've said that I fully stand behind," the 21-year-old rapper says of his new album. "I've never been this transparent with myself or with music."

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ASAP Ferg: 'I Want This Moment To Last Forever'

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Microphone Check sat down with ASAP Ferg in February, just before he released the video for "Doe-Active," a song off his November mixtape, Ferg Forever. The pillar of New York's ASAP Mob spoke about his aesthetic choices, the way he imagines our far off future and ...

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Leila Steinberg: 'With Earl, It's A Journey'

Monday, March 09, 2015

When Leila Steinberg was 25 years old, she met a 17-year-old named Tupac. She became involved in his career in a managerial role, which she had stepped away from by about 1993. The next time Steinberg agreed to a management relationship with a musician was almost 20 years later. At ...

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Big Sean: 'I Stuck With My Gut'

Monday, March 02, 2015

The week Big Sean released his third studio album he stopped by NPR's Los Angeles bureau for a talk with Microphone Check. The Detroit rapper recorded Dark Sky Paradise almost entirely at his own house, in a studio he spent all his money building. "I made a promise to myself," ...

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

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Last year you heard Terrace Martin's work on YG's album, Ninth Wonder's compilation, Big K.R.I.T.'s Cadillactica and, just this week, a new song by Kendrick Lamar, called "The Blacker The Berry." In the space of less than six months in 2014, the LA-based producer ...

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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.

"You gotta get funky to make records that give people the frown face when they hear it," ...

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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 — the MVP of the MPC — tells Microphone Check hosts Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Frannie Kelley the story of the father/son talk he once had with Cam'ron, delineates EDM and hip-hop (one is more like private school than the other) and calls out ...

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

Thursday, January 08, 2015

Back in October, Detroit's Black Milk released his sixth solo album, called If There's A Hell Below. He came to New York and spoke with Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Frannie Kelley about trying to impress J Dilla, transforming his music for live shows and always improving. "Each song, I want ...

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When You Gotta Go: Manila Police Asked To Use Diapers During Pope's Visit

Thursday, January 08, 2015

Some 2,000 traffic cops in the Philippine capital are being asked to wear adult diapers during next week's visit by Pope Francis to the predominately Roman Catholic country.

So, some of them will no doubt feel relieved that they've got a place to go during what promises to be a ...

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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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After Nut Rumpus, Macadamia Sales Rocket

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The aftermath of a Korean Air executive's rage over how a steward presented macadamia nuts in her airline's first-class cabin has had an immediate side effect: sales of the nuts have risen sharply in South Korea.

From The Wall Street Journal:

"Sales of the nuts from Monday through ...

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Rick Ross: 'It Was Just So Powerful To Me'

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

On the day before Thanksgiving, Microphone Check hosts Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Frannie Kelley sat down in Los Angeles with Rick Ross. First things first, they talked about food, but quickly got into the Miami musician's early rap fandom, the importance of imagery in his work and what his mentors ...

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Straight Out Of Chevy Chase

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

From boom bap to EDM, we look at the line between hip-hop and not, and meet a defender of the genre that makes you question... who's in and who's out.

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