It took me a little while to come around on 2 Chainz. While I liked a thing or two that he did with Playaz Circle, with so many rappers being shuffled in and out of "the game" on a weekly basis, I initially assumed that 2 Chainz would fade out quickly and I could get away with just ignoring him. One highly-successful mixtape and G.O.O.D. Music contract later, I'm man enough to admit that I was wrong—I fox with 2 Chainz. To celebrate the release of the first video from his official solo debut ("No Lie" with Drake, above), I present a gallery of the things that I've come to love about 2 Chainz to help you see the light if you haven't already.
We’ve seen what a little TV can do for burgeoning stars. What the Mac Air did for Yael Naim, Chevy Sonic for fun., “The Hills” for Natasha Bedingfield – an under-a-minute spot can catapult an otherwise unknown artist into a ubiquitous one. And with Elle King’s single “Playing for Keeps” nabbing the spot as the theme song for VH1’s new show Mob Wives: Chicago, there’s a good chance you could get sick of her before ever getting to know who she really is. All credit to her voice though, we doubt that’ll happen.
After singing and dancing his way through adolescence and young-adulthood, it would seem that Usher should have managed to find himself by now, but according to his new album's title, he's still looking. Even with a nearly twenty-year career behind him, Usher still has plenty of time left to it's good that he's still motivated to keep himself current, but despite those efforts, he still always manages to land in a similar place: a decent album with a few great singles to raise the average. "Looking 4 Myself" is frankly not much different, but the good news is that Usher is still a solid performer overall, so even when he's not knocking them out of the park, he still manages to get on base.
Last week, Kanye West and his G.O.O.D. music mates Big Sean, Pusha T and 2 Chainz released the video for their collaborative "Mercy." Heavily sampling the dancehall tune "Dust a Sound Boy," the clip is fittingly shot in a parking garage in Qatar by a cameraman who appears to need a step stool - "his taste level ain't at 'Ye's waist level," it seems. And it looks as if the ever-humble rapper surprisingly forwent the large budget to instead recruit a handful of cameo-making friends, so here are some other numbers that matter.
While Curren$y’s name has frequently appeared on blogs over the last few years—often scrawled across the artwork for other artists’ singles—one could be forgiven for being a bit behind on his work due to his lack of a mainstream hit single thus far (not counting his earlier, oft-forgotten work with Master P and the 504 Boyz). Nevertheless, Curren$y has solidly established himself as a rapper’s rapper, earning a considerable amount of respect from A-list emcees and producers that have resulted in an impressive list of collaborations mixed in with his catalogue of solo work. His second major-label album, The Stoned Immaculate, has plenty of both, so if you have in fact missed out on Curren$y’s work so far, it’s not a bad place to jump on.
Despite having already gained fame as the runner-up on the seventh season of the UK's televised singing competition TheX Factor and having already released her album Heaven to that loyal audience nearly 6 months ago, us statesiders were just introduced to English singer-songwriter Rebecca Ferguson last week when she dropped her debut here.