Music Essay

How Kendrick Lamar Stumbles Toward Queer And Trans Allyship On “Auntie Diaries”

"Auntie Diaries" shows that Kendrick Lamar still has some work to do before he can fully consider himself an ally… Read More

May 13, 2022

How Kendrick Lamar Holds “The Culture” To Task On “The Heart Part 5”

On "The Heart Part 5," Kendrick Lamar makes necessary arguments about the negative influence and impact "the culture" has on… Read More

May 12, 2022

Why Erykah Badu’s ‘Baduizm’ Is The Best ’90s Neo-Soul Album

Erykah Badu's Baduizm not only stamped neo-soul's validity but foreshadowed its staying power decades after its invention. The year is 1997,… Read More

February 10, 2022

The Look of Love: An Introduction to J Dilla, The Rapper

For Dilla Day 2022, we celebrate the deceptively deep catalog of daggering wordplay from J Dilla, an innovative producer who… Read More

February 7, 2022

There Will Never Be Another Music Video Like D’Angelo’s “Untitled (How Does It Feel)”

A look at how the video for "Untitled (How Does It Feel)" made — then almost broke — D'Angelo. In the… Read More

January 25, 2022

Ari Lennox & Summer Walker: The Yin & Yang of R&B

Though the two are very different, Ari Lennox and Summer Walker stand out in the upper echelon of R&B because… Read More

January 4, 2022

Black Women Are Leading Pop Music’s Next Evolution

Pop this year was defined — and redefined — by Black women who've been instrumental in transforming the sonic and… Read More

December 23, 2021

De La Soul’s Discography Is Better Than A Tribe Called Quest’s

De La Soul tends to get left out of the best-ever conversation — especially alongside their fellow Native Tongue members A… Read More

November 30, 2021

Where Does Raging In Rap Concerts Go From Here?

Amid the tragedy that occurred at Travis Scott's Astroworld, what does rage and raging in rap look like moving forward?… Read More

November 12, 2021

September 29th, 1998 Was Rap Music’s Last Great Release Date

Read a first-hand experience on what made September 29th, 1998 special, and why we'll never see another date like that… Read More

September 29, 2021

How Black Drummers Influenced Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit”

Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl shared earlier this year that drummers from disco and funk groups inspired his drum part for… Read More

September 24, 2021

How The Fugees’ ‘The Score’ Brought Haiti And Hip-Hop Together

The Fugees' The Score was a cultural moment for Haitians across the world, but more specifically Haitian-Americans, normalizing and legitimizing all… Read More

September 22, 2021

André 3000’s “Life of the Party” Verse Deserved Better Than Kanye And Drake’s Pettiness

André 3000 spit his most heartfelt guest verse in years. The moment was overshadowed by the immature pettiness of Drake… Read More

September 10, 2021

Revisiting Dipset’s Complicated & Provocative Relationship with 9/11

The 9/11 terrorist attacks were a unifying moment for the US. Hip-hop had a more complicated relationship: part patriotic, part… Read More

September 10, 2021

How the Sample Snitch Won

Hip-hop's code of silence pits producers against an obsessively resourceful block of fans. With the crate-digging community thriving online, there’s… Read More

August 20, 2021

Remembering JAY-Z & Kanye West’s ‘Watch the Throne’ Era

JAY-Z & Kanye West's Watch the Throne was more than just an album. It was a moment — a time… Read More

August 6, 2021