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Why Rick Ross Will Never, Ever, Win His Lawsuit Against LMFAO

Rick RossFor years now, Freeway Rick Ross, the real life drug dealer upon whom rapper Rick Ross bases his stage persona and kingpin image, has been trying to nail Ross (the latter) for making millions by selling his music under an appropriated drug lord persona. Last week, a California judge dismissed Freeway Rick’s most recent appeal, citing the rapper’s creation of original works that only used the name as a jumping-off point. Freeway Rick was not amused.

In a statement issued following the judge’s rejection of his appeal, the real Freeway Rick Ross remarked: ”There is a teachable moment about the state of our community when a man who has a respectable job as a correctional officer, has to recreate himself in my former image as a large-scale kingpin to gain what he feels is social acceptance as a successful man.” Though Freeway Rick’s indignation does have a point here, he misunderstands Ross’ motivations. Ross was never thinking about perceived social acceptance as a successful man. He was thinking about actual success. And he actually achieved it by making insane amounts of money because he understands the fan inclination to want to believe that artists’ music reflects a truthful depiction of their lives.

Hip-hop culture has always been based on the appropriation and re-interpretation of communal objects from the past. It’s called sampling. And hip-hop artists have been doing it in with their stage personas forever, pretending to be harder and more dangerous than they actually are. So when Ross took on the symbolic identity of a historical drug dealer, he was doing just that: “sampling” someone else’s life and then turning it into something new. And that is exactly why Rick Ross’ recent lawsuit against LMFAO for interpolating the lyric “Every day I’m hustlin” from his 2006 song “Hustlin” is so ironic, because when LMFAO jokingly altered that line, they were doing the exact same thing. Though Ross’ lawsuit states that LMFAO’s similar lyric is ”an obvious attempt to capitalize on the fame and success of “Hustlin,” the reality of the situation is a bit more nuanced.
Continue reading ‘Why Rick Ross Will Never, Ever, Win His Lawsuit Against LMFAO’

2 Chainz And Juicy J Star In Online Video Games

Originally living in shamanic clans on the world of Draenor, 2 Chainz and Juicy J were forced to abandon their peaceful culture after the demon lord Kil’jaeden of the Burning Legion vengefully corrupted…oh, sorry. We’re getting word that 2 Chainz and Juicy J are actually featured in their own video games. Our mistake.

Continue reading ’2 Chainz And Juicy J Star In Online Video Games’

Ke$ha Releases Video For “Die Young”

If you’re a conspiracy theorist, you’re going to find a lot to like in Ke$ha’s new video for “Die Young.” Inverted crosses and satanic pentagrams flash repeatedly in blatant, seizure-inducing patterns, while upside-down triangles appear superimposed over almost every single shot, splicing up the frames into disjointed tesselations. There’s definitely enough imagery present to incite rabid online discussions of secret Illuminati plots to take over the world, but like most of those theories, such arguments seem to miss the mark. What’s really going on in with the proliferation of these kind of inscrutable symbols in Ke$ha’s new video is a lot less sinister, but not any less devious.

Continue reading ‘Ke$ha Releases Video For “Die Young”’

Post-Election Songs: From Hopeful To Head-Scratching

Given that President Barack Obama had the hip-hop vote pretty securely in the bag, it’s only fitting that the day after his re-election is awash in a wave of celebratory tracks from artists big and small. Here are three notable songs paying tribute to Obama’s second term that range from the inspiring to the incomprehensible.

 

Young Jeezy“We Done It Again”

The newly minted Senior Vice President of A&R at Atlantic Records manages to cram Trayvon Martin, Hurricane Katrina, and the trillion-dollar deficit into a mere two and a half minutes. In the spiritual successor to his 2008 track “My President Is Black,” Jeezy sends out his message to “every ghetto in the world / Every little boy and little girl.” Though the new track is more cautiously optimistic this time around (“Waiting on a savior, maybe Barack”), it still a clear show of the rapper’s full support of the president.

Continue reading ‘Post-Election Songs: From Hopeful To Head-Scratching’

Khloé Kardashian ‘X Factor’ Debut; How Did She Do?

Since the announcement of Khloé Kardashian Odom and Mario Lopez as co-hosts of The X Factor, the anticipation toward their live show debut has been building. Wednesday night, the wait was finally over as we watched Lopez breeze through the show, with Odom awkwardly stumbling through. Check out more details after the jump. Continue reading ‘Khloé Kardashian ‘X Factor’ Debut; How Did She Do?’

2 Chainz Gets Motivational On First “This Is How I Made It” Episode

Forget cats, hot air balloons, or whatever other random images the makers of motivational posters think get their point across. 2 Chainz should be their go–to man from now on. In the introductory episode of MTV’s “This Is How I Made It,” the Georgia emcee dishes out the inspirational story of his early life and rise to fame like a bling–laden Tony Robbins. Despite being a prodigious basketball player who was courted by numerous Division I schools, 2 Chainz’ chances of playing college ball dissolved after he was locked up for a month during high school.

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The Weeknd Releases ‘Trilogy’ Album Trailer

After releasing a trio of hugely hyped mixtapes in 2011, Abel Tesfaye a.k.a. The Weeknd is ready to make his proper album debut this November. Thanks to a deftly calculated promotional campaign of carefully withheld information surrounding the Canadian R&B artist’s first two releases, House of Balloons and Thursday, Tesfaye real identity remained relatively unknown. But by the release of Echoes of Silence in December 2011, the word was out, and Tesfaye was even out performing publicly. The new trailer for Trilogy, The Weeknd’s upcoming full-length, brings back some of the mystery that initially surrounded his anonymous, internet–only releases. Tesfaye stands still, a solitary silhouette in front of a blaze of purple fireworks, while a brief album cut drones on narcotically in the background. Though a recent personal note detailed his ambivalence about mainstream fame, the new album trailer, in addition to the video for “Rolling Stone,” shows that Tesfaye isn’t changing his sound to suit the big time. We couldn’t be happier.

Can’t wait for November 13th? Check out OurStage artist Yuri Koller in the meantime!

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Jay-Z To Stream Final Barclays Center Show On YouTube

Jay-Z’s series of eight shows at the brand new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, will culminate in a live stream of his final show this Saturday night. The performance will be streaming from Hov’s YouTube channel, Life+Times, an offshoot of his lifestyle website of the same name. Even though Jay-Z negotiated a price break for tickets to his Barclays Center shows, the average cost of tickets quickly skyrocketed by several hundred dollars thanks to scalpers. But one lucky Jay-Z fan is bypassing all of that, having won tickets to the final show through OurStage’s Free Ticket Friday promotion. For the rest of us, there’s always YouTube.

If you love Jay-Z and just can’t wait until the live stream tomorrow, check out OurStage artist Tamppa in the meantime!

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Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Nominees Announced

It’s that time again! Time to review the candidates, do your research, and start voting!

We’re not talking politics here, this is straight up rock and roll, and for the first time in their history the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is giving fans a say in which of the newly announced 2013 nominees will be inducted.

Among this year’s first time nominees are Rush, N.W.A and Public Enemy, while returning nominees include Donna Summer, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts and The Meters. Artists must have released their first recording no later than 1987 in order to be eligible. It’s a tight race people, but someone has to decide on these artist’s hall of fame fate!

Now through Dec. 5, you can vote at Rockhall.com and CNN.com and give your favorite artists a shot at becoming inducted. Winners will be revealed the same month, with the 28th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony taking place April 18 in Los Angeles, and broadcast on HBO at a later date.

View the full list here and get voting!

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Rap Genius Backed By $15 Million Investment

What’s the secret to obtaining $15 million in backing from a venture capitalist firm? Being the website Rap Genius.

Rap Genius, a popular crowdsourcing website where readers give their take on rap lyrics, recently received an astonishingly large investment from Andreessen Horowitz. The firm explained that while the public is double taking at this investment, their reasoning is sound. You can read a statement from the firm regarding the investment after the jump.

Continue reading ‘Rap Genius Backed By $15 Million Investment’

 


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