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[10 Feb 2011 | One Comment | ]

Selected as one of 106 KMEL’s Top 10 Freshman Rappers of the Bay Area, 21-year-old San Francisco native Roach Gigz has gone from virtually unknown to one of the hottest artists on the West Coast in just four years.

Biographies »

[24 Dec 2010 | No Comment | ]

Norfolk Virginia native, Nottz’ first major placement was in 1998 with Busta Ryhmes, when he was just beginning a successful production career that now spans over a decade. Nottz’s consistent success over the years stems from not only his natural gift for production and great relationships built with the artists he has worked with but also his love of music, his humility, and his manager, Darryl Sloan, who he has worked with for over a decade.

Biographies »

[23 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

After taking a break from being one half of Grammy Award nominated and Grammy Award winning Deep Dish, the most successful US dance duo in history, DJ Sharam has continued to delight and confound critics in equal measure – and he wouldn’t have it any other way.

Biographies »

[8 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

Jern Eye was born in 1978, raised in Los Angeles during the 80’s through the advent of gang culture and the rising underground hip-hop scene. Immersed in all facets of hip-hop, Jern Eye developed his craft by attending freestyle battles at underground clubs in L.A. such as The Foundation, UNITY, and Project Blowed. After meeting fellow emcee Spear Of The Nation in high school, where heated rap battles would usually take place, Jern Eye and Spear came to form the hip-hop group Lunar Heights shortly after graduating in 1996. After recording many demo tapes together and playing local shows, they decided to migrate to Oakland in 2000 to further pursue their careers by becoming part of the Bay Area independent hip-hop scene.

Biographies »

[8 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

For musicians today, a record deal can be like a used car; it might get you from point A to point B, but most likely the salesman took your money and poured sawdust in the transmission. Fortunately, while the industry is gridlocked in filesharing, the members of iLL-Literacy can teleport. And by teleport, they mean “make music that would inspire passionate love with a Silverback gorilla…if it was socially acceptable.” And like any good Silverback gorilla lovemaking, iLL-Literacy’s music somehow recalls our primal past, while leaping forward (and sideways) into a future marked by inter-racial babies and Twitter.

Biographies »

[8 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

Emerging out of the electric nights and stepping into new wide eye mornings, Bisco Smith aka Bisc1 is now prepared to direct his mind to a larger range of thinkers, a lighter train of thought and a more balanced way of being. From the first official release, The Basics, Bisc1 has focused mainly on himself, his inversions and his personal story. On The Broadcast, after nearly 4 years of notable releases and 4 projects, Mr. Smith has reached a new channel of art, awareness, and energy. With age comes experience and with experience change is born. From behind the microphone Bisco broadcasts his thoughts far and wide projecting to everyone inside of listening range.

Biographies »

[8 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

Souls Of Mischief is an alternative hip-hop group hailing from Oakland, CA. They are also part of the hip-hop collective, Hieroglyphics. The Souls Of Mischief formed in 1991 and is composed of emcees A-Plus, Opio, Phesto, and Tajai. As a group, Souls of Mischief has released 4 critically acclaimed albums and have been certified Gold by the RIAA. Their newest release Montezumas Revenge will be coming on November 10th, via Hiero Imperium Records.

Biographies »

[6 Oct 2009 | 2 Comments | ]

BRUINSTORMAZ consists of 2 members, namely Lloyd Julius better known as (Bitter) and Marvin van Wyk known as (CREAM).
These talented, Afrikaans MC’s were born in Sarepta, Kuilsriver, their home and foundation. Bitter and Cream met during a “Cypher” battling against each other which later lead to the two MC’s forming the group and knowing that together they would make people “sit and listen” to their music. Having come up with the group’s name, BRUINSTORMAZ came about during a BRUISTORM’ing session.

Biographies »

[6 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

The Alchemist is one of the most sought after hip-hop producers in the genre today. His hard knocking drums and gritty east coast flavored rhythms have blessed the likes of Mobb Deep, Eminem, Nas, Snoop Dogg, and many others. Alchemist serves Eminem inhouse DJ and also Executive Produced the 2006 Shady Records platinum selling release The Re-Up. Chemical Warfare, the long awaited follow up to his 1st Infantry has been worth the wait – big time. Entirely produced by The Alchemist himself, this release is sure to knock on every corner and every block across the country.

Biographies »

[4 Oct 2009 | No Comment | ]

K. BAIN Hip Hop Artist and Social Entrepreneur, K’s lyrical flow and storytelling ability represent a combination of new school swagga’ mixed with old school skills. With a free flowing style at once brash, smooth and dangerous all at the same time, K refuses to be categorized. His stories tell of the struggle and triumphs of a man doing what he can to find his way, however he can.

Biographies »

[13 Oct 2008 | No Comment | ]

One of South Africa’s leading Afrikaans hip hop & rap projects, Kallitz, was conceptualized in 1998 by producer and record label owner Dokte, and signed to Mothermix Records in 2004. Dokte passed his Sound Engineering Diploma with 93% in 1998 after quitting his medical studies at the University of Stellenbosch, and has instead been ‘doctoring’ music ever since. Dokte is in the process of launching Xzekutiv Entertainment, a new company which will focus on media production such as music and video.

Biographies »

[24 Sep 2008 | No Comment | ]

You can call Chris “Ludacris” Bridges a number of things.  Hip-hop superstar.  Actor.  Entrepreneur.  Philanthropist.  Restaurateur.  Pitchman.  Online visionary.  Columnist.  All of these labels are accurate, and with his forthcoming October 21st album release, Theater Of The Mind, the Grammy winning, Atlanta-based entertainment maven shows that, as he continues expanding his reach, his musical prowess remains as potent as ever.

“I wanted an album where you could listen to it from beginning to end and it would put you in an imaginative state,” Ludacris says of his sixth major label album.  “Ice Cube, Scarface, 2Pac, The Notorious B.I.G., they paved the way for me.  I feel like they’re some of the greatest of all time and they lyrically and conceptually put you in this place.  I want my fans to feel like they’re part of the music.  That’s what Theater Of The Mind is all about, drawing people in.”

Indeed, Theater Of The Mind highlights Ludacris’ rap supremacy, on a number of levels.  “I call myself the MVP of rap,” he says.  “When you put everything together in rap, as far as lyrics, visuals, record sales, personality, conceptual songs, I feel like I’m the summation of all.  I feel like there’s nothing I can’t do.”

Ludacris has good reason to feel that way.  His acting career remains on an enviable trajectory.  After star-making appearances on the NBC drama Law and Order SVU, the Oscar-winning Crash and the independent film sensation Hustle & Flow, Ludacris stands as one of the most in-demand actors in Hollywood.  

In October 2008, Ludacris will star in two major motion picture releases.  In Max Payne, based on the popular video game, he stars as an internal affairs agent alongside Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis and Beau Bridges.  Then, in Guy Ritchie’s Rocknrolla, Ludacris joins an ensemble cast with Gerard Butler and Thandie Newton for a captivating tale of the Russian mob setting up shop in London.

Even though many actors who break through as rappers first have a hard time securing plum roles in Hollywood, Ludacris has been able to avoid playing only a rapper.  “When I choose movie roles, I want to be versatile and not typecast,” he explains.  “I make a conscious effort to take on different roles.  I’m exploring and trying to reach new heights to continually challenge myself.”

That mentality extends to his other business pursuits.  With his DTP Records, which has a joint venture with Island Def Jam Records, Ludacris and partners Chaka Zulu and Jeff Dixon experienced gold success with R&B act Bobby Valentino.  Future DTP hit makers include R&B songstress Shareefa, rap group Playaz Circle and rapper Willy Northpole.

Ludacris has also partnered with Chef Chris Yeo to open Straits Restaurant, a Thai/Singaporean cuisine located in the heart of downtown Atlanta.  Straits has become a good place to network for Ludacris, as have Ludacris’ two online ventures.  WeMix.com is a social networking site aimed at showcasing and developing artists, while Myghetto.com serves as a myspace for the hood.

With Ludacris’ visibility in a variety of media at unprecedented levels, it’s no wonder major corporations enlist Ludacris as an endorser.  He has worked with Puma, XM Satellite Radio and Boost Mobile, and is the first rap act signed by communications giant AT&T to represent its brand.   

Given his phenomenal success, Ludacris is keenly aware that others are less fortunate.  That’s why his Ludacris Foundation is in its seventh year of operation.  Thus far, the non-profit organization has given more than $1 million to organizations that help out underprivileged children.  The Foundation helps kids to help themselves by using music and the arts to inspire them to develop goals and work to achieve them.  

The Ludacris Foundation’s mission was expanded when Ludacris recorded the hit song “Runaway Love” with Mary J. Blige and teamed with the Chicago-based National Runaway Switchboard to provide support for runaway children.  The Foundation has also spearheaded college tours where Ludacris spoke to students about safe sex and HIV/AIDS awareness.

Though Ludacris has more going on than most, he remains focused on delivering the highest quality product regardless of the business.  “I’m still passionate about everything that I do,” Ludacris says.  “It’s about doing what I love.  I’m living my dream and there’s no amount of money that you could get that’s going to make you stop living out your dream.”

So even as Ludacris becomes a bankable Hollywood star, a respected label head, a multi-faceted entrepreneur and a philanthropist, music remains his first love.  

“Music is still No. 1,” he says.  “Theater Of The Mind should showcase that.”

Biographies »

[24 Sep 2008 | No Comment | ]
From Outkast, T.I. and Jeezy to Ne-Yo, Usher and Ciara, it’s no secret that Atlanta’s burgeoning music scene has spawned some of the world’s most beloved artists. Although many genres of music in the Southeast shine through, the common thread is that these chart-toppers are changing the face of popular music for today and the future.
As a direct influence of trailblazers before him, trend-setting Atlanta native Myko (pronounced Mee-ko) is on his way to becoming a unique new Urban Pop star. The young singer/songwriter has always aspired to bring his electric soulfulness to the world, and found ways to partner with key promoters in Atlanta to build his buzz.
In 2007, the hard work paid off when Thomas Jones of the New York Jets enlisted Myko as the flagship artist on his budding Outta Pocket Entertainment. Myko’s new single “Late Nite Creep” produced by Static Major is steadily growing at radio as the Outta Pocket team prepares to release Myko’s debut album, Options.
In his hometown of Atlanta, Myko has been received well by industry and fans alike. Performing in the midst of Hip Hop artists, Myko often surprises people with his ability to serve R&B with a swagger equal to any rapper on stage. “Most of the showcases in Atlanta are pretty much rap-based,” explains Myko, “so when I come in and start singing, it’s like a shock. People are just sitting there looking at me quietly until the show is over, and later they’re like, ‘Man, I enjoyed that. You’re hot.’ It just works for me.”
Myko’s movement stems from a passion for true soul and R&B, with legends like Al Green, The Chi-Lites, The Stylistics and The DelfonicsOutta Pocket offering him the deepest influences for his early work. Myko began his initial direction with a pure R&B sound, and later, as he was exposed to various forms of music, opened up to create his own brand of Urban Pop fusion. When he partnered with the team, they saw Myko’s potential to be a fan favorite. 
“I feel like going with Outta Pocket was a great move,” says Myko. “With my work ethic, we’re gonna achieve a lot of great things. There are a lot of things in the works in the future. Right now I’m honing my craft as a singer. I’m interested in the acting part of it, doing commercials and all of the stuff that comes with it. There are people I know that have talent that I’d be interested in bringing into the music game, but ‘everything in due time’ is the way I see it. As long as my situation works out, then we can open up doors for somebody else. In the future I see Outta Pocket being a brand, not just in the music game but in film too. The sky’s the limit.”
As things pick up on the business end for Myko, with “Late Nite Creep” garnering heavier spins at radio, the video debut, promo tours and more, he realizes that there has to be a balance for his art. His album is coming together with the combined talents of several people, including the amazing production on “Late Nite Creep” from Static Major, who sadly passed away in February 2008.
“I look at it as an honor to have Static’s work on my album,” expresses Myko. “I was a big fan of Static coming from when he had ‘Cheers 2 U’ with Playa. I got a chance to meet his family and speak to people whose lives he affected. I try to pay homage to the song and situation every time I get a chance to perform it. I understand his work ethic, and I feel my work ethic is pretty similar to his, so when I’m on stage I try to make sure I’m giving it my all, because somebody put a lot into this record. As soon as we called to take the beat, we were in Kentucky within a week recording, and we already knew it would be the single before it was even finished – that’s how much faith we had in this record.”
The rest of Myko’s debut album, Options, is rounding out production with the likes of Atlanta’s B-Rock on the track “Spend This Bread” featuring Rick Ross; Virginia producer Bink (known for his work with Jay-Z, Freeway, Amerie and most recently Rick Ross “Shinin” from the Trilla LP) on several songs including “Heaven” and “My Baby’s Got It;” Grammy Award winner Khao (T.I. “Why You Wanna”) and Toxic. Songwriter Jason Desrouleaux, who worked recently with Bad Boy artist Donnie Klang, Lil Wayne and Bettie Wright, has been working alongside Myko to optimize the essence of his vibe.
“With this album, I want people to know that a lot of hard work has been put in to get here, and I believe they’ll feel it through the passion in the sound," explains Myko. "My whole goal is for everyone to understand that we are trying to bring good music with a futuristic feel. I listen to a lot of different kinds of music. I want to bring love for the old style that I grew up on, and the new feel that I’m so into now. Right now I’m excited about the album, and anxious to see what people think about it.”

Biographies »

[11 Sep 2008 | No Comment | ]

HTML MessageThe number two is powerful. Not only does it signify Nina Sky's tag teaming force on the R&B plateau, it also signifies the culmination of their sophomore release, "The Musical." Since their global recognition in 2004 with the reggae-infused pop jam, "Move Ya Body," the duo has spent four years challenging their voices and learning more about themselves in life and in business. "Just because we weren't in the spotlight doesn't mean we weren't making moves," Natalie explains. "These last four years were spent traveling, doing shows all over the world, writing and working with other artists. We've really had time to mature into women and master our craft. It shows lyrically and vocally on this album."

While four years have elapsed, "The Musical" aims to keep Nina Sky listeners in tune with the duo's journey since their first album. It takes just one listen to their new album–a savvy mix of R&B songs heavily influenced by hip-hop, classic rock and soul supported by intriguing, ethereal vocals–to understand why Polo Grounds/J Records signed the twin team. Besides arranging vocals, Nicole and Natalie penned each track on the album, at times testing their work of art on eager audiences before it was officially ready.

As Nicole and Natalie ready for a fresh beginning, their musical abilities have never once failed to resonate with audiences. "We aren't only singers; we write all of our music," Natalie reveals. "Nicole plays guitar and deejays. We are very musical and try to show this while on stage. Our vibe isn't like your typical group! Because Nicole deejays, she's able to command the crowd and every once and a while, we'll bring the guitar out on stage to show our versatility." As a teen, Nicole mastered the turntables but relied on her guitar playing skills to support the lyrics she and Natalie wrote. Fast forward years later and the duo's songwriting capabilities are displayed in catchy uptempo songs with hip-hop flair to poignant ballads.

In 2007, Nina Sky officially began working on "The Musical." Noted producers on the album include Krucial Keys , Ryan Leslie, Cipha Sounds, Solitair, Cool & Dre, Salaam Remi, Supa Dups, Neo da Matrix, The Runners, Big Bert & EST and more. "We're so excited about the music we've recorded for this album. We've grown so much in the last few years and experienced love, heartbreak, fun times, sad times, and everything in between. The content on 'The Musical' is really reflective of our personal experiences," says Nicole. "We're giving our fans a glimpse into our lives as Nicole and Natalie. Also, the production on this album is extremely tight. We worked with some of the most talented writers and producers in the industry. The album is a pop, R&B album with a hip-hop base. It's very true to who we are and is finely crafted. We can't wait to release it!"

"The Musical" places Nina Sky on a new path, but their ride to recognition began before its creation in Astoria, Queens, where Puerto Rican twins Nicole and Natalie Albino grew up amongst salsa beats and freestyle anthems. The most prolific musical force the duo recalls came from that of their stepfather–a self-taught DJ who created a home enveloped in the sounds of Miles Davis, Madonna and Journey, among others. " We grew up in a household where music was always played. Our dad deejayed from sunrise to sunset. It's because of him that we learned to appreciate all genres of music and have always been open to experimenting with different sounds and vibes," says Nicole.

Nina Sky's ascent is the result of one prolific figure. MTV VJ, HOT 97 jock and producer DJ Cipha Sounds met the two at 17 and immediately recognized their gift. "When we auditioned for Cipha, we didn't know what to expect. But he embraced our performance and soon after, asked us to hit the studio with him," Natalie reflects. "At our first session he played us the Coolie dance riddim and, within 30 minutes of hearing it and vibing out, we'd written "Move Ya Body," continues Nicole. "We had no idea what would come of it but he kept saying the song was gonna be big. Same way he believed in us, we believed in him, and the song took off!." Cipha, alongside Jack Move Inc. co-owner Jamal Landlord, assisted the duo in signing with Eddie O'Loughlin and Next Plateau Entertainment/Universal Records. "Move Ya Body," off their self-titled first release, made Nina Sky a household name in 2004.

The "Nina Sky" album hit the industry with a brand of R&B that was unprecedented, coming from two Puerto Rican twin sisters from Queens. That same year, rapper N.O.R.E. called on Nina Sky for vocal assistance on "Oye Mi Canto," featuring Daddy Yankee, which became the first reggaeton record to hit mainstream radio and showcased the ladies bilingual talents. The duo was featured on The Alchemist's ode, "Hold You Down," featuring Prodigy of Mobb Deep and Illa Ghee, and on renowned DJ Tony Touch on "(Hey DJ) Play That Song." They also released two independent mixtapes, "Nina Sky The Mixtape" and the Latin-influenced "La Conexion", which produced the anthem, "Ladies Night," featuring Ivy Queen and Pitbull. Last year, Nicole and Natalie were featured DJ Envy & Brooklyn emcee Red Café's "Things You Do," yet again with The Alchemist on "Key To The City" and Talib Kweli's "Hostile Gospel" alongside Joell Ortiz and Blu.

At 22, Nina Sky give credit to Jack Move Inc. and Polo Grounds Music President Bryan Leach for musically supporting them through tumultuous times with their former record label. "When we were signed to Universal [Records], we always felt disconnected. They didn't understand us as a group and didn't give us the proper attention a label should give any artist they are trying to propel to success," Natalie admits. "After our last situation ended, we knew it was important to sign with someone who believed in us, our movement, and our music. From the beginning, Bryan Leach got it. It was as if he was a part of our team even prior to signing to his label!."

Now, with The Musical (executive produced by Nina Sky, Jack Move Inc., and Bryan Leach) complete, Nina Sky welcomes tastemakers and fans to rejoice in their return. Their new single, "Curtain Call featuring Rick Ross," and new label, Polo Grounds Music/J Records, is as close to a musical rebirth as the duo can get. An elaborate work of art, "The Musical" showcases the growth and versatility that is Nina Sky.


HTML MessageNina Sky – "Curtain Call" (feat. Rick Ross)

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Biographies »

[18 Jul 2008 | No Comment | ]

King Solomon and Giggles emerged in 2007 with the smash web hit "Camouflage Back Massage", which generated over 500,000 views on YouTube, and features on other prominent video sites such as Veoh, Myspace, Collegehumor, The Daily Reel, DotComedy and a homepage feature on NBC.com. After capturing interests from fans from around the globe, they're now back with a follow-up release "Take Your Pants Off (Don't Touch My Balls)" – a track about going to the doctor's office to get checked for hernia.
Influenced in the style of early 80's Prince, Michael Jackson and Rick James, King Solomon teamed up with his production sidekicks Rakeman and DJ Man-E to produce an intricate, slick Hip Hop dance track with a retro feel for "Take Your Pants Off."
"Once you hear it, you'll feel it in your balls…even if you're a woman" says King Solomon. "Ok, maybe that's physically impossible. Fine. But it'll definitely make your uterus explode."
Growing up in Philly, the King Solomon and Giggles were surrounded by the neo-soul Hip Hop scene, which was heavily popular in the city at the time. "I wanted to do something different," says King Solomon. He describes his rapping style as "a totally awesome sound that makes the ladies go wild."
Although they deliver a new-school sound, their music is a blend of comedy and Hip Hop, reminiscent of old-school rap rooted in comedy ala Digital Underground's classic "The Humpty Dance," The Fat Boys, Biz Markie and others.
Titles like "Camouflage Back Massage," "Girls With Diseases" and "Buttcheeks & Titties" define the tone of the duo's music. "Some people tell us that nobody will take our music seriously because we're doing comedy," explains Solomon. "But think about how Hip Hop reached the masses… songs like The Fresh Prince's 'Parents Just Don't Understand' helped get the ears of the surburban kids, and ultimately caused Hip Hop to blow up. Back then, nobody said ‘that's not music!' Hip Hop has become so serious over the past decade that people forget that it was often rooted in comedy."
Combining hot beats meshed with carefully constructed rhymes and lyrical delivery, King Solomon and Giggles aim to prove that good Hip Hop can still make you laugh. "We make comedy and Hip Hop go together like pudding and Bill Cosby."