By Morgan Schwartz and Matt Goodhue
If you’re not a pop person and found our first five songs of the summer to be a little, well, not your taste, don’t sweat it. We compiled our favorite rap/hip-hop jams for the summer to give you a taste of what we’re listening to. Whether the songs speak of summer romances or partying the night away, they are sure to set the mood for the best season of the year.
1. “Super Bass,” Nicki Minaj
If we’ve learned anything from Ms. Minaj, it would be that girls can do rap and hip-hop just as well, if not better, than any man. In this new single, Nicki does what she does best and raps over an awesome beat before breaking into a catchy chorus that gives those of us not quick enough to spit along with her a chance to sing with this summer jam. The music video’s neon colors and sexy outfits are enough to put it at the top of our playlist, and the sex appeal combined with Nicki’s lyrics may just get us ready for our own summer romance!
2. “Out of My Head,” Lupe Fiasco ft. Trey Songz
This has definitely been a great year for Lupe and it’s about to be an even better summer. Although this song of isn’t one of the singles off his new album, Lasers, his performance of this jam at the 2011 MTV Movie Awards got our attention. Like “Super Bass,” “Out of My Head” talks about a possible crush and is perfect for your blossoming summer love. Trey Songz’s hook – “girl I want you to know/I can’t get you out of my head, my head” – makes us think this song could be the soundtrack to your summer romance? You’ll have to download it to find out…
By Allen Spector
NEW YORK — Here's a concert lineup you don't see often: Sheryl Crow with special guests Lupe Fiasco and Hawaiian ukulele player Paula Fuga. But that was the bill at Terminal 5 for Tuesday night's Joyful Revolution, a benefit for the Joyful Heart Foundation, an organization to help victims of domestic violence founded by "Law & Order: SVU" star Mariska Hargitay.
The usually bare-bones concert venue was transformed into a fancy catering hall, and instead of hipster T-shirts and sneakers, this time the crowd was clad in "joyful" attire, as in cocktail dresses and suits. The evening honored "L&O" creator Dick Wolf, and the entire cast of "SVU" was there to support their boss, including Ice-T, Stephanie March and Chris Meloni. "Dick Wolf is the man. We all work for him," Ice-T told us.
While everyone was posing for pictures and mingling during the cocktail party, I went up to Lupe Fiasco and asked him if he'd do a back-flip onstage, like I saw him do at Lollapalooza last year. He said he would try, but with all the amps and mics, he never got the chance. Read More...
By Kathleen Newman-Bremang
Justin Timberlake better watch his back when he climbs Mount Kilimanjaro with fellow musicians Lupe Fiasco and Kenna. If Timberlake doesn't make it back down the massive mountain, we'll know who to blame. Fiasco jokingly warned the New York Daily News that [If things go bad out there], everybody's dying!
"I'll go psychopath, freak out and murder everyone for the sake of none of us suffering!" he said. "It would be like the ending of a Stephen King movie by the time the rescue helicopter comes."
Calm down JT fans, Fiasco hasn't gone completely insane. The rapper promised that he only has Timberlake's best interests in mind.
"I wouldn't euthanize Justin unless he was really suffering," he laughed.
By Steven Roberts
Lupe Fiasco is really upset. He's not quite typing-in-all-caps upset, but he is putting three exclamation points at the end of his sentences on his blog. He is so upset that he decided to postpone the release of his third — and reportedly final — album, LUPE.N.D, indefinitely.
By Jordan Upmalis
Lupe Fiasco had plenty to talk about this week on the set of the video shoot for the remix of N.E.R.D.'s "Everyone Nose" — except on the topic of what he was actually there for.
"What are you talking about?" he asked quite seriously, while standing outside of the studio. "What remix? Remix to what? 'Everyone Nose,' that's the N.E.R.D. record. ... It's a remix? Who's on it?"
It's OK. Lupe has a lot on his plate. Fresh from playing shows in London, he's spent much of the year on the road with Kanye's Glow in the Dark Tour (which he described as real good). "I was kickin' it with N.E.R.D., Rihanna, Chris Brown and Kanye. It was love."
He also recently received a gold plaque for his second album, The Cool. But Fiasco isn't just a one-trick pony. He had much to discuss about expanding his empire — musically and otherwise.
So what's on Lupe's agenda?
Down in Panama City Beach, Florida, mtvU is having its 4th annual Spring Break. Artists like Kid Sister, Lupe Fiasco, Panic at the Disco, Paramore and Flo Rida are all making the trip down here over the next two weeks to perform and partake in the parties. Tuesday night, both Lupe Fiasco and Flo Rida were stuck in Atlanta due to mechanical problems with their airplane. With both scheduled to perform Wednesday, there was panic in the production room.
Luckily, some flights opened up Wednesday morning, and thousands of college students gathered around the stage on the beach at 1 p.m. to hear the first performance: Lupe Fiasco featuring Matthew Santos. Telling the crowd, "This is what a Grammy sounds like," Lupe performed five of his tracks, bringing Santos out for most of them. Afterwards, Lupe and I talked onstage about his new album, The Cool, and how much he likes playing with a full band.
Later on, I was able to catch up with him backstage. While he didn't want to "talk politics," we did talk about his music. I noticed that, between songs, Lupe talked about how sometimes his label asks him to "dumb it down" and stop using so many big words in his lyrics. If you listen to The Cool, you'll find that not only do its tracks have a rich vocabulary, but they also cover a wide range of issues. Lupe told me that "the point" is to make an album that has the music to appeal to a mainstream audience, while at the same time "sneaking" powerful messages into the lyrics. We also talked about his book and Kanye West's "Glow in the Dark" tour, featuring Rihanna, N.E.R.D. and, of course, Lupe himself. Read More...
Walking out of the Hard Rock hotel for the first time in Chicago, and who do I bump into but the Mayor of Chicago himself, Lupe Fiasco.