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RAPstation: Hip Hop in Your Pocket

Get RAPstation in your life.

RAPstation is a free iPhone app that’s pretty much the dopest hip hop radio station out there. It’s the app for rapstation.com, which Chuck D (of Public Enemy fame) foundeed in 1999. If you like dope hip hop, you gotta be hip to RAPstation. I mean, Chuck D was smart enough to launch this shit 16 years ago, so there’s no excuse at this point for you to not be on this.


The site

Chuck D

Photo: ambrosiaforheads.com

Chuck D knew how big the internet would be for hip hop (before many other people did), so he wanted to make sure there would always be a place by hip hop artists for hip hop artists and listeners. Anyways, in case you couldn’t guess, the most important part of RAPstation is its hip hop radio station. They got a dope line-up which only plays the dope shit, so you’re not allowed to complain about how shitty rap on the radio is anymore, because at least one radio station has got your back now.

That’s not all though, the site’s also got hip hop news (written and on the air for a minute every hour), RAPstation TV and if the radio station is your thing you can sign up to be a DJ on it. They even got charts, and it’s not so much a radio station as it is a rap ecosystem. Leave it up to Chuck D to make sure there’s a dope spot for hip hop artists and fans on the web.

The app

RAPstationAnyways, the site obviously came before the app, but we live in the future now so you can easily have RAPstation on the go. Once you get the app (for free, and it doesn’t even have any bullshit in-app purchases of anything), you can choose to stream the normal RAPstation stream, or choose from some artist radio stations, including of course Public Enemy (my personal favorite.) Between the RAPstation app, the Datpiff app and whatever you got from iTunes, all your hip hop needs can easily be on your phone at all times.

The site doesn’t just have stations though, and it tries to be a more faithful little brother to the site. They also got charts, but the dopest part is “This Day In Hip Hop & Rap History” (in the Extras), which is pretty much like one of those daily calendars but for hip hop facts. This would already be dope, but paired with the fact that you can also stream dope rap for free makes this app a must-have for any hip hop fan.


Trust Chuck D.

Listen. Chuck D is one of the best rappers of all time, and one of the most important folks in the movement in general, and he has been for almost 30 years. If you’re gonna put your trust in dope hip hop anywhere, put it in the mastermind behind Public Enemy. Download the free RAPstation app for your iPhone and live large.

RAPstation - BTN East


Spit Talking

Download Free Hip Hop Music and Enjoy

So you wanna fill out your music library.

But you also don’t wanna spend too much many. Well, if you’re waiting on a paycheck or times are just tough in general, your budget might be nothing. Today, I’m writing for y’all, and I’ma tell you how to download some free hip hop music (with an added bonus of staying on the right side of the law.)


Mixtapes

DatpiffNow I’m not gonna tell you how to illegally download rap albums, cause that’s wack to the rapper and makes hip hop in general shitty (see more here). Luckily though, unlike most other genres, mad dope rappers release full projects as free mixtapes all the time. So if you wanna fill up your music collection while spending exactly $0, you can definitely do that shit. The best mixtapes are just straight up albums, because nowadays a lot of rappers release free shit because they know people will just download it illegally anyways. So now you can not only get mad dope projects, but you can try them out without spending a dime.

The standard

The number one place to download hip hop for free is Datpiff. Not only do they have the best collection of mixtapes, from the newest hottest shit to some underground joints (not to mention all the remixes), but they also just got a dope site. It’s mad clean and it’s easy to find what you’re looking for, like reviews and number of downloads/plays. They also certify mixtapes as Silver, Gold, etc based on the downloads, so it’s also like billboard at the same time for mixtapes. I’d say almost half of the shit I’ve listened to in the last 3 years has been from Datpiff.

The app

Datpiff appNow a lot of folks know about Datpiff (and you probably already did too), but not as many heads know about the app. I was always disappointed a few years back when you couldn’t download and listen to mixtapes on the app, but the glory days of hip hop have come. Now, even if you don’t have a computer, you can still enjoy all the hip hop you need. If you wanna get started somewhere, try Cyhi the Prince’s new shit, I hear it’s fire. And hey, it’s free, so what do you got to lose? After that, scope Vic Mensa’s INNANETAPE from 2013 and see why Kanye threw him on his new track.

Download it from the app store: DatPiff - Idle Media Inc


Go listen to some free hip hop yo!

Now that I’ve told you about the magic of Datpiff, both on your phone and on your computer, what are you waiting for? Mad dop mixtapes are out there waiting for you to listen to them, and in a few years you could recognize all the new cats from their old mixtapes. Chance the Rapper created more buzz than anyone with Acid Rap in 2013, and Datpiff was right in the middle of it all.


Spit Talking

Scope this Site: #kweliclub

You a fan of Talib Kweli?

Talib Kweli

Photo: hotnewhiphop.com

Of course you are. He’s one of the best rappers of all time, and as known/beloved for his solo work as he is for his work with Mos Def (Black Star.) He’s a classic rapper who’s still grinding hard and changing the game. Anyways, if you like Talib, you gotta scope #kweliclub.


Don’t sleep on his recent shit

Generally, folks think of Talib as just a legend from the ’90s (and early 2000s.) While his old shit was mad dope and what made him big, he’s put out some of the dopest albums of the last few years too. For example, I bet you don’t know that he put out 2 albums in 2013 alone, Prisoner of Conscious and Gravitas.

Prisoner of Conscious

Talib Kweli - Prisoner of ConsciousPrisoner of Conscious came out in May 2013, and was Talib’s last album under a major label. It’s a generally smooth album that goes a little harder in a few spots but is mad enjoyable all the way through. It has a lot of features, with Kweli bringing both older and newer guys in on his shine, including Nelly, Kendrick, Miguel and Busta Rhymes, and RZA and J Cole (amongst others) on the production. This album’s a good listen for a lot of moods, and you should buy it if you like any of Talib’s shit.

Prisoner of Conscious - Talib Kweli

Gravitas

Talib Kweli - GravitasReleased in December 2013, Gravitas was a little different, mainly because it was his first off a major label. It also has a dope feature line-up, including Big K.R.I.T., Raekwon, The Underachievers and Black Thought. For this release, Talib started #kweliclub so he could sell the album and keep more profits that the major label didn’t get this time. Hit up the site, and pick up the album or some dope merch. Gravitas starts with a powerful message about distribution models, and it bumps all the way through. If you got any dumb ass friends who run their mouth about the Illuminati, just show them The Wormhole and they’ll shut up.


#kweliclub

#kweliclub is kind of just a fan site for Talib, but it was also the only place to get Gravitas right when it released. With #kweliclub, Talib’s basically selling the music himself, so even if he sells less he still gets a lot more of the profits. So if you buy something from there, you’re putting more money in the rapper’s hand than you usually do. Also, you’ll get a personal email to Talib only for members of #kweliclub, so that’s pretty dope.

#kweliclub catalog

Also, members get emails telling them about upcoming music being released either by Talib or one of the other dope artists he’s putting on. Members also get exclusive videos sent to them and sometimes even free downloads of singles from upcoming albums. If you’re gonna buy an album anyways, you might as well do it where you give the artist more money and get a personal connection to Talib himself.


Anyways, just remember Talib’s still killing it.

One of the best rappers from one of hip hop’s golden ages, Talib’s still going hard, putting out dope albums and putting on other dope artists. He even started a legal defense fund for Ferguson protestors and went down there himself during the protests. Dude backs up what he says, and I respect the shit out of that.


Spit Talking

Hip Hop & Twitter: A Love Story

If you love hip hop, you gotta be on twitter.

Twitter is one of the best things to happen to the internet, and especially one of the best things to happen to (both dope and struggle) rappers. If you don’t have a twitter yet, go get one so you can know what’s going on, even if you never wanna tweet. Once you have one, let me tell you who to follow (and who to avoid.) Most obvious, lemme just get them out of the way, are Desus (@desusnice) and Mero (@THEKIDMERO), and just scope here if you don’t know why that’s obvious.

Desus Twitter AviMero Twitter Avi

 

 

 

 


Rappers you should follow:

Follow these dudes because they’re actually entertaining and real on twitter. They don’t necessary constantly tweet out jokes or anything, but they don’t only use twitter for self-promotion either (which is the most annoying thing someone can do on twitter.) They also clearly run their own accounts so you can actually tweet at them and maybe get a response (and Lil B will probably follow you back anyways.) These dudes are well known but they still tweet funny shit, and it’s sad when once-great tweeters go boring (probably working on their music like nerds or something) so shouts to Chance the Rapper and Tyler the Creator for that (no disrespect though.) Also honorable mention goes to Chuck D (@MrChuckD) for his informative and unique presence on twitter, repping the old heads.


Hip Hop artists (non-rappers) you should follow:

Questlove Twitter AviEven though they aren’t rappers, you gotta be following this drummer, producer and group on twitter, respectively. If you want instant reactions to hip hop news from people who know rappers and producers, follow these dudes (kind of for the same reason as following the rappers.) Wu-Tang is also constantly posting mad dope pictures, and you don’t wanna miss any of those. Also, Questlove’s avi implies Obama endorses him, and Obama knows twitter.


Rap news sources you should follow:

Hey, I had to throw Spit Talking a little shine right? Anyways, if you’re not looking for rapper’s or artist’s thoughts but actually looking for hip hop news and rap analysis, follow these twitters. If you do that (and if you join Spit Talking’s newsletter) you’ll never miss a development in the hip hop world. If you’re not trynna jack up your follower count though (respect the ratio), you could really just follow Spit Talking cause we only post and retweet the best of the best. Just saying.


Other rap twitters you should follow:

Ed Piskor Twitter AviEd Piskor is the mad dope man behind Hip Hop Family Tree. Hip Hop Golden Age is just a cool feed that tweets out dope pictures of rappers (also shouts to Rare Hip Hop Pics – @RareHipHopPic for their constant stream of old and rare pictures), but they also got dope hoodies and stuff (including one I’ve bought.) Trash Lyrics is exactly what it sounds like, and it’s one of the funniest twitters out there.


These are the best hip hop twitters out there.

Which one’s your favorite of these? Am I missing any gems out there? I’m always looking for ways to make my twitter feed any better, so hit me with whatever you got. Also, for rap twitters NOT to follow, avoid Iggy Azalea (AKA Igloo Australia) and Macklemore because they’re straight trash, no explanation necessary.


Spit Talking

#KnowledgeDarts: Desus vs Mero

If you ain’t watching Desus vs Mero, you should be.

The best show on TV ain’t even on TV. It’s on Complex. Scope because you gotta hear both sides.

Desus vs Mero

Photo: vulture.com


 UPDATE: Desus vs Mero is done (?), scope here for more info.


Lemme tell you what it’s about

So pretty much dudes just sit in front of a green screen and talk cash shit about what’s been going on in hip hop, sports and other stuff. They got the best set for a show I’ve ever seen. In front of them is literally just some stacked milk crates with some cardboard on top of them, and then a bunch of kool aid barrels on top. In other words, these ain’t some bullshit rich folks trynna talk to you about hip hop from the set of the View.

Desus vs Mero

Photo: missinfo.tv

 Shit they love

Dudes love the Knicks more than anything in the world. Even though the Knicks ain’t been winning too much this season, they will never switch to the Nets. Their favorite players were J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert (who even came on the show) though so that trade to the Cavs left them down. They love hip hop, but it’s hard to tell because when they talk about rappers they’re pretty much exclusively talking shit.

Shit they hate

How much time you got? They hate Iggy Azalea and Mackelmore (codenames: trash and garbage) just like everyone should. They hate washed rappers whose hairlines are higher than their career trajectories. They also of course hate dumb ass Yacubians. This includes politicans and celebrities and just those doing dumb shit on youtube.

Desus vs Mero

Photo: goodfellamedia.com

Why should you watch?

It doesn’t even feel like you’re watching a show, it feels more like you’re kicking it with some funny ass dudes. They’re mad quick and got mad jokes, and they’re talking about all the dumb shit you talk about with your boys. Complex obviously lets them do whatever they want, and since it clearly costs mad little money to make each episode, they don’t have to constantly listen to suits about what direction the show should go.

Don’t forget the podcast

So the video is like a time-edited version of the podcast. Videos are usually about 20 minutes and the podcast’s more like a hour. So once you get hooked on this shit you’ll probably wanna start listening to the Desus vs Mero podcast. It’s by far my favorite shit to listen to on the plane.


So get over to Complex and start watching Desus vs Mero.

Scope it here. Otherwise you’re just watching some dumb shit. At least listen to the podcast if you don’t wanna sit down and watch it.

Also scope Desus (@desusnice) and Mero (@thekidmero) on twitter.


Spit Talking

Buy Hip Hop/ Rap Beats

Looking for some backing to your rhymes? Trying to find instrumentals for a project?

I know the best place where you can buy hip hop/ rap beats for whatever you need. Prime Loops is the spot you’re looking for. It’s great looking and it won’t break the bank.

Prime Loops


Head to Prime Loops to buy dope beats for your tracks or your film projects or whatever you want.

I love writing rap, but I can’t do it without a beat. So usually, I just whip up a quick simple beat on Garageband or something and then write to that. Sure, you might just write to an instrumental of some song you like, but it’s always hard blocking out the lyrics that have already been written to that beat, and it’s a bit distracting.

Why not just write without a beat?

I’ve definitely tried this before too, and it seems to work fine while you’re doing it. When you try to recite that over a beat later though, most of the time it turns out that you were writing to a few different tempos, and you realize how hard it is to just imagine a single beat and stick with it. Sure, you can write great spoken word without a beat (obviously), but it’s almost impossible to write to an imagined, consistent beat, especially if you’re writing in a few sittings.

Why do I have to pay for beats?

Well, assuming your rhymes are fire, you probably wanna do something with your music. I mean, sure, if you write to someone else’s beat, you can just record over that bea and throw it up on soundcloud. If you wanna make any money off your music though, you need to own the beat you’re rapping over. So if you’re a serious rapper and don’t wanna make your own beats, you should really buy some.

This also goes for people who want to put music in their movies or whatever. If you want to make any money off your movies, you need to own all the music you’re putting in there (if you don’t wanna pay royalties.) So if you’ve spent so much time working on a project or track of yours, and you want to rightfully get paid from your work, you should really consider buying some beats to have full ownership and rights to 100% of your work.

Why Prime Loops?

There are plenty of sites like this out there, but Prime Loops is by far the best. It’s incredibly professional looking, and doesn’t look like it’s run by a kid. You can get good deals on bundles and it’s easy to find whatever you want.


So, whether you need something to rap over or want some instrumental music for your movie project, buy some beats.

Prime Loops


Spit Talking

Free Hip Hop Music: Mixtapes at Datpiff

This is a Public Service Announcement.

If you’ve ever wondered what the best free hip hop music website is, you should know by now. There’s no question that it’s Datpiff. Datpiff is easily the place for mixtapes, both official releases from big rappers and remixes by lesser-known folks.

Datpiff


You can build a whole music collection without spending a dime

From Chance the Rapper to Big K.R.I.T. to Game, you can get full album-length mixtapes from established and upcoming rappers totally free and legally. People ask me all the time about where to find good hip hop, and I always point them to Datpiff. You can listen to anything there for free, so there’s no reason not to give some new stuff a try.

Mixtapes have always been big in hip hop, but the internet has helped them get recognition

Mixtapes have been a crucial component in hip hop for years. With the internet, they’ve seen a surge of popularity, considering anyone can make a mixtape and release it to an audience of millions online. Some, like Chance the Rapper, are actually choosing to release their music as completely free mixtapes (mainly on Datpiff) to increase their fanbase, and then get paid on tours, merchandise and feature royalties. There are multiple ways to do this even, with soundcloud and bandcamp being good alternatives (or additions) to Datpiff.

It’s a great time to be a hip hop fan right now, and a big part of that is because a lot of big releases right now are free mixtapes. Considering streaming services like spotify and rhapsody give listeners a great deal while not paying artists too well, along with the fact that many people illegally download all their music for free, it makes sense for rappers to just straight release their music for free as mixtapes and rely on tours more for money. I mean, you can download the video of a concert, but you can’t actually download a show.

Get free music, guilt-free

So f you want to listen to free hip hop music, head over to Datpiff and sign up (it takes a quick second and they don’t need a credit card or anything.) I’m telling you, when a rapper is done with their mixtape, the first thing they do is go give it to Datpiff to put up. Some of these get 100,000 downloads in no time flat, they’re practically full album releases.

Datpiff – Free mixtapes


Let me know which dope mixtape you picked up!


Spit Talking

Listen to Mad Hip Hop with Amazon Prime Music

If you sign up for a 30-day free trial of Amazon Prime Music, you can:

 

  • Listen to the dopest hip hop for free

 

  • Watch movies & watch TV online for free, now!

 

  • Get free 2-day shipping at Amazon

 

Join Amazon Prime - Listen to Over a Million Songs - Start Free Trial Now


Want unlimited entertainment for the next 30 days? Want free 2-day shipping for 30 days? Willing to part with $0?

Then sign up for a 30-day free trial with Amazon Prime Music. Don’t let the name fool you, you also get unlimited movies and TV shows, along with 2-day shipping. That’s free 2 day shipping on most things at Amazon, which is basically most things in the world someone could possibly want to buy. Not to mention it’s Amazon, so you know it’s not some sketchy garbage that’s gonna spam your inbox all day. So just head on over, spend exactly $0 days and enjoy the next 30 days!


I’m serious, they got all the dopest hip hop

From Snoop Dogg to Lauryn Hilll to J. Cole to Gorillaz, they got everything you could be looking for. If you want to dip your toes into streaming some music, this is a great place to start. You get 30 days of this totally free. This way, you can scope out all the music we talk about here at Spit Talking before deciding whether or not you want to buy the album.

It’s not just music, you can stream movies & TV

Then you can watch all the dopest movies with rappers and all the shows you like (including the ones with hip hop theme songs.) Come on, how much time are you gonna spend these holidays just kicking it on the couch, wondering what to do. Why not watch a ton of movies and shows for free when you’re on your break from listening to dope hip hop for free?

Not to mention you get free 2-day shipping

If you sign up for the 30-day free trial, you also get Amazon Prime shipping, which means any qualifying item (most of them) that you buy from Amazon you’ll get shipped to you in 2 days. That means if you sign up for this (again, 30 days for free), you can do your holiday shopping and get all the presents you buy shipped to you in 2 days! That means they’ll come just in time for the holidays. If you need to buy something online but don’t wanna mess with sketchy sites with iffy shipping, sign up for this trial without having to pay a dime.

Join Amazon Prime - Listen to Over a Million Songs - Start Free Trial Now


Spit Talking