Hip Hop in it's Purest Form…

Author Archive

Check Me Out Tonight at The Berkeley Cafe in Raleigh, NC

Yoooooooo, if you are in the Raleigh area, you better be ready to party and enjoy this Holidaze… It’s gonna be crazy tho. The lineup is insane, it’s only $5, & we are all going to be throwing down. So if you are with it, show your face…

Poe Mack – Back At It (Music Video)

Shouts to the homie Poe, Van Gundy & Kris with Oktobervision for putting together this dope video. “Back At It” appears on Move Mountains, Poe’s critically acclaimed mixtape that was presented by kevinnottingham.com. So if you do’t have that, make sure you download it. Until then, check out the new video, leave a comment, spread the word, ENJOY….

I am opening up for Big K.R.I.T. & Freddie Gibbs at the Soapbox in Wilmington, NC TONIGHT!

If you have hung out with me for more than an extended period  of time in the last year, ans we began discussing the “new” school of up & coming hip hop artists, two names easily came to mind. Big K.R.I.T., the Def Jam signee from Mississippi whose mixtape, KRIT Wuz Here, was the best project I heard released last year, and Freddie Gibbs, the gangsta ass muhfucka from Gary, Indiana, who recently signed to Young Jeezy’s CTE. Both of these artist possess the grit and lyricism that I crave when looking for new artists. So when I heard they were touring together, I made it a point to make sure I could be in attendance. It wasn’t until recently that I was blessed with the opportunity to actually open up for them. So thank you to Louis T & County Lines Clothing, and the Soapbox for making it happen. Pick up tickets here. Promote it on facebook here. THANKS.

Focus… feat. Sha Stimuli – I Know… (Free Download)

Large ups to Focus & Sha Stimuli for teaming up and yet another dope ass track. This joint features Focus on the mic and beat, and Sha doing his usual dirty work that he is known for. Get ready for The Misinterpreted, which will be out on  May 3rd. But until then, download this joint for FREE here…

Jozeemo – True Identity (Promo Video)

Joe Murdock aka Jozeemo sent me the link to this promo video for the intro to his upcoming album, True Identity. This joint is pure fire, so it’s a guarantee that the album will be full of more of the same. Until then, check for his mixtape, The Good Die Young, The Great Don’t, which I did the artwork for. That should be dropping soon…

Zo! & Phonte – Return Of The Mack f. Tigallo the Tay God (Free Download)

If you are a fan of Phonte’s music, then you are sure to know about the project he did with Zo!: Zo! & Tiggalo Love the 80’s. I guess his recent collaboration with Lil’ B has brought out the Tay God in the NC legend. This joint is smooth and hilarious, all at the same time. If you are smart, this is a must have for your collection. Make sure you download it here for FREE

K-Hill – The Declaration of an Independent (Video)

Shouts to the homie, K, & Depth of Sound for putting together a dope visual to go along with this banger of a track. I did the cover art to the single last month or so, & now the video is set to blast this joint off even further. Make sure you check it out, and be on the lookout for Motivational Speaker, due out soon…

Malice – “Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind & Naked” – Book Review by Trick

So for once, Trick was really influenced by this latest book that he read for the site. Being such a self-proclaimed “literary genius,” I think that he doesn’t feel challenged when he approaches these books. However, Malice’s book had a little different effect on him. Check out his review below(he even throws a jab at us! Haha):

I had no idea what Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind & Naked was about, but I was definitely excited to see what fellow 757 representative Gene Thornton Jr. (aka Malice from The Clipse) had to say.  When I got the book and saw that it was basically his testament to the role that religion has played/is playing in his life, I was a little less excited; not that I’m anti-religion or anything, just didn’t really want to be preached to for 170 some pages.  But once I started reading it my opinion changed.

Wretched is one of the most honest books I’ve ever read.  It’s written in a very conversational tone – lots of “Now, ….” to start sentences, etc.  It reads like Malice was talking to a friend, telling his story, and somebody just transcribed everything he said.  Unlike most books written by celebrities, you can tell that he wrote it all himself and the editors didn’t really change much at all, which is a nice change. As I said, the book basically details how faith brought him out of some of the darkest periods in his life.  Malice’s descriptions of some of those times are what really made this worth reading for me.  I can’t think of too many rappers who would be willing to admit to, much less publish a book about, their financial problems, AIDS scares, fallouts with friends, family, and colleagues in the music business, and insecurities in general – it all comes across as being completely genuine and heartfelt.  And I definitely can’t think of too many who would admit that they were too weak to get through all of that themselves and had to give themselves up to a higher power to come through it.  Much props to Malice for having the courage to say what he feels.

On the real, this book changed my life.  Or at least how I feel about it.  Can’t say that I’ve started living more righteous or going to church, but Wretched at least made me feel like maybe I should.  And if you’re on here reading Big Hop’s blog, you should definitely read the book, ‘cause you obviously need Jesus.

Rating: 4 ½ out of 5

1 out of 5 notepads – stick to your day job “writer”
2 out of 5 notepads – if somebody gives it to you and your bored, read it
3 out of 5 notepads – if somebody gives it to you, read it even if you’re not bored
4 out of 5 notepads – worth a read, pick it up if you see it
5 out of 5 notepads – go to Barnes & Noble today, stuff this under your coat & walk out

So there you have it. For the first time since he was a choirboy, Trick was honestly touched by something. Do the obviously good thing, and support Malice by purchasing this book online. You can get it here.
& tune in next month as Trick gets busy with his newest book review…


Heavy Rotation – Takers (Free Mixtape)

Shoutout to the homie, Heavy Rotation, for hitting me up about getting some of my joints featured on his new mixtape, Takers. This joint is stacked with some of NC’s hardest grinders. Artists such as Ty Nitty, E. Smith, Shelly B, & Jag are all featured on Takers, so I was honored to be included. If you are looking for some bangers to get your day started right, or even if you need some laid back, lyrical joints, this mixtape has something for everyone. Get it in and make sure you download this joint for FREE here…


Rapper Big Pooh – RapperPooh-A-Lude feat. Kendrick Lamar & Ab-Soul (Free Download)

Major shoutouts to the homie, Big Pooh, for commissioning me to create all the artwork for his newest release, Fat Boy Fresh Vol. 1. Peaking at # 11 on the iTunes Hip Hop charts, this album is full of top notch producers and guest appearances. After releasing a few singles as teasers, the latest to be let go for free is the RapperPooh-A-Lude which features LA rising stars, Kendrick Lamar & Ab-Soul, and is produced by one of the best out to do it, Focus…

So make sure you download this RapperPooh-A-Lude for FREE here, and then do the right thing for once, and go buy Fat Boy Fresh Vol. 1 off iTunes here

I am performing tonight in Greenville, NC

Shoutout to GreenStar Clothing for putting together this event tonight at the Tank in Greenville. This is my first time performing in the 252 since a couple gigs last fall, and I am eager to get back to Pirate Country. G-Vegas always looked out for me in the past, so I am set to tear the roof off that biotch tonight. As normal for my shows down there, I am sharing the stage with H2OKZ & DJ Brillowhead. Also, Lamont Coal will be blessing everyone with his creativeness, performing beats and sequencing live, while bringing out NCHipHop monsters, K-Hill & J Capri. So make sure you come out and support a dope show with a dope lineup. It’s Greenville, so there will be insane drink specials and lots of women. Catch me on stage around midnight. See you there…

Big K.R.I.T. – Return of 4Eva (Free Mixtape)

Last summer, I came across a gem of a mixtape when I downloaded Big K.R.I.T.’s KRIT Wuz Here. Still to this day, I bump it regularly, as I consistently refer to it as my favorite release of 2010. So when KRIT signed to Def Jam, I was hesitant at first. See, KRIT Wuz Here was fueled by an independent ferocity that I feel often gets stripped when an artist signs a major lable deal. With Return of 4Eva, I can hear a more polished thought out sound, and the lyrics are equally as potent for the most part. However, I feel the production cruises through a more laid back vibe on this mixtape. Regardless, this joint is doing crazy numbers on the download side, and is growing on me more & more with every listen. So if you have heard KRIT before or not, make sure you download this joint for FREE here, and get ready for his major label release which I am sure will be out later this year sometime…

Chapel Hill Footage

Shoutouts to A Robb of Eargasm Entertainment for filming parts of my set a couple weeks ago in Chapel Hill. The show was stacked with some of NC’s finest artists, and everyone threw down. Above is a video of me performing “Ante Up,’ with the help of  Tuscon & Don DiGiorgio.

Above is me starting off the show with one of my favorite joints, “Money In The Flesh.”


– Thanks again to everyone who came out that night. It was good seeing a lot of my NCHipHop family.

Drique London – White + Blue (Free Mixtape)

Shoutout to the homie Drique, and Risky Bizniz Clothing, on the release of his new mixtape, White + Blue. Drique has got a crazy buzz in NC, and this joint further solidifies his spot in the scene. Check out some more info here:

Raleigh, North Carolina native Drique London is back with his latest effort, White & Blue. The mixtape serves as a precursor to his upcoming album, ‘The Manual’, which is slated for a late spring/early summer release. White & Blue offers tracks produced by U’Nique Music, W2, Doc Verbs, and Brian Flores as well as features from Carrington, and SkyBlew.

Download this joint for FREE here…

4th Quarter Biz presents The Back Court (Free Mixtape)

Shoutouts to the homie, CarolinaBlew, for putting me on to this fire. Here is some more info:


So rep NCHipHip &  download this mixtape for FREE here…

Pusha T – Fear of God (Free Mixtape)

When Kanye signed Pusha T to GOOD Music last year, I had mixed emotions. I felt like it was a slap in the face to Malice, the other half of VA duo, the Clipse. But once you think about it, and check the trajectory path of their careers, it was obvious that it was bound to happen. As Malice seemed to be growing more & more spiritual, and devoted to his book and other things, Pusha appeared to be going twice as hard with grind. & Fear of God is a good representation of what you can expect from the future from Pusha Ton. Besides the who’s who list of producer’s that lent their expertise, this mixtape features a rack of some of the most notable emcee’s working the mainstream circuit right now. So make sure you check this out, and let them know what songs you are feeling the most, cuz those are label to be seen again in video form, or on the official album. Download it for FREE here…


Idols & Role Models Series (Free Downloads)

Shouts to the homies over at aFam for putting together these two monsters. This first joint features Focus & Kida over this soulful, yet powerful production. The remix, or “Second Perspective” features HOJ artists, Rapper Big Pooh & Chaundon. Both of these joints are equally as potent, and will keep you looking more from this quartet of artists. So download both of these joints for FREE here….now!


Chapel Hill is the spot to be at tonight….

Whoa. After the last two days of UNC basketball, I think it’s about time everybody exhales(after inhaling, of course), and enjoys life for a little bit. & where else better to do that then in the heart of Tar Heel country, itself. Chapel Hill is the move tonight if you are looking for a good hip hop event. Some of the state’s finest emcees will be in the building to put on a show that will leave you gasping for air. King Mez, fresh off of his first MTV appearance and the release of The King’s Khrysis, will be holding it down. 9th Wonder, and Kooley High prized pupil, Rapsody will be doing her usual murderous microphone routine, Lazurus, Poe Mack, IllPo, and others will also be out repping for NC. Lastly, I will be there doing my usual 2 step on stage. So if you want to get out and celebrate tonight, do it in a smart manner….WITH US! Come tru. Jack Sprat. Show starts at 10p…

Flyer by me.

I am Performing Tonight in Wilmington…

If you are in the Wilmington area, you need to come out to 16 Taps tonight for this international hip hop affair. The homie, Mandisi from Colour Culture hit me up awhile back about coming down to Port City to rock with them at their upcoming show. Being a major fan of ILM, I obviously jumped at the opportunity. Tonight is set to be crazy with Colour Culture, a crew of artists who come from various countries around the world, FineArts, who have ties to Philly, VA, and other spots, Roanoke VA’s Poe Mack, & yours truly(only god knows what area I am repping these daze, hahaha). The event is being hosted by AYPMedia’s The Original Mr. Neva Dedd, & you know how he brings out a good crowd. I am bringing the homie, H2OKZ down to rock with me, so on the whole, this is a show that you won’t want to miss. Shouts again to all my #910 people who are coming out tonight. Can’t wait to see everyone. 16 Taps, 11pm. Be there…

Rapper Big Pooh – Fat Boy Fresh Vol.1 Mix (Free Mixtape)

Humongous shoutout to Rapper Big Pooh & the rest of the HOJ family on the release of Fat Boy Fresh Vol.1 Mix. This joint is a prelude to the album, which drops early next month. Just quick glance at the tracklisting, guest features, and producers on this project virtually certifies it as a classic offering from the former Little Brother member. On top of that, this joint is hosted by the world famous, Statik Selektah, and mixed by Justus League DJ, DJ Flash, So make sure you support the official release when it drops in April, but until then you can download this joint for FREE here…

Cover artwork done by BIG HOP, son…

ReeseBeatz – In Da Street Beatz Vol.1 (Free Instrumentals)

Super shoutout to J Reese on the release of his new instrumental project, In Da Streetz Vol. 1. In case you have smoked too many blunts, J Reese brought us one of this site’s first posts, when Herb Skee & I filmed him verbally unleashing on fellow producers at a showcase in November. Even though it was all in good fun, the video was classic and caused a bit of drama around the NC Hip Hop scene.

Now, Reese is back with this new collection of instrumentals for your listening pleasure. So make sure you check them out, give them a whole bunch of listens, download the ones you like, and record some new jams. Hopefully, Reese will fux with them, and not wyle out on you for doing so. Hahahaha. Get In Da Streetz Vol. 1 here for FREE…

West Wonder – First Appearance (Free Download)

Shoutouts to West Wonder on the release of his first major project as an emcee, which is appropriately named, First Appearance. This project hits hard from the jump with joints like “First Appearance” feat. Ty Bru, “My Life,” & “Running From Sin.” If you are a fan of the NC Hip Hop movement, then First Appearance is a must have in your collection. You can download it for FREE here….

And if you like the production on this project, and are looking for beats, hit up West on twitter. He has got that fire!

Invincible by Styles P. (Book Review by Trick)

The homie Trick is back with this month’s book review. This time he looked at Lox & D-Block member, Styles P’s first foray into literature with his book, Invincible. Many of us know the Ghost as being an incredible song writer, but incase you were wondering about his literary chops, check out what Trick had to say about his debut…

When Hop told me I was going to be reviewing the book that Styles P had written, I think my response was something like “What the fuck could Styles possibly have to say that he needed to write a whole book to get it out?”  I mean, don’t get me wrong, the Ghost has always been one of my favorite rappers, but even though his lyrics might go a little deeper than the average gangsta rap, he’s not somebody I would have seen as the author type.  But Styles came correct with his debut novel Invincible.

As you’d probably expect, the story revolves around guns, money and murder.  Jake, the main character, wakes up from a coma after being beaten close to death in jail, and wages a one man war against the powerful but mysterious crew that tried to take him out.  Honestly, I had this book for like a month before reading it – I envisioned it being a literary version of the “State Property” movies – an unoriginal plot with a lot of holes, not put together all that well, and only mildly entertaining.  But Invincible has a main character you can’t help but pull for, the story is told well and moves along quickly (not a lot of time wasted with details), and most of it is believable enough to keep you interested.  The writing isn’t perfect – the writing style varies from over correct (lots of “you are” and “I am” in dialogue when it’s hard to see the characters not saying “you’re” or “I’m”) to using incorrect verb tense during the narrative; some of the plot twists are a little over the top; some of the characters could use a little more developing – but all in all it’s better than I expected.  More “Paid in Full” than “State Property.”  It won’t win any literary awards or go down as a classic piece of fiction, but Ii Styles writes another one, I’ll read it.  

Overall: 3 ½ out of 5 notepads

1 out of 5 notepads – stick to your day job “writer”
2 out of 5 notepads – if somebody gives it to you and your bored, read it
3 out of 5 notepads – if somebody gives it to you, read it even if you’re not bored
4 out of 5 notepads – worth a read, pick it up if you see it
5 out of 5 notepads – go to Barnes & Noble today, stuff this under your coat & walk out

Tune in next month, as Trick discusses Clipse member, Malice’s Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind, & Naked…

Drique London – Red Chucks (Video)

Shouts to Drique London & Depth of Sound for collaborating on this hot new video. This is the first video from Drique’s upcoming project, The Manual, which is set to be released this Spring sometime. If you have been a fan of Drique’s laid back style in the past, then you will be equally as hyped about this one. Stay tuned to the site, cuz when The Manual drops, I will post links to it…