The Last Word: James Brown’s Estate Gets Robbed, Usher Has a New Scent, and Mary J. Blige Is Back!

What’s up everyone? The end of another week that saw your favorite TV shows come back with new episodes, protests concerning Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s visit to the US, and Isaiah Thomas battling sexual harassment charges in court. Shout out to Jena Six member Mychal Bell, who was finally released Thursday (Sept. 27) on $45,000… Read more »



Ledisi: Lost To Claimed

Right up until the moment you hear Ledisi speak about her new album Lost & Found (Verve Records) it’ll be difficult to distinguish which of her past projects was her side hustle. Moving from her home in Oakland, California to the mean, but lucrative, streets of New York City, Ledisi left behind all that she… Read more »



Tori Amos is Hip-Hop

Tori Amos might appear to be an unlikely fit for a Hip-Hop website. The legendary singer/songwriter/producer has a career that spans well over two decades, with a cult following that will outlive any existing fanbase for some flash in the pan artist. With 13 albums under her belt, along with countless bootlegs, EPs and imports,… Read more »



The Last Word: Jamie Foxx is a Star, BET Causes a Ruckus, and Naomi Campbell Cries Racism

What’s real, world? The end of another five days and we’re still here to welcome the weekend. Unlike previous Words I can’t say it was dull week. With everything from Dan Rather suing CBS for $70 million for making him the scapegoat in his botched story on President Bush, to Defense Secretary Robert Gates saying… Read more »



Jah Cure: Born Again

With the over-saturation of Hip-Pop celebrities in the media, the UK reviving soul music, and the war on terrorism in Iraq, it’s easy to see how one wouldn’t notice the fading presence of reggae artists in today’s melting pot of music.  Well after an eight year hiatus, served in a Jamaica penitentiary for an alleged… Read more »



Bradd Marquis: Fitting In

Losing the nerdy glasses in high school was not the only thing that boosted Bradd Marquis’ popularity. As an R&B singer, he’s had multiple appearances on Showtime At the Apollo, performances at “Wild Out Wednesdays” on 106 & Park and radio airplay of his record “Radio” on New York’s Hot 97. As Bradd Marquis joins… Read more »



The Last Word: Halle’s Expecting, J-Lo Gets Paid, and R. Kelly’s Judgment Day Is Not Until ’08!

Hello folks! Another week gone by, another 15 cents made. Nevertheless, it’s been a good one, to say the least. Whether it was Fred Thompson formally throwing his hat in the presidential race, another toy recall from Mattel, the biggest upset in college football during the Labor Day weekend or the search for missing adventurer… Read more »



The-Dream: Perfect Ten

Many of today’s young artists struggle to make it to the top, but for Def Jam’s new wonder boy The Dream, the scene played out like a fairytale.  If you’re thinking that you haven’t quite had this dream before, think again. The songwriter turned singer, who is married to R&B diva Nivea, is the genius… Read more »



Shareefa and Bobby Valentino: Double Trouble

When Hip-Hop recording artist Ludacris was selling records out of his trunk back in ‘99, nobody imagined that his initiative would eventually help fulfill the dreams of other new and upcoming artists. While enduring the ups and downs of the music business, Ludacris and his comrade Chaka Zulu created Disturbing Tha Peace Records. With the… Read more »



Get To Know: The Transfer

Group: The TransferLocation: L.A.Influences: Bill Withers, Tupac, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jay-Z, Fiona Apple, The Cure, Outkast, The Four Tops, DJ Premier, Incubus, Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Stevie WonderWhy You Should Know The Transfer:When someone describes something as “different,” it usually means “dude-it-ain’t-for-me.” But in music, where the next generation of party-goers continue to blur the… Read more »



Erika Rose: Musical Gardner

Arriving at a fork in the road, an artist hears two voices: one desiring to travel a secure road, and the other yearning to express creativity. In some cases, the two voices work together to create monstrous experiences. Singer-songwriter Erika Rose personifies the duality of listening to both and the ability to travel down both… Read more »



Crave: Ready To Go

Everybody has their own grind. For the members of Crave, that grind is finally about to pay off. The singing group was discovered by members of Pretty Ricky and immediately became their opening act. They’ve been popular in their native area (Pittsburgh) for years, but are now in a position to have national exposure. A… Read more »



Marc Broussard: Soul Provider

One Thursday evening in mid-July, New York’s Irving Plaza had a sold out show. It was so packed that people had no room to stand and doorways were being opened into the hallway. There were no opening acts, so there was no question about who everyone came to see, a young man from Louisiana –… Read more »



Akon: Real Talk

Akon has literally been the reigning R&B/Hip-Hop success story of the last three years. Dominating the album charts and going triple platinum in a climate where most artists haven’t been able to go gold, it seemed he could do no wrong…But then…Akon was filmed dry-humping a 14-year-old girl on stage, and then a few weeks… Read more »



Mya: Getting Liberated

Mya, the Grammy award winning multi-platinum artist, is at a new place in her life. Her new music and look, is sexy, grown, mature and honest as reflected on her newest project, Liberation. This is Mya’s fourth CD, her Universal Motown debut, and she sounds confident and mature. With ballads such as “Life Too Short”… Read more »



KeKe Wyatt: Still Standing

In 2001, when we first heard the sultry voice of Ketara “KeKe” Wyatt on the ‘80s remake of “My First Love” with R&B artist Avant, no one would have ever guessed she was only 19 years old. A young woman with the sound of a seasoned songstress, it was only a matter of time before… Read more »



The Last Word: R. Kelly Gets Trapped, Mr. Biggs Begs Your Pardon, and Timberlake’s Member Gets Emmy nod!

What’s up? The summer just keeps flying by as July is close to becoming August. Another crazy week gone by. From corrupt NBA refs to presidential candidates taking questions from YouTube users, to the Simpsons finally hitting the big screen, it’s been an interesting one…to say the least.   R.I.P. to Tammy Faye Messner, and get… Read more »



Mavado: Original Gangster

It’s the gangster disposition of Reggae music’s “Real McKoy” Mavado that had ghettos from Cassava Piece, Jamaica, to Brooklyn’s notorious ’90s streets chanting “Anywaaayeeeeeeee” in unison before the remainder of the globe eventually caught on. The lyrics were raw, the sound was haunted, the flow was hard, and the flex was rougher than rough. Something… Read more »



Last Word: Bobby Brown Chased By Terrorists, a Bionic Isaiah Washington, and Michael Jackson Back In Court!

What’s happenin’ folks? It’s been a good week, to say the least. If it wasn’t, then just be thankful you’re not facing legal trouble like Michael Vick or Remy Ma. Shout out to Lindsay Lohan for making it out of rehab, Dave Chappelle, and Kelly Rowland for overcoming their bouts of exhaustion and dehydration, and… Read more »



Ty and Kory: Rugged and Raw

To put it bluntly, Ty & Kory are exactly what’s lacking in R&B music today. With radio stations across the country bogged down with studio-engineered vocals and slapped-together dance routines, good soul music has become all too rare. Label execs everywhere try and try to manufacture success, but you’ve either got the instincts or you… Read more »



Soulive: Organic Sounds

Are you hungry for some Jazz and Funk mixed with a whole lot of Soul? When placing the order, your craving can be met with New York’s Soulive. On the menu since 1999, Soulive consists of Eric Krasno (guitar), Alan Evans (drums), Neal Evans (Hammond B3 organ, bass keys, clavinet) and a recently added reggae… Read more »



Get To Know: Brandon Hines

Artist: Brandon HinesLocation:  Detroit/Washington, DCInfluences: J Moss, Kim Burrell, Trey Songz, Luther Vandross, Aretha Franklin, Nas.Why You Should Know Brandon Hines:Upon hearing his latest single, “Look Me in My Face,” one might question whether Mario Winans is back at it with another album. As you listen a little closer, you notice the fragile voice of… Read more »



Chromeo: In Control

There are two undeniable truths about Dave 1 of Chromeo: he is a Hip-Hop encyclopedia and an avid reader of At first glance, he and his best friend and P-Thugg might not look like your average b-boys. Sure, their electro-rock-funk-soul-(insert another cool genre) band Chromeo is making waves across the globe with their follow-up… Read more »



Bryce Wilson: In the Groove

Bryce Wilson is no stranger to the entertainment industry. Although most remember him as part of the ’90s duo Groove Theory, he has since conquered the ranks as an established recording artist, executive producer, and an actor. As a producer, Bryce Wilson has worked with some of our generation’s best entertainers including Beyoncè Knowles, Mary… Read more »



Bad Brains: Rasta Revolution

While browsing the aisles of your local record store, you may come across Build a Nation, the latest from Washington D.C.’s hometown heroes (or villains, depending on who you ask) Bad Brains. The red, yellow, and green cover art prominently displays a crowned lion. On the back, the band’s photo shows three Dreads backed by… Read more »



Collie Buddz: Come Around

Collie Buddz just might be to reggae/dancehall what Eminem was to the world of Hip-Hop those many years ago – a snowball building momentum, preparing to avalanche this crazy world that is music. Born Colin Harper in New Orleans, Louisiana, this future reggae sensation later moved to the island of Bermuda at the age of… Read more »



Macy Gray: Real Love

In this era of manufactured reality show stars, American Idol runners-up, and Mouseketeer graduates dominating the charts, the beautifully talented Macy Gray automatically stands out and adds a breath of fresh air to the current stale and somewhat repetitive music industry. For a while though, the helium-voiced Miss Gray seemed to be coasting instead of… Read more »



Daddy Yankee: The Big Boss

Videographer: Brian MappVideo Editor: Quadre Owens The thought of being a rapper crosses the minds of many young Hip-Hop listeners. For Daddy Yankee, these thoughts not only manifested as a childhood dream, but exceeded his expectations. Yankee has successfully transformed his love for the culture and created a new genre altogether. Selling two platinum albums… Read more »



Ciara: More Than Music

In 2004, a young girl from Atlanta, Georgia by the name of Ciara Princess Harris, brought forth an ingredient that R&B had been missing. By having a street edge, catchy beats, and creative lyrics, the evolution of Ciara began long before her sophomore album, The Evolution. Since her debut into the world of entertainment, Ciara… Read more »



Chrisette Michele: Can’t Forget About Her

Crash Mansion, New York City. Singersroom Live, notorious for their intimate R&B concert series, has dedicated a night to songwriting/singing prodigy Johnta Austin. Prior to the performances, it was “Johnta this, Johnta that.” Every artist was great, but a blur now…including Johnta himself. Every artist that is, except for Chrisette Michele. Arriving third in the… Read more »



Elephant Man: Walk The Line

It’s a blazing 90 degrees in New York City, but reggae/dancehall sensation Elephant Man isn’t at all affected. “I love it when it’s hot,” he says, sitting in the Bad Boy offices with a fresh new multi-colored haircut and a new album anticipating a late summer release. The man who delivers more “wine” than a… Read more »



Notch: Cross Colors

  When the now defunct Born Jamericans swam the mainstream in the mid ‘90s, it was the breezy melodies of Notch that lingered in the ears of Hip-Hop and reggae fans alike. Known for hits like “Boom Shak-a-Tack,” “Send My Love” and “Yardcore,” Born Jamericans were kids from foreign that added a twist to reggae/dancehall… Read more »



Pretty Ricky: Four Brothers

  Getting what she wants is pretty much every girl’s dream. It’s also one of the things that Pretty Ricky say they do best – not one, but all four of them. Pleasure P, Spectacular, Slick Em and Baby Blue are set out to do just that with their latest release from Bluestar Entertainment International/Atlantic… Read more »



Kevin Michael: One Love

  While Pennsylvania’s claim as the birthplace of America is widely contested, it can confidently boast the origin of neo-soul. That distinctively Philly-centric genre is characterized by the jazz-inspired vocals and soul soaked percussions of which The Roots, Jill Scott and Musiq are its most noteworthy proprietors. Now, 22-year old newcomer Kevin Michael hopes to… Read more »



Young Steff: The New Style

  Ten years in the music business is a long time. For Young Steff, it was an education, complete with instruction from family and music heavyweights. As a result, the 18-year-old crooner found himself – attaining his swagger from former Roc-a-Fella Records partners Jay-Z and Damon Dash before residing at music producer Rich Harrison’s new… Read more »



Donda West: Mother Knows Best

  Having a son reach the plateau of Kanye West has been an invigorating experience for Dr. Donda West. An English Professor for 31 years, one can only imagine what it’s been like to witness Kanye drop out of college and become one of Hip-Hop’s biggest superstars. As a single mom, she instilled in her… Read more »