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A blog for Seattle music lovers of all stripes, from hip-hop and indie rock to jazz and world music.

Category: R & B/Hip-hop
August 21, 2014 at 4:27 PM

Eastside punk, South End rap – something in common? | Concert preview

Ten years ago, a raucous post-hardcore quintet from the Eastside suburbs called The Blood Brothers was making local music history, gaining a national following and spawning a legion of sound-alike bands. On Friday, the band is performing at the Showbox — its first local show since 2007.

A half-mile away, at the Crocodile, Nacho Picasso, a South End-bred rapper at the forefront of Seattle’s underground for the last few years, may be building the kind of legacy that years from now will also deserve a reunion celebration.

Though these artists don’t share much in the way of sound, image or background, there is a common thread — an overarching regional dreariness typical of the Northwest, which resonates with local youth.


Comments | More in R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop | Topics: Concert Preview, Crocodile, Nacho Picasso

August 8, 2014 at 11:54 PM

Lady Gaga brings her colorful, big-hearted, Vegas-like spectacle to KeyArena

Making up a date she was forced to postpone in May, pop diva Lady Gaga treated fans to a colorful, high-energy spectacle Friday at KeyArena. The connection to her fans was especially strong in her latest Seattle show. She read fan letters aloud, enlisted concertgoers in singing “Happy Birthday” to her dad (who attended the show…


Comments | More in R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop

August 7, 2014 at 12:24 PM

Q & A with Soulja Boy, who makes first Seattle appearance Friday | Concert preview

In early 2007 a 16-year-old from Atlanta named Soulja Boy Tell Em made a simplistic steel-drum snap beat on his computer, rapped over it, made up a dance to go with it, and put a video on YouTube. Months later he had a Billboard Chart-topping, multi-platinum single in “Crank That (Soulja Boy),” and a record deal with Interscope. It was one of the earliest, most widespread independent viral music videos.

It’s only been seven years, but that’s multiple music careers’ worth of time in Internet years. And with Soulja Boy’s ever-constant mixtape output, still-ubiquitous online presence, multiple business ventures, eye and ear for the current trends (at least borrowing from them), and major label connections, the 24-year-old appears to have the kind of tools and experience to become the Internet generation’s Diddy or Jay-Z. For an artist who was initially dismissed as a disposable passing fad, he appears to be here to stay.


Comments | More in R & B/Hip-hop | Topics: "Crank That", Concert Preview, Crocodile

August 4, 2014 at 9:18 AM

Soundgarden, Pharrell to perform prior to Seahawks’ season opener vs. Packers

Soundgarden and Pharrell will perform a free concert at 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 4 outside Seattle's CenturyLink Field. (Seattle Times)

Soundgarden and Pharrell will perform a free concert at 4:30 p.m. on Sept. 4 outside Seattle’s CenturyLink Field. (Seattle Times)

Two Grammy award-winning acts, singer/rapper Pharrell and Seattle’s own Soundgarden, will perform a free concert outside CenturyLink Field on Sept. 4 before the Seattle Seahawks‘ 2014 NFL season opener against the Green Bay Packers. The music begins at 4:30 p.m. and will be broadcast on the NFL Network.


Comments | More in General news, R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop | Topics: Green Bay Packers, NFL, Pharrell

July 31, 2014 at 12:22 PM

The social media rewind on Bey and Jay at Safeco

Beyoncé and Jay Z’s #OnTheRun Tour stopped in Seattle Wednesday night. With their ironclad image management, Mr. and Mrs. Carter were not allowing press photography or video, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t thousands of people their with smartphones. We scoured social media to bring some images of the night. View the story “The…


Comments | More in Dance, R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop | Topics: Beyoncé, Jay Z, safeco

July 31, 2014 at 7:50 AM

Beyoncé and Jay Z near perfection at Safeco Wednesday night

Beyonce and JAY Z perform on the On The Run Tour at Safeco Field on Wednesday, July 30, 2014, in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Mason Poole/Parkwood Entertainment/PictureGroup)

Beyoncé and Jay Z perform in their “On The Run” tour at Safeco Field on Wednesday, July 30. (Photo by Mason Poole/Parkwood Entertainment/PictureGroup)

The official theme for the joint Beyoncé and Jay Z concert Wednesday night at Safeco Field was “On the Run,” harkening back to the singer and rapper’s duet “03 Bonnie and Clyde” — a statement of solidarity when Jay Z was a bigger star than Beyoncé (it was his song, technically). Wedded now, they’re both international pop music icons, but the power dynamic has changed.


Comments | More in R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop | Topics: Beyoncé, Jay Z, On the Run

July 31, 2014 at 12:05 AM

Jay Z and Beyoncé bring the On the Run Tour to Seattle

It’s in the books. The second show ever at Safeco Field and it was a big one. Mr. and Mrs. Carter, aka Bey and Jay, aka the closest thing pop music has to a royal couple, performed for more than two and half hours Wednesday night. See SoundPosts tomorrow morning for a full review.


Comments | More in General news, R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop | Topics: Beyoncé, Jay Z, On the Run Tour

July 30, 2014 at 5:09 PM

Shabazz Palaces pushes boundaries again| New recordings

Shabazz Palaces, ‘Lese Majesty’ (Sub Pop) “Focus” is the first word uttered on Shabazz Palaces’ second full-length, “Lese Majesty,” an expectedly dense and boundary-pushing follow-up to its 2011 future-rap opus “Black Up.” It’s a fitting word for a record in which everything demands a closer listen or further consideration, from its lyrics to its track names…


Comments | More in Electronic, R & B/Hip-hop | Topics: Lese Majesty, New Recordings, Shabazz Palaces

July 28, 2014 at 10:41 AM

Charles Bradley leads dance party to end Timber! Fest

Charles Bradley performs at Timber! Outdoor Music Festival on Saturday. Photo by Owen R. Smith.

Charles Bradley performs at Timber! Outdoor Music Festival on Saturday. Photo by Owen R. Smith.

Charles Bradley hugged me. Wading into a sea of  ecstatic revelers Saturday night at Timber! Outdoor Music Festival as the final strains of “Why Is It So Hard” played, Bradley cast his arms open wide, pulled me into an enormous bear hug and whispered his sincerest thanks for coming to watch him play. I stood there, as more people pushed to get their moment with Bradley, stunned. I have experienced very few things in my 20 or so years of attending concerts that have given me real pause, but that indelible moment of gratitude from an artist who had just spent over an hour killing himself on stage is something I will carry with me long after I’ve stopped writing about music. It was exactly the sort of moment that organizer Kevin Sur had hoped for when he booked Bradley, whom he called the most gracious performer he’d ever seen.


Comments | More in Dance, Festivals, R & B/Hip-hop, Rock/Pop | Topics: Charles Bradley, Timber Festival

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