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V Exclusive: Pete Rock And Camp Lo Talk Super Group; Plot Album And Tour

One of hip-hop’s greatest producers is teaming up with one of the ‘90s most underrated rhyme duos. Pete Rock, whose signature soul drenched samples and crisp beats delivered celebrated production for such rap luminaries as Run-D.M.C., Public Enemy, Nas, Raekwon, and Kanye West, is teaming up with critically-acclaimed Bronx, New York act Camp Lo to form the supergroup 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s. And according to Pete Rock, the ambitious merging came about earlier this year after running into Camp Lo spinner Technician The DJ following a studio session. When he was told that Camp Lo’s Sonny Cheeba and Geechi Suede were recording tracks for a new project, Pete decided to drop by and catch up with the pair.

“After that I started playing them beats and then we just built it from there,” Pete tells VIBE of the meeting. “From there we realized we were on to something.”

And what of the eyebrow-raising name of the group, 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s? Geechi says it’s all about making a statement. “We are trying to show that what we are all about is originality,” he explains. “That goes with our name and the music. We didn’t go too far with the sound. We didn’t go too left field. But what we are doing is still very original.”

And the group is already making noise on the hip-hop circuit. In late March, the newly christened act dropped a 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s mixtape. “Working with Pete Rock has really been a smooth transition,” says Cheeba. "The music is all souled-out on both sides. It’s real easy to the ears. Us coming together make sense.”

Indeed, 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s is an inspired pairing. Pete Rock, who began his career in 1991 as one-half of the Mount Vernon, New York act Pete Rock & CL Smooth, went on to forge a 20-year career that catapulted him amongst the some of the most storied hip-hop studio wizards of all-time including the groundbreaking likes of Dr. Dre, DJ Premier, the RZA, Timbaland, Organized Noize, and the Neptunes. Camp Lo exploded out of the underground New York rhyme scene with the 1996 breakout hit “Coolie High.” With their ‘70s style aesthetic, unorthodox rhyme cadences and slang, and jazzy soul driven production, Camp Lo were lauded, as their 1997 debut album Uptown Saturday Night became one of the year’s most noted efforts.

Pete Rock says he is excited about the future of the group, which includes a summer album and talks of a tour. “We have a single called ‘Mic Check,’ and it’s out now,” says Pete of what’s ahead for 80 Blocks From Tiffany’s. “The video is out. As for a release date for the album, we don’t have that yet. But we are close to finishing the album.”—Keith Murphy


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Nicki Minaj's Boyfriend Kenneth Petty Received 18 Violations During Prison Stint

Nicki Minaj's new boyfriend, Kenneth Petty has a very troubled past.

On Friday (Dec. 14), TMZ revealed court documents disclosing Petty's history of disciplinary actions while he was an inmate in New York for manslaughter from 2006 to 2013.

When he entered the correctional facility, he was reportedly written up for creating a disturbance. Later during his stint, he was hit with a slew of disciplinary actions following a series of violent actions that included fighting, making terroristic threats, and "disobeying a direct order."

In 2009, prison faculty placed him in solitary confinement for four months as part of being reprimanded for nine different violations. Petty lost privileges that included the usage of the inmate telephone service, recreational activity, and the prison canteen.

In addition to his prison violations, Petty is a convicted sex offender. At the age of 16, he was tried as an adult served a four-year sentence for attempted rape of a minor.

Petty, who hails from the same borough as Nicki, Queens, knew the platinum-selling rap star since she was a teenager. They dated for a short period years prior to reuniting.

Minaj posted various photos of her and Petty going on a vacation getaway earlier this month. Sources close to Minaj told the celebrity gossip website that the 36-year-old hip-hop artist is  "happier than she's been in years" with Petty.


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READ MORE: Nicki Minaj Plans To Sue 'Daily Mail' TV Host Jesse Palmer

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Sandy Hook Elementary Evacuates After Bomb Threat On 6th Anniversary Of Mass Shooting

Sandy Hook Elementary School was reportedly forced to evacuate its students and administration on Friday (Dec. 14), after receiving a bomb threat, CNN reports. The incident occurred on the sixth anniversary of the school's tragic mass shooting.

Newtown, Connecticut Police Lt. Aaron Bahamonde stated that the threat didn't appear to be substantial, but they decided to  evacuate the facility as an extra precaution.

Bomb squads reportedly swept the school and surrounding area for explosive devices but did not discover anything on the property. They later concluded that there was no immediate threat. The school administration dismissed students and faculty for the rest of the day however, considering the previous incident.

As previously noted, Sandy Hook endured a horrific mass shooting on Dec. 14, 2012, in which 20-year-old Adam Lanza shot and killed 20 children between six and seven years old, as well as six adult, staff members.

Earlier this month, thousands of documents were released about Lanza that revealed his mental state and social status in the years leading up to the shooting.

The shooting is not believed to be in connection to the recent string of bomb scares around the nation that targeted major politicians including the former first families Barack and Michelle Obama and Bill and Hillary Clinton.

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H.E.R. Brings All-Star Medley To Tiny Desk Set

Grammy-nominated singer H.E.R. appeared on NPR's "Tiny Desk" set on Dec. 12, to deliver a 4-piece-medley from her last four projects.

Tucked neatly behind her dark sunglasses, the songstress began her set strapped to a mustard yellow guitar with a host of back-up musicians accompanying the 21-year-old on her first solo journey with "Tiny Desk." She previously appeared on the performance series in June 2018 alongside collaborator Daniel Caesar to bring their single "Best Part" to life.

The singer began with "Going (Interlude)," a low-tempo song ushering a heavy-hearted feel into the 18-minute-performance. Keeping with the melancholy vibes planted by the first single, Gabriella Wilson – best known by her three-letter-moniker –  delivered a stunning rendition of "Feel A Way." With two-final transitions, the singer-songwriter concluded her act with "Focus," a throw back from the 2017 EP that gained her worldwide recognition, H.E.R. Volume 1.

Switching from strings to keys, Wilson sat peacefully before a keyboard playing the melody she crafted for the crowd favorite. Chaperoning the performance to a close, Wilson and her background singers played a vocal game of tag as the band jazzed up the slow beats until the set officially wrapped.

Watch as H.E.R. rocks the "Tiny Desk" set in the video above.

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