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MOB TIES: MEET A$AP NAST

Fresh off the A$AP tour and back in Gotham City, Nast is happy to be back around the way in the hood that gave him his sense of style, his career path and of course his adopted family. Known for his trademark chipped tooth and unique delivery, the kid is plotting on his next moves while reflecting on this past year's experiences. He's seen his cousin Rocky who he hung out with as a child grab Rihanna's ass on stage and he's been on the road for 61 days performing 47 shows with his cohorts. Eventful year wouldn't you say?

(A$AP Ferg will be performing at VIBE's first V-Mix concert this Thursday in NYC - Purchase Tickets HERE)

Still, there's a lot more money to make and cars to park so he's not straying to far from the studio now that he's back home. Read on to see how's handling his new found success, how he feels about the rest of A$AP and how much they all love The Mighty Ducks.

VIBE: Just hopped off tour, Nast. What are some cities that you hit that were especially live?
Nast: The Bay and just Cali period. We have a lot love so the shows are turned up. Most cities have been sold out so the crowds have been crazy. Some were aight but could've been better.

Must feel good to be off that bus, extending your limbs?
Yeah I love being back in NYC. I'm just walking downtown, stopped to eat by Supreme. Feels good to be back in my city. Especially after Sandy.

Word. Speak on Sandy for a minute. Is your family ok?
My family is uptown in Harlem so everyone was ok. Honestly, I didn't really know how serious it was until I started going on twitter and saw the pictures. For the most part my homies and family are all good.

So not that you've been on a fairly extensive tour and The Mob has a tape out, do you feel like an official rapper?
I've always been an official rapper, always. It does feel good having a project of our own that we can tour off of and make some money for ourselves. That's a great feeling.

How does it feel to have a couple dollars in your pocket?
The money always been in my pocket but any kid in our shoes, in the slums of Harlem or NYC knows what we come from knows that there's no feeling like when you're doing you and being supported by so many people. I'm proud of my brothers as a collective that we can put ourselves in this position.

So have you been recording again to keep momentum going? I heard you had a studio on the bus?
Honestly we weren't able to record as much as we wanted on the bus. We had a lot of shows to do. But now that we're back after these couple months of touring we gonna give the people what they want.

Good. So how would describe your style?
I think I'm more chill, more laid back but I got my wild out versus too where I just bug the fuck out. It's a bit of a mystery. Sometimes I write before I get to the studio, sometimes I don't even write at all and sometimes I hear the beat and sit down and write right there.

You and the rest of The Mob act like real brothers. Why is that?
Man, we argue, we joke, we fight... that's family and real family requires that you go through all that, that's how you know you really love each other. We would all die for each other. Plus, me and Rocky are cousins so it really is blood.

Do you want to do solo stuff as well?
Yeah for sure. I definitely want to get some solo stuff out there.

I saw Scott tweet some shit about The Mighty Ducks box set. Was that on heavy rotation on the tour bus?
[Laughs] Ah man, actually we didn't get The Mighty Ducks until just before the tour ended. A fan of ours gave it to us.

Do you guys argue about who gets to be Coach Bombay?
[Laughs] Everybody wants to be Coach Bombay!

You said earlier in the interview that always have been a real rapper. Was there ever something you wanted to do aside from rapping?
Fashion was the only other thing. I love fashion more than I love rapping. I wanted to get into all aspects of fashion. I want to design and do modeling even, just to get a feel for it. Everything about fashion has always interested me.

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Ella Mai Puts The Ball In Your Court With "Shot Clock" Visuals

Kobe, KD, Kyrie, how about Ella Mai?

Marking her third official single from her self-titled debut album, the 24-year-old dropped a new video from her charting project, bringing "Shot Clock" to life in her B-ball themed clip.

The Colin Tilley directed visual captures the essence of the young singer, framing her unique style and iridescent vocal abilities. The clip captures the various parts of Mai's magnetic energy, as she stars in her own thematic love story.

The two-time Grammy nominee goes through the many downs that occur in relationships while the red beams of shot clock shine in the background slowly reaching zero, a neon indicator of her lessening patience, the singer finds herself alone.

This visual was released in the midst of the "Boo'd Up" songstress' first debut tour currently venturing through the United States and Parts of Europe. Check out the tour dates below to see if R&B's new golden child is coming to a city near you and watch her video for "Shot Clock" above.

THE DEBUT TOUR

Jan 18 – Berlin, DE- Festsaal Kreuzberg Jan 20 – Hamburg, DE- Grosse Freiheit Jan 21 – Copenhagen, DK – Vega Main Hall Jan 22 – Stockholm, SE - Berns Jan 24 – Oslo, NO – Rockefeller Music Hall Feb 12 - Vancouver, BC – Commodore Ballroom Feb 14 – Seattle, WA – Showbox SoDo Feb 15 – Portland, OR – Crystal Ballroom Feb 17 – Sacramento, CA – Ace of Spades Feb 19 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater Feb 20 – Santa Cruz, CA – The Catalyst Feb 22 – Phoenix, AZ – The Marquee Feb 23 – Las Vegas, NV – House of Blues Feb 25 – Denver, CO – Ogden Theatre Feb 27 – Lawrence, KS – The Granada Feb 28 – Minneapolis, MN – Varsity Theater Mar 2 – Detroit, MI – St. Andrew’s Hall Mar 3 – Chicago, IL – Concord Music Hall Mar 5 – Cleveland, OH – House of Blues Mar 6 – Toronto, ON – The Danforth Mar 7 – Montreal, QC – Club Soda Mar 9 – Boston, MA - Royale Mar 11 – Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Steel Mar 13 – Philadelphia, PA – Theatre of Living Arts Mar 15 – Silver Spring, M.D. – The Fillmore Silver Spring Mar 16 – Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Sound Stage Mar 19 – Atlanta, GA - Tabernacle Mar 20 – Orlando, FL – The Plaza Live Mar 21 – Fort Lauderdale, FL – Revolution Live Mar 24 – Houston, TX – House of Blues Mar 26 – Dallas, TX – House of Blues Mar 27 – Austin, TX – Emo’s Mar 28 – San Antonio, TX – The Aztec Theatre

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9th Wonder Talks Collabo Album With Smif N Wessun And The Soul Council

A few weeks fresh off the 23rd anniversary of their classic debut album, Da Shinin', Brooklyn duo Smif N Wessun (Steele and Tek) have released the video for the soul smacking single, "Testify" produced by Khrysis, off their newest album, The All. The project, produced entirely by Grammy-nominated producer 9th Wonder and his Soul Council team, brings the hardcore feel of SNW's best work to the forefront.

“9th Wonder and the Soul Council provide the perfect backdrop for Tek and I to deliver heartfelt lyrical content,” Steele reveals directly. “It’s a true tale of ups and downs, wins and losses, growth and acceptance. It speaks to the hearts and minds of all people; particularly our followers and fans of all ages and ethnicities.”

When artists who rep a certain quality sector of hip-hop music resurface to offer newness to an audience, the longtime fans are looking to bring that old thing back while looking to reflect and push forward at the same time.

"'Testify' is a realistic reflective look back on our accomplishments and failures throughout our career and serves as a precursor to what you will experience on The All,” Steele continues. "This project is a reality check for SNW, one that reflects the struggles and obstacles that we’ve had to endure to survive at the level we occupy in the hip-hop arena."

9th Wonder took the project on as a lover of the group, "My goal is to make sure that we cement the legacy of the artist, but at the same time update the artist. We came up with the concept of  The All (based on a speech from Louis Farrakhan), you can never underestimate the essence of Islam in Hip-Hop. Given the fact that SNW are both Muslim and so many others are as well, we couldn't forget that part."

Going into new chambers of living is needed when you have been recording albums for over 20 years. 9th explains, "we wanted them to talk about stuff they wouldn't normally talk about on records, as they are in a different point in their lives, very grown man. It gives something to our generation to listen to, appreciate and celebrate without feeling old, without feeling outdated. We also wanted to let them know, the legends can still do it."

As the word legend gets thrown around a lot, it's not a far off title for the duo of Tek and Steele. "Some bestow the 'legend' tag upon us (we are very appreciative of that)," says Steele. "And we are chronicling that journey throughout the album.”

The full project will be dropping on February 22nd, 2019 on Duck Down Records. You can pre-order the album here and group merch here.

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Premiere: Duck Down Records' Smif-N-Wessun Returns With Khrysis-Produced 'Testify'

It's been nearly 25 years to the day since their classic debut Dah Shinin' impacted in January 1995, but legendary Brooklyn duo Smif-N-Wessun is still representing the culture with authority and authenticity. "Testify," the premiere music video from their upcoming album The All, adds another notch to their storied catalogs.

"Testify" begins with old photos of group members Tek and Steele in their 90s heyday, but they don't spend much time there before getting busy with present day rhymes. Over a backdrop from Khrysis, the Duck Down Records duo confidently announces their return while solidifying their legendary pedigree. The song gives a short but sweet taste from The All, their upcoming album produced entirely by 9th Wonder and the Soul Council.

“9th Wonder and the Soul Council provide the perfect backdrop for Tek and I to deliver heartfelt lyrical content,” Steele told VIBE. “It’s a true tale of ups and downs, wins and losses, growth and acceptance. It speaks to the hearts and minds of ALL people; particularly our followers and fans of ALL ages and ethnicities.”

‘Testify” is a realistic reflective look back on our accomplishments and failures throughout our career and serves as a precursor to what you will experience on The All,” Steele continued. "This project is a reality check for SNW, one that reflects the struggles and obstacles that we’ve had to endure to survive at the level we occupy in the hip-hop arena. Some, bestow the “Legend” tag upon us (we are very appreciative of that) and we are chronicling that journey throughout the album.”

The All is scheduled for a February 22, 2019 release on Duck Down Records, and is available for pre-order.

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