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Opinion: Is Kendrick Lamar's Black Hippy Crew The 2013 G-Unit?

Is Black Hippy's mounting run giving you déjà vu? VIBE stacks Kendrick's crew up against G-Unit's early days

Comparing Black Hippy to G-Unit of a decade ago seems about as inappropriate as Charlamagne Tha God. But there are some parallels.

While Kendrick isn’t slaying birthday songs, the wordy rapper kicked in the door like 50 Cent with a hard-knocking instant classic, good kid, m.A.A.d. city. He's been the hottest, most hyped-about rapper of 2013, spazzing on cameo appearances and remixes. And back in 2003, 50 Cent was as ubiquitous as oversized white tees (remember those?!). Then there's that Dr. Dre guy, who's been influential in the success of both respective rookies of the year. They've got distinctly different rhyming styles: 50's flow often slows to a drawl and is loaded with threats and gangster glorifications; Kendrick's is much quicker and far more lyrical, giving a hefty slice of the streets as a reporter rather than a participant. But still, only 10 years separate rap's two hottest newcomers.

And then there's their crews. Schoolboy Q recalls Young Buck; they’re both high-energy street disciples with heart. If someone tested Dre at a 2013 awards show, our cash is on Q to pull out a shank. Ab-Soul brings Lloyd Banks’ cool and clever lyrical premium. Soul is aesthetically more eclectic; a side-by-side comparison of Control System and Banks' Hunger For More exposes as much. But there's no question that each are the lyrical lieutenants of their set. Meanwhile, slept-on street vet Jay Rock’s intangible presence—like Tony Yayo’s—glues the gang together.

The Hippies seem to have the right idea with their rollout, though. Each member has carefully carving his own following, astutely rotating with solo releases before ever embarking on a group project. So there's not quite the same hierarchal feel of G-Unit following 50's record-breaking Get Rich Or Die Tryin', which preceded the group album Beg For Mercy. While G-Unit followed the same release blueprint as the likes of St. Lunatics and D-12 prior (with much better success), Black Hippy is making its own rules, writing its own script. They're not following any formulae or chasing radio and mainstream success. And that's part of why BH is the most talented and exciting new rap troupe of the past few years.

While 50, Banks, Buck and Yayo's collective chapter is a wrap, Kendrick and Co. are still on the ground floor building the Black Hippy legacy. Gotta wonder what The Game's take is... —John Kennedy (@youngJFK)

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Jhene Aiko Taps Big Sean,Ty Dolla $ign, Ab-Soul And More For ‘Chilombo’ Album

After announcing the release date for Chilombo, Jhené Aiko unveiled the album's track list on Wednesday (Feb. 26). The project features appearances from Big Sean, Ty Dolla $ign, Nas, John Legend, Ab-Soul and Aiko’s father, Dr. Chill.

Last month, Aiko released the track “P*$$ Fairy (OTW),” which will be featured on the LP. The album's other interesting song titles include, “Happiness Over Everything (H.O.E),” “Tryna Smoke,” “Born Tired,” “LOVE,” “Mourning Doves,” and the Sean-assisted, “None of Your Concern.”

 

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March 6th ✨ #CHILOMBO 🌋

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In a new interview with Essence, Aiko spoke on the “healing” properties of her music and discussed how she maintains privacy in the age of social media -- especially with all the chatter surrounding her relationship with Sean after the two seemingly broke up and got back together.

“The internet has made everyone aware of their opinion,” she said. “As many people as there are in the world, that’s how many opinions there are. If you let that many opinions affect your own opinion, and your own way of looking at things, you’re going to be so confused. I just love the feeling of taking that away from people; their need to have to say something or have to give their opinion because I personally have never been that way—well maybe when I was younger, or high or drunk.

“Whether it be something with me and Sean, or me and my daughter,” continued Aiko. “I share about one percent of my whole being with the internet. Even in my songs, that’s literally one moment that I’m talking about or when I felt that way. There’s so much more to my relationship with my [late] brother [Miyagi], or with my daughter, or with Sean. People hear a song like ‘Triggered’ and they’re like, ‘Oh, do we hate him now?’ In the grand scheme of things that was like a moment.”

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Wrongfully Convicted Kansas Man Awarded $1.5 Million After Spending 23 Years In Prison

A Kansas man, who spent more than half of his life in prison for a wrongful conviction, was awarded a $1.5 million settlement on Monday (Feb. 24). Lamonte McIntyre sued the state last year under a newly-implemented wrongful conviction statute.

“Today, Lamonte McIntyre has been declared, finally and conclusively, a completely innocent man. That long-overdue recognition, along with the statutory payment and other benefits will help lighten a bit the heavy load he has carried,” McIntyre’s lawyer, Cheryl A. Pilate, told CNN on Monday.

The settlement includes counseling, access to state-funded healthcare benefits for 2020 and 2021, and a tuition waiver to cover his post-secondary education up to 130 credit hours.

McIntyre was wrongly convicted in the 1994 murders of Donald Ewing and Doniel Quinn. He was just 17 years old at the time and served 8,583 days in prison before being released in 2017 at age 41.

“We are committed to faithfully administering the state’s mistaken-conviction law as the legislature wrote it,” Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said in a statement. “In this case, our office worked diligently to obtain and review all available evidence, including evidence identified but not provided in the earlier judicial proceedings. We were ultimately able to resolve all issues, satisfy all of the statute’s requirements, and agree to this outcome so Mr. McIntyre can receive the benefits to which he is entitled by law because of his mistaken conviction.”

McIntyre is the third wrongfully convicted man in Kansas to be awarded a settlement after suing the state under the wrongful conviction law, which was enacted in 2018. Three additional lawsuits remain pending in “various stages of litigation.”

Since his release, the McIntyre has completed barber school and founded Miracle of Innocence, a non-profit organization helping the wrongfully convicted. McIntyre attends Penn Valley Metropolitan Community College where he is pursuing a business degree.

“I feel like a new person, I feel like I’m actually starting my life now,” he told ABC news affiliate KMBC.

See more on McIntyre’s story in the video above.

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Snoop Dogg Addresses Gayle King Comments On ‘Red Table Talk’

Snoop Dogg visited Red Table Talk to address his comments against Gayle King. In the episode, which aired on Wednesday (Feb. 26), the Doggfather explained his social media fury against King for bringing up Kobe Bryant’s rape allegations in an interview days after the his death.

“I let my emotions get the best of me,” Snoop confessed to hosts Jada Pinkett Smith, Willow Smith and Adrienne Banfield-Norris. “I was frustrated on top of just venting.”

“I wanted to make sure that the message was across that we love Kobe, but be respectful of Vanessa [Bryant] and those kids. That’s what the whole intent was, to protect that woman and them babies over there because they are still grieving. Let’s give them some respect.”

Tyler Perry, Diddy, and Van Jones reached out to Uncle Snoop after he posted the blistering video calling King out of her name. “They didn’t bash me, they was just like ‘brother, we got your back if you need ‘anything’, but we think that you shouldn’t have said it.”

Snoop also received a phone call from his mother who checked him for his words about King. After the talk, he reached out to King privately before recording a public apology. Red Table Talk also reached out to King to invite her to appear on the show.

Nothing but love 🙏🏾🌹✨ tune in to @RedTableTalk today https://t.co/Ev7XsZQu7f pic.twitter.com/myEUwMLIO1

— Snoop Dogg (@SnoopDogg) February 26, 2020

Elsewhere in the interview, Snoop discussed the grief that he endured leading up to the deaths of Kobe and his daughter, Gigi, including the murder of Nipsey Hussle and the sudden death of his newborn grandson.

Click here to watch the full episode of Red Table Talk.

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