TUPAC-Cover-9-13-16 (1) TUPAC-Cover-9-13-16 (1)
Jeffery Newbury

A Poem For Tupac: Hail Mary "Makaveli's Army"

We miss 'Pac so damn much. 

As we continue to celebrate the life and legacy of Tupac Shakur this month, VIBE reached into the vault to rehash a moving poem dedicated to 'Pac and his mother.

READ: 20 Years Later: Tupac Is Hip-Hop’s Prophet Of Rage And Revolution

Hail Mary: Makaveli's Army
by Tayllor Johnson

Soldier to the Lieutenant never met
Only heard through blood boiling, beats split
I was possessed by the West Side prophet.
The moment I claimed me Los Angeles,
I was given the fight fatigue to beat concrete boxes
crafted by systems that gave us labels as misfits
then guide us to six feet pits
Like my Lieutenant

Lip synced as legend by the time I was conscious,
His name was a war cry for the war-torn masses
My side was chosen, my loyalty embroidered
to the man who spoke many languages

He spoke Black Man
He spoke Black American
He spoke growing up in Black American’t
He spoke fatherless and motherful
He spoke redemption
He spit like glass under rioting shoe soles
and black batons on back bones
I stood by him before I knew how universal our demons were

My Lieutenant had an assignment he never got to finish
When blackness meets consciousness
and consciousness meets rhythm
then rhythm meets bullets–
I had my mission: Create Artistic Friction

My existence is an anomaly to this country
My influences stunted yet preyed upon,
cut short like weed smoke sucked back into the lungs of a crack head origin–
I had no choice but to grow out, grow loud, grow force
Use my Black voice to make friends with uncomfortable
And define my madness for myself
Art

Tupac Shakur forced a world to remember
Even if his last bar was cut short,
They had it memorized.
And still they listen for his last words,
which I can tell you from the front lines, will never come
all you are gonna hear is the stomping feet
of his next generation…

Tayllor Johnson is a poet, writer, and activist. Originally from Los Angeles, California, Tayllor has dedicated her life’s work and artistic process to to find new ways spoken word can empower the voiceless, soothe the wounded, disturb the status quo, and set us all on a path to freedom. www.Tayllorjohnson.com

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Spotify Testing Feature That Allows Users To Mute Certain Artists

Spotify users will be able to mute certain artists, for their listening pleasure. The streaming company introduced a “don’t play this artist feature” as apart of a new IOS app update, according to Thurrott, which got its hands on an early version of the feature.

The block button allows listeners to banish specific artists from their personal music libraries, and stops them from popping up in automatically curated playlists, and other pages on the music streaming app. In order to utilize the mute feature, users clicks on the menu above an artists’s page and selects the “don’t play” option. The feature doesn’t work for songs that the artist may be featured on, the Verge reports.

The update could be a middle ground for Spotify as it faces increased pressure in wake of the #MuteRKelly movement, and Lifetime’s Surviving R. Kelly  documentary. A Change.org petition calling for Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube to remove R. Kelly’s music from its services is close to garnering 150,000 signatures.

Last year, Spotify briefly removed Kelly, XXXTentacion and T-Kay (a Texas rapper convicted of murder) from featured playlists due to the company's hateful conduct policy. “We don’t censor content because of an artist’s or creator’s behavior, but we want our editorial decisions -- what we choose to program -- to reflect our values,” the company explained in statement to Billboard last May. “When an artist or creator does something that is especially harmful or hateful, it may affect the ways we work with or support that artist or creator."

Spotify abandoned the plan after pushback from fans of the artists singled out, and industry heavyweights like Top Dawg Entertainment founder Anthony Tiffith, whose label imprint is home to Kendrick Lamar, SZA, ScHoolBoy Q and more.

Tiffith reached out to Troy Carter, Spotify’s global head of creator services, and threatened to remove his artists’ music from the streaming service. “I don't think it's right for artists to be censored, especially in our culture,” Tiffith told Billboard. “How did they just pick those [artists] out? How come they didn't pick out any others from any other genres or any other different cultures? There [are] so many other artists that have different things going on, and they could've picked anybody. But it seems to me that they're constantly picking on hip-hop culture."

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The Internet Reacts To Carmelo Anthony Being Traded To The Chicago Bulls

According to a tweet sent out by ESPN's Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, the Houston Rockets have agreed to trade Carmelo Anthony and cash considerations to the Chicago Bulls. However, he will likely not play any games.

"Anthony won't play a game for the Bulls, league source tells ESPN. He will be released and become a free agent if he clears waivers," tweeted Wojnarowski. "...it is possible that franchise holds off on waiving him until the trade deadline, league sources tell ESPN. Bulls could include him in a one-for-one trade, but can't aggregate his contract in another deal."

Since today is a national holiday (Jan. 21), the official word will reportedly be held off until tomorrow. Wojnarowski reports that his "best bet" would be to wait it out until the trade deadline (Feb. 7) to find another opportunity with another team.

The Houston Rockets have agreed to trade Carmelo Anthony and cash to the Chicago Bulls, league sources tell ESPN.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 21, 2019

The NBA office will not execute the trade today because it's a holiday, league sources tell ESPN. To clear the way for Kenneth Faried to sign and play tonight in Philadelphia, Rockets had to waive to James Nunnally. Trade call on 'Melo will likely be Tuesday. https://t.co/Oo2IA0nsJP

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 21, 2019

Anthony won't play a game for the Bulls, league source tells ESPN. He will be released and become a free agent if he clears waivers. https://t.co/Oo2IA0nsJP

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 21, 2019

Social media caught wind of the news, and reacted with shock and of course with laughs via some hot takes.

"Melo is revolutionizing the 'farewell season' by signing a contract with each NBA team before he retires, truly ahead of his time," one tweet read, while another said "Melo is being held hostage by teams. Hopefully this means Liam Neeson will have a movie saving him come out around the trade deadline."

Check out some tweets below.

Melo is being held hostage by teams. Hopefully this means Liam Neeson will have a movie saving him come out around the trade deadline.

— Zach Harper (@talkhoops) January 21, 2019

Melo stans: THE BUUUUUUULLS? pic.twitter.com/Y9nYBgNFuX

— #RingerNBA (@ringernba) January 21, 2019

[email protected] fans looking at GM Lebron when Melo becomes free agent. pic.twitter.com/wJy3ujSAIH

— Yahoo Sports NBA (@YahooSportsNBA) January 21, 2019

Carmelo Anthony will not play a game for the Bulls, but it is possible that franchise holds off on waiving him until the trade deadline, league sources tell ESPN. Bulls could include him in a one-for-one trade, but can't aggregate his contract in another deal.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 21, 2019

For Anthony, his best bet is waiting until the Feb. 7 trade deadline to find his next team. He can wait for roster spots to open, trades to happen, etc, that'll create the best opportunity for him. Anthony wants to find a place to contribute. https://t.co/cRgbMalvTl

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) January 21, 2019

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Chloe x Halle Performing 'America The Beautiful' At Super Bowl LIII

Singers Chloe x Halle will perform "America The Beautiful" at Super Bowl LIII, which will take place in their home city of Atlanta, Ga.

"The group joins the previously announced Gladys Knight in the pre-game festivities at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Feb. 3," reports The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Chloe and Halle Bailey, ages 20 and 18 respectively, gained the attention of Beyonce in 2013, after covering her song "Pretty Hurts" from her self-titled album. Since then, the two were signed to Bey's Parkwood label, and haven't stopped since. They can be found on the Freeform show grown-ish, which is now in its second season.

Late last year, the sisters could add "Grammy nominees" to their resume. Thanks to the release of their album The Kids Are Alright last year, Chloe x Halle were nominated for two awards- Best New Artist and Best Urban Contemporary Album. They will find out if they've won on Feb. 10.

Gladys Knight commented on the backlash for her upcoming performance at the Super Bowl, stating "I pray that this National Anthem will bring us all together in a way never before witnessed and we can move forward and untangle these truths which mean so much to all of us."

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