Craig Mack And The Iconicity Of "Flava In Ya Ear (Remix)"

The all-star remix featuring a then-rising Notorious B.I.G. marked a milestone for Bad Boy. 

Just days after hip-hop marked the death anniversary of The Notorious B.I.G. on March 9, the rap world mourns the loss of another one, as former Bad Boy rapper Craig Mack passed away on Monday night (Mar. 12). Mack was 46, and is best known for his groundbreaking debut "Flava in Ya Ear (Remix)" with guest appearances by Biggie himself, LL Cool J, Busta Rhymes and Rampage. The music video, shot in black-and-white by director Craig Henry, also features cameos by Sean "Puff Daddy" Combs, Keisha Epps, Mary J. Blige and Irv Gotti, among others.

"I always wanted to make a video with science fiction as the theme," comments Henry in VIBE's August 1994 issue, outside of the New York Hall of Science in Queens.  Cinematographer Lisa Leone continues:

The crew has struggled all morning to dig a grave in a rocky field nearby. The camera is down in the grave with a piece of Plexiglass over the lens. Craig's supposed to throw dirt at the screen while he raps about "leaving suckers buried in the ground," but he's not feeling it. "I didn't come here to shovel dirt," he says. Puffy gives a pep talk: "You're throwing dirt on other MCs; you're leaving them in their graves." One more take and Craig's shoveling on the beats. It's time to go inside. The great hall, designed to simulate outer space, is eight stories high, with wavy cement-brick walls embedded with cobalt blue glass. It looks even freakier lit with multicolored concert lights. When Craig steps in the beam, it's as if he's being teleported. The last step is to wet down the floor and turn on the tornado machine. "For the next video," says Henry, "we should have you jumping from planet to planet." Mack's eyes light up.

The song became a milestone for Puff Daddy and Bad Boy Entertainment, receiving a Grammy Award nomination for Best Rap Solo Performance at the 37th Grammy Awards in 1995. The song ultimately lost to "U.N.I.T.Y." by Queen Latifah. Appearing on Bad Boy's 10th Anniversary... The Hits, "Flava in Ya Ear" peaked at No. 9 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was certified platinum by the RIAA, selling 1,000,000 copies in the United States.

The remix went on to soundtrack films such as Notorious and Straight Outta Compton, among others. "Flava in Ya Ear" famously samples "We've Only Just Begun" by O'Donel Levy, and was later sampled in the Jennifer Lopez and Ja Rule single, "Ain't It Funny (Murder Remix)" as well as the song "Don't Leave Me" from the Backstreet Boys.

Big Mack! 🙏🏾 ‘93 #ripcraigmack #ripbiggie #ripbadboy

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Meek Mill Once Used Soulja Boy's "Kiss Me Thru The Phone" Lyrics In Love Letters From Jail

Who knew Soulja Boy’s ubiquitous 2008 hit “Kiss Me Thru The Phone” once served as a romantic catalyst for Meek Mill? The Philadelphia rapper recently admitted on Twitter that while he was incarcerated in his youth, he used the lyrics to Soulja Boy’s schmaltzy love note within letters and phone calls to girls.

This was my favorite song when I was in jail back in the day calling girls collect.... and I used to his bars in the letters I wrote them no cap lol 😂😂😂 #bigdraco pic.twitter.com/qFqgkylQtm

— Meek Mill (@MeekMill) January 16, 2019

Amid Meek’s cheeky co-sign, Soulja Boy has been one of the Internet’s favorite topics of discussion since his latest interview on The Breakfast Club. The 28-year-old rapper spoke about his legacy in hip-hop and why he deserves more credit than he’s been given for his influence. He also had some choice words for Kanye West when he said the latter is old and "lame."

"I'm younger than you," he began. "I'm flyer than you, ni**a. Whatever. You crying on Twitter every week about Drake? You gotta stop that sh*t, bro. You look lame, bro. You look cap, bro...You up here supporting Trump and sh*t, bro. You supporting Trump? What the f**k wrong with you, bro? That sh*t's not right."

Other artists in the industry also chimed in on the situation:

I’m Not Going To Lie Soulja Boy Been Funny As Fuck

— Sir Ski Mask (@THESLUMPGOD) January 17, 2019

The internet crazy , Soulja boy reinvented himself 🤦🏾‍♂️

— zoey dollaz (@ZoeyDollaz) January 17, 2019

Soulja Boy is a legend

— juicy j (@therealjuicyj) January 16, 2019

WE HAVE NOTHING BUT LOVE, RESPECT & ADMIRATION FOR SOULJA BOY IN THIS HOUSEHOLD *cranks dat in silence* pic.twitter.com/Amacz7NQYO

— The Vibe Formerly Known As (@KARIFAUX) January 16, 2019

For nostalgia's sake, listen to "Kiss Me Thru The Phone" below.

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Vic Mensa Covers' 'Zombie' In Honor Of The Cranberries' Dolores O'Riordan

Vic Mensa and his group 93PUNX covered "Zombie" by Irish rock group The Cranberries, in honor of the one-year anniversary of the passing of the group’s lead singer, Dolores O’Riordan.

93PUNX serves as an opportunity for Mensa to perform music outside of his typical hip-hop lane and explore genres more freely. He posted snippets of the track on his Instagram page with the caption, “RIP DOLORES.” Mensa also revealed in a statement the reason why he covered the hit.

“We connected to ‘Zombie’ because we were born from violence,” he said. Dolores O’Riordan died on Jan. 15, 2018. Toxicology reports state that the 46-year-old died from accidental drowning due to alcohol intoxication.

The artwork for the “Zombie” cover features a woman with dripping, bloody fangs, and was created by artist Lucas David. The cover version itself is slowed down, which provides a more mysterious take on the 1994 protest classic.

Mensa released his recent project HOOLIGANS in December 2018, which traverses various thematic landscapes, from mental health awareness to love lost. The EP features Ty Dolla $ign, G-Herbo, G-Eazy, Charlie Wilson and more.

What do you think about the cover? Listen below and let us know in the comments.

 

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@93PUNX - ZOMBIES 🧟‍♀️ 🧟‍♀️ RIP DOLORES. art by @lucasbavid

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City Girls And Cardi B Bask In Their Bootyliciousness For 'Twerk' Video

As it is written, so it must be done, and there's a whole lot of shakin' going on in The City Girls' video, "Twerk."

The video for the Cardi-B-assisted track features some of the finest twerkers the world has to offer, who were encouraged to show off their skills for a contest last year. The winner would receive $50,000. Not only did the winner get "flewed out," the woman with the best skills was highlighted at the end of the visual.

Elsewhere in the video, Yung Miami and Cardi are painted in head-to-toe jungle body paint (Miami as a zebra, and Cardi as a tiger), and are seen on the beach and on a yacht shakin' it with the best of them. They lead the group of dancers through various scenes- all of which do not feature the presence of a man- so they can live their best bootylicious lives in peace and reclaim their sexuality. During JT's verse, the group dances in front of a mural of the incarcerated MC.

The song itself has been streamed over 215 million times, and is featured on the duo's album, Girl Code. The Floridians gained national exposure after being featured on Drake's "In My Feelings," however, hey've proven to be standalone entities in their own right.

READ MORE: City Girls Drop Debut Album 'Girl Code'

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