Up and coming emceeDaVinci is hard at work making a name for himself. Recently signing with Bay-Area label SWTBRDS Creative Collective, DaVinci will soon unleash his music onto the masses with his debut album The Day The Turf Stood Still – scheduled to hit the streets on March 9, 2010. Building momentum for the release, in addition to releasing material from his upcoming debut, DaVinci will be releasing three bonus tracks not on the album. Rather than throwaways, all three are album-quality songs, simply completed too late to make the final cut. Up first, DaVinci offers us “It’s On Me,” and with this initial offering, gives listeners, both familiar and unfamiliar with DaVinci’s prior work, a window into his prior life – telling his own story of struggling his way out of a lifestyle of crime, taking big steps to help himself move up in the world. Raps DaVinci, “I’m at the bottom with the roaches and rats, but I’m climbing to the top with the snakes and cats.” Hoping to affect a greater change in the world than merely tell his own story, DaVinci looks at “It’s On Me” as a way to both inspire and prove his own merits. “I came up wit the concept to inspire people to take initiative for their hustle,” says DaVinci. “The message here is, ‘If I don’t do it, nobody else will,’ so I felt the need to convey exactly why I think people should give my music a chance.”
The slick production is courtesy of Vancouver producer Blunt, behind all three forthcoming pre-album tracks, perhaps most well known for his production efforts with Freeway – Blunt produced a majority of Freeway’s Month Of Madness. DaVinci was introduced to Blunt through a mutual friend over email, and was an instant fan of his beats: “The track was dope without anyone even rapping on it, so I just wanted to make sure that there was a marriage between the beat and my lyrics.”
“It’s On Me” prod. Blunt: http://media.audibletreats.com/DaVinci-Its_On_Me_Prod_By_Blunt.mp3
FEATURING REMIXES BY CRAZE AND NOSAJ THING, BBGUN DIRECTED VIDEO COMING IN FEBRUARY
In an era where emerging MCs are immediately boxed up and tagged as “street” this and “hipster” that, it’s refreshing to hear an new artist like Donnis defy such quick categorizations simply through good, honest music.
Having spent 2009 rising through the blog ranks with copious freestyles, live performance videos, and the smash mixtape “Diary Of An ATL Brave” (presented by beloved clothing label 10.Deep), Donnis is ready to take the next step in his career by releasing his debut single “Gone” on Fool’s Gold Records, the Brooklyn powerhouse founded by A-Trak and Nick Catchdubs, praised by Billboard as an “indie innovator” and a “tastemaker label” by the New York Times.
“Gone” is a perfect introduction to the stylistic diversity Donnis has in store. Produced by Needlz (Lupe Fiasco, G-Unit, Ludacris), the soaring, dreamy cut is as much a look into the future of Atlanta hip-hop as it is a classic A-Town ride-out in the vein of early TI and Outkast. It’s already receiving radio love from everyone from Khaled to Hot 97′s DJ Enuff, who named it a “Heavy Hitter Pick Of The Week“, and a video is due out in February from directors BBGun. The single is rounded out by an up-tempo dance remix from Craze (Kanye West DJ, three-time world DMC champion) and a spacey take by critically acclaimed producer Nosaj Thing.
Donnis’ relationship with Fool’s Gold Records has been long in the making, from sharing stages with Fool’s Gold’s DJs to guest spots on records by A-Trak and Bag Raiders. “I’ve known A-Trak and Nick for a couple years. We’ve wanted to work together for a while now, but timing is everything – and the timing is finally right. I respect what they do and I’m excited to work with the Fool’s Gold team on this record,” says Donnis.
The feeling is mutual, explains A-Trak: “Donnis has always been dope, but he’s grown by leaps and bounds over the past year from a skilled party rapper into an extremely charismatic, well-rounded artist. Nick and I are thrilled to have ‘Gone’ bring him into the Fool’s Gold family.”
The track is available now at iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/gone-ep/id350007310
Favorites of fans and critics alike, Little Brother, the North Carolina duo of Phonte and Rapper Big Pooh, is proud to finally confirm the release of an album people have been waiting on for years.LeftBack, which will be the fourth album of Little Brother’s illustrious career, will be available April 20thvia Hall Of Justus.
Little Brother members Phonte and Rapper Big Pooh worked through several versions of the album before locking in the final version of LeftBack. Close followers of Little Brother may already be familiar with the LeftBack title, however, any previously held notions of this album being an EP should be dismissed. Little Brother opted to scrap the EP concept and instead, crafted an album’s worth of material for those who have been waiting patiently for new content. “I didn’t want our last record to be a bunch of second-rate material,” says Phonte. “I wanted to walk away from Little Brother knowing that I gave our fans all that I had to give, and said everything I wanted to say. With LeftBack, I’ve done that.”
Continuing the tradition they set with the critically acclaimed GetBack, Big Pooh and Phonte have enlisted multiple producers for LeftBack, both from within and outside of the Justus League camp. Producers for this album include frequent collaborator Khrysis and GetBack producers Denaun Porter and Zo!, as well as efforts from Symbolyc Oneand first time Little Brother contributors, J. Bizness, and King Karnov.
In addition to production, Khyrsis will also be contributing guest vocals on the album. Joining the North Carolina producer/MC are Torae, Truck North, Jozeemo and fellow Justus League MC’s Chaundon and Median. Resident crooner Darien Brockington and songstress Yahzarah also supply vocals on the album.
Despite Little Brother’s dominating presence in the hip-hop world since the 2003 release of The Listening, LeftBack will mark the duo’s first album with a true multi-media experience. Accompanying LeftBack will be four official music videos, all shot and directed by Matt Koza, known for his previous work with Foreign Exchange, Rapper Big Pooh, Kam Moye, RJD2, and more. While not customary for a Little Brother release – the group has had only one previous official video, forThe Minstrel Show’s “Lovin’ It” – with LeftBack, Little Brother is excited to offer loyal supporters a long-desired visual take on the group’s music. Says Big Pooh, “Three albums, three mixtapes, one video. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense in this day and age. We have always lacked in the visual department, and I think it will be refreshing to finally offer the people those visuals.”
Building on the album’s multi-media offerings, the initial pressing of LeftBack will also feature a limited edition DVD full of exclusive bonus material. Compiled in a documentary format, the bonus DVD will include recent tour footage, as well as exclusive Little Brother footage shot and archived throughout their career. For fans that miss the initial run, a subsequent DVD-only release will also include all official music videos from LeftBack.
Fans can expect further announcements from Little Brother, including tour info and other interesting developments onLeftBack’s road to the release.
Ladies, we’re moving on up! For the first time ever, Hardihood Clothing is releasing a women’s line. Playing with the concept of Tibetan Buddhist influences, the collection has fantastic fit, great colours, and will be unfolding this spring.
“At Hardihood we are always pushing the boundaries to be unique,” says Creative Director Angus Wong. “We’ve had so many requests to do women’s clothing and now that we’ve had so much success with our men’s line, we are ready to tackle this new challenge and expand the Hardihood family.”
The designs embody Hardihood Clothing’s self-assured maxim, I Am What You Are Not. “The Hardihood woman is sassy and strong – she’s the type that can change your mind without saying a word,” says Angus. This boldness is on display with the cheeky Kiss Tee ($66).