Clearly the Jay-Z and Kanye album didn't drop on July 4 as last indicated it would (fans did get a flashy gold album cover and a presale link however). But a grip of other hip-hop goodness came to light over our celebratory long weekend.
Common and Nas dropped this track a couple days ago. It's the leading single off Common's new solo effort, The Dreamer, The Believer. No, it's not the same as an entire album between the two, but it's got a good hook and some real nostalgic vibes, making it worth a listen for sure.
Yesterday, SoulCulture posted this video on its YouTube account which amounts to a trailer of an upcoming video release. As you can see, it features Blackstar -- Mos Def and Talib Kweli -- Rakim, and De La Soul in of one of the most star-studded hip-hop concerts in recent memory. We'll let the official word sum it up:
"Crowds poured into London's Hammersmith Apollo on May 10, 2011 for a historic Hip Hop show with legends Rakim, De la Soul and Blackstar coming together onstage for the experience that was Science of Speech. Stay tuned for SoulCulture TV's exclusive coverage of the event, capturing live performances of iconic classics and backstage antics caught on our AAA roams."
And finally, we have The Roots, who made this video for John Varvatos' winter line this year. Such a gorgeous video, with just enough hint of runway high fashion to make sense for the context. Also, I don't remember the last time I heard an Akira Kurosawa shoutout in any song.