Hip-Hop and Rap

  • Blogs

    November 19, 2014

    Dallas Hip Hop Needs a Unified Sound to Get National Attention

    The most popular rapper to have ever come from North Texas is one Robert Matthew Van Winkle. You probably know him as Vanilla Ice. This is nothing short of equal parts silly and embarrassing. Vanilla Ice is the Psy of the '90s and "Ice Ice Baby" is hands down the "Gangham Style" of those times. Drop ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 18, 2014

    Which New Dallas Old-School Hip-Hop Station Should You Listen To?

    Since early Saturday morning, the people of Dallas are momentarily retiring their auxiliary cables and tuning into not one, but two new radio stations, both specializing in a virtually untested format. As we reported Monday, both Boom 94.5 FM and Hot 93.3 FM made an unprovoked about-face early Satur ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 7, 2014

    Run the Jewels Were Hip Hop's Great Unifiers Last Night at Trees

    Run the Jewels Trees, Dallas Thursday, November 6, 2014 The blood red tour bus bearing Run The Jewels' name and signature iconography - two mummified hands, one surrendering a gold chain to the other, gestured as a gun - glared in the early afternoon sun outside of Trees in Deep Ellum, visible from ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 31, 2014

    The Best Concerts in Dallas This Weekend, 10/31-11/02

    It's Halloween weekend, which is most likely your favorite time of the year to party if you're under 30. If you're over 30, relax, New Year's Eve isn't too far off. For now, there's just a bunch of shows you should check out this weekend, Halloween-themed and otherwise. Slipknot and Korn take their ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 27, 2014

    The Best Concerts in Dallas This Week, 10/27-11/02

    The hottest ticket this week is of course Halloween. There's gonna be a shit ton of Halloween stuff for you to do this week and we know you started last week. Just couldn't resist. So of course our music picks for this week include a few Halloween-based ones as well as the usual civilian ones. Doubl ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 17, 2014

    Four Dallas Beats Producers You Need to Hear Now

    When it comes to genres that have been allowed to flourish in the age of the online music cloud, few have risen to greater prominence than future sounds, better known to most as beats. An all-encompassing chimeric blend of electronic, hip-hop and soul that, beats takes DJs and producers of more trad ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 19, 2014

    Best Concerts in Dallas this Weekend 9/19 - 9/21

    Well, it's the weekend once again. We here at DC9 hope you powered through the week and that you're looking for some relief. We want you to go to some bars and have a few drinks. We want you to pregame beforehand. (That's just being fiscally responsible.) But most importantly, we want you to check o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 3, 2014

    The Best North Texas Hip Hop Concerts In September

    Howdy, folks. The best thing that's gonna happen this month is the one and only State Fair of Texas. It's in your best interest to head on down to Fair Park and daze at the 55 foot gargantuan glory that is Big Tex. Gorging on fried foods that have the propensity to stop your arteries by the aroma al ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 14, 2014

    10 Reasons 1994 Was Pop Music's Greatest Year

    By Art Tavana Was 1994 the best year for pop music in history? Quite possibly. Sure, some of it was terrible, but overall it was amazing: Nordic black metal, Britpop, pop punk, trip hop, and the best R&B of the '90s (Boyz II Men were peaking). Hip-hop's Golden Age was winding down, but a new, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 1, 2014

    The Best North Texas Rap Shows In August

    As PARTYNEXTDOOR sadly reported on the opening track of his new project; the summer is over. It won't physically feel that way for us down here in North Texas until about early to mid October, but that magical haze is fading away now. Everyone's going back to school. Football practice is in full swi ... More >>

  • Music

    July 24, 2014
  • Blogs

    July 24, 2014

    Win Free Tickets To See Dallas Hip-Hop Documentary "We From Dallas"

    You won't hear much about the work of underground rappers from Dallas in the broader context of hip-hop history, but that's only because most people don't know where to look. We From Dallas, a documentary made by local music scene figures Joel Salazar, Teddy Cool and Islam Sesalem, seeks to tell the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 21, 2014

    The Best Concerts in Dallas This Week, 7/21-7/27

    Well, so much for the polar vortex. With the temperatures looking set to start climbing back up in the coming days, it's going to time to start finding some places to take shelter indoors. Lucky for us, there are plenty of cool, welcoming concert venues that are nice enough to throw open their doors ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 19, 2014

    Kessler Theater to Host Trees Reunion Party on July 11

    Next month, the Kessler will open its doors to hundreds of people in celebration of Trees, a music venue long revered for its contributions to the historic Deep Ellum community. As one of the neighborhood's earliest and most popular venues, Trees has been part of Dallas nightlife for over 20 years, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 12, 2014

    Yoni Wolf Worked the Hip Hop and Indie Rock Divide at Rubber Gloves

    Yoni Wolf With Serengetti, Topic Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, Denton Wednesday, June 11, 2014 By H. Drew Blackburn We're gonna go ahead and break the fourth wall right off the bat here: I had a roommate who was into Why? He didn't listen to rap music. If he did, it was Aesop Rock or something ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 7, 2014

    Hip-Hop's Illuminati Dropout Class of 2014.

    It's that time of year again: Graduations have party-blocked out every May weekend while springtime optimists flock to their favorite blogs to discover soon-to-be summer hits. You know, the kind of hits that stealthily attack radio and multiply like a pop virus. But what about your favorite hip-hop ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 30, 2014

    10 Reasons Urban Outfitters is Bad for Music

    We all know it, but it's time to show it. Urban Outfitters is a creative wasteland, a shortsighted cul-de-sac of trends and trash-culture bent for capital gain -- one large, unthinking slab of cultural masturbation. But, by and large, it's a beast we ourselves feed. Like creepers to a drug deal we l ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 14, 2014

    More than Drinking and Sexing: 'Mad Men's' Characterization of Hip-hop

    Characteristically, Mad Men bleeds hip-hop. On the surface you may think, "Of course it does, the characters smoke a lot, they drink like there's no tomorrow, and to them sex is more casual than a handshake." And while that's part of the story, it's a little bit deeper than that. Skydiving into its ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 14, 2014

    Ludacris: An Appreciation

    This is a statement that your brain will reflexively disagree with but also one that it will eventually accept as truth: Ludacris is one of rap's greatest and most unstoppable guest-verse performers of all time, and, despite his millions of album sales and shelf full of awards, remains somehow under ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 5, 2014

    10 Must-See Acts at SXSW 2014

    There's anywhere from 1 to 10 billion bands at any given SXSW. This year I think there's more. This makes planning one's festival schedule a daunting monstrosity. But don't worry, The Dallas Observer is here to help. Because it's our opinion that festivals should be about seeing great bands, not try ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 4, 2014

    I Accidentally Volunteered To Teach Kids Hip-Hop Dancing

    It might have been the Christmas spirit or a feeling of a quarter-life crisis creeping up on me, but whatever the reason, I decided to volunteer. I ended up teaching some local kids everything about hip-hop dancing. Before you glance up at my name or Facebook stalk me, I am in fact a white girl. I ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 10, 2014

    Should Rap Lyrics Be Used in Criminal Trials?

    Legions of angry parents were already up in arms when gangster rap arrived on the scene. After the 1985 PMRC Senate hearings helped institute "Parental Advisory" stickers, albums by Ice-T and N.W.A. were among the first to be branded. Since then, rap as a musical form has continued to take its lumps ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 5, 2014

    Ludacris Will Headline This Year's Dallas Observer St. Patrick's Day Concert

    St. Patrick's Day in Dallas is a quiet celebration of our Irish heritage and Catholic faith. Just a couple friends wearing matching outfits and standing in the street. No reason you wouldn't remember last year, but just in case you have it looked sort of like this. To these proceedings the Dallas ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 14, 2014

    Why Beyoncé Could Be a New Leader for Texas Hip-Hop

    Last summer, Houston's one-woman pop monopoly Beyoncé Knowles introduced the world to one of her grittier alter-egos with the unleashing of Third Ward Trill. With chopped-and-screwed rap deliveries, à la promotional single "Bow Down/ I Been On," fans received a taste of the hip-hop influences to f ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 19, 2013

    The Legendary Fritz Had Unfinished Business in Dallas Hip-Hop

    Matt Deas' rapper name, Legendary Fritz, pays homage to his late cousin (and "Harlem gangster") Richard "Fritz" Simmons. The 'Legendary' part came later, when Deas' was freestyling at Club Exodus in Dallas. Hip-hop legend KRS-One happened to be there, promoting one of his new albums. During his batt ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 19, 2013

    Public Enemy Are Coming to Dallas

    Fight the power! The Door in Dallas has just announced they're bringing Public Enemy to town on December 29. Tickets are set to go on sale this Thursday, November 21.

  • Music

    October 24, 2013
  • Blogs

    October 24, 2013

    The Eight Best Shows in DFW this Week, October 24 to 30

    Halloween is the best holiday, and that is just a fact. Christmas presents and Thanksgiving dinner are all well and fine, but how often do you get to get shitfaced wasted at a block party dressed as Miley Cyrus or a Ninja Turtle? Probably not enough. This weekend, the holiday festivities are in full ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 9, 2013

    Stop Calling Yourself Old

    Detroit rapper Danny Brown has a new album, called Old. Brown's occasional boasts about receiving in-show fellatio aside, just about everyone who likes good rap music likes him, and this new work does not disappoint. But the title is really annoying.

  • Blogs

    October 4, 2013 Like Chatroulette, But for Battle Rapping

    By Jonah Bromwich You enter the room and they're already there. Some of the names you recognize: Randa the Rhyma (45 wins), Gig@ntic (48 wins), and Novice Raps (53 wins). You've checked the boards obsessively, but you've only ever been here before anonymously, as a guest. This is your first appeara ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 24, 2013

    Breakaway Music Festival Brings Juicy J, Wu-Tang Clan and More to Frisco

    "We're in a stadium, but I can probably hear each and every one of you," says Ra Ra Riot front man Wes Miles. "So if you have anything you want to say..." That invitation rarely ends well. Some people standing near the back of the 50-person crowd in FC Dallas Stadium give heckling a shot, but get ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 19, 2013

    The 30 Most Disturbing Songs of All Time

    We recently noted some of the best clean versions of hip-hop songs, which got us thinking - what songs are so disturbing that they couldn't possibly exist as a clean version? Well, here you go. Artists choose to write shockingly upsetting music for a number of reasons: To express extreme emotions o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 25, 2013

    The Six Best Concerts In DFW This Week, Including a Farewell to Zubar

    It's always sad seeing a good bar or venue close its doors. This week we're losing Zubar, a Greenville Avenue bar that has hosted a lot of great DJ residencies and some pretty phenomenal reggae, house and hip-hop sets in its nearly 17-year span. On the bright side, they're throwing a massive party ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 19, 2013

    The 18 Most Entertaining Musical Performances by Politicians

    In America, politics and music have been tied together since the very beginning. Benjamin Franklin played multiple instruments, including the violin, harp and guitar, and he even invented one: the glass harmonica. Thomas Jefferson, who played the violin, used music to woo his wife, Martha, who pla ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 2, 2013

    LL Cool J, Ice Cube, Public Enemy and De La Soul at Verizon Theatre: Review

    Chuck D says knock you out. The Kings of the Mic Tour has repeatedly been compared to a big classic rock arena show - old timers busting out riffs familiar to a graying crowd. But that's the wrong comparison. The Kings of the Mic Tour is more like if Chuck Berry went on tour with Elvis Presley, Lit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 27, 2013

    The Nine Must-See Concerts in DFW This Week: June 27-July3

    There's a lot happening in music around here -- a lot has happened this week, in fact. In this sprawling metropolitan music scene, with a kaleidoscopic framework of ever-changing people and bands and venues and ideas, a lot happens at once. The only thing we know for sure is that the people who make ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 22, 2013

    Backstreet Boys, Steely Dan, Cold War Kids and More Top Show Announcements

    You know, this seldom happens, but I can say without a doubt that I have every single one of these artists in my iPod. Maybe I'll make it into a playlist. This'd be a good playlist, right? Either way, here are your top show announcements this week, and if you're like me, you're flabbergasted by th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 9, 2013

    Foxy Brown Lies About Jay-Z's Sex Life and Other Controversies

    Where to begin? #raptwitter had a big day yesterday, with big stories breaking left and right. From a Foxy Brown hoax to a pseudo-Big Tymers reunion, here are your biggest hip-hop news stories of the week: Yesterday started off with a shocking report of Foxy Brown dishing out some pretty wild alleg ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 12, 2013

    Jean Grae Talks Jeanius Re-Release Plans, Prepares to D-Town Boogie

    The best show you had no idea was going on this week is almost upon us. Tonight, Heroes Sports Lounge weekly Paid In Full Fridays emcee battles will feature a very special guest headliner. A legend in the game, and arguably the most talented female emcee to ever pick up a mic- Brooklyn's own Jean Gr ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 5, 2013

    I'm a Feminist who Loves Hip-Hop. Rick Ross and Other Misogynists Can't Change That.

    Rick Ross is having a rough week. The Maybach Music Group kingpin is currently being crucified by the media & women's interest groups all over the country, for a guest verse he gave on Atlanta rapper Rocko's new single, U.O.E.N.O. Featuring a hook from autotune boy wonder, Future, the song is perfec ... More >>

  • Music

    March 28, 2013
  • Music

    March 14, 2013
  • Blogs

    February 20, 2013

    DJ Quick Chris was a Guiding Light for Dallas Hip-Hop: R.I.P.

    Last Sunday, Dallas lost a true beacon in the scene. Christopher Evans Kelly, a.k.a. DJ Quick Chris, died of pneumonia and congestive heart failure after a year-long fight with lymphoma. "Even through his ongoing stays in the hospital, Chris continued to create new and original sounds," says his si ... More >>

  • Music

    February 7, 2013


    Friday, February 8, at The Prophet Bar

  • Music

    January 24, 2013


    Saturday, January 26, at Granada Theater

  • Music

    December 13, 2012
  • Blogs

    December 5, 2012

    Five Rap Albums That Changed the Game in 2012

    Before the storm of best of lists start hitting the blogs, I wanted to take a second to put aside the artistic merit aspect of the year in review, and take a look at what happened in the cultural landscape of rap music. Some of these albums were really good, some of them were really not, but all of ... More >>

  • Music

    November 29, 2012
  • Music

    November 15, 2012

    Mary J. Blige

    Sunday, November 18, at American Airlines Center

  • Blogs

    November 1, 2012

    Kendrick Lamar - South Side Music Hall - 10/31/12

    Kendrick Lamar, -topic, Dustin Cavazos South Side Music Hall Wednesday, October 31 Thanks to Scoremore and AEG, Dallas rap fans are currently having one of the best Halloweens ever. By the time candy prices are marked down again, our city will have seen Nas with Lauryn Hill, Asher Roth and the A$AP ... More >>

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