M-Bomb

Author


[Podcast] John River talks believing in a greater purpose, #BlackLivesMatter, and the pressures of success

To hear John River tell it, his future lies in one of two extremes: either he’ll become the biggest rapper in the world, or he’ll end up as the biggest bust in hip-hop. The more you hear the 20-year-old Mississauga artist tell his story, the more you can’t help but believe that he’s destined to succeed. After all, this is the same artist who, as a teenager, took a bus to New York City and showed up unannounced at the president of Dreamville’s door. It’s also the same artist who left an indelible mark with his debut mixtape, The Calm, and is now prepared for its followup, The Storm.

What happens to a young artist when things don’t happen as quickly as they had imagined? The same setbacks that cause so many to call it quits served as a wakeup call for John River once the honeymoon of The Calm ended. “You have to really grow up,” says River. “You have to shut up, stop complaining, get educated, be willing to listen, and understand that maybe you’re not the best rapper in the world at 17.”

Suffice it to say, a lot has happened since the release of River’s debut mixtape two years ago, and it was long overdue that we caught up with him once again. We spoke about everything from believing in one’s greater purpose, to the significance of the #BlackLivesMatter movement, to the pressures of success and the fear of failure.

Listen to the podcast above and get a glimpse of the conversation after the jump.

[Interview + Podcast] Junia-T talks travelling to England, things happening on divine time, and being rich in love

Interview by: Martin Bauman

What happens when you feel like you’ve hit the ceiling in Toronto’s music scene? Either you give up, or like Junia-T, you look for that next step to grow. So it was that the Mississauga-raised artist found himself hopping on a plane to the United Kingdom, eager to find a musical foothold outside of his hometown. Even more remarkable was the timing: his latest project, Eye See You, came out when he was overseas — quite the leap of faith, when most artists would seek comfort in celebrating the release in their hometown. We caught up with Junia-T to talk about his month-long departure to England, things happening on divine time, being rich in love, and much more. Listen to the podcast above and read the interview after the jump.

[Interview + Podcast] DJ T.Lo talks new EP with Shad, memories of their smallest shows, and digging for records

Interview by: Martin Bauman

You may not know his name, but chances are you’ve heard his music or seen him perform before. T.Lo has been deejaying for Shad since the very beginning, and he’s also responsible for producing some of the London emcee’s most beloved songs: “Rose Garden,” “Telephone,” and more recently, “Always Winnin.” Pretty soon, there will be another batch of songs to add to that list. The Mississauga native has been working on a collaborative EP with Shad for the past several months, and it’s almost ready for the world to hear.

The story of a touring deejay (or any band member, for that matter) is fascinating to listen to. They’ve been there through it all, from the humble beginnings to the peaks of success. When it came to T.Lo (a former Scribble Jam champion and DMC Canadian champion in his own right), we had to learn more. We caught up with T.Lo to talk about the upcoming EP, memories of the smallest shows he and Shad ever played, digging for records, and much more.

Listen to the podcast above and read the interview after the jump.

[Interview + Podcast] P.R talks Nujabes’ influence, hip-hop in Australia, and where Iggy Azalea fits in

Interview by: Martin Bauman

If jazzy hip-hop is your thing, look no further than P.R. The Sydney, Australia-based producer has the sound damn near perfected, drawing clear inspiration from the likes of Nujabes and meshing the jazzy, mellow vibes with the boom bap flavour of influences like DJ Premier, 9th Wonder, and J Dilla.

We first took notice of P.R when he sent his Moment In Time EP through last year, and it blew us away. Smooth production and stellar features from the likes of Substantial, Skyzoo, Blu, and Cise Starr combined to create one of the year’s most memorable EPs. It was only right that we eventually connected down the road to hear him tell his story.

We caught up with P.R to talk about Nujabes’ influence on him, the hip-hop scene in Australia, where Iggy Azalea fits in, and much more. Listen to the podcast above and read the interview after the jump.

[Interview + Podcast] Rapsody talks meeting Jay Z, self-belief, and choosing to “give a damn”

Interview by: Martin Bauman

Make no mistake: for all her humility, Rapsody is not an emcee to be overlooked on the microphone. On “Hard To Choose,” the budding Jamla star raps, “The quietest in the room is the baddest one like Durant.” The more you think about it, it’s not that far of a stretch to compare her to the NBA’s reigning MVP. Both entered their respective fields being thought of as too soft to succeed — Durant, for his wiry frame, and Rapsody, for being a woman in a male-dominated genre. Durant shed that misnomer in Oklahoma City’s first playoffs series win in 2011. Here’s how ESPN writer Royce Young described the moment:

Kevin Durant, who had dropped 41 points, including 14 in the final five minutes, stalked along the baseline, right in front of where owners Clay Bennett and Aubrey McLendon sat. With his teammates hanging on his shoulders, Durant popped his jersey and bellowed, “This is my motherf—ing team!”

Nobody was questioning KD after that. As for Rapsody? That defining alpha moment could very well be her latest offering, Beauty and the Beast. After steady growth on The Idea of Beautiful and She Got Game, the Snow Hill, NC emcee sounds like an artist who has finally found her voice. The rhymes and delivery have always been there. The difference now is in her confidence, which shines through on every track. Three years after Durant’s alpha moment, he had his MVP season. It’s only a matter of time before Rapsody has her own. We caught up with the Jamla emcee to talk about meeting Jay Z, where her confidence comes from, carrying the torch from the likes of Ruby Dee and Maya Angelou, and much more.

Listen to the podcast above and read the interview after the jump.

[Feature] Fashawn’s “Boy Meets World”: An oral history on its five-year anniversary

Fashawn Boy Meets World

Interviews by: Martin Bauman

In 2009, a young, hungry, and largely undiscovered emcee from Fresno teamed up with a Los Angeles producer with an ear for crafting albums and bringing an artist’s music to life. Fashawn and Exile were in the works on Boy Meets World, a project that would change their lives forever.

Hip-hop has long had an obsession with the debut album — perhaps more so than any other genre. They mark an artist’s introduction to the world and often live on as their definitive piece of work. Nas had Illmatic. Jay had Reasonable Doubt. Snoop had Doggystyle. Biggie had Ready to Die. On October 22nd, 2009, the day came for Fashawn to leave his own mark. He had lived 21 years and was anxious to tell his story — to let the world know what Fresno looked like, sounded like, and felt like.

The result was an album the likes of which had seldom been heard from someone his age. It was witty, heartfelt, and honest. His storytelling was captivating. The production was magnificent. XXL gave it an XL and called it an album that “resonates a lot more than the work of some rappers decades his senior.” HipHopDX called it “perhaps the most heir apparent to Nas’ ’94 classic.” It’s only fitting that five years later, Nas would end up signing Fashawn to his Mass Appeal label.

Perhaps the greatest testament to the album’s significance, though, is the fact that it’s still as relatable and fresh today as the day it was released. We caught up with those involved in the making of Boy Meets World to hear the untold stories behind the album’s creation. Read the oral history after the jump.

[Video + Podcast] Classified and Shad talk each other’s music, their most embarrassing moments onstage, and the best year in hip-hop history

Classified and Shad on The Come Up Show

When it comes to Canadian hip-hop — and hip-hop in general, for that matter — few artists are better than Classified and Shad. Look at the numbers: the two have combined for a whopping 13 Juno nominations (with one win each — during the Drake era, no less), three Polaris Music Prize nominations (all Shad’s), and three Platinum records (all Classified’s — one of them quadruple-Platinum). For what it’s worth, the two were also voted as two of the top six greatest Canadian rappers ever, in a list compiled by CBC Music.

The truth is, the numbers only tell half of the story. Each artist has contributed his own unique perspective and flair to Canada’s mosaic of music and related to hundreds of thousands — if not millions — of people through their lyrics. Songs like “All About U,” “Brother (Watching),” “Things Are Looking Up,” and “Keep Shining” have connected with people from all walks of life. “Oh…Canada” and “Fam Jam (Fe Sum Immigrins)” tell equally patriotic tales of what it means to be Canadian.

Beyond the accolades, and beyond the music itself, Classified and Shad are two down-to-earth emcees who — plain and simple — love hip-hop. We caught up with them to talk about how they discovered each other’s music, their most embarrassing moments onstage, the best year in hip-hop history, and much more. Check out the video and podcast below.

Page 1 of 11112345...102030...Last »

TCUS Newsletter

Our Weekly newsletter featuring giveaways, events, interviews, and feel good music subscribe now!

The Come Up Show Podcast

Connect With Us