href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 15, 2022Nathaniel S. Butler/Getty Images

Jay-Z has been rumored to charge and exorbitant amount of money to appear on a track, but the rapper recently admitted he doesn't take money for verses.

On Thursday (July 14), Hov appeared on the new episode of Kevin Hart's Hart to Heart show on Peacock. The rare Jay-Z interview featured the rapper touching on a number of topics, including his fee for a 16, which Jigga claims is nada. According to Jay, his appearance on songs these days is deeper than a paycheck.

"It's mostly relationships. It's actually always been mostly relationships," Jay-Z revealed around the 19:55-mark of the sit-down. "Sometimes it's talent and sometimes someone asks me to be on something. Pretty much every song that I'm on I'm asked to be on. I don't ask people to be on their songs. I never charge."

Though most rappers would like to get their hands on a Jay-Z verse, they are few and far between. He's only appeared on one track this year, Pusha T's "Neck and Wrist."

"Way more nos than yeses," Jay confirmed about the ratio of requests he actually obliges.

During the interview, Jay-Z also confirmed that he is not retired from rap.

"Nah, I tried [retirement]. I'm terrible at that," Jay said, referencing the time when he claimed he was getting out of the rap game following the release of The Black Album in 2003. "I just needed a break … I was really burnt out at that time. I was releasing an album every year … I just looked up one day and I was like, 'I'm tired.' I'd never been on vacation until, say, 2000, my whole life."

"I don’t know what happens next," he added. "I’m not actively making music or making an album or have plans to make an album, but I never want to say that I’m retired. It’s a gift, and who am I to shut it off? It's open to whatever. And it may have a different form or interpretation. Maybe it’s not an album, maybe it is. I have no idea, but I’m just going to leave it open."

Jay's last album, 4:44, came out in June of 2017.

Watch the Full Jay-Z Interview With Kevin Hart BelowSee How Much It Costs for a Verse From Your Favorite RapperAny guesses on dollar amounts before you look?Filed Under: Jay-ZCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/robbyseabrookiii/” rel=”author”>Robby Seabrook IIIPublished: July 15, 2022Lisa Lake/Dimitrios Kambouris/Paras Griffin/Getty Images (3)

Week in and week out, there are plenty of brand-new rap songs, no matter the time of year. It can be really difficult to stay aware of what's out and also what's hot, so XXL decided to make things much easier for you. Instead of sorting out nearly everything that released this week, we've narrowed it down to strictly the best of the week, saving you plenty of time.

Expect to see selections from the established stars, the next wave of new talent, the up-and-comers and everyone else in between. If your song is fire enough to beat the competition, it'll take one of the weekly spots. You can trust us on this one; follow our lead and you'll never get laughed off the aux cord again. Your friends will finally trust you with playlists; it'll be wonderful. In addition to that, you can check back every week for the latest and greatest tracks. You'll always have somewhere to turn to each week, being sure to find some songs you'll dig.

Enjoy this week's list, featuring new songs from Lloyd Banks ("Power Steering" with Jadakiss), DJ Premier ("Beat Breaks" featuring Nas), Yo Gotti ("Paparazzi" with EST Gee and Blac Youngsta) and more. See you next week.

  • “Power Steering”Lloyd Banks featuring Jadakiss
  • “Beat Breaks”DJ Premier featuring Nas
  • “Paparazzi”Yo Gotti, EST Gee, Blac Youngsta
  • “Crash Dummies”Seddy Hendrinx
  • “Zipcodes”Joey Bada$$
  • “Los Flow”Sada Baby
  • “Football Heads”Maxo Kream featuring Benny The Butcher
  • “Pussy”Latto
  • “Master P”Rowdy Rebel featuring French Montana
  • “Kiss Ya Neck”Sheff G featuring Fivio Foreign and Rowdy Rebel
  • “Love Is…”Toosii
  • “Bad Bad”Roy Woods
  • “Get Backers”SpotemGottem

See the Rappers Who Unsuccessfully Tried Changing Their NamesFiled Under: Bangers, Benny The Butcher, blac youngsta, DJ Premier, EST Gee, Fivio Foreign, French Montana, Jadakiss, Joey Bada$$, Latto, Lloyd Banks, Maxo Kream, Nas, Rowdy Rebel, Roy Woods, Sada Baby, Seddy Hendrinx, Sheff G, SpotemGottem, The List, Yo GottiCategories: New Music


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 15, 2022Cooper Neill, Getty Images

UPDATE (July 15):

NBA YoungBoy's attorney, Andre Belanger, has confirmed the rapper was acquitted in court today. He released the following statement to XXL:

"[NBA YoungBoy] was acquitted and walked out the courtroom saying he was never guilty of this. I am grateful we could challenge what little evidence they had before 12 people. This verdict shows the power of a jury and the ability to check government power."

ORIGINAL STORY (July 15):

YoungBoy Never Broke Again has reportedly been found not guilty in his federal gun case.

On Friday (July 15), following four days of trial, NBA YoungBoy's fate was announced in California Central District court. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty, according to Rolling Stone Senior Reporter Nancy Dillon. The Louisiana rapper was facing multiple years in prison if found guilty of the gun offense.

The case has been hanging over the rapper's head for more than a year. It stems from YoungBoy Never Broke Again being arrested on March 22, 2021. Federal agents along with the Los Angeles Police Department attempted to execute an outstanding federal warrant on the rapper from a 2020 Louisiana arrest. While trying to pull the rapper over in a vehicle, police say YoungBoy eluded them before exiting the vehicle and leading them on a foot chase. K-9 dogs had to be brought out in order to locate the rapper. Police also discovered an FN, model FNX-45, .45 ACP caliber gun in the floorboard of YB's Maybach SUV.

After some haggling, the rapper was finally released from jail on house arrest via a $1.5 million bond last October. He lived in Layton, Utah as stipulated by his bond in the months leading up to his case being brought to court.

A point of contention leading up to the trial involved the use of song lyrics. The prosecution wanted to use lines from NBA YoungBoy's song "Gunsmoke" as evidence. On the track, YB raps about the model of firearm found in his vehicle. Ultimately, judge R. Gary Klausen vetoed the attempt.

According to Rolling Stone, during the trial, jurors reportedly heard testimony from an FBI forensic examiner who told the court no DNA evidence from NBA YoungBoy was able to be pulled from the firearm located in the rapper's vehicle. The rapper's defense argued NBA YoungBoy had no idea about the firearm, which was located on the floorboard surrounded by items that reportedly did not belong to the Colors rhymer. They claimed he ran because he was afraid after authorities "took defensive positions" and "drew weapons" during what he thought was a routine traffic stop.

Now that YB has cleared this legal hurdle, he still has an open gun case in Baton Rouge, La. He received positive news about that case back in March, when it was revealed the judge in the case had thrown out video and photo evidence.

XXL has reached out to YoungBoy Never Broke Again's attorney and the U.S. District Attorney for comment on the latest verdict.

See 44 of the Longest Prison Bids in Hip-Hop HistoryC-Murder, Max B, B.G. and more.Filed Under: YoungBoy Never Broke AgainCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 15, 2022Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

Boosie BadAzz's Instagram account has been deleted again and the rapper is livid.

On Thursday (July 14), Boosie BadAzz's former Instagram page @americasmostwantedig was taken down. The Baton Rouge, La. rapper vented about the move on Twitter in a heated rant, blaming Facebook owner Mark Zuckerberg and Instagram head Adam Mosseri. Boosie believes his page was deleted because of the video of his recent detainment by police, which shows the rapper verbally assaulting officers during the encounter.

"Y’all take my IG for a video that a cop posted of me going off like wtf I ain’t post it," Boosie BadAzz typed on Twitter. "Adam [Zuckerberg] n Mark [Mosseri] y’all some bitches‼️ All that dam money n your wives look like Aliens n your kids look like retardsI wake up every morning hoping your jet crash ."

"The Alien people have done it again #racistatitsfinest," he added in a follow-up tweet.

From there, Boosie BadAzz further wished harm on the social media moguls and their families and poked fun at their looks.

"GOD Bring Kobe Bryant back n put mark and Adam in that helicopter with their family," the Louisiana rhymer added.

"Adam look like u play on revenge of the Nerds lmao," Boosie continued. "Revenge of the nerds looking mf."

Boosie BadAzz and Instagram have had a tenuous relationship. This is the third time his page has been deleted. The first time happened in 2020, after the rapper was posting explicit sexual content. Last year,  his second page was deleted on the heels of Boosie doing a livestream on his page giving his thoughts on DaBaby being removed from a several festival performances after making homophobic comments. Boosie vented then as well.

"They took my IG AGAIN SMH AINT EVEN DO SHIT SPam @mosseri HES A BITCH," he wrote on Twitter. "ITHEY TOOK MY IG CAUSE I SPOKE ON WHAT THEY DOING TO OUR KIDS @mosseri U A BITCH."

Boosie's latest Instagram account wasn't even verified.

XXL has reached out to Facebook for comment.

See Boosie BadAzz's Tweets Going Off About His Deleted IG Page BelowSee the Many Times Rappers’ Social Media Accounts Were SuspendedFiled Under: Boosie BadazzCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 15, 2022Cole Burston, Getty Images

A rumor that Drake was arrested in Sweden has turned out to be false.

Late Thursday night (July 14), rumors began to swirl on social media that Drake had been taken into custody by Swedish authorities. According to unconfirmed reports, the rapper and his security were allegedly arrested at a night club on marijuana charges. XXL has confirmed with a rep for the rap star that the speculation is false.

Video came out online of Drizzy's plane, "Air Drake," landing in Sweden on Wednesday (July 13). It is unclear why he is in the country.

The Drake hive started going crazy when rumors first began floating around that Drizzy was behind bars, with "Free Drake" trending on Twitter.

"Never thought I’d see the day that free Drake is trending 😭😭," one person tweeted.

"Free drake don’t even sound real to say out loud like wtf is goin on inna world rn," someone else questioned.

"Fell to my knees in my room, tears are running down my eyes," one of the more extreme tweets about the alleged arrest reads. "This is worst than the death of my son i had in 2017. the world will burn if this is true. i am now running covered in blood screaming 'FREE DRAKE' in the streets till the lord hears me."

If true, it would have been the second time a famous rapper had been arrested in Sweden in the last few years, following A$AP Rocky's infamous arrest there in 2019, which turned into an international issue where then President Trump got involved.

See Fans' Reactions to the Rumor Drake Was Arrested BelowSee 44 of the Longest Prison Bids in Hip-Hop HistoryC-Murder, Max B, B.G. and more.Filed Under: DrakeCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 15, 2022Money By Any Means/Empire / CMG The Label/Interscope / Epic

There are three guarantees in life: death, taxes and new music releases on Fridays. Closing out this week, we get a compilation album from one of the south's strongest labels, a new LP from one of the rap game's punchline kings and the debut album from a Brooklyn rhymer who came home from prison in 2020.

Yo Gotti has been building one of the most impressive collections of young rap talent for the imprint CMG The Label. He puts his roster on full display on the new compilation project Gangsta Art. Gotti officially announced the album on July 6 during an Instagram Live session that included CMG's Mozzy, Moneybagg Yo and EST Gee.

"On the real, I think it’s about time. Everybody keeps asking for it, like, you know, ‘When we gon’ do a tour? When we gon’ do a project together?'” he said. “I think it’s about time, man. All the songs we’ve been recording together. All the late nights. We got crazy, crazy, like, crazy songs, so I think we should just gon’ drop the whole CMG project on these people, man.”

The album features a robust 27 tracks featuring the aforementioned CMG members as well as Blac Youngsta, 42 Dugg, BlocBoy JB, Big Boogie, Lil Poppa, Lehla Semia and the latest signee Glorilla.

Lloyd Banks still has the hunger for more. The Queen, N.Y. spitta releases his new album, The Course of the Inevitable 2 on all streaming platforms. Banks has been teasing the album since April, and has gifted previews of the project in the form of the singles "Menace" featuring Conway The Machine and "Fell in Love."

Fourteen songs are on the album, which is the follow-up to The Course of the Inevitable that dropped last June. The former G-Unit rapper taps Jadakiss, Benny The Butcher, Dave East, Vado and Tony Yayo on the offering. In promotion of the album, Banks will be performing at Sony Hall in New York City tonight (July 15).

After serving a nearly six-year prison bid and coming home in 2020, Rowdy Rebel is ready to deliver his debut album Rebel vs. Rowdy. The Brooklyn native's proper introduction to the rap world is spearheaded by the singles "Woo Nina" and "Rowdy vs. Rebel." It's been a bumpy ride for the Bobby Shmurda affiliate, who lost momentum in 2014 when he was arrested along with members of the GS9 gang and imprisoned for a half-decade. The LP is a redemption of sorts.

"Life is a marathon and a journey," Rowdy wrote about the album on Instagram. "I’ve overcomed [sic] what most people would fall from. I’m excited to share my first ever album in my career 'Rebel vs Rowdy' dropping 7/15. This one for NY and all the real ones."

See other new releases from Sheff G, DJ Premier and more below.

  • Gangsta ArtYo Gotti and CMG ArtistsCMG/InterscopeCMG/Interscopeloading…
  • The Course of the Inevitable 2Lloyd BanksMoney By Any Means/Empire / CMG The Label/Interscope / Money By Any Means/Empire / CMG The Label/Interscope / loading…
  • Rebel vs. RowdyRowdy RebelEpic RecordsEpic Recordsloading…
  • A Kid Named Cudi (Remastered)Kid CudiRepublic RecordsRepublic Recordsloading…
  • From the CanSheff GTKTKloading…
  • SpecialLizzoNice Life Recording Company/AtlanticNice Life Recording Company/Atlanticloading…
  • Well SedSeddy HendrinxGeneration Now/AtlanticGeneration Now/Atlanticloading…
  • Hip-Hop 50 Vol. 1DJ PremierPayday Records/Ultra RecordsPayday Records/Ultra Recordsloading…
  • The Blue HourRexx Life RajRexx Life/EmpireRexx Life/Empireloading…
  • Emo or Die 2Mikey PoloMikey Polo/Emo Gang RecordsMikey Polo/Emo Gang Recordsloading…
  • MedusaMeliiMelii Ent LLCMelii Ent LLCloading…
  • MudslideVic Spencer and Small ProfessorCoalmine RecordsCoalmine Recordsloading…
  • GuapGuapdad 4000TWNSHPTWNSHPloading…

See the Best Hip-Hop Projects of 2022 So FarWhich project is your favorite?Filed Under: 42 Dugg, Bangers, BlockBoy JB, DJ Premier, EST Gee, GloRilla, Guapdad 400, Kid Cudi, Lizzo, Lloyd Banks, Melii, Mikey Polo, Moneybagg Yo, mozzy, Rexx Life Raj, Rowdy Rebel, Seddy Hendrinx, Sheff G, Small Professor, vic spencer, Yo GottiCategories: Music, New Music, News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 14, 2022Million Dollaz Worth of Game/YouTube/Paras Griffin, Getty Images

The back-and-forth between Gillie Da Kid and Rick Ross is heating up, with Gillie recently resurfacing an old photo of Rozay when he was a correctional officer.

On Thursday (July 14), Gillie Da Kid responded to Rick Ross' apparent Instagram diss and announcement that the South Florida rapper would be starting his own podcast. In his own IG post, Gillie shared a faux cover art for Ross' potential podcast that shows Ross in his former gig as a CO.  Gillie titled the post Lock It Up Podcast w/ Rick Ross.

"I got ur name 4 ur podcast @richforever aka The Mickey Mouse Show 😂 ur history ain’t right to fu$k with me u betta leave that alone 💯," Gillie captioned the post.

Gillie's latest taunt comes in response Rick Ross dissing the Philadelphia rapper-turned-podcaster earlier in the day. Rozay shared an Instagram video where he took subliminal shots at the Million Dollaz Worth of Game co-host.

"Fellas, fellas. Let me give you the real game," Ross said in the video, seemingly referencing Gillie's podcast title. "When I spend more money on my cow hooves than you do on your wife and kids every month, you should take notes."

Ross also announced he would be putting out a podcast of his own and urged fans to come up with the title, which led to Gillie's response.

Gillie Da Kid sparked the beef on Monday (July 11), when he dissed Rick Ross on the latest episode of his podcast.

"It's old niggas, they don't hear the roar of the crowd no more, and they still think the world gon' come back," Gillie vented. "So, they be on Instagram and they be on social media doing dumb shit. 'I just bought a cow.' And all this dumb shit. Fuck would you buy a cow for?"

"You knew I was gon' bake you, nigga," he continued. "I seen you in those comments. You knew I was gon' bake your goofy ass. Yeah, fuck wrong with you? Don't ever comment on nothing about me, nigga. When you used to be a CO, nigga. When you used to lock niggas like Wallo in the cell."

Gillie's issue with Ross seems to stem from Ross commenting on Gillie getting called out earlier this year when he appeared to lie about having Lil Wayne shook when they ran into each other at Jackson State University.

Rick Ross worked as a correctional officer in Florida before his rap career from 1995 to 1997. After cop rumors surfaced in 2007, Ross initially denied the claims. His former profession was exposed in 2008 by TheSmokingGun who uncovered work documents from Ross' time on the force. He recently spoke about his time as a cop on The Full Send podcast.

"One of my big homies had just got in trouble and a lot of things were going on," Ross said when asked why he got into that job. "He just suggested it."

"I didn't really get to make it to the prison," he expounded when pushed for details. "You have to go through training and all that and I didn't last long. I may have last four months before they said I….You know, I was a little tardy."

See Gillie Da Kid's Response Rick Ross' Apparent Diss BelowSee 10 of the Shortest Beefs in Hip-HopBeefs within rap that ended quickly.Filed Under: Gillie Da Kid, Rick RossCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 14, 2022Terence Rushin/Steven Ferdman/Getty Images (2)

It looks like Rick Ross is clapping back at Gillie Da Kid after the rapper-turned-podcaster dissed Rozay on the most recent episode of the Million Dollaz Worth of Game podcast.

On Thursday (July 14), Rick Ross shared a message on his Instagram Story that appeared to be a direct rebuttal to the shots Gillie recently fired at the Miami MC. In the clip, Ross shared a video of himself walking around his The Promise Land estate.

"Fellas, fellas. Let me give you the real game," Ross says in the video, seemingly referencing Gillie's podcast title. "When I spend more money on my cow hooves than you do on your wife and kids every month, you should take notes."

Prior to the subliminal shot, Rick Ross announced he would be starting his own podcast, apparently to directly compete with Gillie and Wallo267's show.

"Guys, I woke and just had a beautiful idea, a boss idea. I'ma start a podcast," Rozay revealed before urging fans to help him think of a title for the new show.

Rick Ross' apparent shots come a few days after Gillie dissed the Richer Than I Ever Been MC during a podcast interview with producer Southside.

"It's old niggas, they don't hear the roar of the crowd no more, and they still think the world gon' come back," Gillie vented. "So, they be on Instagram and they be on social media doing dumb shit. 'I just bought a cow.' And all this dumb shit. Fuck would you buy a cow for?"

"You knew I was gon' bake you, nigga," he continued. "I seen you in those comments. You knew I was gon' bake your goofy ass. Yeah, fuck wrong with you? Don't ever comment on nothing about me, nigga. When you used to be a CO, nigga. When you used to lock niggas like Wallo in the cell."

Gillie Da Kid doubled down in the comment of a blog post.

"This ain’t no fuckin sneak diss 😂😂😂," he posted. "I’m talkin to Ross he should of never been in Mack Maine comments callin me a fraud 💯."

Gillie's beef with Ross seems to be the result of Rozay commenting on an incident earlier this year where Gillie claimed he had Lil Wayne shook, but video evidence proved that was not the case.

See Video of Rick Ross' Apparent Response to Gillie's Diss BelowSee 10 of the Shortest Beefs in Hip-HopBeefs within rap that ended quickly.Filed Under: Gillie Da Kid, Rick RossCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 14, 2022Travis Shinn for XXL

Hear Me Clearly
In the 15 years since he appeared on the inaugural XXL Freshman cover, Lupe Fiasco has changed a lot. Yet, he remains one of the illest lyricists in the game.
Interview: C. Vernon Coleman II
Editor’s Note: This story appears in the Summer 2022 issue of XXL Magazine, on stands now.

At this point in his Grammy award-winning career, Lupe Fiasco is a reluctant rap star. That's because, at 40, he defines himself as much more than just an MC. Rap renaissance man might be a more apt title. The Chicago native's character arch has been an intriguing one, which includes receiving cosigns from Kanye West and Jay-Z in the mid-2000s and releasing acclaimed debut and sophomore albums, Lupe Fiasco's Food & Liquor (2006), and Lupe Fiasco's The Cool (2007), respectively. The former features his Grammy award-winning track "Daydreamin'" with Jill Scott. However, his own career didn't always play out so blissfully.

No good story comes without conflict and Lupe faced a fair share over the years. Beef with his former label, Atlantic Records, and disparaging comments he made about former President Barack Obama turned Lupe into an industry pariah following the release of his Billboard 200 chart-topping Lasers album in 2011. He remained unwavering, releasing four more albums and five additional projects. He's earned a total of 12 Grammy nods while finding himself and settling into his role as a hiphop elder statesman.

Time and the industry have changed Lupe Fiasco, who will be teaching a course on rap, activism and computing at the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology this fall. These days, the rapper is just as likely to be practicing martial arts on Instagram as he is engaging in record industry rigmarole. He likes it better that way. But the bars are definitely still present, as evident on his eighth studio album, Drill Music in Zion, a poignant jazz and boom-bap-fused LP that was created during a 72-hour tour de force in August of 2021. The 1st and 15th indie label co-owner and artist spoke with XXL in May via Zoom about his new LP, mastering martial arts, myths in hip-hop and freedom of speech.

XXL: What's the average day like in the life of Lupe Fiasco these days?

Lupe Fiasco: Days is days. Working on different little projects. It’s a lot of just basic work. The work side of being a rapper. Emails, phone calls, creative discussions. Stuff like that. So, real domestic and real boring as they would say.

Do you enjoy any part of that?

The music business has always been like a thorn in my side because it's so messy. A lot of different kinda agendas and scandals and scams and stuff like that. Not all of it, but like a majority of it. It's not something that I kinda spend my time with or entertain. So, I just try to get it out the way. You can’t just rap. That's the myth. You can't just rap and not be in the business. Especially when you're rapping for the business.

lupe fiasco xxl magazine summer 2022 issueTravis Shinn for XXLloading…

It's been four years since your last album. Why drop a new one now?

’Cause my label wanted me to. [1st and 15th co-owner Charles "Chilly" Patton] hit me and was like, "Yo, do an album for me." And I was like, "Aight." I was working on some other things and that's really how it happened. I don't really have a drive to keep doing records like that. But at the same time, too, you gotta kinda keep the lights on as they say. So, every once in a while, I have to do something for the sake of the biz. The other side to it is, I'm always creating. So, I'm always working on something. Always building something. It's just a matter of when is the best time to let people lean into my world.

What's the premise for the album title Drill Music in Zion?

The Drill Music in Zion actually comes from a freestyle that I did prior to that. I was like, I'ma call my next album Drill Music in Zion. And it was like, Oh shit, I got an album title. And then just riffing off the title, you know, my sister did a poem for me, where she just kinda riffed on all the different avenues and arenas based off the title. It's not so much necessarily about Chicago. It's not so much necessarily about drill music. There's one song that kinda speaks to it, but that's the same critique of that shit that I've had since the beginning. And then kinda coming to terms with it. But the album is not about drill music. It's just the title and it's how does that title guide certain things? And what other elements and aspects of it are to be brought out. But I don't want people to look like, super deep and start seeing shit that's not there. Or knock yourself out. See whatever you want to see. Do that shit, too.

But I wouldn't. It's not really about the city. Drill music's everywhere now. We didn't call it drill music. That's the name that the new generation gave to gangsta rap. ’Cause it's the same shit that we been dealing with forever. Niggas talking about killing other niggas on record. Same shit, and niggas actually going to do it. People say, "Drill music is different ’cause these niggas is actually doing it." No, they was doing this shit before. Niggas was dying and shit before.

A favorite line on the title track is "I'll leave a whole sleeve down in Condoleezza's comments," referring to former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Are you still into politics? It seemed like you were more vocal about politics prior.

The last show that I just did, this show was at an Air Force base. And I was always hesitant from the blowback that I had, politically. Talking about the president and politics and shit like that. So, when doing the meet-and-greet, the commanders, they come last. He pulled me to the side, he was like, "Look, man." He said, "I just wanna let you know something. I did a background check on you." They have to, to even let you on the base. Check your whole shit. He was like, "Yeah, so I looked you up, man, and I seen your politics and the shit that you was saying," and this, that and the third. He was like, "I just wanna let you know, that you are who we are fighting for. You are the example of why we do what we do. To go out there and protect your right to say whatever the fuck you wanna say. To speak truth to power."

When you see shit like that happen to you, man, it reframes and recontextualizes the stuff we do, why we do it, who we do it for. And then, what's the goal? What's the success? Is that success? That sound like success to me.

"On Faux Nem," you say, "How does that transpire?/To be so damned by God you want your friends to be goddamn liars?" That's a mind-blown moment, especially within the context of the song. Can you talk about that a little bit?

I wish these niggas was liars. I wish that drill shit was entertainment. And I'm not picking on Chicago. It's all over the world. Niggas is drilling and killing all over the fucking world. I wish this nigga wasn't telling the truth, but they telling the truth. And niggas just hear it as entertainment. So, when I heard it, I didn't hear no fucking entertainment to that shit.

When I hear Pop Smoke, I didn't hear no entertainment to that shit. That shit was fun, it was catchy, but, dang, nigga. We have a problem in New York. We have a problem in London. We have a problem in L.A. We got a problem in Chicago. We got a problem in Atlanta. We got a problem in Texas. We not supposed to be dancing to the shit, man, you feel me? This is different. And the only reason I care so much is these niggas is 13, 14.

Eight albums in at this point. What do you feel your role is in hip-hop?

I don't really feel I have one, to be honest. My era was so long ago. And it was really just to kinda bring lyricism back in a certain way with a certain generation. I think that was my goal. So, I think anything beyond that is just extra. It's just like, bonus points.

In movie terms, you have an interesting character arch. You've been the guy everyone has rooted for. You've been down when you had issues with the label and bounced back up. A Kid Cudi fan might say you've played the role of a villain. What film character would you compare your career to?

It's a little hard to boil it down to. Like, something as simple as a career arch. ’Cause it's so much life and so much happening, so much chaos and so much other things embedded within that process. What movie tells that story, successfully? Avengers? I don't know. Batman in this muthafucka? I don't know.

This year marks the 15th anniversary of the first XXL Freshman class, which you were part of. What do you remember most about being a part of that?

Probably meeting Boosie [BadAzz]. He was like, "My kids listen to 'Kick Push,' man. You the skateboard rapper, right?" I was a big, big fan of the South and Boosie.

As an elder statesman in hip-hop now, what are your views on the current crop of rappers overall?

I don't know. I don't really listen to rap. I don't really care about their music and what they're doing because music comes and goes. It changes. It's there, it's not there. It's responsive. It's reactionary. It's all of those things. At the end of the day, when I look at my fellow peers in this craft, I'm just concerned about their well-being. Not how they did on a record.

You have won a Grammy. You have platinum and gold records. What is success to you in 2022?

A lot of that stuff is smoke and mirrors. So, a lot of the things that we consider to be the trophies of our craft, they weren't built for rappers. Platinum plaques weren't built for rappers. Grammys weren't built for rap. But success for me is just, you know, I got breath in my body. That's all I really care about.

You've been heavily into martial arts over the past few years. What exact discipline are you into?

I've been doing martial arts since I was 3 years old. I just let people see it in the last few years. We've been doing karate and judo and aikido and hapkido and ninjutsu and kung fu and wushu and tai chi. It all comes from my dad. He was a martial arts master. His whole life was dedicated to martial arts, in the projects, in Chicago. Went to his first karate school right by the projects.

Recently, it was just, you know, I felt it was kinda important to let people see, oh, I'm in this, too. People thought that shit. They think it's the weirdest shit in the world. So, it's kinda like, Damn, I shouldn't have showed you niggas nothing. I should have kept that shit to myself. But to the people that it inspires, to the people that it reinforces those traditions to, I think it was worth it, you know?

lupe fiasco xxl magazine summer 2022 issueTravis Shinn for XXLloading…

It's a mixed bag of responses to your martial arts videos. Some people see you doing your thing and it's like, "Wow, what the hell?" Then, other people see it and are like, "Whoa, he's really into it. He knows what the hell he's doing."

We been dealing with that for years, man. All the karate schools were in the hood. So, we would be these karate kids running around in karate uniforms. Niggas who walk around, they gang-banging and shit, they look at us like, "Look at these weirdos," you know? "Look at these weird kids." And they'd try to reach and get they ass beat. Then they'd just be like, "Ah yeah, let's leave them alone." But it was really like we running down the street in ninja suits in the ghetto. It's weird. I'm looking at it like, this shit's weird. This is very, very weird.

But, I mean, there's nothing like it. It's the most beautiful shit ever. So, born into it, probably die doing it. My father's instructor is still alive. I think he's like 88 or 80, something like that. I went to go visit during COVID, recently in Chicago. Old Korean dude. Beast. And he was like, "Man, I'ma die on this mat." And when I think about the last moments of the trajectory of my life, it's not rap, you know? I'll probably die on that mat.

What are your top five martial arts films?

Tai Chi Master. Definitely Blood Sport. Definitely [The] Last Dragon, for sure. Super Ninjas was the joint. And then as Jackie Chan movie, Drunken Master. They might not have been the best or even my favorite, but those are the ones that I watch over and over and over and over again. You're big into video games as well. What are your top five martial arts-based video game characters? Ken and Ryu on Street Fighter, for sure, I and II. Terry Bogard from Fatal Fury. Raiden from Mortal Kombat. Kung Lao from Mortal Kombat was a demon, too. Jago from Killer Instinct was my jam. It was a couple from Virtua Fighter that I really dug. The drunken boxer on Virtua Fighter was cool.

You're big into video games as well. What are your top five martial arts-based video games?

Ken and Ryu on Street Fighter, for sure. I and II. Terry Bogard from Fatal Fury. Raiden from Mortal Kombat. Kung Lao from Mortal Kombat was a demon, too. Jago from Killer Instinct was my jam. It was a couple from Virtua Fighter that I really dug. The drunken boxer on Virtua Fighter was cool.

Watch Lupe Fiasco's Exclusive Interview With XXLlupe fiasco xxl magazine summer 2022 issueTravis Shinn for XXLloading…

Read Lupe Fiasco's interview from the 2022 XXL Freshman issue, on newsstands everywhere now. The issue includes additional interviews with the Freshmen featuring BabyTronCochiseSaucy SantanaBabyface RayKenTheManSoFaygoBig ScarrBig30KayCyyDoechiiKali and Nardo Wick, 2022 XXL Freshman producer Wheezy Outta HereKevin GatesPi'erre BourneNLE ChoppaYvngxchris, producer DJ Dahi, engineer Teezio and singer Chlöe, plus a breakdown of every Freshman Class from a numbers standpoint, a look back at what the 2021 XXL Freshman Class is doing, the story of why the 2016 XXL Freshman Class gets so much respect now, a deep dive into the world of NFTs through hip-hop's lens and exploring rappers' most valuable collections. You can also buy the 2022 XXL Freshman Class issue here.

See Every Artist in the 2022 XXL Freshman ClassWhich rapper is your favorite?Filed Under: Feature, Lupe Fiasco, promo, XXL MagazineCategories: News, XXL Magazine


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 14, 2022TMZ

Boosie BadAzz went off on cops after being detained in Georgia this week.

On Thursday (July 14), TMZ shared footage they obtained of a traffic stop involving Boosie BadAzz and the Fairburn Police Department, which occurred on Tuesday (July 12). According to the celebrity news site, Boosie and the vehicle's driver, D'Shun Lawrence, were pulled over for having dark window tints and a concealed license plate. They were both handcuffed and the vehicle was searched. Authorities reportedly found 11 grams of marijuana.

Body-cam footage of the incident shows Boosie visibly upset and lashing out. "I can't keep going through this, bro. I can't, bro. I don't do no wrong," Boosie vents to one officer on the scene, who informs the rapper that marijuana is illegal in Georgia.

"I got to go to y'all superiors and file charges. This is harassment. Every day, I can't even live. I moved to the country to fucking live, bro," Boosie adds.

Boosie later fumes while talking to Lawrence. "Fuck ’em. I don't give a fuck about no jail," Boosie snaps. "I'm like that. I'll go in there and fight the police and spit on them bitches, every-fucking-body. ’Cause I'm tired, bro."

Lawrence copped to the weed being his and he was cited for marijuana possession. Both men were then released.

XXL has reached out to the Fairburn Police Department and Boosie BadAzz for comment.

Three years ago, Boosie BadAzz was arrested in Newman, Ga. in April of 2019. In that incident, he was pulled over for driving erratically and police reportedly discovered 11 grams of suspected marijuana,  a loaded 9mm handgun, a large sum of cash and a vape pen with what is believed to have THC oil in it. In August of that year, he was charged with two felonies including possession of less than an ounce of marijuana and possession of a controlled substance.

Last October, Boosie BadAzz was arrested and charged with second-degree criminal damage to property, inciting a riot, disorderly conduct and criminal trespassing, following a fight at State Farm Arena during the Legendz of the Streetz Tour.

See Video of Boosie BadAzz Livid After Being Detained During a Traffic Stop BelowSee 44 of the Longest Prison Bids in Hip-Hop HistoryC-Murder, Max B, B.G. and more.Filed Under: Boosie BadazzCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/kemethigh/” rel=”author”>Kemet HighPublished: July 14, 2022XXL

During the 2022 XXL Freshman shoot in Atlanta this past May, selected artists were tasked with stepping up to the plate and leaving no crumbs behind by the time everything was said and done. The quad of Kali, Cochise, Babyface Ray and BabyTron did just that in their cypher. Fusing for a track strong enough to go platinum, the layered artists prove here that the only time they fold is when it comes to the dead presidents in their pockets.

The beat is laced by multiplatinum-selling producer Wheezy Outta Here. Offering his usual brand of romantic trap, the Grammy award-winning talent utilizes a combination of chordophone and woodwind instruments for the melody, along with a turbulent drum kit to match. Additionally, the foundation, best described by the viral clip of Future saying "sensational," is, of course, equipped with his standout producer tag, which came from an old studio session with Pluto and Young Thug.

Thanks to Georgia's own Kali, things couldn’t have gotten off to a better start. Talking greasy, she uses an array of flows to detail her player mentality when it comes to having prospects and authentic motion in the rap game. "Niggas only hard to they homeboys/Niggas only hard to that weak-ass bitch/Flashin' them guns in the videos, and don't even know how to load up a switch/I ain’t even havin' no sneaky link, ’cause a nigga gon' brag on the shit," she spits.

Next is Florida's own Cochise, who's typically known for his high-pitched delivery, zippy cadences and carefree bars that precede his lively ad-libs. He puts all of those on display here. Keeping things fun and truly going off the top, he raps about being in the presence of his day ones and recruiting people’s girlfriends to keep them company. "OK, excuse me, got your shawty she loosie/I slap on her booty/She show me the boobies/And all of my niggas we getting some cuties, OK," he rhymes.

Third up is the respected Detroit rhymer Babyface Ray. Prevailing with his signature conversational flow, ’Face flexes about staying true to himself from an infant. Despite always having special qualities, he expresses that, nowadays, he has juice on tap, flexing, "Face yo' baby, face her, baby, drive her crazy/New Mercedes, huggin' me good the new 580/Blue 500, done made 500, just call me the greatest/From nothin' to somethin', now I’m a stunna like Weezy and Baby."

Rounding things out is another Michigan native, BabyTron. He opts to go a cappella, emphasizing his caption-worthy bars about being a savage-hearted hustler who gets to the bag by any means while also being quick to put his enemies in one. "Play with us or one of mines, be done left y'all/Why you playin'? Once it's up, you can’t press pause/Sonic to the blues, get to runnin' like the hedgehog/Catch ’em in a Off-White tee, get ’em X'd off," he raps.

Talk about ending the Freshman rollout on a high note.

Watch Kali, Cochise, Babyface Ray and BabyTron’s 2022 XXL Freshman Cypher

Read the 2022 XXL Freshman cover story featuring BabyTronCochiseSaucy SantanaBabyface RayKenTheManSoFaygoBig ScarrBig30KayCyyDoechiiKali and Nardo Wick in the magazine, on newsstands now. The issue includes additional interviews with Wheezy Outta HereLupe FiascoKevin GatesPi’erre BourneNLE ChoppaYvngxchris, producer DJ Dahi, engineer Teezio and singer Chlöe, plus a breakdown of every Freshman Class from a numbers standpoint, a look back at what the 2021 XXL Freshman Class is doing, the story of why the 2016 XXL Freshman Class gets so much respect now, a deep dive into the world of NFTs through hip-hop’s lens and exploring rappers’ most valuable collections. You can also buy the 2022 XXL Freshman Class issue here.

See Every Artist in the 2022 XXL Freshman ClassWhich rapper is your favorite?Filed Under: 2022 XXL Freshman, Babyface Ray, BabyTron, Cochise, Feature, Kali, XXL MagazineCategories: News, XXL Freshmen, XXL Magazine


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 14, 2022Prince Williams/Getty Images/Funny Marco/YouTube

Bow Wow has reacted to a viral claim made by actor Orlando Brown, who recently said the rapper has "bomb-ass pussy."

On Thursday (July 14), Bow Wow addressed Brown's wild statement after being prompted  by fans on Twitter.

"Since when legends got to speak on fuckery?" the "Shortie Like Mine" rapper tweeted. "I'm filming my new tv show as we speak and preparing for a sold out show at the 02 arena for the Millennium Tour in London. I'ma 35 yr old father I don't play them type games. You do know this Bow you talking to right. I am a boy Damon."

In a follow-up post he added, "Dog I'm just now seeing this. I been wrapped up w work. I be chilling … off the grid not all on the net then I'll look up and be trending… they know who names they gotta say to go viral for 24 hours. Shit be crazy."

Bow Wow went on to accuse Brown's antics of being drug-fueled.

"Tweaked out," Bow Wow added. "But you know dude really need help na I'm say? That's why we ain't trippin on em. Nobody taking him serious. It's sad because he had potential to be great. It's sad. Dem drugs!"

Orland Brown had Bow Wow trending on Twitter after he made the outlandish claim about the Ohio rapper. On Tuesday (July 12), Brown sat down for an interview with Funny Marco. During the trippy conversation full of random questions and weird camera cuts, Marco asked if Brown had a problem with Bow Wow around the 21:20-mark of the interview.

Brown replied, "I aint got a problem with Lil' Bow Wow. Lil' Bow Wow got some bomb-ass pussy."

This isn't the first time the troubled former child star has made wild sexual claims about a rapper. Back in 2020, he claimed to have given Nick Cannon fellatio, causing the Wild 'N Out creator to respond.

Watch Orlando Brown's Wild Interview and See Bow Wow's Reaction BelowSee 52 of the Most Controversial Hip-Hop Album Covers Since 2 Live Crew’s As Nasty As They Wanna BeWhich rapper has the most controversial album cover?Filed Under: Bow WowCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 13, 2022Access/YouTube

Jay-Z recently sat down for a rare interview with comedian Kevin Hart where the rap icon opened up about retirement.

Hov and Hart chopped it up for an upcoming episode of the second season of Kev's Hart to Heart show on Peacock. In a snippet of the rap session released by Access on Wednesday (July 13), the hip-hop billionaire rejected the thought that he retired from the rap game despite his sparse contributions recently.

"Nah, I tried [retirement]. I'm terrible at that," Jay said, referencing the time when he claimed he was getting out of the rap game following the release of The Black Album in 2003. "I just needed a break … I was really burnt out at that time. I was releasing an album every year … I just looked up one day and I was like, 'I'm tired.' I'd never been on vacation until, say, 2000, my whole life."

Though retirement isn't in the cards just yet, Jay-Z has no set plans on his next musical step.

"I don’t know what happens next," he added. "I’m not actively making music or making an album or have plans to make an album, but I never want to say that I’m retired. It’s a gift, and who am I to shut it off? It's open to whatever. And it may have a different form or interpretation. Maybe it’s not an album, maybe it is. I have no idea, but I’m just going to leave it open."

The question of whether or not Jay-Z's body of work is complete has merit. Though he still puts out a couple of rare feature verses a year, he hasn't released an LP since 2017's 4:44, which turned five last month.

Watch a Clip of Jay-Z's Interview With Kevin Hart BelowThese Rappers Haven’t Dropped an Album in A While and We’re Still WaitingFiled Under: Jay-ZCategories: New Music, News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 13, 2022limewire via Twitter/Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images

LimeWire is making its triumphant return with the help of a Soulja Boy classic.

Last week, on July 7, the former file sharing client announced it will be returning in an all new form, different from its origins as an illegal music downloading hotbed. In the video promotion, two kids are shown leaving school and excitedly rushing home to download Soulja Boy's 2007 hit "Crank Dat (Soulja Boy)," which scores the commercial. The video then cuts to the two kids as adults. In a similar situation, they rush home to get on LimeWire. Only this time, they are going on the site to check on an NFT purchase.

The commercial closes with the message, "LimeWire is back. Your place for music NFTs."

Soulja Boy has reposted his fans' responses to the ad on Twitter.

"This man brought limewire back. Legendary," one person posted.

"First Rapper to bring Limewire back in 2022," another person wrote.

In the early 2000s, file sharing softwares like LimeWire and Napster were all the rave with people looking to illegally download anything from music to movies. In 2010, a U.S. federal judge issued an injunction against the company after several record companies and the Recording Industry Association of America filed lawsuits against LimeWire on the grounds of copyright infringement. The owners of LimeWire settled out of court for an amount that was rumored to be in the low nine-figures. In March, the new owners of the LimeWire name announced they would be rebranding as a music NFT marketplace for creatives and collectors.

See 13 SoundCloud-Era Hip-Hop Projects With No SkipsWhich project is your favorite?Filed Under: Soulja BoyCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/joeyech/” rel=”author”>Joey EchPublished: July 13, 2022yungmiami305/Twitter

Kevin Gates left Yung Miami of the City Girls completely speechless during a revealing discussion about his sex life and sleeping with his cousin.

On Wednesday (July 13), Yung Miami dropped a teaser trailer for an upcoming episode of her Revolt TV podcast, Caresha Please, that will seemingly feature Kevin Gates opening all the way up about some of the wild escapades he's experienced in the bedroom. In fact, the Baton Rouge, La. native was so candid about his sexual desires and experiences in just the 54-second clip alone, that he left the City Girls rhymer with her jaw on the floor.

Off rip, the short video promoting the podcast shows Yung Miami, who is known for having no issue discussing sex in her own right, bluntly asking Gates about his widely publicized past-sexual encounters with his own cousin.

Caresha asked: "Did you really fuck your cousin?"

While the beginning of Kevin Gates' direct response appears to have been edited out of the trailer, the Khaza MC can be seen unapologetically describing the experience.

"She pulled me to the side and said, 'baby, that's your cousin,'" replied Gates. "I ain't ’bout to stop."

From there, the conversation becomes even more sexually explicit, with Kevin saying things that caused the "Pussy Talk" rapper to become even more shocked by his words. Yung Miami asked if the Lousiana spitter is "really like that," seemingly referring to his recent "Super General" freestyle, in which Gates raps all about his sexual fantasies regarding women in the industry like Beyoncé, Rubi Rose and Nicki Minaj.

In his response, the "Thinking With My Dick" artist lays it on Caresha with the same type of abrasive sex talk as the aforementioned track over Kodak Black's "Super Gremlin." In the course of just a few seconds, Gates describes exactly what type of sexual activity he enjoys with references to booties, feet and twirling his "big, long-ass tongue."

Given the fact that Gates has never been one to mince his words on anything, especially his lustful desires, the topic of sex has been coming up a lot lately when the "I'm in Love" rapper speaks publicly. When asked about the bars he spits about Beyoncé on "Super General" in a June 2022 interview with Bootleg Kev, Gates doubled down on his fantasies and then some.

As for having sex with his cousin, that particular part of Kevin Gates' past has been circulating throughout the majority of his rap career. In fact, Gates himself openly admitted to doing the deed with his own relative in a series of since-deleted Instagram posts back in 2015.

XXL has reached out to Kevin Gates and his team for comment.

Watch the Caresha Please Teaser Featuring Kevin Gates BelowSee Rappers With an OnlyFans AccountAre you subscribed? Filed Under: City Girls, Kevin Gates, Yung MiamiCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 13, 2022Alberto E. Rodriguez/Raymond Hall/Getty Images (3)

Nick Cannon has admitted he wouldn't mind getting back with Kim Kardashian for another go-round.

On Tuesday (July 12), Nick Cannon appeared as a guest on the Hot Tee YouTube channel, where he discussed his new project The Explicit Tape: Raw & B. During a segment called Spin the Block, Nick was asked if he would get back with a list of his exes. When Kim K. came up, Nick gave a wild answer.

"This is controversial. She’s with my little bro. That's Pete [Davidson]," Nick said around the 29:50-mark of the interview. "I don't want to take credit for no one's skills, but Pete Davidson is literally my little brother. If you go back and look at the thing, he used to call the radio station, and my morning show, as a kid … He was my opening act. I put him on Wild 'N Out. That's my family. So, it was really interesting when I saw that together."

Nick added, "Hey, it’s all love, but that’s Kim Kardashian. I’d definitely spin the block. Shouts-out to my little bro, but I would. I mean, come on. I don’t know what their situation is. I’m not messy, I’m patient. Let's just say that."

Elsewhere in the interview, Nick said he would also be open rekindling his relationship with his ex-wife Mariah Carey.

Nick Cannon and Kim Kardashian dated all the way back in 2006. They broke up in 2007, reportedly because of Kim's sex tape with Ray J. Kim K. and Pete Davidson started dating last year, following her breakup with Kanye West.

Watch Nick Cannon's Interview on Hot Tee BelowSee Controversial Hip-Hop ShirtsWhich rapper has the most controversial shirt?Filed Under: Kim Kardashian, Nick CannonCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/joeyech/” rel=”author”>Joey EchPublished: July 13, 2022Rich Fury, Getty Images

Nicki Minaj is, without question, one of the most popular and influential rappers hip-hop has ever seen. The Trinidad-born, Queens-bred MC's mere presence over the past decade-and-a-half has paved the way for the next generation of women in hip-hop to have goals of becoming just as prominent.

At this point in her career, much of the 2022 XXL People’s Champ Award winner's legacy can be credited to the fact that the whole rap game definitely knows what time it is when Nicki Minaj is rumored to, about to or officially release new music. She's never been one to shy away from expressing herself in her rhymes. When she gets to the point where she feels the need to either defend herself or simply take aim at those whom she feels have done her dirty, the Barbz know who she's referring to. The "Do We Have a Problem?" spitter has zero qualms about verbally pulling up on the opps whenever necessary, but she also has no problem putting respect on the names of her peers, especially when it comes to other women in hip-hop.

In fact, Onika has gone on record to give it up to many women throughout all eras of rap. Nicki has made it a point to show love to rap pioneers like Queen Latifah and MC Lyte. She’s also given props to more current popular rappers like Doja Cat and Coi Leray. One time, she even bowed down on her hands and knees in a gesture of unworthiness to the great Lauryn Hill.

With all that in mind, XXL highlights the many instances in which Queen Barbz has gone out of her way to boost the confidence of other women.

Check out Nicki Minaj giving lowers to other women in rap below.

Here Are the Many Times Nicki Minaj Gave Flowers to Other Women in Hip-HopFiled Under: Asian Doll, Azealia Banks, Cardi B, City Girls, Coi Leray, Dej Loaf, Doja Cat, Feature, foxy brown, Galleries, Gallery, Iggy Azalea, Kash Doll, Lauryn Hill, Lil Kim, Maliibu Miitch, MC Lyte, Megan Thee Stallion, Missy Elliott, Ms Banks, Nicki Minaj, promo, Queen Latifah, Remy Ma, Trina, Young M.ACategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/joeyech/” rel=”author”>Joey EchPublished: July 13, 2022Nicholas Hunt/Cindy Ord/Getty Images (2)

Funkmaster Flex has clapped back at Conway The Machine after the Griselda rapper called him and other New York City DJs "gatekeeping weirdos" and "clowns."

On Tuesday (July 12), Funkmaster Flex hit up Instagram and went in hard in response to some harsh words Conway The Machine had about DJs in New York City, specifically Flex and DJ Suss One. Following a viral rant in which Conway called out Funk Flex by name while airing out heavy grievances he holds toward hip-hop media figures, the veteran DJ decided to let the Buffalo, N.Y. spitter know exactly how he feels.

After questioning why Conway is so angry with him in the first place, the famed mixtape curator countered the "Bang" MC's comments that implied he is out of touch with the current wave of rap. Flex used Griselda's major accolades and industry connections as means to explain that while he doesn't understand the hostility toward him.

"Why do I get on the nerves of multi-platinum, worldwide touring artist[s] like Griselda?" wrote Funkmaster Flex in an IG post accompanied by a clip of Conway The Machine's recent rant. "Artists like Griselda? Managed by Roc Nation and signed to Eminem/Interscope? I'm old, over the hill, irrelevant, plus I'm not in tune with the new generation. My support is pretty much not needed? Why do I make so many people upset?"

From there, Funk Flex ramped up his aggression toward Machine's call out. In a lengthy follow-up post, the acclaimed DJ listed the many cosigns both Conway and Griselda have received throughout the rap game in an implication that perhaps the Buffalo, N.Y. crew is beyond their peak.

"You and your team have had a feature from Jay-Z, Eminem, Lil Wayne, J. Cole, Jadakiss, Travis Scott, French Montana and more," continued Flex. "Wasn't you on Kanye's Donda album? I'm gonna give you the advice Paul Rosenberg should [have] gave you. You're a 40-plus 'bars rapper,' sorry, lyricist, that has had every resource possible. If you are not happy with your career as of today with all them cosigns, I think you have peaked, my guy. What you think?"

Before signing off for the night, Funkmaster Flex let his petty light shine bright, offering Conway a chance to respond to him and further addressing Machine's claims that he is too old for the game.

"Haha. You still up?" wrote Flex, tagging Conway The Machine's Instagram handle. "You said you wanted to debate, my friend? Let's start here. Remember, you started this … You're only gonna take this as disrespect because the truth might be a bit much for you. Signed, Grandpa, Wheelchair Bandit, Warm Milk General."

The jump-off point for Funkmaster Flex's animated clap back was when Conway The Machine hit up IG Live about the fact that he feels hip-hop media figures like Flex have a chokehold on his style of rap music.

"New York and shit, in my opinion, man, y'all gotta get them old niggas up out the way like Flex and them niggas, man," said Conway. "Them gatekeepers that ya'll got up there that's trying to dictate, c'mon, bro. Good thing I don't need ya'll niggas because if I needed y'all niggas, ya'll niggas would be fake stifling my growth."

Later in the livestream, the "Tyson vs. Ali" rhymer continued to lean into his disdain for Funk Flex, calling the O.G. radio personality a "weirdo" and a "clown."

"It's weirdos like y'all weirdo DJ niggas and y'all niggas think that ya'll run new york, nigga," he continued. "Y'all is lame and clowns. I hate the motha fuckin’ the media. I hate you DJ niggas."

Since throwing the initial shots at Flex and his hip-hop media peers, Conway The Machine has yet to respond following the aforementioned opportunity to have a debate with the New York City DJ.

Watch Conway The Machine Call Out Funkmaster Flex in the Video Clip BelowHere Are the Monumental Moments Rappers Squashed BeefFiled Under: Conway The Machine, Funkmaster FlexCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 13, 2022Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Sixteen months following his arrest on a gun charge in Los Angeles, YoungBoy Never Broke Again is on trial. The Baton Rouge, La. native is facing a charge of possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon. Instead of taking a plea deal, YoungBoy has decided to fight the charges in court. His trial started on Tuesday (July 12). Here’s everything we know about NBA YoungBoy’s case and trial so far.

In February of 2021, it was reported that the Feds had an open case against YB in relation to a 2020 arrest in Louisiana. The following month, NBA YoungBoy was arrested on March 22, 2021. On that date, the Los Angeles Police Department and federal agents attempted to pull the Top rapper over in a vehicle order to execute an outstanding federal warrant for his arrest shortly after he left his L.A. home. YoungBoy reportedly led police on a low-speed chase before exiting the vehicle and running from authorities on foot. Police reportedly used K-9 dogs to locate the rapper, which they did and took him into federal custody. Police discovered an FN, model FNX-45, .45 ACP caliber pistol in the vehicle the rapper fled from.

The initial warrant stemmed from a 2020 incident in which YoungBoy Never Broke Again and 15 more people were arrested in September that year at a video shoot in Baton Rouge, La. There were 14 firearms, three grams of marijuana, one dose of Hydrocodone inside a clear bag and digital scales present. YoungBoy was charged with weapons possession. Based on an unsealed indictment, authorities in Louisiana officially charged YB with possession of firearms by a convicted felon and possession of a firearm not registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, which triggered the warrant.

On March 23, 2021, the day following YoungBoy's arrest in L.A., a California magistrate granted the rapper a bond, which included $540,000 in cash, collateral in the form of two properties worth $1.5 million, drug testing, an ankle monitor and more. However, the bond had to be signed off by a judge in Louisiana. On March 24, 2021, James Manasseh, YB’s attorney, called the Cali arrest a perversion of justice.

"What happened to him in California was a travesty," Manasseh said. "Every law enforcement agency knows we represent Kentrell [YoungBoy's government name] and no one told us of his warrant. Had they told us he was indicted, we would have voluntarily surrendered him at our office in a safe and non-public manner."

The attorney added, "The surprise tactic of arresting him in California was unnecessary. It was simply a show of force and power upon an individual by the Government."

On March 25, 2021, the United States Attorney for the Middle District of Louisiana submitted a motion to keep NBA YoungBoy locked up until his trial, labeling him a threat to the community.

The court document read, "The government will present evidence of Gaulden’s prior history of ignoring probation conditions. This evidence coupled with his brazen attempt to evade arrest in this matter supports the concern that Gaulden presents a flight risk. Indeed, before knowing the potential jeopardy in which he finds himself, Gaulden sought to evade capture. Now that he knows the seriousness of these offenses, the temptation to flee is greater. Moreover, Gaulden’s criminal history includes violent offenses."

The filing continued, "He is charged with possessing a gun as a convicted felon, and he possessed another gun as he fled from law enforcement at the time of his arrest. When his gun possession is combined with his violent crime, attempts to flee from law enforcement, which included a high speed chase in and around a neighborhood that included a middle school, and his pervasive marijuana use Gaulden clearly and convincingly presents a danger to the community."

A Louisiana judge signed off on the motion and YoungBoy Never Broke Again's bond was revoked on March 30, 2021. YoungBoy extradited to the St. Martin Parish Correctional Center in St. Martinville, La. on April 13, 2021. In June of that year, it was revealed that the FBI’s codename for the rapper’s investigation was “Operation Never Free Again.” YB was officially indicted for the California gun charge on Aug. 20, 2021.

He sat in jail for six months until he was finally granted a bond on Oct. 22, 2021. However, the following day, a hold was placed on his release by the California U.S. Attorney's Office due to firearms charges he faces in that state. He had to wait three more days until he was released on house arrest on $1.5 million bond. The release stipulations required him to stay in Layton, Utah with former members of the military securing his property. YB was also forced to submit to drug testing, go through inpatient or outpatient abuse therapy, wear a GPS monitor and pre-approve visitors with the court.

While on house arrest, YoungBoy continued to put out music. In September of 2021, he released the album Sincerely, Kentrell, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. This past January, he released the mixtape Colors, which peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard album's chart. YoungBoy also collaborated on a joint album with DaBaby called Better Than You in March. During this time, he resorted to using YouTube as his way of communicating with fans after shutting down his social media accounts.

Leading up to the trial, one of the points of contention was whether or not song lyrics would be admitted into evidence. Specifically, the prosecution wanted to bring into question the track "Gunsmoke," on which YoungBoy raps about the same firearm that was discovered in his vehicle. In a motion filed on Monday (July 11), the prosecution claimed the lyrics proved "familiarity and knowledge of FN, the high-end manufacturer of the gun found in (his) car that he denies knowingly possessing."

However, on the first day of the trial this week, YoungBoy’s attorneys successfully got the lyrical evidence thrown out by Judge R. Gary Klausen.

"These lyrics are highly prejudicial as they discuss hardcore rap which has been empirically established to be more negatively received than other genres of music. It would be one thing if the music described this arrest," YoungBoy’s legal team responded to the prosecution’s motion on Monday.

"But a song referencing a similar gun well before the gun in the indictment was purchased and another song referencing a jeweler whose relationship with Mr. Gaulden is not in dispute offer very minimal probative value and are substantially outweighed by the prejudice contained within the words of the songs."

The rapper’s legal team added, "Even if Mr. Gaulden [YoungBoy Never Broke Again] is familiar with various models of guns and sings about them, it does not mean that he knew this particular gun was secreted on the passenger floor of the Maybach when police attempted to pull his car over to arrest him."

Pictures have surfaced of NBA YoungBoy outside the courthouse on his first day of trial. In the photos, the rapper is wearing tan slacks and a brown jacket. In one picture, he is holding a puppy.

Regarding the trial, there appears to be one Black person on the jury, according to independent lawyer Moe Gangat, who is not tied to the case. The first day of trial concluded on Tuesday with both sides giving their opening statements and some testimony. Gangat reports that the prosecution must prove YoungBoy possessed the weapon or knowingly had it in his vehicle. The defense reportedly stated that there is no DNA evidence from the rapper on the firearm. However, five other people's fingerprints were pulled from the weapon, which was reportedly found in the car surrounded by items that did not belong to the rapper.

Gangat says multiple federal agents testified. One of the agents spoke on finding the firearm in the floorboard of the rappers Maybach SUV after at least two other agents searched the vehicle prior to him. The defense reportedly argued that that proved the gun was not in plain sight and YoungBoy did not know the gun was in the vehicle.

According to Billboard reporter Kristin Robinson, the defense also claimed the rapper fled police during the arrest because he was afraid after they "took defensive positions" and "drew weapons" during what he thought was a regular traffic stop.

The trial continues today (July 13).

XXL has reached out to YoungBoy Never Broke Again's attorney for comment.

See 44 of the Longest Prison Bids in Hip-Hop HistoryC-Murder, Max B, B.G. and more.Filed Under: YoungBoy Never Broke AgainCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 13, 2022XXL

The 2022 XXL Freshman Class is here. You’ve seen their ABCs, listened to them respond to trolls for the Mean Comments segment and heard them spit in their individual freestyles. Now, for the moment you’ve all been waiting for: the 2022 XXL Freshman cyphers. Jacksonville, Fla. native Nardo Wick, Memphis' Big Scarr and Big30, and KenTheMan, who hails from Houston, grab the mic to showcase the skills that got them inducted into the class in the first place.

This year, Mississippi native Wheezy Outta Here provides the soundtrack that all four Freshman slide on. Wheezy has been on the fast track to production superstardom lately as the man behind the boards on trap-style anthems like Lil Baby and Drake’s "Yes Indeed," Young Thug and Gunna’s "Hot," YSL’s "Ski" and more. The Freshman quartet deliver Southern-fried bars over the "Pushin P" producer’s bass-heavy, hi-hat-laced score.

This year’s youngest Freshman Nardo Wick bombs first, igniting his freestyle with the explosive bars, "Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang/Big brother always tryna touch a nigga brain," the soft-spoken 20-year-old artist raps. "Leave him neckless, he try reachin' for my chain/Izzy always tryna hit a fuckin' stain/Brush my teeth with Scope, but promise I got Aim." From there, Nardo speeds things up a bit, showing impressive versatility.

Sliding in behind Nardo, Big30 brings big energy to the cypher. He doesn’t let off the gas in his lengthy rap, which stays true to character in pushing the rapper’s gangsta persona. "50 racks on me right now and this Dior is made of silk/Nigga spin my block incorrect than somebody gettin' killed," 30 spits. "My young nigga 15 with four bodies, can’t even buy a fifth/He ain't even old enough to vote, that lil boy bangin' Crip," he adds, later shouting out incarcerated fellow Memphis rhymer and 2021 XXL Freshman Pooh Shiesty.

1017's Big Scarr delivers what might be the shortest cypher verse in Freshman history, with his mic drop moment in the cypher clocking in at less than 10 bars. "I'm in the eggshell coupe, this bitch here a hatchback/I don’t do the basic bitches, Hemi here a Scat Pack/I don’t do no talkin', roll a nigga in the outback/I’m with your main bitch, we eatin' steak, chillin' at Outback," Scarr rhymes. In and out.

KenTheMan is the show closer. Putting on for H-Town, TheMan is small in stature, but big on bars. She slips in and out of flows over the menacing track with ease. "ATL, hopped off a plane and hit the stage with Kali/I'ma P, I got some hoes that's ducked off in the valley/Ask about me, I been 100, my card super valid/I drop a ho, I get another one like DJ Khaled."

Man, oh, man. It's up.

Watch Nardo Wick, Big Scarr, Big30 and KenTheMan's 2022 XXL Freshman Cypher

Read the 2022 XXL Freshman cover story featuring BabyTronCochiseSaucy SantanaBabyface RayKenTheManSoFaygoBig ScarrBig30KayCyyDoechiiKali and Nardo Wick when the issue hits newsstands everywhere on July 13. The issue includes additional interviews with Wheezy Outta HereLupe FiascoKevin GatesPi’erre BourneNLE ChoppaYvngxchris, producer DJ Dahi, engineer Teezio and singer Chlöe, plus a breakdown of every Freshman Class from a numbers standpoint, a look back at what the 2021 XXL Freshman Class is doing, the story of why the 2016 XXL Freshman Class gets so much respect now, a deep dive into the world of NFTs through hip-hop’s lens and exploring rappers’ most valuable collections. You can also buy the 2022 XXL Freshman Class issue here.

See Every Artist in the 2022 XXL Freshman ClassWhich rapper is your favorite?Filed Under: 2022 XXL Freshman, Big Scarr, Big30, Feature, KenTheMan, Nardo Wick, XXL MagazineCategories: News, XXL Freshmen, XXL Magazine


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/xxlstaff/” rel=”author”>XXL StaffPublished: July 12, 2022trendykulturee/Instagram

UPDATE (July 13):

The Yonkers Police Department has released a statement in regard to the viral footage of two police officers making an arrest and Styles P attempting to intercede. The police department also issued full-length bodycam video if the incident that supports the statement.

"The Yonkers Police Department is aware of a video that surfaced on Social Media regarding an interaction between Yonkers Police Officers and members of the community," the statement starts. "The incident itself revolved around the arrest of an individual who fled from Officers while she was being detained during an investigation into her reckless driving on an unregistered moped on a busy city sidewalk. Unregistered and uninsured moped operation on Yonkers streets and sidewalks is one of the most frequent complaints from community groups in recent months. After the individual attempted to flee, the Officers caught up to her and attempted to restrain her. The individual continued to refuse to comply, at which time an Officer utilized a standard take-down to bring her to the ground to be handcuffed. Subsequent to her arrest, a knife was recovered from an easily accessible front compartment on the moped."

The statement continues, "An internal investigation was immediately commenced at the scene, even before any videos of the incident were published to social media. The Yonkers Police Department routinely conducts full investigations into ALL uses of force by our Officers. This investigation includes the review of all video surveillance footage including Body-Worn Cameras, as well as interviews of all involved. The early stages of this investigation reveal that no strikes were used at any time during the incident and no force was used after handcuffs were applied. The investigation is ongoing. The attached video is the full and un-edited Body-Worn Camera footage from a primary Officer involved. The Yonkers Police Department is committed to transparency and serving the Yonkers community with service, integrity, and respect. More information regarding this interaction may be released as it becomes available."​

ORIGINAL POST (July 12):

Styles P is beginning to trend after a video has gone viral of him stepping in to try to protect a woman being detained by police.

The video, which first surfaced this afternoon (July 12) on social media, shows the woman being taken down to the ground by two police officers allegedly in Yonkers, N.Y. Her apparent moped can been seen laying on the ground near her. Although unconfirmed at this time, it's being rumored that she is a deliverer for Uber.

As the woman is handcuffed by police, another woman begins to film and then shout at the officers, telling them that she is recording the somewhat violent arrest.

As the first woman is being pinned to the ground and arrested she repeatedly tells the officers she is not resisting arrest. Moments later, Styles P appears on the scene.

"Yo! He's a bitch," the rapper is heard telling one of the officers, then telling the woman recording on her phone to keep filming the video.

"Yo, sista, loosen up," Styles P tells the woman being detained, in an attempt to deescalate the situation for her while extending a hand to try and help.

"You's a fucking hoe," the LOX member then tells one of the officers. "You a whole bitch."

That officer stands up and begins to approach Styles, who raises his hands and says, “I'ma back up. Don’t touch me.”

"Keep recording me," Styles directs the woman recording. "You slammed a girl! For no reason!" he then shouts at the officer.

As the video continues, Styles is seen standing his ground against the cop, eventually moving to the other side of the woman being detained.

Styles is receiving accolades on social networks for defending the woman and confronting the cops.

XXL has reached out to the Yonkers Police Department and a rep for Styles P for comment.

Watch Styles P Step in to Protect a Woman Being Detained by Police OfficersSee Proof That Manifestation Really Works for RappersDo you believe in manifestation?Filed Under: Styles PCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/joeyech/” rel=”author”>Joey EchPublished: July 12, 2022Paras Griffin/Ron Galella/Getty Images (2)

T-Pain thinks if Tupac Shakur were still alive, he would've gotten washed lyrically by today's rappers.

On Monday (July 11), T-Pain joined DJ Akademiks for a live video on Twitch and dropped a controversial opinion. During a conversation about how old-school rappers would fare in the age of social media, the "I'm Sprung" rap-crooner said if Tupac Shakur were still around to pop off the way he did in the 1990s, his legacy would be a lot different than it is currently. In fact, Pain is of the belief that by 2022 standards, the iconic West Coast MC's bars couldn't hold a candle to what rhymers are offering these days.

"I feel like, and I'm not gon’ lie to you, this gon’ be some bullshit," said T-Pain. "’Pac would've got killed sooner and he would've got his ass ate the fuck up lyrically."

When Pain was taken to task for his bold statement on the live stream, the Florida native doubled down on his opinion.

Pain continued: "Lyricism-wise, ’Pac would've got ridiculously murdered. ’Pac was a crazy lyricist in our time because ain't nobody else have no platform. If the platforms are what they are now, ’Pac would've got ate the fuck up … What we look at as ’Pac's greatest lyrics right now is peanuts to what we hear today."

With that, however, T-Pain did somewhat clarify his thoughts when he mentioned that he considers the late "Dear Mama" spitter to be a better poet than an MC.

"’Pac is a full fuckin' poet. ’Pac was one, if not the, one of the greatest lyricists at the time. But if we would've had social media back then and everybody would've had their opinion, there would've been way the fuck more disrespectful niggas at the time. Niggas would've been dying to be more disrespectful than ’Pac."

Ironically, T-Pain's comments come almost a year to the date of his comments calling out new rappers for all sounding the same. T-Pain made headlines for other comments he made in the same recent Twitch interview, where he said Chris Brown has a "princess complex."

Watch T-Pain Talk About How Tupac Would Fit in With Today's Rappers BelowSee the Most Memorable Lyrics From Rappers Under 25Playboi Carti, Roddy Ricch, Lil Tecca and more.Filed Under: 2Pac, T-Pain, Tupac, Tupac ShakurCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 12, 2022Araya Doheny/Amy Sussman/Getty Images (2)

T-Pain called out Chris Brown due to Breezy's complaints that he didn't get the proper support for his new Breezy album.

T-Pain recently sat down for a Twitch interview with DJ Akademiks on Monday night (July 11). During the convo, the topic of CB venting over his subpar albums sales came up, and T-Pain said the Virginia crooner has a "princess complex," which causes Brown to act out.

"That is my muthafuckin nigga," T-Pain prefaced his statement. "But I know what his faults are. Chris Brown has the princess complex. Now, a lot of niggas don't know what the princess complex is… So, basically, the princess complex is when a young girl grows up in a family or in her surroundings where every day she gets called a princess. She gets called pretty. The prettiest girl in the world, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah."

He continued, "The princess complex is when you not only get what you want, you get the accolades of a pretty person for doing absolutely-fucking-nothing. And just being pretty…The second that the first real muthafucka come up to you and say, 'Hey, you ain't that fucking pretty,' it's over. Breakdown. Twitter outrage, everything. Now, this is my nigga. And I'm not saying that he has this. I'm saying…If he put out the tweets that I saw. If that was actually him. Then, yeah. Maybe there's a little princess aspect to it."

T-Pain is referencing the Instagram Story messages Chris Brown put up following the release of his new Breezy album, which debuted at a lower than expected No. 4 spot on the Billboard 200 chart after moving 72,000 equivalent album sales in the first week.

“July 8th [Breezy] deluxe album, not that [it] matters…,” Brown wrote in one post. “SEEMS LIKE YALL ONLY INVEST IN THE NEGATIVE STORIES ABOUT ME. CHRIS GETS IN TROUBLE (THE WHOLE WORLD IS ON it). Chris drops album…[cricket emojis].”

Brown added in another post, “I’m back on my gangsta shit…It’s BRACKIN at all Times.”

Watch T-Pain Opining on Chris Brown's Response to Breezy Support BelowSee Great Hip-Hop Projects This Year That Shouldn’t Be Determined by Commercial SuccessCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/joeyech/” rel=”author”>Joey EchPublished: July 12, 2022Rich Fury/Ezra Shaw/Getty Images (2)

Charlamagne Tha God says when he first moved to New York City, he thought that HOV lanes along the local highways were named after Jay-Z.

In an episode of the nationally syndicated radio show, The Breakfast Club, that dropped on Monday (July 11), longtime co-host Charlamagne Tha God explained that when he saw signs on the highway that read "HOV," Jay-Z was the very first thing he thought of. In true hip-hop head fashion, Charla mistakenly took high-occupancy vehicle lanes (HOV), also referred to as carpool lanes, as a symbol of Jay's high-profile status in his home city.

"I want ya'll to keep in mind that I know nothing about the HOV lane," explained the South Carolina native at the 26:45-mark in the clip below. "First time I ever saw a HOV lane was in New York City and I said to myself, 'Damn. Jay-Z got his own lanes in New York?' I did. When I moved here in 2006, that's the first thing I thought. 'He really is the King of New York.'"

The topic that sparked the conversation about HOV lanes on the esteemed morning radio show is the story of Dallas, T.X. resident Brandy Bottone. Bottone was recently pulled over by police while driving solo in the carpool lane, which is typically a violation of highway laws. What makes the story notable is that when the officers pulled up on Brandy, she explained that she was not in fact driving alone because she is 34 weeks pregnant, citing the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that women have no federal right to receive an abortion.

Since Charlamagne is known for his comedy on the popular radio show and other ventures, it's not exactly clear whether or not he truly believed HOV lanes were in honor of Jay-Z or if the comments were simply a clever play on words.

Hear the Full Episode of The Breakfast Club below.These Are the Best Alter Egos in Modern RapWho’s your favorite?Filed Under: Charlamagne Tha God, Jay-ZCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 12, 2022Erika Goldring/Getty Images

The judge in YoungBoy Never Broke Again's California gun possession case has ruled that the rapper's lyrics cannot be used against him in his trial.

NBA YoungBoy's trial for gun possession began on Tuesday (July 12). In a ruling in court today, Judge R. Gary Klausner of the Central District of California shut down the prosecution's attempts to use the Baton Rouge, La. rhymer's lyrics as evidence. XXL has confirmed the ruling.

YoungBoy Never Broke Again's defense team has been trying to stifle the government's plan to use lyrics in court for weeks. Specifically, the lyrics to songs "Gunsmoke" and "Life Support," which mention the type of gun, an FN, the rapper was allegedly arrested with.

The topic of the use of song lyrics in court cases has been a controversial one. Recently, the prosecution in YSL's RICO case tried to use violent lyrics in their argument to deny Young Thug and Gunna bond. In May, New York passed a law limiting the use of lyrics in court.

XXL has reached out to YoungBoy Never Broke Again's lawyer, his label reps and the U.S. District Attorney for comment.

The California case stems from a situation in which NBA YoungBoy was arrested in Los Angeles on March 22, 2021. In the incident, police attempted to pull the rapper over in order to arrest him on an outstanding federal warrant after he left his Los Angeles residence. YoungBoy reportedly led the police on a short pursuit in his vehicle before exiting the SUV and running on foot. Police used K-9 dogs to eventually locate the artist and reportedly discovered a FN .45 caliber pistol in his car.

A magistrate in California granted the rapper a bond. However, a Louisiana judge ruled he be kept behind bars due to a pending gun case he had in Baton Rouge, La. Last June, it was revealed that the FBI codenamed their case against YoungBoy "Never Free Again." In October of 2021, YoungBoy was granted a bond and placed on house arrest.

NBA YoungBoy still has the gun case in Louisiana, which stems from him being arrested in September of 2020 at a video shoot where several guns were discovered. He got a break in that case back in March, when a judge threw out video evidence against the rapper.

See 44 of the Longest Prison Bids in Hip-Hop HistoryC-Murder, Max B, B.G. and more.Filed Under: YoungBoy Never Broke AgainCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/xxlstaff/” rel=”author”>XXL StaffPublished: July 12, 2022Swisher Sweets

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Ready to win? Then head to the Swisher Sweets Life is Sweet entry page to upload a photo and short story or a video with a caption to showcase how winning $100,000 would make your life sweet. The Official Rules contain the guidelines you must follow to participate, but here are some tips to get you started: If you choose to send a photo or video, make sure it's of yourself. If you're writing a short story, it must be a minimum of 25 characters and a maximum of 1,000. And, you have to be 21+ to enter and your submission must only have people who are 21+. Link to the rules here.

The contest kicked off on June 1, 2022, and you have until Aug. 21, 2022 to upload your photo or video. You can also enter daily by making one entry per valid email address. A winner will be chosen based on select criteria.

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You'll find out if you won around August 28, 2022. The winner will also be featured on SwisherSweets.com.

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Get creative by being yourself for your chance to win and make your life sweeter, thanks to Swisher Sweets.

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Categories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 12, 2022XXL

Tell the truth, this is what you’ve all been waiting for. Now, that the 2022 XXL Freshman Class is fully unsheathed, and the pleasantries of the Mean Comments, ABCs and individual freestyles are out of the way, it’s time to get the finals: the 2022 XXL Freshman Cyphers. The first group of rappers from the new class that are ready to show and prove in the rap circle is Tampa, Fla. native Doechii, Atlanta’s SoFaygo, KayCyy from Kenya and St. Paul, Minn., and Saucy Santana, who calls Bridgeport, Conn. and Perry, Fla. home.

It all starts with a fire track, and one of the hottest producers in the game has provided that this year. Platinum-selling producer Wheezy Outta Here, the man behind hits like Gunna and Future’s "Pushin P," Young Thug's "Hot" and YSL’s "Ski," supplied a bevy of fire tracks to choose from. The first group picked a banger with pulsing synths and deep bass as their palette.

Ladies first. Doechii, the self-proclaimed "Swamp Princess," proves she’s not to be played with. "Ooh shit, ooh nana/Tell ’em make room when a real bitch fly by," she spits. "If Doechii on the list than it's thicker than a Popeyes/Flick of the wrist will get you gone, bitch, bye bye/Made $1 million in a month like voila/Niggas switching gangs, bandanas looking tie-dye/In The Shade Room, but the shades ain’t Prada."

Next up, Travis Scott’s Cactus Jack Records signee SoFaygo is operating in the flex zone for his cypher contribution. Taking his time, So slow-flows over the spacey soundscape. "Topic discussion, whoa/I do this shit just like it's nothing, whoa," he raps. "Come get that bitch that you cuffin', whoa/Ice on my wrist and it's bussin', whoa/Ice on my neck and it’s bussin'."

Minnesota’s KayCyy, by way of Kenya, is third up to the plate. Despite cosigns from Kanye West and Drake, the young rapper is still fighting for respect. He comes off the dome with a freestyle about his underdog status. "More money, more problems, that’s certainty/I came in the game and it’s urgent/I came in the game and it's promising (Yeah, let’s do it)," he delivers. "I don’t got time for the other shit/I don’t time for the nonsense/Yeah, I don’t got time for the drama shit."

Saucy Santana is dripping swag while batting cleanup. "I'm rockin' with Gucci, Emilio Pucci/Bitches my kids, baby mama coochie," he rhymes. "Go against me you must be stupid/When you rap, my ears is muted/Niggas is strapped, they zooted and booted/Looking for love and trying cupid."

Watch Doechii, SoFaygo, KayCyy and Saucy Santana's 2022 XXL Freshman cypher below.

Read the 2022 XXL Freshman cover story featuring BabyTronCochiseSaucy SantanaBabyface RayKenTheManSoFaygoBig ScarrBig30KayCyyDoechiiKali and Nardo Wick when the issue hits newsstands everywhere on July 13. The issue includes additional interviews with Wheezy Outta HereLupe FiascoKevin GatesPi’erre BourneNLE ChoppaYvngxchris, producer DJ Dahi, engineer Teezio and singer Chlöe, plus a breakdown of every Freshman Class from a numbers standpoint, a look back at what the 2021 XXL Freshman Class is doing, the story of why the 2016 XXL Freshman Class gets so much respect now, a deep dive into the world of NFTs through hip-hop’s lens and exploring rappers’ most valuable collections. You can also buy the 2022 XXL Freshman Class issue here.

See Every Artist in the 2022 XXL Freshman ClassWhich rapper is your favorite?Filed Under: 2022 XXL Freshman, Doechii, Feature, KayCyy, Saucy Santana, SoFaygo, XXL MagazineCategories: News, XXL Freshmen, XXL Magazine


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 12, 2022myfabolouslife/Twitter/Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Chris Brown is the latest hip-hop star to have his look-alike go viral, and it's thanks to Fabolous.

Loso is currently in Croatia, according to his Instagram Story. In the latest clips, posted on Monday (July 11), the Brooklyn, N.Y. rapper is at a pool party when he spots someone who looks eerily similar to Chris Brown. Faux Breezy is rocking a trucker hat, ripped jean shorts, a colorful shirt and a shoulder bag.

"Am I high or is this Chris Brown?" Fab captioned the first clip of the look-alike mingling in the crowd.

In a second clip, the Chris Brown doppelgänger busts out some quick dance moves.

"Yeah that's Breezy….Knew I wasn't crazy," Fab captioned the snippet along with a crying laughing emoji.

"Croatian Chris Brown got it!" Fab wrote on another video of bogus Breezy vibing out next to the pool. "Cro Breezy with the dance moves."

Rapper look-alikes have been making headlines this year. Lil Durk's look-alike, Perkio, ran into trouble earlier this year when he got caught up in a plot by 6ix9ine to diss Durk. Perkio later denied he was in on the stunt, where Tekashi made the Instagram star put on a R.I.P. King Von jacket.

Fake Drake has capitalized on his 15-seconds of fame as well. He even claimed he was getting a $10,000 appearance fee at one point. Last month, video surfaced of Fake Drake getting kicked out of a club, though he later claimed it was promotion for the real Drake. Earlier this month, Fake Drake got removed from Instagram, causing thrilled reactions from social media users. A DJ Khaled look-alike has even gone viral.

See Video of Fake Chris Brown BelowThese Are the Best Alter Egos in Modern RapWho’s your favorite?Filed Under: Chris Brown, FabolousCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 12, 2022Paras Griffin/Michael Reaves/Getty Images (2)

Gillie Da Kid sent shots at Rick Ross on the latest episode of the Million Dollaz Worth of Game podcast.

The latest episode of Gillie and Wallo267's podcast aired on Monday (July 11), and featured producer Southside. During the show, Gillie went on a side quest and dissed Rozay.

"It's old niggas, they don't hear the roar of the crowd no more, and they still think the world gon' come back," Gillie vented at the 1:24:52-mark of the interview. "So, they be on Instagram and they be on social media doing dumb shit. 'I just bought a cow.' And all this dumb shit. Fuck would you buy a cow for?"

From there, Gillie Da Kid broke the fourth wall and started talking directly to the camera, giving more hints about who he was talking about.

"You knew I was gon' bake you, nigga," Gillie continued. "I seen you in those comments. You knew I was gon' bake your goofy ass. Yeah, fuck wrong with you? Don't ever comment on nothing about me, nigga. When you used to be a CO, nigga. When you used to lock niggas like Wallo in the cell."

Rick Ross has been buying livestock for his The Promise Land estate in Georgia, recently, and showing off his purchases on Instagram. He also formerly worked as a CO.

"Fuck these old niggas," Gillie added. "They mad at me 'cause I tell ’em fuck ’em. All you niggas pussy. You ain't gon' do nothing."

If there were any doubts Gillie was talking about Rick Ross, he cleared it up in the comment section on an Instagram blog.

"This ain’t no fuckin sneak diss 😂😂😂," he posted. "I’m talkin to Ross he should of never been in Mack Maine comments callin me a fraud 💯."

gillie da kid diss rick rossgilliedakid/Instagramloading…

Gillie is referencing an incident back in May when he got called out by Young Money president Mack Maine for claiming Lil Wayne was shook when they ran into each other at Jackson State University. Apparently Ross commented on the post, causing Gillie to strike back at the opportune time.

Watch the Latest Episode of Million Dollaz Worth of Game BelowSee 10 of the Shortest Beefs in Hip-HopBeefs within rap that ended quickly.Filed Under: gillie the kid, Rick RossCategories: News


href=”//www.xxlmag.com/author/cvernoncoleman/” rel=”author”>C. Vernon Coleman IIPublished: July 11, 2022Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

Kid Cudi is defending his right to change the cover art for his debut mixtape after receiving backlash from a fan for the swap.

On Monday (July 11), Kid Cudi shared the updated cover art for his debut mixtape, A Kid Named Cudi, which will be hitting streaming services for the fist time on Friday (July 15). The artwork for the tape is noticeably different. The original features Cudder's face behind spacey lettering. The new version shows a black-and-white photo of Cudi wearing a plaid shirt and backwards baseball cap as he sits on steps in front of a brick background.

"This photo was taken by Mel D Cole on 9.22.08 in NYC. Right before my life changed forever," Kid Cudi expounded on the photo in a follow-up post.

Not everyone was feeling the change. One fan commented, "I'm sorry cud but the og cover too iconic."

The Ohio artist seemed to take exception to the fan's opinion. Kid Cudi fired back, "Im sorry but that cover i never liked and this is way better to see me at that time. Some of yall be so stuck on the past and dont wanna see any change its really sad. This photo is as equally if not more iconic. Ur bogus."

Kid Cudi announced his breakout project, A Kid Named Cudi, would finally be coming to streaming services back in March. Originally released in July of 2008, the tape features the what would be his eventual hit single, "Day 'N Night," which is currently five-times platinum.

Cudi just released his greatest hits album, The Boy Who Flew to the Moon Vol .1, last Friday. His long-awaited new album, Entergalactic, is slated to drop on Sept. 30. Last month, Cudi announced his To The Moon Tour. He also recently announced his inaugural Moon Man's Landing Festival, which starts two weeks before the tour kicks off. Tickets to Kid Cudi's To The Moon World Tour can be purchased here.

Check Out Kid Cudi's Tweets Defending His New Cover Art BelowSee 52 of the Most Controversial Hip-Hop Album Covers Since 2 Live Crew’s As Nasty As They Wanna BeWhich rapper has the most controversial album cover?Filed Under: Kid CudiCategories: News