Friday, September 20, 2013

7 Underground Bay Area Rap Artists that are KILLIN IT right now

I'm coming off a hiatus and I'm about to do another one.  Gotta get this guapele.  Unlike some of these bloggers I'm really in the streets.  Like literally.  I live in my car.  Temporary setback.  When you got the mind of a king you gonna end up a king though.  I'm positive as fuck-minded right now.  Shoutouts to the ones that stayed down.

Compiled below are some of the best bay area rap artists that are still flying under the radar.  I should probably start writing about more established artists for the purpose of search engine optimization, but I want to make sure to expose the variety of underground talent in the bay area.  Joe Blow, J. Stalin, HD of Bearfaced, E-40, San Quinn, Messy Marv, etc... are all dope... but the already got names.

Support the artists below, download their projects, add them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Bay first.

Nittee - Heavy Retaliation (68 Bars) - @NitteeLBRMG
Nittee is one of the hardest underground rappers in Oakland right now.  When a lot of artists out here are jumping on the "swag" bandwagon, it can be hard to find that grimy mobb music to keep you gassed.  Luckily Nittee stays dropping street music.  This track in particular is one of the hardest and most epic tracks to come out of Oakland in 2013.

This song and more can be found on his Trust Issues mixtape with Tommy T
You can download the mixtape HERE

Jaseen Seven - Wrong Turn - @Jaseen7

Fresh off a vacation of which I'm not at liberty to discuss the details, east Oakland's best kept secret Ja'seen Seven hits us with some leaks from his upcoming release, "Seven". This track is introspective, and samples Erykah Badu, in a way that works.  Collaborate with Jaseen while he's still in your budget, because I feel the days are numbered when you can still get "verses for the low".

His album release of "Seven" on Higher Caliber Music Group is coming soon, but for now you can download his pre-album Mixtape HERE

Lil Aaron shit is grimy but deep.  Very few artists are able to pull off this combination of intellectual insight and lyrical simplicity.  When listening to Lil Aaron's music you get the feeling that you're being laced with true game from an O.G. who's been there, done that and lived to tell about it.  He picks good beats too.  The "I'm Back On My Taliban Shit" mixtape is dope all the way through.  The mixing is rough but the game is real.

You can download his mixtape HERE

Lil Aaron is also an author.  I can't tell if his book has been published yet, but you can pre-order it HERE

Jo. T - Way That I'm Livin - @iamjot

Jo. T AKA Jordan Thomas got bars, and particular excels in the use of "multi's" (rapper grammer for rhyming multiple syllables).  It would be safe to say that from a lyrical standpoint Jo.T. is definitely  my favorite artist from Santa Rosa since Disalasion's "Get It All" and Low Pro'z "As We Ride".  Yep, I took it there.  For those unfamiliar with the history of suburban gangsta rap in the north bay, however, I'll use a better reference: Jordan Thomas AKA "Jo. T" is the dopest rapper from Santa Rosa since Ray Luv.

Jai Swift - Ode To Ganja - @JaiSwift

When Hayward's finest Jai Swift drops an "Ode To Ganja", it can only be described as redundant.  Jai Swift's ENTIRE CAREER is an Ode To Ganja.  Extended Totally Insane family member, college student and weed connoisseur (yup, I spell checked that one) and labelmate Dee Star brings us more good music to blaze up to.

G.Thoro - Always Been - @itsthorobro

G.Thoro is a dope artist out of Frisco who's music combines bay area street culture and motivational wisdom.   Seriously, I was about to buy a coaching package from Tony Robbins but then I was like "fuck it, I can just download G. Thoro's "License to K.I.L." album for free and save $10,000."  Listening to his music, you get the feeling that G. Thoro is going to be successful at whatever he does.  I'm hoping that he doesn't fall victim to the swag movement and continues to make good rap music, although to be honest there's probably more money in motivational speaking.

You can download G. Thoro's License to K.I.L. album HERE

Tiggo - Show You How (Feat. San Quinn) - @_TIGGO_

I don't know much about Tiggo, other than he has roots in both SF and Sacramento, and his lyrics are dope.  This DJ Fresh produced track with San Quinn got him some spins on YouTube, but from the quality of his lyricism I could see Tiggo getting a lot more exposure in the near future based solely on his music.

You can download his album "I Am Him" HERE
and be on the lookout for his upcoming project "Get Wit It Or Be Wit Out It 2"

What artists are missing from this list?
Who are your favorite bay area artists that combine lyricism, street sensibility and realness?
What are you gonna do to contribute to the future of bay area rap?

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Birch Boy Barie - Gorilla Gang Mixtape

Birch Boy Barie is one of the most promising artists I've heard out of Oakland.  He puts out quality mixtapes / albums every few months, is dedicated to telling the truth in his music, and was recently nominated as a top 30 prospect for the Bay Area Freshmen 10.

Here on Mobb Reflectionz we would like to present you with a couple of our favorite tracks from Birch Boy Barie's latest mixtape: Gorilla Gang (Hosted by Young Gully).  If you're you're still sleeping on Birch Boy Barie after listening to these songs, please do the bay a favor and KILL YOURSELF.


                                             Birch Boy Barie - @BirchBoyBarie - "Slidin"

"They not chasin money, these niggas rather beef, I don't know what's goin on, it ain't the same up in these streets, I'm tryna keep from going crazy, so I'm gettin high daily, actavis straight out the bottle got a nigga feelin lazy...."

"G-Team till I die!  Forever we gone slide!"

This is the anthem of the album, and according to Barie the video has already been shot.  Rahlo's epic production and the straight forward sincerity of Barie's lyrics are a perfect match for each other.  This is a good motivational track for the grind!

                                            Birch Boy Barie - @BirchBoyBarie - "Why"

"Every day be the same, why the hell we won't change?
Why we do drugs when it just bring more pain?
All the love I done gave...  why they still hate?
Maybe cause I'm authentic, true to the streets, they can't relate...."

Birch Boy Barie is a very much a street rapper...  but tracks like this that indicate that he's way more than just a trap star.  The song is laid out as a series of questions.  It's dope.  I don't gotta tell you to listen to it, cause it should already be playing out of your speakers.

I'll be writing more about this artist in the future, as his career unfolds.  If you want to get in on the ground floor and be able to say "I was one of the first ones listening to Birch Boy Barie"... NOW is the time.

                       Thizzler's Bay Area Freshmen 10 Prospect Introduction: Birch Boy Barie

You can download a few of his albums here:


Saturday, June 1, 2013

Family music: Philthy Rich and A-Wax make songs for their parents

I'm not sure if it's still cool to hate your parents in 2013.  I think kids these days just ignore their parents and sext each other or some shit.

When I was a spoiled teenager (not financially, just spoiled in that my parents didn't beat my ass), I went into my room and played gangster rap loud so loud that it would drive everyone in the house crazy.  Then I refused to turn it down.  Then we fought.  Shit was ugly.  I don't know why I'm going into it.


Seeing as we're about half way between Mothers Day and Father's day, I thought I would share a couple of rappers who have made recent songs about family.

                                                 Philthy Rich @philthyrichFOD "Deadbeat"

An amazing diss track by Philthy Rich against his biological father, Philthy's surprisingly deep song of paternal separation contains a laundry list of reasons why he has no reason to maintain a relationship with his forebearer.

Apparently his pops has been trying to get at him now that he's famous (Eminem had the same issue).  It's become a cliche (editors note: when?  was it ever not?) that people who didn't support an artist when they were on the bottom often try to get at them like it's all love once the artist ascends to the height of glory.  I would think it's gotta be especially hurtful when it's a parent, who's biological duty is to support and nurture their children.

Philthy drops so many gems on this track that I don't have to time to list them.  Almost every line is dripping with depth and emotion.... something I NEVER thought I'd say about Philthy Rich's music.  Game recognize game.

A-Wax @waxfase "Her Mistakez"

Is it stereotyping to say that the difference in subject matter between these two songs illustrates the cliche of white boys being the ones with mother issues?

Unlike a certain other white rapper's "fuck you, I hate you mom!" songs, A-Wax errs towards introspection, rendering a heartfelt tribute to his dysfunctional maternal bonds.  Lines like "see her mistakes, looking at me" and "she chose a man, I chose a gang, so different but yet so the same..." are very well written.  Better, in fact, than this paragraph.  That's why A-Wax get's the big bucks, and I'm stuck eating out of dumpsters and writing blog posts.

I blame it on my mother.  Entirely.

Speaking of the mom's of white rappers, I met Young Dru's mom, drunk outside of a concert venue that I worked for. To her credit she was very proud of her son, making sure to let us know that her "son's a rapper, his name is Young Dru".  She also gave me a burned copy of the 707 Compilation that said "master" on it.  That's a cool ass mom to promote her son like that!

Side 2 Syde @BigThump "Can You Stand The Pain"

I'll end this post with a throwback track from Side 2 Syde about his lack of father and love of mother.

Side 2 Syde dropped what I consider to be a classic album called Sky Ballin back in 1997.  As of the time of this writing it's going for between $30-$200 on Amazon. To paraphrase John Travolta in Pulp Fiction:  "God damn that's a pretty fucking good [album], I don't know if it was worth [$200], but it's pretty fucking good!"

The Side 2 Syde legacy now continues in the form of the rapper Big Thump, who is working on a comeback with a single called Krazy.  

Questions for my readers:
What is your relationship with your parents like?
What was your parents relationship to bay area rap music?

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Ice City to Canada... three new songs to check out

In my last post I meant to give you an update of some of the new bay area music I was listening to, but instead it turned into a history lesson about the connections between the Bay and Texas.  Here, without further ado is some of the music I've been listening to.

Pimpton feat. Andre Nickatina - @ThePimpton @AndreNickatina- "Little Darryl"

Pimpton is a Canadian rap artist (who I met a while promoting Mobb Report Radio at the underground concert series Oakland Live_.  My respect for Canada went up 3 notches when I heard his album.

The old school whip, analog turntable and Wu Tang shirt might lead one to think that Canada was about 15 years behind us, but trust me... the music is only 5 years behind us.  By 5 years behind I mean it's BETTER THAN ALMOST ANYTHING THAT'S MADE BY BAY AREA RAPPERS IN 2013.  Let's hope Pimpton and his homies above the border aren't doing swag rap anthems in 5 years.  I have to hold on to the belief that there's somewhere on this planet where music is still hyphy and pure.... even if that place is Regina, Saskatchewan, CA.

I've known about this song ever since the album dropped, but it grows on me more and more with each listen.  THE BEAT IS SO FUCKIN WEIRD....  different from anything he's ever put out.  The atmosphere of the beat takes you back into an era where HD wouldn't exist.

There are several science fiction scenarios that could explain a song like this being created, but I'll go with one:
Imagine there was a DJ/producer who had some kind of transdimensional portal.  The audio output of this portal was hooked up to a copy of Serato Scratch Live, and he could mix and match different eras of sound.  One day he sets the dial on his portal to "random", and on Deck 1 there's some old guy in Tennessee strumming out a bluesy riff on a guitar... and then on Deck 2 he hears a weird cell phone conversation of some young man from North Oakland talking with a friend about what he had for lunch.  He adjusts the tempos to match between the two decks, and next thing you know, he's created this track.  He then thinks a disparaging thought about DJ Shadow's career "post-entroducing" and then calls it a night.

Anyway, as I predicted after the first listen, this song has grown on me.

Antwon @aaantwon "Laugh Now"

I'm not gonna show this guy too much love, cause he's a rapper who's popular with white hipsters and probably get's more than his fair share of blog love already.  Can't hate on the music though.  He mostly makes songs for the bitches, but they're usually good.  This is one of the few songs I could find from Antwon that isn't about eating pussy.  It's about isolation, fear, revenge and other things that I think about more than I should.

I'm back... sorta... plus Texas and the Bay are at it again!

Ok, I've been MIA for a few weeks.  I took a break from this blog to smoke weed and fuck bitches... and not necessarily in that order.


I've still been listening to bay area rap music though.  Luckily I can multitask.  Smoking weed (blue dream is a helluva drug), fucking bitches (that look kinda like Raven Symone) and bumping bay area rap (of the Mobb variety) are all activities that support and ENHANCE eachother.

Here's a few tracks that have come into my life since last we spoke (like RJD2):

"The Game" by Laroo and Hustler E (Texas Money Boyz)
@laroothh @TheRealHustlerE @ttokens
Laroo isn't good at making bad music and this track is no exception.   This is a collaboration between him and Hustler E, a relative unknown from Waco, TX.  Hustler E is dope, the producer T. Tokens is dope.  They did a whole album together, Texas 2 The Bay: Straight Game, Fast Life.

This builds on a seldom discussed but long history of ties between the bay area and texas rap scenes, the evidence of which is presented below:

UGK feat. E-40 and B-Legit "Corruptors Execution"

"Corruptors Execution" is a song who's title is only possible due to it being for a soundtrack.  UGK and E-40 were both on the same record label, Jive records.  Jive handle a lot of the important bay area and southern rap before they struck gold with Backstreet Boys and N'Sync and subsequently lost interest in promoting bay area rap.  Apparently there was an E-40 poster in the background of a UGK album cover, although I can't find it right now.  Just trust me on this.  You can trust me.  Come on, I wouldn't do you like that brah..

Exhibit B
Spice 1 was born in Corsicana, Texas.  It goes without saying that Spice 1 was one of the most influential rappers in the bay area, but his extreme gangsta rap and emotional death ballads were a strong influence the the Houston rap scene as well.

Exhibit C
Bay area rap was a favorite of the legendary DJ Screw, who would slow down classic and lesser known Mobb tracks.  Over a decade before HD was rappin about bricks Bo, the entire city of Houston, Texas was  sippin syrup and listening to bay area rap music.

Here's several of the best examples from Screws extensive discography:

Conscious Daughters - Funky Expedition
From the DJ Screw Tape "Mash For My Dreams

Richie Rich - Do G's Get To Go To Heaven (Freestyle w/ Big Moe, LOS, Grace & Wood)
From the DJ Screw tape "Killuminati"

E-40 - It's All Bad
From the DJ Screw tape "Codeine Fiend"
Check for Droop E's voice at about 1:40

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Ya Hemi: The hardest female rapper in the bay since The Conscious Daughters...

Well I missed Women's History Month, but I'm making up for it with this post.  If there are any radical feminists who are mad about that, they are more than welcome to CLICK HERE.

The reality though is that I love empowered female rappers, especially of the gangster variety.

...Which leads us to Ya Hemi... AKA Queen LaCheefa a female rapper from Oakland, CA, and the best thing to hit the airwaves since The Concious Daughters.  She's repping the HBR click (of Sleepy D and D-Lo fame).  I haven't yet delved into the HBR click archives, but apparently they exist, and three HBR mixtapes can be found on datpiff.  I hope that they feature Ya Hemi prominently, and I'm about to show you why.

Ya Hemi "Get Tha Business" @queenlacheefa

This is the first Ya Hemi track I heard and I was hooked, via SilverNBlackOAK and Shanedogg's "Make The World Burn Vol. 2".  

This is straight up street shit, and while I'm morally opposed to her advocacy of armed robbery, the song slaps and deserves it's shine.  As Ya Hemi puts it "I ain't tryna be cocky, but name a bitch in the streets that's gone stop me".  My first answer is the same as her subsequent adlib.  NONE

This track features Beeda Weeda, in the best sounding performance I've ever heard of his.  Never been on Beeda's stuff that much, but his voice and flow matches the beat perfectly.  Next up is Young Sunny, who's sounds like he's got a southern twang to his voice.  It's not that annoying southern sound that a lot of bay artists try to emulate.  His voice is genuinely interesting, and I want to hear more.

Last is Ya Hemi, who let's us know what she's about with the line "I'm wit the shit, you niggas can save hip hop".  This is an important line, in that she firmly establishes what lane she's in and that she's not trying to please everybody... a quality sorely lacking in an age where most rappers try unsuccessfully to have universal appeal instead of just doing them and staying true to themselves.

Here at Mobb Reflections we're both WIT THE SHIT and SAVING HIP HOP at the same time.  How bout that!  Try that! [In my best Ja'seen Seven voice]


Ya Hemi "Fuck You" @queenlacheefa86

This one got 15,000 views.  I'm not feelin the beat as much as the previous ones, but the video is shot well, and the presence of so many people in the background gives creedance to her intro line "If I wanted you dead, nigga, I would paypal your hit, ya hear me?"

I hope to hear a lot more from Ya Hemi AKA Queen Lacheefa in the future.  Check her out.
YA HEMI Twitter
YA HEMI Facebook

And my favorite female rappers of all time:  THE CONSCIOUS DAUGHTERS
RIP Karryl Smith AKA "The Special One"

The Concious Daughters "We Roll Deep" @The_Daughters

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Bavgate sighting

Recently someone asked "what ever happened to Bavgate"?  He hasn't been as active in the last few years as he was in the mid-2000's.  Well, here's the answer, Thomas.  In AUTOTUNE...

Bavgate Feat. Laced "I Know"

And "I know" what your all probably thinking.  This is another attempt to get the radio to "play Bavgate".

I was student in the music program at Youth Uprising before, at the ripe old age of 25 I had to leave.  It was feeling a little weird being in music production classes with 13.  I probably shoulda stuck around as staff or something because they did offer me a job, and that was right before Too $hort got hired on as a Career Counselor.  But [in best Tariq Nasheed voice] I digress...

I remember they had a music conference for the youth, including a panel discussion.  Bavgate was one of the artists representing, and I recall him and Rick Lee getting in a heated argument about how KMEL doesn't support local artists that are hot in the streets.  If I recall, Rick Lee's basic argument was that he tried to get people in during his occasional mix, but that other than that his hands were tied.  Gate wasn't satisfied.  I'm not either.  Hence, MOBB REPORT RADIO, the only station on the internet that don't play nothing but that bay shit!  Again, I digress.

Bavgate "Play Bavgate"

Ironically (or perhaps NOT ironically) this is the only song of Bavgates that I think got any play on KMEL.  He didn't get the heavy rotation he asked for on the chorus, but one of Rick Lee's main defenses was that he did play this song a few times.


I don't like the shit.  But if I gotta hear it I guess I would rather hear it from a bay area gangster rapper than a pussy ass R&B singer (or two) who can't even sing to begin with.

So basically, if I'm hearing Bavgate (or HD), I'd rather it isn't Autotune, but if I HAVE to hear Autotune, I'd rather it is Bavgate or HD.  Make sense?

Looking forward to hearing more new Bav in the future too.