sounds-of-summer

As the warm days come to an end, it’s time we look back on the artists who owned the summer. Some made headlines with their game-changing music and others shocked us with candid storytelling.  One rapper used a clever marketing tactic to get his fans involved with promoting his album. Other artists reached life milestones […]

It’s hard to believe summer of 1997 was 20 years ago. Back then, the way we experienced music was much different. When an album dropped, you ran to your nearest record store and purchased a copy. Walkmans and CD players were the only portable options, way before smartphones and streaming services became the new normal. […]

Each year, the warm days and nights of summer are marked by a soundtrack of standout songs. These are the tracks your favorite DJ plays to get the party in a frenzy. They’re the hits that we hear blasting out of cars. These are the songs with lyrics that become hilarious memes. So, with August […]

On the opening track of his debut album, Vic Mensa takes the listener back to his childhood bedroom where he’s drowning in music-making. His creative process is interrupted by his father banging on his door: “Victor. Turn down the music, you have school tomorrow…You’re spending too much time in the studio.” Despite pressure from a […]

Thousands of R&B and hip hop lovers came to the legendary Essence music festival in New Orleans, Louisiana, on Fourth of July weekend. From Mary to Chance, this year was unforgettable. While temperatures were hot and smoggy outside the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, attendees were cool and all smiles inside the venue. Some of the biggest acts […]

Summer is here! Get ready for the beach, barbecues, good times in the sun with friends and, of course, music. This year, the sound of summer 2017 will be shaped by a number of albums. R&B songstress SZA and hip-hop’s biggest curator, DJ Khaled, have already stirred some of the biggest buzz. Veteran artists, like […]

Today, DJ Khaled is ushering in another summer with his tenth studio album Grateful. Asahd, Khaled’s baby boy, is the executive producer of the forthcoming release, which features A-list musicians. Before the release, Khaled rolled out Beyoncé and Jay Z’s “Shining,” “I’m the One” featuring Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper, and Quavo; and the Rihanna […]

SZA’s CRTL was one of the most highly-anticipated albums to drop this summer. But the rollout for it was shaky. Behind the scenes, the 26-year-old singer trudged through a stormy fall season. She mourned deaths of loved ones — including her grandmother — and faced creative insecurities surrounding her highly-anticipated record. In October, Top Dawg […]