BlackBook Tracks #8: Gift Raps

I originally made this for my friend’s mixtape club under the theme “gift raps.” It is exactly what it says it is.

Le1f – “Wut”

Underground rap’s summer anthem of 2012 has been on repeat for weeks.

Iggy Azalea – “Murda Bizness” (ft. T.I.)

The latest party anthem from the Australian upstart shows off her undeniable star power. It’s also accompanied by one of the year’s best music videos so far, a spoof of the child pageant world.

Kanye West – “Monster” (ft. Jay-Z, Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj, Bon Iver)

Remember those days when Nicki Minaj was just doing guest verses and had yet to do anything that people considered disappointing?

Angel Haze – “Werkin’ Girls”

NYC rapper Angel Haze is Universal’s toughest new signee, and this cut from her latest release Reservation shows why.

Das Racist – “You Can Sell Anything”

#RappersThatSpitTheTruth isn’t trending on Twitter any more, but this is still my pick.

M.I.A. – “URAQT”

Have a throwback to 2005 to remember that this bad girl has always done it well.

A-Trak – “Ray Ban Vision” (ft. CyHi The Prynce)

This hilarious/infectious track was a favorite in fall 2010 and still sounds fresh, thanks to the ever-reliable A-Trak’s amped-up production.

Dominique Young Unique – “Gangster Whips”

This Florida-based rapper has remained fairly underground for years now, but she’s slowly but surely going to make her way out.

Yelawolf – “Lick The Cat” (ft. Diamond)

This song contains the line “White boys eat pussy like a sandwich.” That is all you need to know about it.

Azealia Banks – “Fuck Up The Fun”

If you haven’t already, listen to this track from Azealia Banks and Diplo and you’ll immediately know why our friends at Vibe put this dream team on their cover.

Kitty Pryde – “Orion’s Belt” (ft. RiFF RAFF)

Resistance is futile. Recent Mad Decent signee RiFF RAFF is one of the most bizarre, compelling figures in pop culture today, and Kitty Pryde’s honesty and self-awareness is inherently likeable.

Azealia Banks Says F.U. to T.I. over Misogynist Comments

For a guy who claims he doesn’t want to deal with women, rapper T.I. did a pretty terrible job avoiding a skirmish with up-and-coming rapper Azealia Banks. During an appearance Monday on WGCI’s “Morning Riot” show, the “Popped Off” performer weighed in once more on the feud between Banks, the up-and-coming Harlem rapper known for her underground hit “212,” and Iggy Azalea, the Aussie rapper signed to his Grand Hustle record label. “I ain’t even know nothing about it. I didn’t even see it,” T.I. told the radio show. “I know they’re going through their thing, but the fact that she’s speaking upon me and mine, that is what I consider bitch shit. I’m a man… You ain’t got no business addressing me. You got a man, get him to address me, and he and I can speak on it. But you and me… Can’t keep dealing with that woman. Ya’ll handle that. I do what men do.”

Despite his moronically misogynistic yet somehow not uncommon rant, Banks, who’s currently recording with Missy Elliott, wasn’t exactly scared back into her hen house. “What a fucking clown,” she tweeted at T.I. “Ain’t you the same dude that got photographed butt naked in a pair of sneakers and a beanie?” she continued. The kerfuffle dates back a few months to when Banks publicly questioned Azalea’s inclusion on XXL magazine’s “Freshman Class” list, which rounds up young talent. “Iggy Azalea on the XXL freshman list is all wrong,” Banks wrote at the time. “How can you endorse a white woman who called herself a ‘runaway slave master’?” And while Banks’ beef with Azalea might not die down anytime soon, it looks as if she knows better than to try and change a man, especially one like T.I. “I shouldn’t be letting T.I bait me for his artists’ promo,” Banks concluded in a tweet last night. “I’m giving him what he wants. That’s no good.” 

T.I. Loves His Life on New Single, ‘Love This Life’

Spending a good amount of time in jail for some stupid bullshit will make any man feel completely grateful for his life — especially if that life is filled with fame and fortune. On his new single, "Love This Life," T.I. delivers a number of gentle platitudes and effortless reassurances about his new-and-improved worldview over a rapid fire rat-a-tat drum beat, sounding very much like a man who’s learned a number of lessons since his brush with the law. It’s more believable than T.I.’s Road to Redemption, at least. Listen to it after the click, via

"My heart is RSVP, I’ve extended an invitation / and don’t go wasting your time with what they saying online," he rhymes. Who doesn’t always feel that way about everything? Welcome back to rap supremacy, bro. Trouble Man, T.I.’s upcoming album, is out this summer. 

T.I. Releasing New Mixtape on New Year’s Eve

2011 was sort of a wash for T.I. — he rapped a bunch, sure, but he also spent more than half the year in prison on a 2010 drug charge. It probably wasn’t a horrible stay, because he’s T.I. and no one messes with T.I. in the joint. Counterpoint: prison!

With that in mind, Tip is ringing in the new year by releasing a new mixtape entitled Fuck da City Up on New Year’s Eve. Is it out at midnight? Sometime after? Who knows, but if you follow him on Twitter, I’m sure you’ll be up to date when the moment comes. He’ll be hosting a party in Atlanta (no, you’re not invited) and waiting for the clock to strike 12. "Between the party and the mixtape, that’s all I got going," he told MTV News. "New year, new money. That’s that."

Below, you can watch a clip of him working in the studio with Dr. Dre. If you’re not doing anything on NYE, you can get it right away and ponder the irony of listening to a mixtape entitled Fuck da City Up while you are doing anything but. Happy 2011, y’all. 2012 can’t come soon enough.

Morning Links: T.I. Thinks Gays Are Sensitive, Lily Allen Has A Baby

● T.I. thinks that Tracy Morgan’s "If you can take a dick, you can take a joke" joke about gay people being too sensitive is really funny and also "kind of true." And he thinks it’s his American right to do so. "If you’re gay you should have the right to be gay in peace, and if you’re against it you should have the right to be against it in peace," he told Vibe, sounding about as clear on the First Amendment as he is on the Second. [TMZ]

● Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston were almost at the same movie theater at the same time. [NYDN]

● Lily Allen has at last welcomed a little girl into the world, an experience she described as "totes amaze" after a difficult miscarriage last year. [Daily Mail]

● Over the weekend, Prince William helped rescue sailors from a sinking cargo ship in the Irish Sea. Where can we get one of those sinking ships? We wouldn’t mind a royal rescue. [Huff Post]

● Chris Martin thinks that he’d be "just terrible" if he went solo. "I think me and my keyboard would be outside Woolworths most days, getting shouted at," he says. [NME]

● Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes spent a reportedly romantic weekend at Paris’ Père Lachaise Cemetery, where they "ducked into a family vault for some couple time." [NYP]

● Don’t call Michelle Williams "a star;" she much prefers "trash compactor" — “That’s what I felt like every day on the set. Like I was being pressed up against the wall of my own abilities,” she says of playing Marilyn Monroe in My Week With Marilyn. [NYT]

Morning Links: Taylor Swift Brings Out T.I. in Atlanta, Possible Tupac Sex Tape Surfaces

● T.I.’s first post-prison performance was an unlikely guest spot at Taylor Swift’s Atlanta show last night. As it turns out, the girl’s got edge. [Rap Radar] ● Waka Flocka Flame was slugged in the face by a former protege during a charity being held at a bowling alley. The rap game’s stressful. [TMZ] ● When it became clear he wouldn’t be making his Toronto show, Russell Brand likened the Canadian border patrol to Nazis and blamed them for denying him access into the country. In reality, Canada could care less about the comedian; he was just late because of plane problems. [THR]

● Kim Kardashian and Selena Gomez are truly the best friends a girl could want. Demi Lovato says they called her every day while she was in treatment for an eating disorder. “Those two girls, they meant the world to me,” she says. “They still do.” [NYDN] ● TMZ thinks they’ve found a short Tupac sex tape, which opens up all sorts of weird questions about postmortem sexiness. [TMZ] ● Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner fancies himself to be most like Mad Men adwoman Peggy Olson. He also sees a lot of Don Draper in himself, but because he writes about “consequences,” he says, “I really don’t fantasize about being him.” [NYT]

Morning Links: Courtney Love Working on a Memoir, T.I. Finally Free

● You’ve heard the rumors about Ashton and Demi being dunzo? Well, Ashton broke his twitter silence yesterday to warn, “When you ASSUME to know that which you know nothing of, you make an ASS out of U and ME.” It’s unclear, however, who that was directed at. [Us] ● The wonderfully un-hinged Courtney Love hopes to “set the record straight” — or whatever that means coming from her — with a memoir, due out next fall. [P4K] ● Someone covered Justin Theroux’s BMW motorcycle with a “blanket of bologna” while it was parked outside Jennifer Aniston’s West Village apartment. [Page Six]

● T.I. is actually free this time, and he’s already working get back up to speed. [Reuters] ● Mike Myers named his kid Spike. [E!] ● In case you haven’t gotten her anything yet, all Kim Kardashian wants for Christmas this year is a sea horse. “I’ve always wanted one,” she says. [Us]

Morning Links: T.I. Sent Back to Jail, Benni Cinkle Finally Has Her Own Video

● Yesterday T.I. was released from jail early, but then they sent him back after he showed up at the half-way house in a luxury bus. Apparently that’s not allowed. [NYDN] ● Taylor Swift and Reese Witherspoon got lunch together in L.A. so that they could talk about how Jake Gyllenhaal, their shared ex, is so “vain.” [Us] ● Whole Foods thinks that Real Housewife Bethenny Frankel’s SkinnyGirl Margaritas are toxic and are pulling the product from their shelves. [NYP]

● Insane Clown Posse’s Violent J doesn’t really think his collaboration with Jack White is so weird because they both wore costumes while doing it. “He put on his black hat and his black coat and we put on our makeup…And it wasn’t that different. He had our shtick and we had ours,” he says. [Village Voice] ● Cher took to twitter in support of her son Chaz, who has been the victim of attacks since since his casting in DWTS, tweeting that “It took guts 2 do it,” and that “Mothers don’t stop Getting angry with stupid bigots who (mess) with their children!” [Huff Post] ● Paz de la Huerta’s Agent Provocateur campaign finds the lady looking, as always, near-nude and mostly fabulous. [ONTD] ● Benni Cinkle, that awkward girl in pink from Rebecca Black’s “Friday” video, finally has a video to call her own. [ONTD]

Morning Links: T.I. Got Out Of Jail Early, David Lynch’s Paris Night Club Opens

● T.I. was released from jail a little early yesterday, which means he also got to start filming his post-prison reality show for VH1 a little early. [TMZ] ● Rihanna bought a house for $7 millions dollars, but it’s leaky so now she doesn’t want it and is suing the real estate company. [Huff Post] ● Probably because someone knew it would be funny, Kim Kardashian’s new beau, Kris Humphries, was seated on a plane next to Kim Kardashian’s sex-tape beau, Ray J. How awkward! [Page Six]

● Rappers love themselves some Basquiat. [NYT] ● Beyoncé’s baby is already making her money: 4 sprung right back into the iTunes top ten after her so-sweet Sunday night announcement. [RS] ● David Lynch’s new Paris night club, Club Silencio, looks a lot like other night clubs, except it’s probably weirder because the odd-ball director got the final say on everything, meaning even the nuts are salted exactly to his pleasing, and his pleasing alone. [Guardian]