Roll Back, Play That: Tyler, the Creator
Roll Back, Play That: Tyler, the Creator
Photography: Mark Peckmezian
Saint Heron presents “Roll Back, Play That,” an original series of superior musical deep cuts curated by our favorite artists of today.
Tyler, the Creator’s self-curated playlist opens brightly with “Black and White Town” from the Doves 2005 album, ‘Some Cities’, followed by a slew of Pharrell featured hits with Snoop Dogg, Usher and T.I. There is also Lenny Kravitz’s warm, funky-rock single, “California,” lifted from 2004 along with an André 3000 produced Gwen Stefani number.
Read up on Tyler’s song selects and tune into the full playlist below!
Tyler, the Creator: All of these are specific from my 8th grade year (2004)
Doves – “Black And White Town”
I accidentally came across this song in my school’s library and was hooked. Not sure if it was the panned piano loop or the fact that everyone in the video was my age and didn’t look like anyone in my school. It was intriguing and, looking back, probably opened my eyes to how music videos could work. No performance. Not one. The piano chords, simple, yet something I rarely heard in rock songs. The structure was amazing too – the pre hook worked as a bridge, more guitars in the hook but doesn’t take away from the piano. His voice is perfect. The numerous nights I’ve skated home to this, I wouldn’t mind re-living one more time. One of the few songs that sounds like brisk air.
Snoop Dogg feat. Pharrell – “Drop It Like It’s Hot”
In the 7th grade, I attended La Tieja junior high. There i met this kid…lets call him J. He got held back, was gang affiliated and although very problematic, took a liking to me. He knew how much of a Pharrell fan I was, so during the summer he called my house phone (not sure how he got the number)
J: Cuhz, did you hear that new Snoop and Pharrell song
Me: Nah, what, where?
J: Power 106. Its crazy nigga. Its weird but I know you like that shit. Its hard as fuck – they playing it every hour
Me: Oh wow, ok I’m gonna go check it out right now. How are you, man?
J: Iight, Ill see you when school start *hangs ups*
A few hours later, I returned back to the radio and my fucking brain melted. I was confused, excited and not present all at the same time. I’ve never heard anything like it in my life. Snoop has never sounded cooler and getting a P rap verse at the time was rare. I recorded it on tape from my boom box (my dial up internet couldn’t handle Limewire) and replayed it 400 times. This is the end of this story.
The Hives – “Two-Timing Touch and Broken Bones”
Energy. This had fucking energy. I didn’t know what the fuck he was talking about and I didn’t care. His moves, his voice, everything was perfect. It didn’t even have an intro. It instantly punched you in the pussy and I loved it. I’ve performed this song in my bedroom more than my own shit.
Usher feat. Pharrell – “Wifey”
‘Confessions’ by Usher was such a massive album. FUCKING HUGE. Word went around that Pharrell had a few songs that didn’t make it (not sure if they were meant for that album), but a couple of them leaked. A stand out at the time was “Wifey.” Classic Neptunes piano, simple drums, infectious hook and melody, and the icing on the cake was P and Usher going back and forth. Sucks that this never got officially released. (Major shout out to the girl Bianca that I was crushing on at the time. I emailed her this song. She wasn’t feeling it.)
T.I. feat. Pharrell – “Freak Though”
Classic. The way the chords just melt down during the verse, amazing. P singing on the hook, amazing. T.I. going in depth and detail, sticking to the concept, amazing. Not many songs that put the “hoes” of the neighborhood in a positive light. Around the way girl by LL may be the only other one honestly.
Lenny Kravitz – “California”
This song and “Where Are We Running” were on ‘on demand’ for Time Warner at the time. Since my internet was so slow, I would browse and look at everything available on the platform. One thing about the video that stuck with me was the warm tone of it, which was pretty spot on with Los Angeles between the times of 4pm and 7pm. Lenny grew up in the ’70s, a totally different time from the mid 2000s I was living in. But the skateboarding, backyard parties and music were things that I related to. The next few months, I went through a deep Lenny Kravitz phase which introduced me to Steely Dan and a bunch of other bands that I never would have heard of. There is a video of his dick popping out on stage if you are bored.
213 – “Gotta Find A Way”
I wasn’t the biggest fan of west coast rap, given that I was born and raised in Los Angeles. But this 213 album had some gems on it. This song’s sound was so nostalgic but still managed to sound brand new. Nate Doggs’ voice is the audio version of strong coffee with too much cream and sugar, which I would consider perfect for my 13 year old ears.
Ludacris – “The Potion”
This was the hardest fucking beat to me, Jesus Christ. Timbo the king! Luda was one of the best rappers to me at one point. His pockets and witty punchlines were so over the top, but I truly believe his only flaw was the fact he didn’t get serious enough.
Gwen Stefani – “Long Way To Go”
This was definitely a song that didn’t make ‘The Love Below’. Andre wrote a song about racism and color blindness when it comes to love, and that really opened my eyes at 13. This is a Prince song, the more that I think about it.
By NyAsia Burris | Published: October 2, 2018
Audio: Kelela, “KAYTRANADA_WAITIN_115 BPM”
Kelela linked up with KAYTRANADA for the second remix from her forthcoming TAKE ME A_PART, THE REMIXES. The techy and spirited “KAYTRANADA_WAITIN_115 BPM” marks the one year anniversary of its antecedent Take Me Apart and is an unyielding invitation to dance. Sharing the single via Twitter the singer said, “there are some artists i feel kinship with even tho we’ve never met. @KAYTRANADA has always been one of those artists to me (for many reasons) and so i feel genuinely [hand-over-mouth monkey emoji] about this one. a remix for your hips…enjoy!” Along with the single, Kelela added special-edition merch items to the remix album bundle package available for preorder via her site.
“This project has been evolving in my mind since I was deep in recording ‘Take Me Apart,'” Kelela noted in a statement. She continued, “I obsessed over production choices on the album and my only solace was knowing that the songs would be reimagined in this way. So, it’s not just a bunch of remixes…it’s how my worldwide community of producers and DJs communicate through difference. It’s also about the camaraderie that we experience when we find the overlaps. The same songs get to exist in these alternate realities which means different people get to have a relationship with the music. maybe even with each other.” Arriving October 5th, TAKE ME A_PART, THE REMIXES is executive produced by Kelela herself and Asma Maroof (aka Asmara of Nguzunguzu. View the project’s full tracklist and listen to “KAYTRANADA_WAITIN_115 BPM” below. You can listen to it’s slinky and sassy predecessor “LMK_WHAT’S_REALLY_GOOD” here.
1. SANTA MUERTE_BLUFF_94 BPM
2. KAYTRANADA_WAITIN_115 BPM – LISTEN NOW
3. LSDXOXO_TRUTH OR DARE_123 BPM
4. ETHEREAL_JUPITER_97 BPM
5. DJ LAG_ONANON_127 BPM
6. RARE ESSENCE_TMA_83 BPM
7. JOEY LABEIJA_BETTER_107 BPM
8. SERPENTWITHFEET_ALTADENA _88 BPM
9. LMK_WHAT’S REALLY GOOD REMIX_ FEAT_PRINCESS NOKIA_JUNGLEPUSSY_
CUPCAKKE_MS. BOOGIE_100 BPM – LISTEN NOW
10. TRE OH FIE_WAITIN_150 BPM
11. NÍDIA_BLUE LIGHT_123 BPM
12. DIVOLI S’VERE_TRUTH OR DARE_130 BPM
13. BADSISTA_FEAT_LINN DA QUEBRADA_BETTER_125 BPM
14. MOUNTAIN_LMK_130 BPM
15. GAIKA_FRONTLINE_141 BPM
16. HITMAKERCHINX_BLUE LIGHT_108 BPM
17. SKYSHAKER_ONANON_129 BPM
18. KAREEM LOTFY_TURN TO DUST_NO BPM
19. NATHANIEL W. JAMES & DAVE QUAM_WAITIN_122 BPM
20. AHYA SIMONE_ENOUGH_NO BPM
Knice Da Maje
Audio: Junglepussy, “They Know”
Earlier this year, Junglepussy‘s JP3 was released to day-one fans and supporters who were all but surprised at the her phenomenal consistency and newcomers who’d wondered why they were so late to the Junglepussy Party. Today, we’re getting the rapper’s first solo single since that project and it packs all the wit, sass and swaggy sharpness we love her for. “They Know” is an anthem for the ladies who pride themselves on being the upgrade and find no interest in the facades of and time wasted with those who don’t respect and appreciate it.
Junglepussy is currently on an 18 city North American tour that kicked off in Atlanta on September 20th. The tour will also hit Houston, Dallas and Austin (Texas), Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto, D.C., NYC and more before its last stop in Boston on October 28th. Check out Junglepussy’s full tour schedule and listen to “They Know” below.
Audio: Eryn Allen Kane “Feel The Need”
Detroit-bred vocalist Eryn Allen Kane has released single “Feel The Need” amidst her forthcoming EP. Having written for the greats, from iconic Diana Ross to hip-hop star Chance the Rapper, Kane is back to shine light on her own work. With smooth vocals and a jazzy instrumental, Kane captures her listeners and encourages them to love. She sings out, “Don’t you feel the need for love” as the backing vocalists chime in with harmony. It gives you Motown funk, church chorus, and modern R&B. This single is everything you need for the incoming weather. Its warm and fuzzy feel makes you want to cuddle up and enjoy life with the ones you love.
“Feel The Need” has just enough soul to carry us through the rest of the summer. Fall in love again, stream “Feel The Need” below.
Audio: Kelela, “LMK (What’s Really Good Remix)” Feat. Princess Nokia, CupcakKe, Junglepussy and Ms. Boogie
It’s not news that Kelela is perfect but she’s decided that she’s ready to send us all into obsession overload with a refreshing remix to Take Me Apart cut “LMK.” The new single gets a spacey upgrade, new vocals from the singer/songwriter herself and a some flawless assists from Princess Nokia, CupcakKe, Junglepussy and Ms. Boogie. It’s essentially the best lady link up since “Ladies Night.”
TAKE ME A_PART, THE REMIXES, Kelela’s forthcoming, reworked version of her debut album, is due October 5th. For now, Listen to “LMK (What’s Really Good Remix)” via YouTube, Spotify and Apple Music below.
Audio: Maségo, “Queen Tings” Feat. Tiffany Gouché
Maségo‘s Lady Lady album is just two days away and we’re fortunate enough to get its latest single – the highly anticipated, Tiffany Gouché-assisted – “Queen Tings.” If you’ve been keeping up with the pair via socials, you’ve seen them playfully teasing the single and video and the wait (for the former) is over. Slinky horns inflame island vibes-laced production with Maségo’s signature jazzy touch while he praises his lady’s regality in two verses. With the unmatched tone and versatile vocal expression she’s loved for, Gouché joins for a third verse of equally warming adoration for her queen. Plainly stated, this is deep romance swaddled in a tight groove.
Listen below and catch Maségo on tour this fall. Lady Lady arrives this Friday, September 7th.
Audio: Nao, “Make It Out Alive” Feat. SiR
Well…a dream team of two we never knew we needed has come just as the warm weather prepares to smooch the cool. One-of-a-kind singer/songwriter Nao has teamed up with SiR for a super romantic and perfectly composed love ode. “Make It Out Alive” is a lyrically vivid depiction of our reluctance to (but almost-default inception of) deep love. The metaphoric, burning building imagery sung by the pair flawlessly complements the blushing blaze of the track’s composition . Listen as Nao and SiR give in to hopeless devotion without a comeback plan below.
Audio: YE Ali, “T shirt Interlude” Feat. TYuS
If you’re ready for Traphousejodeci 2, YE Ali promises that it’s on its way. In the meantime, he’s blessing fans with a preliminary mixtape. The producer and songwriter has shared a sunny and sensual number that feels like a restart to summer’s lusty energy. Linking up with TYuS for “T shirt Interlude,” the guys tell of total adoration for a lover from her charm to her hypnotizing appeal. The interlude comes from “my mixtape ‘Ye Ali & Chill’ which is coming before Traphousejodeci 2 album,” YE Ali told us via email. Listen below.
Audio: Sunni Colón, “Baby I Don’t Mind”
LA-native Sunni Colón is back with a funky new single titled, “Baby I Don’t Mind.” Combining an infectiously melodic instrumental with soft & sultry vocals, Colón takes us on an acoustic journey of love. “Baby, I don’t mind- the way you’re not afraid to say what’s on your mind… I wanna show you how you make me feel. I wanna get closer to you psychedelic (psicodelic) thrill,” he sings about a person he admires and would do anything for.
Taking a break from the USA, Colón spent some time in Paris where he worked on his forthcoming EP Satin Psicodelic. Although the project is set to be released on August 22nd, this will be his 4th single drop this year. (Trust me, we’re not complaining).
Fall in love again as you stream “Baby I Don’t Mind” below.
Photography by: Pavielle Garcia
Audio: Mick Jenkins, “Bruce Banner”
Gearing up for the release of his forthcoming album, Mick Jenkins follows his or more; the frustration with a new single. “Bruce Banner” is a gritty, menacing cut that clings very closely to Hip Hop’s origins. The Chicago-hailing artist sets the record straight naming himself a writer, “not a rapper,” before the lyrics to follow prove exactly why that is. Jenkins, capable of lyrically emoting everything from street life to introspective reflections, seems to almost effortlessly frolic in this track’s wordplay. Leaving ego-strokes to the more timid types, he asserts his elite status by referencing other rappers as “talkers, not walkers.”
Until more news on Mick’s album arrives, listen to “Bruce Banner” below.
Audio: Petite Noir, “Blame Fire”
The third installment of Petite Noir‘s ‘noirwave’ series is on its way this year. La Maison Noir/The Black House, the follow up to 2015’s La vie est belle / Life is Beautiful, is slated for release on October 5th and is available for preorder now. The “mini-album’s” first single “Blame Fire” arrived today, and it’s a spirited reflection of divine grace amplified by colorful, drum-led production. “‘Blame Fire’ is a phrase that I made up, meaning ‘Thank God.’ I poetically referenced times in history that God showed up as ‘fire’ i.e. the burning bush in the story of Moses and comparing that to the passion, the drive that we all have inside of ourselves to be successful in life. So basically, don’t blame me, Blame Fire for all that I have. In short, it means, all glory to God,” Petite Noir said of the track.
La Maison Noir/The Black House will feature contributions from New York rapper/poet Saul Williams and Detroit-hailing emcee Danny Brown. You can view the cover art and track list as well as listen to “Blame Fire” below.
Audio: Ari Lennox, “Whipped Cream”
Ari Lennox is back with her first single of 2018 and its emotionally saccharine energy is already sticking to our hearts as much as our headphones. “Whipped Cream” is a mid-tempo ode to an old love’s eclipsing infiltration of thoughts and daydreams. The DC-born songstress floats between honeyed nostalgia and complex realities singing “I wish I didn’t care,” over an irresistible bassline accented by an old-soul guitar refrain.
“‘Whipped Cream’ is my little baby that expresses how I feel about an ex that I’m still not over. He’s the same n***a that I talked about in PHO,” Lennox explained. She also confirmed to Zane Lowe that her debut album is in the works.
Audio: The Internet, “La Di Da”
We’re now down to one week until The Internet‘s Hive Mind is released. Still, the Los Angeles-based band is making the wait all but difficult for fans as the album’s third single arrives today. “La Di Da” is a carefree anthem dedicated to dancing into a good time and keeping all bad energy at bay. Opening with Steve on guitar, Syd‘s soft vocals melt over the relaxed number with self-assured lyrics that preface Patrick‘s wave of bass grooves.
Hive Mind is set for release next Friday, July 20th, and was named after the group’s collective cohesiveness in thought and goal when they’re together. Until next week, listen to “La Di Da” below and be sure to check out The Internet’s latest visual for “Come Over,” Hive Mind’s lead single “ROLL! (Burbank Funk)” and its KAYTRANADA remix.
Audio: Iman Europe, “Time”
It’s been awhile since we’ve gotten a taste of Iman Europe’s Hip Hop-tinged soul and we’ve certainly missed it. She’s finally back with a new single titled “Time,” a vibey, laidback cut with truly satiating west coast energy. In love and yet still in control, Iman sings “time is of the essence” themed lyrics to a lover while reminding herself that her romantic destiny is as much in the hand of divine order as the rest of her life. “Although this song stems from a personal experience, I think our generation is very focused right now and our time and attention is very valuable. We ain’t got time to waste it,” she said.
“Time” is the lead single from the Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter’s forthcoming, debut album Nami. Listen via your preferred music streaming service or below via Spotify and Soundcloud.
Audio: Yore, “Knew Better”
Fresh on the scene is Yore, a sultry R&B singer with a new single titled “Knew Better.” The song is gentle and clean with melodic strings and dramatic builds. It’s only fair that you get lost in the keys and buttery vocals. The song was produced by Robin Hannibal- who has worked with artists such as DVSN, Kendrick Lamar, Little Dragon, and Calvin Harris. Although this is Yore’s first single release, he’s preparing to reveal more music and visuals leading up to the arrival of his forthcoming EP1.
Listen to the quiet storm called “Knew Better”, below.
Audio: GoldLink, “Got Friends” Feat. Miguel
A pleasant surprise from the ever-consistent GoldLink arrived today and it features the soulful and smooth Miguel. “Got Friends” is everything one would dream of from a collaboration like this – cleverly lusty punchlines, a slinky yet springy track and each artist’s signature touch. “So let me tell you ’bout this PYT that I seen this week, I had to take a bow/ 5’2 with a brown fur and her hair tied with them light eyes/ And she would make me throw it all away for a fun time and the right prize,” the D.C. native raps of the song’s main muse.
Audio: Masego, “Lady Lady”
Celebrating 25 years of life, Masego has released a new song (and possible single from his debut album) titled “Lady Lady.” The “TrapHouseJazz” pioneer has been on a short hiatus but is back to steal our ears and hearts with this new track dedicated to the ladies. It’s the ultimate shoot your shot anthem for the summer where he sings about taking his time to, “say the things I type online in real life” and letting his new, “classy but reckless” lady choose a necklace.
“Lady Lady” was produced by TDE‘s Sounwave and its got us looking forward to hearing what’s next to come from Masego. Check out his new groove below.
Happy birthday, Masego!
Audio: Kenneth Whalum, “Make It Out Alive”
Some of us prefer the feels in season and out of season – and for that, Kenneth Whalum unfailingly delivers. “Make It Out Alive” is the singer/writer/musician’s first single since 2017’s hauntingly emotive Broken Land, and while it maintains the familiar warmth of that signature, raspy rawness that sets his vocal tone completely apart, the track is sonically larger (and pleasantly so) than the Memphis-born crooner’s prior releases. Love-struck lyrics, downcast electric guitar wailing and a tender acoustic guitar melody formulate a whirlwind of sound that mirrors the hopeful hopelessness in loving and longing. Listen to Kenneth Whalum lament deep attachment in the gorgeously composed “Make It Out Alive” below.
Audio: Diana Gordon, “Kool Aid”
Diana Gordon‘s first single of the year has arrived and it’s a tuneful dreamscape of sweet nostalgia and undying love. The NYC-born singer/songwriter packs Punk and Soul elements into “Kool Aid,” a heartfelt attestation that welcomes the lyrics’ muse(s) to her forever-open arms. Metaphorically singing of a childhood staple drink to bring that universal sense of home to mind, Gordon’s pleasingly gritty vocals express conscious connection that lasts longer than any of life’s circumstances and travels farther than any physical distance.
Whether a family member, lover or friend, if you’re fortunate enough to receive love from Diana Gordon, you’re automatically always granted access to a springing well of home’s syrupy sweet affection. Listen to the strong, yet tender, “Kool Aid” below.
Audio: Smino, “New Coupe, Who Dis?” Feat. Mick Jenkins
Smino and Mick Jenkins have linked up for another summer banger so smooth, it’s likely to keep the July vibes alive through fall and winter. “New Coupe, Who Dis?” is a bouncy but mellow number coproduced by Smino himself and THEMpeople. While Mick’s cool & calm flow sail the beat’s waves, Smino’s signature cadence engages the organ adlibs in a melodic game of patty-cake. Listen below.