Nas (Rapper)

  • Blogs

    October 16, 2014

    The Ten Best Concerts of the Summer

    Red Rocks hosted the last concerts of its regular concert series a little over a week ago, signaling the official end of the summer concert season in Colorado. This week on the Backbeat blog, we're looking back at some of our favorite shows of 2014's warmest months. Note that we didn't include any f ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 16, 2014

    The biggest weekend of Lily Fangz's promising young career

    Lily Fangz bounces on the balls of her feet, looking out on the crowd from the stage at Red Rocks. Her long hair flows past her shoulders. She raises the mic. It's time to go. Fangz, aka Lileana Krenza, is a rapper and hip-hop artist, and she's diving into reggae work. Her "merch" is made up of draw ... More >>

  • Calendar

    June 19, 2014
  • Blogs

    April 25, 2014

    Justin Bua on the connection between hip-hop and MMA: "They are both irreverent cultures"

    For Justin Bua, painting is about documenting moments in time that reflect an era. Hailing from New York, Bua's work has examined the urban themes of hip-hop, jazz, break dancing, and the countless threads that continue to sew the fabric of the entire culture. Since the early '90s, Bua has also pass ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 30, 2013

    The best concerts in Denver this week

    TUES | WU YEAR'S EVE at CERVANTES | 12/31/13 More than just creating a free-associative style that would be emulated ceaselessly throughout the '90s and to this very day, the Wu-Tang Clan engineered an aesthetic and model for profitability with only a spiritual guide, the GZA, a mastermind producer, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 31, 2013

    Prime Element is a hip-hop act that's more concerned with being timeless than relevant

    Prime Element began as 3 the Hardway, three hip-hop heads -- an MC, a producer and a DJ -- devoted to celebrating a culture they love through positivity, hard work and great music. Their name has obviously since changed, as has their label affiliation since Set in Stone, their last release, but what ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 16, 2013

    The ten best shows in Denver this week

    TUES | THE NATIONAL/LOCAL NATIVES at RED ROCKS | 9/17/13 After finishing their tour in support of 2010's High Violet, the members of the National didn't have any immediate plans to record again. But guitarist Aaron Dessner, whose daughter had just been born, ended up with a lot of time on his hands. ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 14, 2013

    The ten best rap producers of all time

    Even though rappers and producers share a symbiotic dependence on one another, there's been an ongoing debate in rap music about who plays the most pivotal role: the one providing the words or the one providing the music. While the MCs obviously get the most shine, would Guru's words been as impactf ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 25, 2013

    Boston Marathon bombing suspect was a rap fan: Ten song lyrics Dzhokhar Tsarnaev tweeted

    Time and distance provide prospective -- isn't that what they say? Sure enough, the further removed we are from the recent Boston Marathon bombing, the more the picture appears to be coming into focus of the two brothers alleged to have conducted the terror plot. From analyzing their online presen ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 23, 2013

    The fifty greatest rap groups of all time

    There's something great about a hip-hop group. From the beginning, it was never intended to be a solo endeavor; rap began in cyphers at block parties, and the first established rappers were components of a collective centered around the more important DJ. Even now that the rapper is the star, it's n ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 5, 2013

    The ten greatest Midwest rappers of all time

    The Midwest is the bastard child of the American rap scene at large -- unsung and independent, with a massive chip on its shoulder. The most talented artists from the Midwest have succeeded each with their own unique style and flavor, regardless of what was making money elsewhere in the country at a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 19, 2012

    9th Wonder on how hip-hop is like pills in the applesauce, a gateway to knowledge and history

    A revered hip-hop producer who got his start with Phonte and Big Pooh in the North Carolina-based group Little Brother, 9th Wonder has worked an array of top shelf artists from Jay-Z and Destiny's Child to Mary J. Blige and Ludacris, among many others. Known as one of the best samplers in hip-hop, w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 19, 2012

    Fresh local hip-hop from Pries, SP Double, Myke Charles, Molina Speaks, AG Flux and more

    Another week, another batch of fresh hip-hop from the Mile High City. Pries draws all eyes to him with The Lonely Kid Show, the tireless SP double shows his proficiency on "The Mission Statement," Myke Charles, FL and the ReMINDers take on some G.O.O.D. music in "The Mourning," Black Mask member AGF ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 7, 2012

    The ten best movies featuring rappers

    Wu-Tang has been immersed in kung-fu for so long, it was inevitable that one member of the Clan would make a major appearance in a martial arts movie at some point. The RZA appeared briefly in Ghost Dog in 1999, but only for a passing moment, though he did produce the soundtrack. In The Man with the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 25, 2012

    New shows: STS9 and String Cheese NYE runs, Fun. at 1STBANK, DeVotchKa and more

    New Year's Eve is shaping up to be an epic night of shows, with the String Cheese Incident pulling into 1STBANK Center for a three-night NYE run (tickets on sale this Saturday, September 29), STS9 plays three shows at the Fillmore (tickets on sale Friday, September 28), and the Motet's Beginning of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 20, 2012

    Logistixx of Drop Switch on his lyrics: "I wanna draw a picture in the listeners' mind..."

    Quote/Unquote is our periodic feature in which we hunt down noteworthy lyrics, examine the best lines and then get the story behind the song. This week, we got some insight from Logistixx of the rap-fusion group Drop Switch to find out what he had in mind while he was crafting his music. In most of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 13, 2012

    Five acts with more taxing problems than you

    See Also: • Tax Evasion: How to live like a rock star -- and pay taxes like one, too. As the saying goes: There are only two things that are certain and unavoidable in this life -- death and taxes. And while both might be causing folks to lose sleep these days (you didn't forget tax time is upon ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 19, 2012

    The Worst Moments from SXSW 2012

    The last few days, Village Voice Media's indefatigable music staff has been regaling you with stories of the best from SXSW 2012. In the midst of these discoveries, we've been culling another list: the worst shit. The acts that ranged from huge bore-fests to downright lame. Below, you'll find our cr ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 12, 2012

    Alert: SXSW coverage ahead

    "What I want from each and every one of you is a hard-target search of every gas station, residence, warehouse, farmhouse, henhouse, outhouse and doghouse in that area." -- Tommy Lee Jones, The Fugitive You don't have to spend much time at South By Southwest to know that all of the above building ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 29, 2012

    As Black History Month comes to a close, we reflect on the influential Sounds of Blackness

    Black History Month 2012 has been a doozy. Beginning with the tragic and shocking death of Don Cornelius to dealing with equally troubling news of Whitney Houston's passing as the month wore on. Most interesting about this time is the ways in which the music healed us. When Whitney died, DJs played ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 16, 2012

    Re:Generation strives to break down barriers

    This past Sunday during his acceptance speech on behalf of his band the Foo Fighters for Best Rock Performance at the 54th Annual Grammy awards, Dave Grohl made some comments that stirred the ire of some folks. Lauding the fact that Wasting Light, the album in question, had been recorded in his gara ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 8, 2012

    Jay-Z's come a long way from the Marcy Projects

    What do you know about Jay-Z? Born Shawn Corey Carter in December 1969, the Brooklyn corner boy from the Marcy Housing Projects, who used to flip kilos of coke as fast as he flipped rhymes, turned his life of trial and tragedy into one of triumph and success, making a ton of money and marrying the g ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 27, 2011

    John Vanderslice on White Wilderness, photography and how he receives criticism

    Autumn De Wilde​In the middle to later half of the 1990s, John Vanderslice (due tonight at the hi-dive with Damien Jurado) was a member of the respected Bay Area alternative rock band, MK Ultra. When the band split in 1999, Vanderslice took the delicate intensity and experimental edge he had b ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 8, 2011

    Five rap albums to take on the mothership when the government shuts down at midnight

    ​Tonight when the clock strikes midnight, you should expect calamity, destruction, and famine to sweep the nation, because word on the street says the government is shutting down. Word to Chicken Little: A bunch of awful things are supposed to happen...we think. They don't pay us the big bucks ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 9, 2011

    Hip-hop's ten most impactful deaths

    ​Today marks the anniversary of the day that the world lost the greatest rapper of all time. Christopher Wallace's untimely death on March 9, 1997, had a significant impact on the rap game. If Biggie had lived, for instance, his presence would have essentially erased the need for Jay-Z. Unstop ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 23, 2011

    Tonight: Hip Hop Fest at Cervantes' featuring Fashawn

    ​Though his debut album, Boy Meets World, came out in 2009, rapper Fashawn has flourished more within the realm of the mixtape, a format he's been using since 2006. Among his many mixtape releases came Ode to Illmatic, a track-by-track take on the classic Nas album that showcased Fashawn's unc ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 21, 2011

    Lil' Jon's tax woes: He's not alone. Here's five of the biggest celebrity tax evaders

    ​The IRS loves leaning on rich people for tax evasion. Case in point, reports have surfaced that Lil' Jon (whose house was just foreclosed on in August) is on the hook for $638,000. It's certainly not easy to do taxes if you're a musician -- or any type of entertainer for that matter -- which ... More >>

  • Music

    October 7, 2010
  • Blogs

    September 29, 2010

    If President Obama has a thing for hip-hop, here are five artists to add to his iPod

    ​In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, our president revealed that his music palette has expanded slightly in recent years with a little help from his personal aide, Reggie Love. New additions to his usual standbys of Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones include Nas and Lil' Wayne. It's a lit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 27, 2010

    Michael Franti, Santana, Blonde Redhead top sellers at local stores

    ​Michael Franti & Spearhead's The Sound of Sunshine , released last week on Capitol, grabbed the top spot at Albums on the Hill and checked in at number three at Twist & Shout for the week ending September 26. Santana's new Arista release, Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics of All T ... More >>

  • Music

    August 12, 2010
  • Blogs

    February 4, 2010

    Q&A: Meet Bianca Mikahn of Paradox

    Which came first, the poet or the MC? Broaching the philosophical debate implies the two are not one in the same. History shows us otherwise, whether the funky notes of blues rattled off the tongue of greats like Billie Holiday, or, more recently, the appearance of the Last Poets on Nas's [Untitled] ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 29, 2008

    Friday Rap-Up: Nyke Nitti, Dr. Dre, The Game, DMX

    Nyke Nitti gets in where he fits in. LOCALS ONLY Nyke Nitti (formerly Nyke Loc) has been putting in work in the local scene for over a decade. His biggest project came around 2000, with the release of Mob Life on his Str8 Check’n imprint. The album scored a solid distribution deal to more than ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 15, 2008

    Friday Rap-Up: Bionik Brown, Ozone Awards, Large Professor, DMX

    LOCALS ONLY Even though hip-hop artist Bionik Brown had only lived in Denver for short time before his passing this week, he became familiar with the local music scene quickly and scored gigs easily thanks to his dope skills on the mike. In honor of Bionik’s memory, after the jump we've posted a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 19, 2008

    Over the Weekend...Atmosphere, DJ Rare Groove and Abstract Rude @ the Ogden Theatre

    Atmosphere, DJ Rare Groove and Abstract Rude Saturday, May 17, 2008 Ogden Theatre Better than: Sean Daley's childhood nickname, "Little Slug-O." The Ogden Theater was buzzing with a sold out crowd on Saturday night for the highly-anticipated Atmosphere show, the first night of a two-night stand. Th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 21, 2008
  • Music

    November 15, 2007


    American Gangster

  • Music

    April 12, 2007

    Amy Winehouse

    Back to Black

  • Music

    February 8, 2007

    Reuben Wilson

    Thursday, February 8, Mount Vernon Country Club, Golden, 303-526-0616.

  • Home Entertainment

    November 9, 2006

    Coke Dreams

    In Scarface, slinging yayo is the name of the game.

  • Music

    November 9, 2006

    Listen Up

    Fast reviews of recent releases

  • Music

    March 16, 2006
  • Music

    December 29, 2005
  • Music

    November 10, 2005


    The Loneliest Punk (Delicious Vinyl)

  • Music

    March 18, 2004

    The Beatdown

    Local MC Apostle prepares to battle for the keys to the Kingdom.

  • Music

    December 4, 2003

    Rock Steady

    Don't call Aesop Rock the savior of hip-hop. He's just trying to be original.

  • Music

    December 26, 2002

    That's a Wrap-Up

    Backbeat writers sound off on a few of their favorite musical things from 2002.

  • Calendar

    March 29, 2001

    Mr. Natural

    Olu Dora mixes his musical styles easily.

  • Music

    August 10, 2000

    Diamond in the Rough

    Three urban luminaries make Lucy Pearl an R&B trio with star -- and staying -- power.

  • Music

    January 23, 1997
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