Roc-A-Fella Records LLC

  • Blogs

    March 5, 2014

    One label controls almost all of hip-hop, and that's a problem for music fans

    It's common knowledge that the popular music industry is dominated by a few huge companies, sometimes referred to as the Big Three: Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group. It used to be the Big Four, until EMI was subsumed into the other three. Before that, it was the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 15, 2013

    The ten best mixtapes DJs of all time

    Over the last decade or so, mixtapes have revolutionized the rap game and altered how marketing in general is approached. Not only have the rappers received substantial acclaim, but the DJs have realized just as much stardom. Although there are numerous DJs -- guys like Statik Selektah, Trap-A-Holic ... 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

    July 28, 2011

    Updated: Jay-Z and Kanye West's Watch the Throne tour due at Pepsi Center on October 10

    ​Update (7/28/11): We just received word from LiveNation that due to an overwhelming demand, additional dates are being added to the Watch the Throne tour, featuring Jay-Z and Kanye West. The tour is slated to hit Denver on Monday, October 10. The additional dates are due be announced on Augus ... More >>

  • Music

    December 30, 2010
  • Blogs

    July 23, 2010

    Freeway and Jake One at the Bluebird

    Rachel Romero​ Freeway & Jake One • Mane Rok 07.22.10 | Bluebird Theater The evening began with a soulful performance by longtime LIFE Crew ambassadors, Mane Rok and DJ Tense, who performed tracks off of Mane's first solo effort, The Ugly Truth, as well as a few throwback tracks from his e ... More >>

  • Music

    July 22, 2010

    Freeway and Jake One

    Thursday, July 22, Bluebird Theater, 303-830-8497.

  • Blogs

    May 18, 2010

    Drake at The Ogden Theatre: A list of the ten things he loves

    Drake. Photos by Kiernan Maletsky​ Drake • Mike Posner • DJ Chonz05.17.10 | Ogden Theatre First was Denver's own DJ Chonz, who was assigned with warming up the rapidly-filling Ogden. He performed his task admirably [editor's note: with one turntable, no less], but as the first-act DJ, th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 30, 2009

    Top Ten Dance Albums of 2009

    ​The past year brought the worst economy since the malaise of the 1970s, and like that era, it also saw dance music sweep the nation. Lady Gaga, the Black Eyed Peas, Beyoncé and P. Diddy all dabbled in the sound. Even Michael Jackson was said to be working on a dance album with the Peas' Will ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 21, 2008

    Beyond Playlist: Guns N' Roses, Kayne West and T-Pain

    Guns N’ Roses Chinese Democracy Interscope Frankly, after a decade and a half, I’m just happy that only some of this blows, instead of the whole thing – and as a bonus, several of the tracks that do blow are unintentionally funny. Not all of them, of course: “If the World” sounds so muc ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 31, 2008

    Friday Rap-Up: Maestro Jeff Hughes, Snoop Dogg, Diddy, Kanye West

    Ever since he started roaming the streets of Denver last year and then putting the footage on YouTube, Maestro Jeff Hughes has been a hot commodity. As Colorado’s own hip-hop violinist, Hughes impresses even the most critical of hip-hop haters by deftly adding a classical touch to hip-hop classics ... More >>

  • Music

    January 24, 2008


    Are today’s rappers ballin’ as hard as they claim?

  • Music

    December 29, 2005

    Hip-Hop Sans Hova

    Still no Jigga, but Kanye, some lovable limeys and a great Beyoncé substitute held it down.

  • Music

    December 22, 2005

    Nationalistic 2005

    The rest of the planet generated some good CDs this year, too.

  • Music

    February 17, 2005

    Club Scout

    NBA All-Star Weekend

  • Music

    February 17, 2005

    The Hustler

    DJ Clinton Sparks has become a rising star by working harder than anyone else.

  • Music

    December 30, 2004

    God Save the Scene

    Sassy Brits, hoochie mamas and a dude named Beans attempted to invigorate a stagnant year for hip-hop.

  • Music

    December 23, 2004


    Backbeat scribes weigh in on their favorite national releases from 2004.

  • Music

    November 25, 2004

    Dirt Nap

    We'll miss the Ol' Dirty Bastard.

  • Music

    May 27, 2004

    The Beatdown

    The Denver Hip-Hop Summit may have flatlined, but there was still plenty to celebrate about hip-hop in Mootown last week.

  • Music

    May 27, 2004


    Split Personality (J Records/Full Surface)

  • Music

    May 13, 2004

    Bums Rushed

    DJ Chonz and his gang are going places. Just not today.

  • Music

    May 6, 2004

    DJ Danger Mouse

    The Grey Album (Self-released)

  • Music

    April 29, 2004


    Damita Jo (Virgin Records)

  • Music

    April 8, 2004
  • Music

    April 1, 2004

    Memphis Bleek

    M.A.D.E. (Roc-A-Fella Records)

  • Music

    December 25, 2003

    For the Record

    For national releases, 2003 wonked as much as it rocked.

  • Music

    March 21, 2002

    Fighting the Power

    Rapper Nas steps back into the ring, fists flying.

  • Music

    December 27, 2001


    Backbeat writers revisit their favorite albums of the year.

  • Music

    December 28, 2000

    On the Records

    Backbeat contributors reflect on the releases that helped them survive the year 2000.

  • Music

    December 3, 1998

    The Major and the Minor

    A roundup of big-name recordings that live up (or down) to expectations.

  • Music

    October 22, 1998

    Getting Big

    Ex-Denver DJ Big Jon Platt on how to succeed in business by really, really trying.