New Sounds: Kevin Gates- Murder For Hire 2 EP

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Kevin Gates is the most polarizing rapper in the business. He’s constantly making moves, his presence on Instagram is an outrageous follow, and his records are worthy of heavy spins. His label is locking up his output, not allowing him to release another full length until 2017. Rather than brood and lose steam, he dropped Murder For Hire 2a year after dropping the original tape. 8 songs. Hard as fuck. Catch him on tour with Snoop and Wiz this summer. Enjoy.

Let Freedom Ring: Gucci Mane Comes Home

Gucci Mane Invades "The Whoolywood Shuffle"

It just feels right on this Memorial Day to welcome home one of America’s true national treasures. Gucci is free, and there’s no doubt he’ll be flooding the streets (and strip clubs) with an anthem or two as the weeks of summer peel away. Here’s “First Day Out The Feds”, his 1st post-incarceration release. Mike Will on the boards. Enjoy.

When Keeping It Real Goes Really Wrong: Troy Ave

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In the wake of a shooting inside in the green room at Irving Plaza during a T.I. show last week, it’s impossible to not shake your head at the stupidity of Troy Ave. The dude has been grasping for some sort of credibility since he started hand to handing mixtapes a few years ago, but he never got the proper engines burning behind his work. Now, the NYPD has him on tape letting off 5 shots in the artists space backstage, which will likely end a career that has fizzled more than it’s ever shined.

Not only did my dude Plaxico himself in the leg, but he allegedly struck his own bodyguard/affiliate in the stomach with a slug, killing him. Once the dust settles and the police put the ballistics together, Troy (born Roland Collins) will be facing murder charges and will have plenty of time in the box to craft his Gucci-esque next act. In the meantime, check out “Doo Doo”, a fitting name for the only single that even sort-of caught fire for Mr. Ave.

On The Radar: A Conversation With Skeeter Manny

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The most influential factor for a new artist is versatility. What we need is more Swiss Army and less switchblade.  Feel me? What we need is more triple threat talent, more rappers who can write. More writers that can engineer a session in and out of the booth. Enter the multi-faceted Skeeter Manny.  Hailing from NYC, the 21-year-old DIY phenom is making waves via MTV, Thisis50.com and a write up in the Village Voice. Manny recently took a few minutes to chat with us about his songwriting process, the magic of the world wide web, and what’s next for the Skeeter Gang. Enjoy.

Shiny Glass Houses: Introduce yourself, who is Skeeter Manny?

Skeeter Manny: I’m a young music artist from Harlem. I’m also an audio engineer, producer, writer, vocalist and videographer.

SGH: Your single, “Cold”, is a calculated mix of hip hop and soul. You blend the lines. What’s your approach to song writing?

SM: My approach to songwriting is always putting myself in the actual scenario that the song is about, all my songs are about actual events that I’ve experienced or I’ve been a second hand to. Authenticity is important to me.

SGH: No Comply bangs. It seems to pull back the curtains a little…but it’s a tease. You working on a full length project?

SM: Actually I am. My goal is always quality over quantity. It would be cool to make an album with more than ten songs, but if I know not all songs can be a hit then it’s not worth it. All my songs have to be the best of the best of the best. All my songs go through a draft pick.

 SGH: Menace laces two tracks on the EP, what was the energy like between you two in the studio?

SM: The power of the internet enables artists to work with each other without actually having to physically be there. I have actually never met Menace in person.

SGH: I’ve seen the #skeetergang tag around social media. Looks like there’s a whole crew of talent ready to drop. Who’s next?

SM: Skeeter Ty is coming out with a single entitled “Tonight” produced by Nate Rhodes, and we’re following that with an EP.

SGH: Where can we check you out along with the gang, the movement?

SM: You can follow Skeeter Gang SoundCloud, and on Instagram @skeeter_manny. Also, Soundcloud skeeter_manny, FaceBook  at Manny Little, and Twitter  @skeeter_manny.

SGH: Last but not least, what’s your drink of choice?

SM: My favorite drink of choice is Ciroc. Shout out to Diddy

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A big thanks to Manny for taking some time and to Freddi for making it happen. Get money.