2013 XXL Freshman Cover

xxl freshman-13

The 2013 XXL Freshmen class & cover has been revealed.

Schoolboy Q, Trinidad Jame$, Joey Bada$$, Ab-Soul, Logic, Action Bronson, Kirko Bangz, Travi$ Scott, Dizzy Wright (10 Spot People’s Champion Winner), Angel Haze, Chief Keef  (“The 11th Freshman”)

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New Video: B.o.B ft. Playboy Tre “Fucked Up”

As B.o.B preps his Strange Clouds album for release next year, he comes through with this new video featuring Playboy Tre where they get “Fucked Up”…

:: JR§

TUPAC SHAKUR COVERS XXL MAGAZINE :: 15 Year Anniversary of Death

September 13, 2011 will mark the 15-year anniversary of Tupac Shakur’s death. XXL pays homage to the beloved, fallen rap legend in the mag’s forthcoming September issue, celebrating all things ’Pac.

For the special tribute issue, XXL Editor-In-Chief Vanessa Satten sat down with Tupac’s biological father, Bill Garland. Among the interesting and revealing topics discussed, Mr. Garland offered a heartfelt description of his son’s giving nature. “[Tupac] cared for people,” he said.

“That was his main thing. He really cared for people. I think that’s why he would get so upset when people tried to question his commitment, his love for Black women or Black men. The East Coast/West Coast, you know, that’s a fabrication. I don’t have to begin to tell you that. So when that was questioned, it bothered him. Because he would give his heart or soul. He was a giving person. He would give anything to people. He would go in a store. [If there was a] Black man who couldn’t afford a $1,500 pair of boots, he would buy ’em for him. Think that Black man would ever forget Tupac? That’s just the way he is. But I don’t think that he did it for that. He did it because he had it, and he didn’t. That’s the way he is.”

In addition, XXL spoke with ’Pac’s ex-wife, Keisha Morris, who shared the intimate details of their relationship. “I knew Tupac,” she said.

“No one can take that away. I really knew him, and he would never hurt me.”

XXL also talked to Tupac’s first manager and one-time roommate and mentor, Leila Steinberg, who gave insight into the special nature of her superstar client and their close relationship. There’s also an interview with Mutulu Shakur, ’Pac’s stepfather who helped raise the MC until the age of 11 and checks in from behind bars to celebrate ’Pac’s legacy.

XXL also spoke with ’Pac’s group, the Outlawz, dug into the tragic passing of one of Pac’s favorite producers Johnny J. and investigated the real story behind ’Pac’s Quad studio shooting recently brought to light with the confession of ex-Jimmy Henchman associate, Dexter Issac, to the robbery and shooting of Tupac in 1994. And finally, 62 rappers remember ’Pac and speak on his impact and legacy.

Outside of the Tupac tribute, XXL reviews Game’s long-delayed, fourth solo LP, The R.E.D. Album, shares some of the jaw-dropping photos from Tech N9ne’s All 6s & 7s Tour and introduces Charlie Boy Gang and Chevy Woods in Show & Prove.

Pick up XXL’s September 2011 issue, hitting newsstands nationwide on August 16.

:: JR§

RICH HIL, son of Tommy Hilfiger, signs with Warner Bros. Records :: Speaks with XXL Magazine

Rich Hil may be the son of famous fashion mogul Tommy Hilfiger, but he’s making a name for himself in hip-hop. The rising rapper has inked a deal with Warner Bros. and XXLMag.com has learned that his forthcoming album on the label will be produced entirely by producer Lex Luger.

News of the 21-year-old upstart’s major label deal went public on Monday (July 18) via a Youtube video:

 

But Hil said he actually signed with the label months ago.

“I’ve been signed for a few months, but this is the first time it’s really real, because I couldn’t tell anybody I was signed until Warner was ready to put the press release out,” Hil told XXLMag.com. “It’s so surreal. I worked so hard for this shit.”

Hil, who was previously signed to Swizz Beatz’s Full Surface Records for three years, has independently released a steady stream of freestyles, songs and mixtapes, including the Lonely Limo series. He said Warner Bros. first became interested in him through R&B artist The Weeknd.

“Warner was talking to the singer The Weeknd and they asked him, ‘Who do you want to work with; Who’s your favorite artist; We can probably make it happen;’ And he said ‘Rich Hil,’” he recalled, “so automatically they called me to the offices in LA and started talking about a deal, and we did it and everything worked out.”

While Hil’s indie status has changed, his style hasn’t, so listeners can expect more of the dystopian, drug-fueled tales he’s known for. This fall, he plans to drop the EP, Support Your Local Drug Dealer, followed by an as-yet untitled album and possible mixtape with Lex Luger.

“We’ll probably do a whole Lex Luger mixtape before the album to give you an idea of what you’re gonna get,” Hil said. “’Cause I got a lot of records with Lex Luger, like more than an album right now, so we’re gonna split them up and do some shit.”

Though Luger is one of the most sought-after producers in the current hip-hop scene, Hil said Luger actually approached him about working together.

“Usually I just get beats from my friends or people who hit me up online and send me shit, but he hit me up online like ‘Yo, I gotta work with you’ and I was like ‘Alright,’ ” Hil said. “The joints that he sent me are like, they sound like Rich Hil beats, like dark, grimey shit.”

Hil’s success and news of his official deal have naturally drawn praise from family and friends, including his father – who not only supports Hil’s career in music, but apparently envies it.

“My dad couldn’t be more proud,” Hil says. “He kinda tells me sometimes like he’s jealous, he’s like ‘Man, if I knew how to make music, I would have made [records] instead of clothes.’ He tells me that all the time, kinda like he lives vicariously me through me, you know?

 

:: JR§

XXL Freshman 2011 Cover

XXl released the Freshman list for 2011. Clockwise from left: Diggy Simmons, Kendrick Lamar, Meek Mill, Big K.R.I.T., CyHi Da Prynce, Lil Twist, Yelawolf, Fred The Godson, Mac Miller, YG and Lil B.