New Segment: Rated Responses

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We at Rated Young want to get our fans involved, so we’re introducing a new segment. Rated Responses. Basically, you can ask us at Rated Young any question about a situation/problem that you need advice on, and we’ll give you a response. Once a week, we’ll read over all of the questions from you, the fans, and post advice to ALL questions. No worries about getting snubbed. This segment will basically be like an advice column. But, we can take other types of questions too, for example if you just want to ask our opinion on something, we’ll cover that too. All questions sent to us will remain anonymous, for sake of your privacy. All you would have to do, is simply go to our contact page, and the rest is pretty self-explanatory. For the name, simply write anonymous. We’re really excited to interact with the people, let’s make this segment a hit!

Blaze it or Praise it? The 4/20 coincidence.

The day Jesus ressurrected, and the date weed fans around the globe celebrate. Which one is right, which one is wrong? It was a controversial topic up for debate. More conservative/religious people said it was morally wrong to get high on the holidays. The other end of the spectrum said Jesus meant for this to happen. Either way, I think however you spended today was right, as long as you had a great day. Overall, I believe the holidays are a time to be just happy. No matter your means of celebration, if you had a good day, then you did today right.

Illmatic 20th Anniversary

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I’ve decided as a tribute to one of the most, if not thee most, influential albums in the history of hip-hop on it’s 20th anniversary, I would share what I think are the 20 best lines throughout the whole album.
20.) “Life is parallel to Hell but I must maintain.” (N.Y. State of Mind)
Why: Haven’t we all felt like life is hell at times? Simple, short, easy line to relate to, but also gives an idea of the difficult environment in which Nas is in.
19.) “Straight out the fuckin’ dungeons of rap, where fake niggas don’t make it back.” (N.Y. State of Mind)
Why: Are there any intros better than this opening line? Few if any.
18.) “Born alone, die alone, no crew to keep my crown or throne.” (The World is Yours.)
Why: The environment Nas lives in doesn’t allow him to have a son to pass his growing legacy onto if his life were to suddenly end, just a real line.
17.) “Back in ’83 I was an MC sparkin’/ But I was too scared to grab the mics in the parks.” (Halftime)
Why: Nas transforms from a 10 year old too afraid to spit his bars to dropping a classic album as his debut
16.) “I rap for listeners, bluntheads, fly ladies and prisoners/Hennessey holders and old-school niggas.” (Memory Lane)
Why: This is the audience Nas thinks he’ll be able to reach, but with a solid debut his fan base has grown to include rap fans everywhere.
15.) “Pumping for something, some’ll prosper, some fail/judges hanging niggas, incorrect bails for direct sales/ my intellect prevails from a hanging cross with nails.” (Memory Lane)
Why: A testament to how African-Americans are treated and trialed unfairly in drug-related crimes.
14.) “Life’s a bitch and then you die.” (Life’s a Bitch)
Why: Because life’s a bitch.
13.) “Wilding on the island, but now I’m Elmira/ Better chill cause them niggas will put that ass on fire, last time you wrote you said they tried you in the showers.” (One Love)
Why: Nas’ friend in jail has been moved to a maximum security prison [Elmira Correctional Facility.] Nas warns him not to try anything, as his fellow inmates might put him through some sexual actions he wouldn’t like. Yikes.
12.) “Nas is like the Afrocentric Asian, half-man, half-amazing.” (It Ain’t Hard to Tell)
Why: In 5 percenter ideology, which is referenced in Life’s a Bitch, the idea of god is rejected and instead replaced with the idea that the black man is part of god, so Nas, being black, is half-man and half-god.
11.) “I drink Moet with Medusa, give her shotguns in hell/ From the spiff that I lift and inhale, it ain’t hard to tell.”(It Ain’t Hard to Tell)
Why: To shotgun is to inhale from a pipe, Medusa in Greek culture turns men to stone, but Nas gets her stoned, cause he’s the man.
10.) “Begin like a violin, end like Leviathan, it’s deep, well let me try again.” (It Ain’t Hard to Tell)
Why: Nas’ skills are smooth like a violin and yet destructive like Leviathan, a biblical sea monster that spits flames and scares away challengers, much like a MC would want to.
9.) “Somehow the rap game reminds me of the crack game.” (Represent)
Why: Great metaphor that’s still recycled by rappers today.
8.) “I can’t call it, the beats make me falling asleep/ I keep falling, but never falling six feet deep.” (The World Is Yours)
Why: Nas never puts himself in enough danger to be six feet under, the common depth of buried corpses.
7.) “Dwelling in the Rotten Apple, you get tackled/ or caught in the devil’s lasso, shit is a hassle.” (The World Is Yours)
Why: Play on the Big Apple that New York is commonly referred to, and that you’re bound to be in police trouble as an African-American in inner-city New York.
6.) “Hand me a nine and I’ll defeat foes/fours.” (N.Y State of Mind)
Why: With a N.Y. accent, foes and fours are close sounding. Nas is saying with his nine he’ll defeat his foes, and the. 44 caliber handguns they carry.
5.) “You couldn’t catch me in the streets without a ton of reefer, that’s like Malcolm X catching the Jungle Fever. – (Halftime)
Why: The use of drugs to make money and escape reality, plus a metaphor comparing that the chances of Nas not having his reefer are slimer than those that Malcolm X would have catching Jungle Fever, meaning being in an interracial relationship. [Jungle Fever was a 1991 movie about interracial relationships.]
4.) “Time is Illmatic, keep static like wool fabric, pack a 4-matic to crack your whole cabbage.” (Life’s a Bitch)
Why: Really solid line technically, to “keep static” is to keep friction/beef with his foes, which his 4-matic will crack their whole cabbage, cabbage being a reference to the head.
3.) “I switched my motto; instead of saying ‘fuck tomorrow,’ the buck that bought the bottle could’ve struck the lotto.” (Life’s a Bitch)
Why: Maturation of Nas, life lessons taught him to avoid wasting money on immediate pleasures and invest/save his money.
2.) “I’m out for dead presidents to represent me.” (The World is Yours.)
Why: Nas has given up hope on the presidents helping out those who need it in the ghetto, and has turned to be represent by the money [dead presidents/dollar bills] that he makes rather than the government.
1.) “It drops deep as it does in my breath/I never sleep, cause sleep is the cousin of death/Beyond the walls of intelligence, life is defined/I think of crime when I’m in a New York state of mind.” (N.Y. State Of Mind)
Why: ‘I never sleep, cause sleep is the cousin of death’ is one of the most recycled lines ever, and gets reused to this day. It also perfectly illustrates Naps’ lifestyle growing up in New York, any loss of focus could cost him is life in his violent environment. He can’t ‘be caught sleeping.’ Also interesting, with this being his debut album, Nas would be hungry for success, relentless in it’s pursuit, sleepless.

Feel free to comment your opinions!

Last Chance High (Episode 1 & 2)

Chicago is on their worst behavior, especially one school, Moses Montefiore Academy nicknamed, “Last Chance High“, which is the last resort of these at risk students in the city of Chicago. These kids have been expelled from every other school they’ve attended for aggressive behavior, and some have been diagnosed with emotional disorder. During the 27 minute documentary, we are introduced to a number of students that tell their story and you really get a feel for what happens. I knew Chicago was bad, but not this bad. It’s heart breaking seeing what this kids go through and hopefully one day something could really change for them! I would advise you to personally take some time and watch this video because it is definitely worth it. Watch Episode 2 below.

Million Dollar Wu-Tang Album

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The legendary Wu-Tang Clan is preparing to release a double album entitled The Wu – Once Upon A Time In Shaolin. The album is rumored to contain 31 songs, with a duration of over two hours. Here’s the catch, only a single copy will be released and sold.

“We’re about to put out a piece of art like nobody else has done in the history of [modern] music,” said long time Wu-Tang member RZA.

The album will be kept in the casing shown in the picture above, created and designed over the course of 3 months by British-Moroccan artist Yahya, who had designed art for royal families and large businesses around the world. The album will then be toured around the world, visiting museums and galleries, and have events for itself, where fans will be able to listen through headphones for a fee. After the touring, the album will be auctioned off, with offers already reported to be near five-million dollars. Wu-Tang’s main goal is to respark the idea that music is an art. The group is also currently working on a 20th anniversary album entitled A Better Tomorrow, rumored to be set for release this summer.

Major Lazer & Pharrell – Aerosol Can

You know what the best thing in the world is besides free stuff? Pharrell’s music. It’s like everything he touches, turns into an gold, age-defying element of the music world as we know it which you can expect to hear on the radio for 3 years after it’s release. Teaming up with electronic music lords, Major Lazer, they debut the video to their latest project which includes tattoo legend, Mike Giant as he brings Pharrell’s lyrics to life in an all white room. Check out the trailer for their latest EP, “Apocalypse Soon” which is available in iTunes now.

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Tallest HS baller, Tacko Fall

We are all born to be great at something, which holds true for high school junior Tacko Fall, a 7’5 center at Liberty Christian Prep in Florida. Fall, born on the west coast of Africa, played his first year of organized basketball this past season. Fall averaged 11.1 points a game while grabbing 5 rebounds, which is only the start of his potential, Fall being inexperienced has a lot of undeveloped talent. Here are some comparisons to give you an idea of Fall’s size. He is 9 inches taller than 4 time MVP Lebron James, and brings to the table an 8 foot wingspan and a size 22 shoe, similar to NBA legend Shaq O’Neal. If Fall was on a NBA team at this very moment, he would be the tallest player in the league, and the second tallest professional player in the world, smaller than only D-League center Paul Sturgess (7’8). Fall dreams of playing in the NBA, or being a biochemist. We at Rated Young wish him the best in his future endeavors. Below is a brief highlight film of Fall.