What is there to say about Pusha T (a.k.a. “The Cocaine Cowboy,” a.k.a. “The Cocaine King,” a.k.a. “King Push.”)? If you don’t know shit about this guy but you want to sound knowledgeable come Spring Weekend, just refer to Pusha as “the guy who raps about cocaine.” That reference alone will get you pretty far.
Though everyone is most aware of his recent work with Kanye West’s G.O.O.D Music label, Pusha, born Terrence Thorton, has been making music for over two decades. Pusha started the hip-hop group Clipse with his brother Malice (now known as No Malice, but he’ll always be Malice to me) back in ’92. Hailing from Virginia Beach, Clipse got started with a deal from Elektra Records, which was secured for them by no other than Pharrell. “The Funeral,” their first single off Exclusive Audio Footage, bombed commercially, although the video and track are definitely worth peeping.
Then comes all their albums you’ve probably never heard of; if you do want to venture into some of the classic hip-hop tracks, it’s worth checking out “When The Last Time” and “Mr. Me Too,” both of which Pharrell makes awesome appearances on. But if there’s one song pre-2008 that you’ve gotta know from Pusha’s discography, it’s “What Happened to That Boy.” You’ve probably heard the clean version way back at your best friend’s bar mitzvah. This track is pretty close to a masterpiece, save for Birdman’s verse which, like any Birdman verse, is full of really dynamic raps like: “If I don’t go to jail, ni**a, birds gon’ flock / Ni**a sitting on the toilet: bitch, get off the pot!”
Tonight, a vigil was held for the passing of graduate student Hyoun Ju Sohn. Candles were lit in remembrance of him, and students wrote down hopes on pieces of paper and placed them into a fire. Continue Reading
Before recently, I hadn’t had the chance to meet any computer whizzes at Brown–or, for that matter, anywhere else–so I don’t quite know what to expect when I venture into the CIT for the first time to meet Graham Carling. He takes me up to the 5th floor of the building and as we walk past old computers on display he tells me, “It’s usually pretty deserted up here.” And he’s right: the two top floors feel like a ghost town. I find myself wondering whether I should have chosen a concentration with its own swipe-access-only building. This place is like a goddamn personal library.
I’ve reached out to Graham to hear more about an app he’s been a part of for close to two years, Push For Pizza – an iPhone application that streamlines the process of ordering pizza. If the name sounds familiar, it’s probably because Push for Pizza went viral last fall with an awesome video [above] that the team made for the launch of the app. The video and the app caught the attention of Forbes, New York Times,Buzzfeed, Huffington Post–for Christ’s sake, it featured on Steve Harvey. It was everywhere. But don’t Google “Push for Pizza” and expect Graham’s face to pop up. He’s not on the public side of the app. Instead, he’s busy developing it – building and maintaining the complicated code that makes the app function.
“It’s not that simple,” Graham says as he explains some of the intricacies of how the app actually goes about ordering pizza for a customer. “We first thought about writing a code that went onto Dominos.com and just filled out forms…we could’ve done that. But that would’ve been boring.” Without getting too specific, Push For Pizza version 1.0 worked by sending a customer’s information to Ordr.in, where the order was processed, confirmed and then routed to the pizzeria. “It was extremely janky and so inconsistent…it was not good,” Graham says. Still, the Push for Pizza team released the app to the public in August of 2014 with phenomenal media success. “Then the VCs started to get involved.”
It’s been over a year since Drake’s junior album Nothing Was The Same dropped. Vibrant and poppy, yet remaining quintessentially Drake, NWTS marked a shift from being just another rapper to a musical auteur. Whether shouting at the top of his lungs or whispering sweet nothings, Drake has maintained a persona both in his music and public image of a hard-core (dare I say gangster?) rapper, as well as an R&B crooner, thus appealing to both hip-hop heads and romantics everywhere. If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late (released without any official announcements, much like Beyonce’s Beyonce last year) signals the singer’s commitment to mining the intricacies of his dual identities, while also highlighting his desire to experiment and expand his sound.
In many ways, If You’re Reading This remains true to Drake’s proven strategy of success. Songs fall into one of two categories: “I go hard in the motherfuckin’ paint” and “I can’t hold you too close because I’m afraid of loving you.” These two modes—boisterous, triumphant tirades or quiet love songs—sometimes compete against each other on the same track with Drake spending the first two minutes of a song shrugging off the haters, only to switch up the music tempo and cocoon within a gloomy dialogue of inner thoughts.