Raheem DeVaughn – Freedom Fighter

Leave it to the hardest working man in R&B to take a break from Grammy nominations and give us a soundtrack to parallel the current economic and political climate of the world. Most of these songs are old but that’s whats cool about Raheem DeVaughn, he has been making timeless, poignant, conscious soul music from day one of his career. What’s more impressive is that it’s all so good that you can’t help but listen to what he’s saying. Marvin has to be looking down smiling.

Download this mixtape and support Raheem’s movement. I can’t think of a better artist to spend your music budget on.    

DTMD – MAKIN’ DOLLAS the album

It’s been a minute and I’m guessing a lot of blood sweat and tears since DTMD dropped their breakout mixtape The Basics. The DMV duo have finally made it official with the release of their debut LP “Makin’  Dollas”. As their name suggests, DTMD’s sound is rooted in an era of hop-hop that has been mostly abandoned by newer artists. I hate when people classify some rap as “real” hip-hop based on how it sounds, suggesting that newer acts don’t deserve to be included in the genre so I won’t do that here. This is just good music. Take a listen and buy a copy or Dunc and Toine will have to change their name.      

Tabi Bonney – Frontin

Tabi is one of my favorite rappers. It seems that his primary ambition is to enjoy himself at all costs and have his listeners do so as well. His style on and off the mic is unique but not contrived. If he said it chances are he did it “in real life” as he likes to say.  Frontin is the first single off of Ski Beatz 2nd installment of 24 Hour Karate School but will also be featured on Tabi’s upcoming “The Summer Years” due out 9.27.11.


Daley – Those Who Wait

Can classic sounds also be a breath of fresh air? Download UK soul singer Daley’s “Those Who Wait” mixtape after checking out the clips below then decide for yourself. Daley’s foundation is clearly rooted in contemporary R&B which is generally not my taste but his sound and exceptional songwriting makes this EP more than worth a few listens for me.  He’s worked with Angie Stone, Estelle and Gorillaz and covered artists from Maxwell to Madonna.

This duet with Marsha Ambrosius might have replaced Cee-lo and Melanie Fiona as the best one I’ve heard in recent memory.

Not sure how this didn’t make the mixtape.