Blu is the leader of West Coast Hip Hop. Since the days of Pharcyde, Freestyle Fellowship, and Jurassic 5, there have been few wordsmiths that have grasped the attention of listeners worldwide. Introduced to NWA and Public Enemy by his father, Blu later was captivated by the likes of Black Star, The Roots, and Common, creating a unique balance that is displayed in Blu’s personality and music.Blu’s first full length LP, “Below the Heavens” pairs Blu with producer Exile on the Sound in Color imprint. His first single, “Narrow Path” has rocked stages across the world, as fans begin to feel the impact of Blu’s music. His delivery flows flawlessly, while the content reflects the joy and pain of working class youth everywhere. Since the release of “Narrow Path,” Blu has performed alongside Slum Village, X-Clan, Platinum Pied Pipers, Lyrics Born, DJ Houseshoes, and many others, while participating in 3 high-profile nationwide tours alongside musical family members: Ta’Raach, Aloe Blacc, and Exile. The buzz has fans salivating for new music. Worldwide, people are looking to put hope into the ‘next’ emcee that will give them the same feeling when they first heard Black Thought, Common, or Slum Village. Blu fulfills this need, but maintains something that is entirely new, while not recycled.
Anderson .Paak needed solutions. The California native saw both of his parents and stepfather sent to prison by the time he was 18, and earlier in his adult life, he, his wife, and his son endured homelessness after he was unexpectedly let go from his job at a Santa Barbara marijuana farm. ''When I look at my tree, I see leaves missing, generations of harsh living, and addiction,'' he sings in his old-soul rasp on Malibu, his second album as Anderson .Paak. He's faced uncertainty as a musician, too, but after ''Suede'', a song he recorded with beatmaker Knxwledge under the name NxWorries, caught Dr. Dre's ear, .Paak became a significant part of Compton: A Soundtrack by Dr. Dre, making six appearances on the album. Not surprisingly, those songs combined for .Paak's big break, and now, eight years after deciding he wanted to make music his livelihood, he's released his best project yet, an affecting album that masterfully marries hip-hop, R&B, and soul.
Madvillainy is a collaboration between rapper MF Doom and producer Madlib under the group name Madvillain. MF DOOM and Madlib were off the radar to many in 2003, but the announcement of a collaboration and the first track, “America's Most Blunted”, brought all the quiet fans out of the woodwork, and let to a controversial and highly acclaimed album release in early 2004 that helped expose the two artists to a large audience for the first time. While the producer and MC both did was what completely natural to them at the time, they turned the formula of popular rap at the time on its head, creating an album that is both unique and true to it's hip-hop influences.
The contributions of the late Detroit producer James DeWitt Yancey -better known to the world as J Dilla- to the world of hip-hop can't be overstated, and nowhere is his legacy more apparent than his work as a member of Slum Village. A founding member of the trio, (Alongside rappers T3 and Baatin) Dilla provided the group's distinctly esoteric, free-wheeling sound, built around winding basslines, quirky drumbeats, subtle low-end frequencies, and classic jazz & soul samples. Against the backdrop of Dilla's rich production, T3 and Baatin's free-flowing style of rhyming would also earn wide critical praise, leading to comparisons as the successors to A Tribe Called Quest. (A label they themselves have rejected.) It's on Slum Village's 1997 studio debut, Fan-Tas-Tic Vol. 1, that all these elements come together in the most proficient manner. An instant hit among Detroit's underground hip-hop scene, the album seemed to combine all the best elements of the reigning alternative and gangsta styles of hip-hop into one cohesive style that was a hit among critics. Fan-Tas-Tic's influence extended far beyond Detroit, as its sound heavily influenced the sounds of D'Angelo, Erykah Badu, and The Roots just to name a few. (Roots drummer ?uestlove has even declared that: "Hands down this album birthed the neo-soul movement.") Ne'Astra Media Group now presents the album reissued on vinyl, for the first time in several years. Every wobbling bass note of J Dilla's production has been preserved and every freestyle line of T3 and Baatin has been re-created, to maintain the legacy of a late-90s rap classic, and the legend of one of hip-hop's greatest beatsmiths.
Long Beach, Cali rapper Vince Staples debuted his seven-song EP, HELL CAN WAIT late last year. The release of HELL CAN WAIT followed Vince s 3-week, 13-city Paisley Summer Tour headlining stint, which wrapped up at Hard Rock Live in Las Vegas. Vince has contributed tracks to dozens of today's hottest artists, including Earl Sweatshirt's first and second albums to Dilated Peoples' Directors Of Photography to Jhené Aiko's The Vapors (on her Sail Out debut, the biggest-selling EP in Def Jam history) and Common's latest album, Nobody's Smiling, on his single Kingdom, performed live by Common with Vince at his side on Jimmy Kimmel Live and at the 2014 BET Hip Hop Awards. As Common stated in XXL, "He's cold on the mic... This dude can really rhyme. It made me want to write." With HELL CAN WAIT, Vince turned the microscope on himself and his family for some of hip-hop s most remarkable music. Ain't nothing realer than the truth, he explains. Ain't nothing better than the truth, like I really did all that. I really seen all that. I really been around that my whole life. Vince's debut album, Summertime 06, set to drop this summer, will be no different. Vince describes Summertime 2006 as the summer that started it all. He looks back in time to tell a story of how his budding career came to be; this album will provide insight into who Vince is and why he does what he does. The countdown to Summertime 06 is on!
Freddie Gibbs is the product of violent, drug-laden streets but unlike most rappers with similar resumes, he brings the block to the booth without inhibition or an exaggerated rap persona. Piñata, a 17 track collaboration with producer Madlib, is the best distillation yet of his transparent approach to making music, combining an at times stark honesty with electrifying talent as a lyricist and performer. Piñata is “a gangster Blaxploitation film on wax,” says Gibbs, who came up on the streets of Gary, Indiana, the disregarded city previously best known for producing Michael Jackson. Here he is joined by Mac Miller, Earl Sweatshirt, Raekwon, Scarface, Domo Genesis, Ab-Soul and a host of others in setting his soliloquies of the streets alongside film snippets and dusted funk, soul and prog musical tapestries. While this is the latest in a series of single-artist collaborations for Madlib, after Jaylib (J Dilla), Madvillainy (MF Doom) and the street-centric O.J. Simpson with Detroit’s Guilty Simpson, the pairing is unique as it is the first time for Gibbs working with just one producer. On Piñata, where Gibbs can shift from textbook lessons in robbing and drugging on tracks like “Scarface” and “Knicks,” to perhaps the album’s most personal song, “Broken,” a collaboration with Scarface, who, along with Tupac, DMX and 50 Cent, make up the rapper’s own Mount Rushmore of MCs (“You’re getting a hurricane of all those motherfuckers hitting you at once when you listen to Freddie Gibbs,” he says). “Deeper,” a Gibbs favorite and the third single from the album after “Thuggin’” (2012) and “Shame,” (2013) is an ode to hip-hop in the mold of Common’s “I Used to Love H.E.R.”; “High,” featuring Danny Brown, is self-explanatory and just what you would expect from Gibbs, Madlib and one of Detroit’s finest; while on “Real,” Gibbs addresses an old score just as Michael Corleone settled all family business on baptism day. As a producer, Madlib, quite simply, is music, and ten years into his career—a time when other artists become comfortable—Gibbs remains restless, focused, with an eye on the competition and their position relative to his ascent. This is because mentally, he’s still on the corner hustling, which would be the downfall of the average rapper. With Piñata, Gibbs confirms that he is anything but average.
Oddisee makes music that rattles in your bone marrow. It’s imbued with love, honesty, and selflessness. It’s virtuosic in its musicality, direct in its language, and infinitely relatable.In a landscape overrun with abstract indulgence and shallow trend-chasers, the Prince George’s County, Maryland artist has created 'The Good Fight', a record that reminds you that it’s music before it’s hip-hop. Released on Mello Music Group, it’s for the fans and for himself. It finds the musical heavyweight balancing between craft, career, and successfully growing into the world around him.For Oddisee, 'The Good Fight' is about living fully as a musician without succumbing to the traps of hedonism, avarice, and materialism. It’s about not selling out and shilling for a paycheck, while still being aware that this is a business requiring compromise and collaboration. It’s music that yields an intangible feeling: the sacral sound of an organ whine, brass horns, or a cymbal crash. It’s not necessarily the syllables, but rather what they evoke. A song like “That’s Love” is more than a declaration; it’s a meditation on our capacity to love and the bonds binding us together. Ambition and greed war with our sense of propriety. “Contradiction’s Maze” offers a list of paradoxes we all face (“I want to tell the truth when it hurts/but when it comes to me, I want the blow softened.”) Oddisee’s production simmers in its own orchestral gumbo. You sense he’s really a jazzman in different form, inhabiting the spirit of Roy Ayers and other past greats. The Fader’s compared him to a musical MC Escher, calling hailing his “grandiose and symphonic sound” and “relevant relatable messages.” Pitchfork praised his “eclectic soulful boom-bap.” 'The Good Fight' acknowledges the stacked odds, but refuses to submit. It’s both universal and personal. The child of a Sudanese immigrant highlights the rigors of his own upbringing: his pregnant mother working the register until she was about to burst, his pops’ shuttered diner that couldn’t survive Reaganomics—the one that Oddisee drives past every time he returns home, just to remind him how quickly the world can turn bad. It’s these minor details that add into something major. It’s testament to the indelible nature of art: when you can turn what you love into something that lasts.
Hailed as the world’s best club DJ, J.ROCC continues to capture music enthusiasts around the globe. In 1992, Jason Jackson, internationally known as J.Rocc, launched his vision of forming a DJ crew comprised of talented musicians, by introducing to the world Southern California’s first turntable band - the Beat Junkies. A prized accomplishment enthusiastically received by worldwide audiences, J.Rocc continues to invent musical styles that display his creative expertise. Highly recognized for his funky showcases and original arrangements, J.Rocc has clearly distinguished his place in music history. Funky President Edits, Vol. 1 is the first installment of J Rocc’s 7” edit series featuring “Brothers Party” & “The Technique”, two party sureshots familiar to the discerning listener and edited with precision.
2007 debut album from Swedish outfit. featuring radiant vocalist Yukimi Nagano and her close high school friends Erik Bodin (drums), Fredrick Källgren (bass) and Håkan Wirenstrand (keyboards), Little Dragon stepped into the spotlight with the release of their first double A-side single on Peacefrog (home to Jos‚ Gonzalez and Findlay Brown), `Twice'/'Test'. A former Rough Trade `Single of the Week'. Yukimi has sung with Sweden's Electronica-Jazz outfit Koop, and both Yukimi and Erik play live with Jos‚ Gonz lez. The album is marvelously book ended by the drifting percussion and electronic dynamics of `Scribbled Paper', showcasing another wonderful vocal performance. Little Dragon take tired musical traces and styles, give them a shot in the arm to leave us with something fresh and positive. It is a debut full of subtle touches, capturing fleeting emotional moments, twinned with gnawingly memorable Pop flourishes and hooks.
Knx, aka Knxwledge, is a beat maker raised in central New Jersey and Philadelphia, now dialing-it-in at home in Los Angeles. Anthology is the essential instrumentals curation from the forty some-odd Knx Bandcamp releases 2009-2013. At fifty three tracks, Anthology is also available as a limited collector's edition double-LP.
Instinct fuels Common during his pre-artistic makeover era. The most enjoyable tracks are the ones where Com lets his guard down and lets us peek inside his mind. "The Question" ponders the imponderable, in a way that Tribe Called Quest did on "What?" He exacts revenge on some stick-up kids on "Payback is a Grandmother." The finest moment is "The Sixth Sense," a collaboration with DJ Premier that has everything a hip-hop track should have: smart lyrics, sharp hook, plus beats and scratches. With Common flying by the seat of his impulses, Like Water For Chocolate serves as a reminder that he is a rapper first and social theorist second.
J Dilla's classic work, Welcome 2 Detroit, strictly instrumentals with a new cover for the 10th Anniversary. Limited!
Liquid Swords is the second solo studio album from Wu-Tang Clan member GZA. Upon its initial release, Liquid Swords received critical acclaim for its complex lyricism and hypnotic musical style. Over the years, its recognition has grown, with a number of famous publishers proclaiming it as one of the greatest hip hop albums of all time. Continuing with its Respect The Classics campaign, UMe will be reissuing the classic back on standard weight vinyl for its 20th anniversary.
The Witch is a horror film directed by newcomer Robert Eggers. Set on the edge of a dark forest in 17th-century New England, The Witch is a tale of only family’s terrifying unraveling under the specter of black magic, possession and an unknown evil. When an English farmer leaves his colonial plantation and relocates his family to a remote plot of land, strange and unsettling occurrences begin happening immediately – animals become vicious, crops wilt and one of the children disappears. Paranoia grips the family as they accuse one of their own of witchcraft. Any great horror film has an equally impressive composer. The Witch is no different. Mark Korven has created a one-of-a-kind spine-chilling score by employing obscure instrumentation from hurdy gurdys to nyckelharps. The result is a discordant, spectral affair that draws the listener into the misty world of the family’s farm as horror permeates throughout.
Already Platinum. Impeccable design. Although this is one of the more talked about records of his career, there's no doubt that this is a testament to JAY Z's diligence, entrepreneurship, and artistic vision. Picking up where Watch The Throne left off, Magna Carta Holy Grail is JAY Z's twelfth studio album, and a portrait of an emcee embracing fatherhood, marriage, and striking a balance between a past spent coming up and a future shuffling around the top. The LP also includes a limited edition flexi-disc postcard of exclusive non-album track ''Open Letter'' hidden under the artwork on the back cover. Production is helmed largely by J-Roc, Timbaland, Pharrell Williams, Hit-Boy and others, while featuring performances by Beyoncé, Rick Ross, Justin Timberlake, Frank Ocean, Nas, and more. With MCHG, JAY Z understands that hip hop is starting to enjoy the same clout as fine art and, even better, hip hop is alive, a part of the world, evolving, and not cordoned off in a museum. Play it forward and grab a copy now.
2LP Green/Pink Neon Colored Vinyl, Custom Die Cut Jacket, 3’x4’ Double Sided Poster, Two Illustrated Record Sleeves, Album Lyrics & Digital Download Card. Indie-rap mainstay Aesop Rock has announced his new album, The Impossible Kid, dropping April 29th on Rhymesayers Entertainment, marking his first solo venture since 2012’s Skelethon. On the new album, Aesop continues finding new ways to improve on the skills that have made him one of the kings of indie hip-hop. His creative process now includes a newfound willingness to open up about his personal life, going deep on topics like depression, his sometimes rocky relationship with his family, and the turbulent handful of years that culminated in Aesop leaving his adopted home of San Francisco to live in a barn out in the woods, where he recorded the foundations of The Impossible Kid. There’s also moments of levity though, as Aesop taps into the funny side of his persona that he suppressed during the period where being taken as a serious lyricist was more of a priority. Like Skelethon, Aesop exercised complete creative control over every aspect of the album, from the production (which he handled himself, with instrumental help from Philly’s Grimace Federation) to conceptualizing the cover art by his friend Alex Pardee. Though it’s been four years since his last solo album, Aesop has maintained an impressive creative streak, releasing collaborative albums with Kimya Dawson (The Uncluded’s Hokey Fright in 2013), with Rob Sonic (Hail Mary Mallon’s Bestiary in 2014), and with Homeboy Sandman (LICE’s self-titled EP in 2015). He’s also been actively crafting beats. Recent projects include producing the 32+ minute instrumental mix, The Blob, working together with Nike to provide the music for a series of their skateboarding videos, and producing the soundtrack for the upcoming film Bushwick, starring Dave Bautista and Brittany Snow. He’s also started skateboarding and drawing again, which were his big passions before his hobby of making rap songs turned into a paying gig that evolved into an accidental 20-year long career, taking him from making beats in his bedroom to playing for crowds thousands deep. Going back to his roots has proven useful in processing everything that’s happened in his life over the past couple decades, and maybe to figure out the person he’s become: The Impossible Kid, a person who’s spent his life doing things that seemed unthinkable before he just went and did them, blazing a visionary trail all his own. Two decades in, he’s still out there pushing it forward.
Producer Madlib (Otis Jackson) + MC Guilty Simpson = OJ Simpson. OJ Simpson. That’s the name of the album. No bloody gloves. No Ford Broncos. These are some 12 hard-hitting, straight-from-the-gutter hip-hop tracks featuring Guilty’s inimitable baritone, and an equal number of Madlib’s signature album-as-soundtrack/radio/sideshow arrangements, where the beat & sequence is as important as the rap. This, with a couple no-nonsense guest appearances, some cuts by J.Rocc, and a whole bunch of attitude, makes up one of our favorite projects in a while. The charisma that Detroit’s heavy hitting MC Guilty Simpson and the Los Angeles based Beat Konducta Madlib share testifies to a musical kinship that is rare in today’s rapper-as-an-accessory marketplace. Going back to Guilty’s first appearance on wax (Jaylib’s “Strapped” – 2003), Guilty over a Madlib beat to us is like hearing Guru over Premier circa Daily Operation, or CL over Pete around the time of “Straighten It Out.” Some times, a rapper and a producer just work well together. "One of Detroit’s illest representatives” –THE SOURCE “A hybrid of Ice Cube and The Notorious B.I.G.’s, Guilty Simpson lays out the joys and pains of coming up in his city. He can draw you in and make you relate to his story, even if you have never seen a liquor store or storefront church in your life.” –HIPHOPDX ”Guilty is undoubtedly the grimiest rhymer in Stones Throw history.” –URB
Hailing from Sacramento, California, Death Grips was formed in late 2010 and consists of vocalist Stefan Burnett and production team Zach Hill and Andy Morin. The band dropped the highly acclaimed mix tape Exmilitary featuring the standout track "Guillotine", Time Out NY 's #1 single of 2011. The release garnered critical praise from tastemakers such as Pitchfork, NME, Spin, The New Yorker, and more, with many call outs on year end best of lists. Death Grips follow up Exmilitary with their Epic Records debut, The Money Store. The album builds on Exmilitary's unique punk rap sound and explores new territory with standout tracks "Get Got", "Blackjack", and "I've Seen Footage".
Riding on the heels of their Sad Clown Bad Summer Number Nine release, Atmosphere marks the transition from Summer into Winter with the release of the Sad Clown Bad Fall 10. The tenth volume of the groups rare and limited Sad Clown series is all about those shorter days and colder nights that make up the Autumn season. Can't wait to see what Winter holds.
Animated sci-fi masterpiece La Planète Sauvage (a.k.a. Fantastic Planet), winner at Cannes Film Festival in 1973, is a bizarre and beautiful film. Towering blue-skinned figures, tiny humanoids in the midst of revolt, and drug-induced Tantric sex transport viewers to a truly magical setting. Composer Alain Goraguer creates an equally hypnotic score from a palette of effects-laden guitars, flutes, Fender Rhodes and strings. While the lush arrangements are reminiscent of Goraguer's collaborations with Serge Gainsbourg in the 1960s, space-age synth flourishes suggest a more psychedelic era. Moody vignettes flow together in tense, slow-paced funk rhythms and Baroque textures. It comes as no surprise that La Planète Sauvage has been cited as an influence on contemporary artists such as French duo Air and American hip-hop producers J Dilla and Madlib. Gorgeous, interplanetary soundscapes resemble the surreal meeting point between Pink Floyd's Obscured by Clouds and Broadcast's Future Crayon. This long out-of-print vinyl release features the original soundtrack recording and newly designed artwork. Recommended for fans of Ennio Morricone, Basil Kirchin and David Axelrod.
Traffic Entertainment Group proudly present Mecca And The Soul Brother, the critically acclaimed 1992 debut album from the Mount Vernon duo, Pete Rock & CL Smooth. The album is considered as one of the greatest Hip Hop albums of all time. Boasting tracks such as the first single, They Reminisce Over You, a dedication to their deceased friend; Trouble T-Roy , which went on to become not only their signature hit, but also one of Hip Hop's all-time great songs. The album is propelled forward by Rock's quick, soulful interludes; usually bits of old R&B tunes layered with his signature trumpet and sax loops. Smooth's liquid freestyle delivery pieces together the perfect vocal match that, together, creates a sprawling, nearly 80-minute-long album on which not a single song or interlude is a throwaway or a superfluous piece. Named one of the essential recordings of the 90s by Rolling Stone, among numerous other accolades, Mecca and the Soul Brother stands up without ever really dating itself and is now available in a beautiful 2xCD box set edition. The first disc features the original 16 album tracks, remastered from the original masters recordings. The second disc contains 15 bonus versions and exclusives. Both discs come housed in individual 'paste on' style sleeves with brightly-colored printed dust sleeves. A 20-page book features in-depth liner notes written by Brian Coleman with contributions from Dante Ross, Pete Rock and CL Smooth. All this plus a full sized poster to boot. This reissue of an early 90s classic is a must have for any music collector or fan of good music.
Formed in 1967 as a psychedelic electronic duo featuring Dan Taylor on drums and Simeon on a homemade synthesizer consisting of 12 oscillators (and an assortment of sound filters, telegraph keys, radio parts, lab gear and a variety of second hand electronic junk), Silver Apples quickly gained a reputation as New York’s leading underground musical expression. Their pulsating rhythmic beats with the use of electronics laid the groundwork for what would become“Krautrock” Silver Apples was released in 1968 and still remains an innovative and revolutionary album. Their highly influential sound has influenced countless bands from Stereolab, Beastie Boys, Blur and more.
Blasphemy, the collaborative album from esteemed Mello Music Group producer Apollo Brown and Ras Kass, is a thought-provoking and highly personal treatise on the unspoken. The sub-rattling and operatic opener “How to Kill God,” a scathing indictment of major religions and the transgressions enacted in their name, serves as a statement of purpose. No “ism” is out of bounds, no topic too untoward. Whatever you hold sacred isn’t above aggressive inquiry. Behind the boards, Apollo Brown orchestrates with divine aural vision. Though Blasphemy is his first album with a west coast rapper, he doesn’t retread g-funk synth grooves. He also forgoes the minimal, rubbery bounce popular with the current crop of west coast talent. Amidst a sea of production crafted for the drug-addled turn up, his work is a life preserver, saving ardent hip-hop fans with hard-hitting beats made buoyant by donuts of soul and blues. On his deftly layered suites, drums hit with the force of an unabridged Bible to the dome, the samples masterfully selected and utilized. With Blasphemy, Brown has created MPC gospel, sonic scripture. In his seminal memoir Soul on Ice, Eldridge Cleaver wrote, “All the gods are dead except the god of war.” Ever since Ras Kass titled his 1996 opening salvo after Cleaver’s book, the critically revered Carson, CA rapper has waged verbal warfare against all those with aims of obscuring the truth. Rappers, preachers, politicians – none have been spared from the wrath of his sharp, illuminating rhymes. When not eviscerating MCs and poking holes in theologies, Ras Kass surrounds himself with a rogue’s gallery of decorated veterans. Pharoahe Monch, Rakaa Iriscience, Xzibit, and Royce Da 5’9” are among the handful of the elite lyricists present. Each delivers their singular bars in top form, making the songs on which they appear some of the best posse cuts you’ll hear in 2014. Above all, this album displays Apollo Brown & Ras Kass’ undeniable synergy. Their sacred writ is the same, their blasphemy for those who want to think as they nod to the rhythm. When Ras Kass crucifies supposed facts over Apollo’s beats, it’s clear he is the West Coast’s preeminent philosopher. When Apollo’s blaring suites soothe your soul, it’s an ontological fact that he ranks among the best producers in the game. With Blasphemy, the duo has delivered the truth.
LP version in deluxe silver foil sleeve. Limited edition of 499. Includes poster. The long-awaited debut album from Hashish. Top-class psychedelia, taking the genre to a new level with a sophisticated approach to Afro-funk grooves accompanied by dreamy, playful melodies that range through a spectrum of Scandinavian occult psychedelia, minimal synth, surreal electronic soul disco, and rare groove. Some have described Hashish as a project that picks up what Goat started. Welcome to tomorrow. The sounds transport the listener into a forgotten world where the future looks different from what it became. On his soft, subtle island capped with clouds of cool fire, Pan weaves his teachings with the wind and the sun, raining sacred melodies on the hearts and minds of humanity and bestowing desperate loves and yearnings with songs of sainthood and madness. Transient temples of the flesh, laughing at death, clothe our lives in fire. On rippling altars of skin we sensual magicians worship bright burning desire. Upon release the album sky rocketed straight into #1 on the official Swedish vinyl chart.
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Joseph Abajian (DJ Jab) founded Fat Beats in 1994 with nothing more than a shoestring budget and an earnest obsession with the music, the culture, and the brotherhood of New York’s burgeoning rap scene. What began as a simple vinyl shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side quickly became an integral hub for artists, both aspiring and established, to convene and collaborate on new projects. Joseph’s timing couldn’t have been more impeccable. When the 90’s cultural zeitgeist – and, in turn, the music industry establishment – chose hip-hop as its new arbiter of cool.
International tourists and touring artists alike flocked to Fat Beats for rare vinyl, kindred spirits, and exclusive in-store performances from Jay Z, Eminem, Gang Starr, Outkast, Slum Village, Mos Def, and more. One thing was clear: the Fat Beats phenomenon could no longer be contained in a single basement shop.
In the late nineties, Abajian proceeded to open new stores in Amsterdam, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. He further expanded the company’s profile to include global distribution and record label branches. Distribution has since proven to be the company’s strongest and most enduring enterprise. Today Fat Beats Distribution stands poised as one of the country’s pre-eminent distributors of vinyl & specialty item records: a proud survivor in an industry now famous for its mortality rate. Despite market fluctuations, technology innovations, and stylistic revolutions, Fat Beats has remained steadfast in its commitment to the timeless vinyl format and to the loyal community who keeps it spinning.
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