Mic Drop: It's Friday...You Know, the Freakin' Weekend

Mic Drop: It's Friday...You Know, the Freakin' Weekend

Little Simz, Cleo Sol — “Woman”
Little Simz, Cleo Sol — “Woman”
Screenshot: YouTube

Friday. The freakin’ weekend. The day that we all wake up looking forward to the moment our eyes open on Monday morning. As it gets warmer and we shift into a new season, the week’s music releases have been too good to wait until Monday. So I’ll be putting you onto the weekly hits to propel you through the weekend.

Anthony Hamilton has brought out another wide brim hat and his broken heart with his new release “You Made a Fool of Me.” This man’s heart has been broken for over 20 years and he still manages to come out with songs that both hit you right in your feels and make you dance all at the same time. Maybe it’s his charisma or attitude that has him locked in an emotional tug of war, but I’m just glad I get to experience it on this side of the screen.

Snoop Dogg and Ice-T are on a track together that’s dedicated to the hip-hop legends of the West and it goes hard. Even though the choice to have Ty Dolla $ign on the song confuses me just a little, his hook does go equally as hard and I appreciate it.

We also have a track dedicated to the badass women of the world and how they’re holding it together. The “Venom” singer (a track that has just taken over the TikTok world) Little Simz speaks on the importance of women on the come up and the support they both get and deserve from the community.

Oh, and J. Cole dropped “Interlude,” the first single off his upcoming album The Off Season that drops next week. He only gave us this as a warning:

So here we are.

These tracks are all over the place but have one major thing in common: they all go hard in their own right whether it’s emotionally, lyrically or rhythmically.

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Anthony Hamilton — “You Made a Fool of Me”

Anthony Hamilton — “You Made a Fool of Me”

I want to find out who broke this man’s heart and thank them for doing their part in the endless stream of “women will always hurt me” tunes from one Mr. Anthony “Wide-Brim-Hat” Hamilton. “You Made a Fool of Me” is one of the most extra songs and videos that I have seen in a hot minute. Based on the title alone, you can deduce that his homegirl had a side-mans that she was seeing regularly and—oop, gets caught with ON THE KITCHEN COUNTER. I can’t go into more because it would ruin the cinematic masterpiece that Hamilton has put together for us this week, but let’s just say his wide brim hats, aviator shades and her Louis Vuitton luggage is all the bougie Black messy relationship fodder that one would hope for in a Hamilton video. This track supersedes his upcoming album release slated for August 2021.

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Emanuel — “Worldwide”

Emanuel — “Worldwide”

This dreamy “dreams do come true” track is just one of many off of Canadian R&B star Emanuel’s debut album Alt Therapy, dropping June 16. The dark and mysterious track features heavy bass, harsh vocals and a dynamic melody. There is a raw need and passion in “Worldwide” that resonates deep. The song touches on Emanuel’s need to travel and connect with people in person, not just from his home alone. The use of different instrumental techniques to separate different parts of the song is smart as it pulls the listener in and out of the raw emotion he’s giving.

Emanuel speaks about his experience and process in a press release from Motown Records provided to The Root. “This past year has been a great learning experience for what it means to really manifest something and be appreciative of the things you’ve been able to uncover and draw from within yourself and make reality…‘Worldwide’ is a song of affirmation and it’s become a prayer to be able to continue until all of those goals are met in their completion.”

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Glasses Malone — “6’n the Morning’ (GMX)”

Glasses Malone — “6’n the Morning’ (GMX)”

Uncle Snoop and Uncle T—two once very real gangsters—are out here making music with Ty Dolla $ign, and I have so many questions. Snoop has just dropped an album, so he’s back at it with the music releases, but Ice-T is out here “low riding/crip walking with the strap.” Anyway “6’n the Morning’” has one of those beats that you reluctantly start dancing to until it takes over your whole body and then you’re dancing until well, six in the morning. The whole premise of the song is going out partying and reliving—or continuing to live—one’s most gangster-ass life.

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Inayah – “What Are We?”

Inayah – “What Are We?”

We’ve all been there, asking “what are we?” but Inayah really wants to know. The song opens with a trilling and mysterious flute that sets the tone for the rest of the song. It’s the type of song that perfectly describes a “situationship” and all of the messy outcomes that come along with it. The spacey synths—both the ambient and the keyed-in—give the song a level of sensuality that matches her lyrics and vocals. “What Are We?” also emirates what I like to call “Pony-energy”—which means it has a similar type of beat and bass as Ginuwine’s “Pony” and I can picture Channing Tatum throwing it back to the chorus.

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J. Cole – “Interlude”

J. Cole – “Interlude”

Earlier this week, J. Cole announced his newest mixtape The Off-Season was dropping on May 14 on the 14-year anniversary of his debut mixtape, The Come Up. “Interlude” has that signature Cole fast-paced high-hats that compliment his equally fast-paced, melodious flow. This sample-driven track is the first to drop from the album and sets the tone for the rest of the tracks. Coming out the gate with a critique on the ways Black people are treated in America, specifically Black mothers, while still keeping to the narrative of “it might get better” emulates the same energy as his debut mixtape from 14-years-ago…only more political.

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Joan Armatrading — “Already There”

Joan Armatrading — “Already There”

We are getting a new Joan Armatrading album this summer, and if that’s not the best thing about summer 2021, I don’t know what is. Her newly released song “Already There” is an intimate exploration of love and devotion. Armatrading’s lyrics are an ode to the one she loves and she wears her heart on her sleeve—a pattern that we expect to see throughout the album Consequences which is scheduled to be released on June 18.

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Kash Doll — “Thumbin”

Kash Doll — “Thumbin”

She said, “Nigga asked for my sign I said Dolla.” Right. Keep that same energy this hot girl summer and you’ll be thumbin’ all your hunnids in the club right along with her.

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Little Simz, Cleo Sol — “Woman”

Little Simz, Cleo Sol — “Woman”

The video opens with a Victorian mansion that rivals all fantasy lover’s dreams. Signing checks while dripped in diamonds and melanin, Little Simz conducts a colorful performance honoring and respecting a multitude of women. The jewel tones are immaculate here and pop against the dark walls of the setting around them. This jazzy and sultry R&B track shouts out different women in each verse, respecting and honoring the achievements of the culturally important icons in history. Matching Simz’s verses of strength comes Cleo Sol’s message of empowerment. “Woman to woman / I just want to see you glow” Simz raps alongside Sol’s I love how you go from zero to one hundred / And leave the dust behind.

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Saweetie — “Fast (Motion)”

Saweetie — “Fast (Motion)”

You know what they say: Your biggest competition is yourself. Saweetie took that quite literary in the video for her new track “Fast (Motion).” The “Content Queen” is seen playing a multitude of sports like soccer and boxing and playing basketball among—and as tall as—the skyscrapers against WNBA MVP A’Ja Wilson. It’s upbeat, over the top and full of glam, just like the rapper herself. Each scene has a larger than life visual that accompanies the larger than life sound she brings from the seamless transitions between songs to the nonchalant way in which she interacts with other characters. We are seeing the rapper come into her own and holding her own. The song is from her upcoming debut album, Pretty B*tch Music.

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TeaMarrr — “Specific (feat. Duckwrth)”

TeaMarrr — “Specific (feat. Duckwrth)”

TeaMarrr is all about sex positivity and specificity in her new track “Specific.” The sensual mid-tempo song outlines TeaMarrr’s desire for her lover to tell her exactly what he’s looking for in the bedroom. Explicitly. Her flirty voice and expressive words weave together a narrative of sexual openness, complemented by the smooth and “dance-able” rhythm. Duckwrth’s melodic rapping style fits well with the music because of its ability to be both hard and soft at any given point. She’s asking her lover to be specific with their needs and Duckwrth takes that ask and runs with it—his verse sounding as if they’re in direct conversation rather than just a feature.

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