AUDIO: “Seattle Sweeties” – Draze (prod. by Vitamin D)

Draze - Seattle Sweeties

Ah yes, the so-called hip-hop “female empowerment anthem:” Generally well-intentioned, but hardly ever well-executed. Seattle rap OG Draze falls into the same institutionalized pit of chauvinism that our favorite of-the-moment rappers like Drake happily occupy. “Seattle Sweeties” gets it wrong from the very start (see: song title), but has its heart in the right place (it’s a vehicle for raising funds for survivors of domestic violence).

Here’s the thing, fellas (and mind you this word to the wise is coming straight from the horse’s mouth: a heterosexual male who trades in misogyny by virtue of my very existence on planet earth): Women don’t need men to affirm their beauty and intelligence.

The best part of the current wave of feminism — at least as it’s manifesting itself in popular culture — is that it reinforces the notion that there is truly no wrong way to be feminine (see: Adele, Nicki Minaj, Beyonce, Lena Dunham, Amy Schumer, Mindy Kaling, et al). Just as there’s no wrong way to be Black, Asian, Latino, gay, straight, or transgender.

The marginalized — and I’m counting myself and Draze among those — need allies in the fight against our oppressors.

Men: We need to stop projecting our values of worth (particularly as it pertains to physical beauty) onto the people we’ve traditionally held power over — that shit is tired and reductive. We need to start taking up arms alongside them. Teach your sons and daughters how to be feminists, not the bankrupt game of respectability politics.

Audio Audio / Video

AUDIO: High On Wax – Stay Hi Brothers

High On Wax - Stay Hi Brothers

Producer/MC Vitamin D and MC Maineak B are two Seattle rap nonpareils who’ve blessed the Town with crucial albums and career-making artist co-signs over the course of multiple decades. Their official union as a duo, the Stay High Brothers, has always catered to the classical rap-minded aficionado’s ear.

High On Wax forgoes the universally accepted studio techniques normally used to craft beats (ie. samplers, sequencers and the like) and relies solely on the art of turntablism to provide the backing tracks for the duo’s raps. The result is a heady, organic and raw soundtrack for Vita and Maine’s daily living. In this hazy, hedonist’s landscape, the good is consumed like daily bread and the pursuit of pleasure rules the day; that is until the fucking pigs inevitably blow the high.

And yet, no matter. Music is the benevolent dictator for the Stay Hi Brothers who remain compelled to get — and stay — lost in the forgiving boundaries of the groove.

Audio Audio / Video

AUDIO: “Children Of The Light” – Draze (prod. by Vitamin D)

Draze - Children Of The Light

Seattle OG Draze timed the release of his new Vitamin D-produced single “Children Of The Light” to correspond with the EMP Museum’s Black History Month kick-off event which went down on Saturday, February 7 (and of which 206UP was a co-sponsor). The track embodies the “Black is beautiful” truism so elemental to hip-hop’s core.

Audio Audio / Video

NEW MUSIC: Purse 1st Ass Last – Malcolm Rebel

Malcolm Rebel - Purse 1st Ass Last

Malcolm Rebel — possessor of direct blood ties to Vitamin D — channels his inner Curren$y on this smooth, smoked-out EP, Purse 1st Ass Last. Produced entirely by Desmond Harvey and mixed by Vita himself.

Audio Downloads

NEW MUSIC: Bornday 2 – Vitamin D

Vitamin D - Born Day 2

Vitamin D’s presence is our present… For this birthday. Or something. Bornday 2 is the latest LP from the venerable Town producer, DJ and MC. Essential soulful slaps, and other alliterative phrases apply to this standout collection. (See, also: the first volume of Born Day.)

Audio Downloads

HOLIDAY SHIT: Chrismas Trees – Sta-Hi Brothers


Seattle rap fans are blessed with the greatest Christmas-themed hip hop album in history. Bold statement, but I defy you to find another! The Sta-Hi Brothers (Vitamin D and Maine) released their Chrismas Trees EP two years ago but it deserves revisiting every December 25th. You’ll never listen to the Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack the same again.

Download Chrismas Trees for free here, but don’t play it while grandma’s around.

Downloads Happy Holidays

NEW MUSIC: Talk Ain’t Cheap – Royce The Choice

Royce The Choice - Talk Ain't Cheap

Royce The Choice selected some (ahem) choice production partners for his latest EP, Talk Ain’t Cheap. Vitamin D, Kuddie Fresh and GMK all lend beats, and this blog’s favorite Town rapper of the moment, Porter Ray, shows up on “For The Jeeps”. You can also catch Royce getting a bit of national burn on DJ Mustard’s Ketchup mixtape.

Audio Downloads

VIDEO: “Loaded Gun” – J. Pinder (dir. by BeanOne; prod. by Vitamin D)

J. Pinder recently let fly the high-def treatment for his track “Loaded Gun” (produced by Vitamin D). BeanOne is involved as well, but this time behind the lens rather than the boards where we usually find him.


NEW MUSIC: “Safeco” – Rebel (prod. by Drew Beats)

Click image to get it.

Click image to get it.

About a year ago Rebel released his five-piece, Swisher Nights, which featured the hardcore tracks of one Vitamin D. It’s been a minute since Reb’s been on the scene but dude recently posted “Safeco,” a hazy one-off produced by Drew Beats. Good to hear this guy again.

Audio Downloads

NEW MUSIC: “Young Ra Ra” – J. Pinder (prod. by Vitamin D)

Click image to download.

Click image to download.

Hometown bias has caused me to vote repeatedly for young J. Pinder for the final spot in XXL‘s Freshman 2013 class (I truly love me some Bronsolini, doe). You can go here to show your support. And peep the new joint, “Young Ra Ra,” blessed by Vita’s necessary adornments below.

Audio Downloads