Tobias – Coughing Dying (feat. MIKE)

It’s Tuesday and the temperature in Chicago has fallen probably 20+ degrees overnight, leaving its residents with a brisker than normal, cloudy day. It’s a refreshing cool after a weekend of high temperatures. It’s the perfect day to ride your bike everywhere you go, knowing the fatigue from the heat won’t be an issue even though it’s almost July.

“Coughing Dying”, produced by Manhattan’s Tobias with rapping from Brooklyn’s MIKE, is the right type of song to play on a day like today. I could imagine Tobias and MIKE trading beats for rhymes on the back porch of one of their apartments. If you dig the track, you’re in luck, because Tobias is working on a full length album currently. So stay tuned for more tunes.

Drake – One Dance (Different Sleep Cover)

I have a theory about Drake’s “One Dance” in which you can find someone to go home with at any nightclub during the duration of this track. Seriously. Someone please test this theory and get back to me.

Now, if you manage to get someone back to your bedroom from the dance floor, I would recommend keeping the mood steady with this cover of “One Dance” produced and performed by L.A. based producer Different Sleep. The cover keeps the seductive vibe of the original while losing the dancehall riddim and replacing it with a more RnB type tempo. Big man ting, shawty definitely gonna be feelin’ da bruv once dis here track starts pumpin wagwan!

VanessaMichaels – Really Like (feat. Effy)

Have you been frantically searching for tracks to add to your “Pool Party” Spotify playlist all summer? Are you getting a little tired of listening to the regular batch of electronic/EDM artists over and over again? Well say no more.

L.A. Producer/DJ VanessaMichaels has been on a hot streak in 2016, releasing a handful of impressive singles and several banging remixes. Now, she’s teamed up with singer Effy for the infectious “Really Like”. Jazzy piano chords, crisp production, and killer lyrics all arranged by VanessaMichaels set the foundation for Effy to belt a catchy melody that blends together to create the perfect track for any outdoor function.

Maggie Rogers – Alaska

Several days ago, I was scrolling through reddit’s front page when I spotted a link with a title something along the lines of “Pharrell’s reaction to this girls song is so genuine. It’s beautiful.” Now, being a fan of Pharrell, I had to see what this was about.

What I found was a girl named Maggie Rogers, not much younger than myself, speaking of her rural background in Maryland and musical upbringing (she’s originally/still is a banjo player) which was dramatically shifted when she became a student at NYU. As the song began to play, it was clear the track was unfinished but the soul and warmth of the song still rung out. Pharrell began to get emotional and in turn, from watching him, I did too.

The beautiful thing about the internet is that just 48 hours after watching Rogers show Pharrell this unfinished masterpiece, we have a completed version in our possession. The track, titled “Alaska”, morphs Rogers’ many influences into a cohesive, semi-electronic arrangement of sounds, vocals and instruments. By the chorus, you might find yourself a bit teary eyed, begging for more music from the young singer/songwriter.

It’s not often you get to discover someone this soon into their journey to becoming a full fledged musical artist and I’m glad I’ll be able to watch Maggie Rogers whole trip from the beginning.

Towkio – PLAYIN FAIR feat. Joey Purp [Prod. Smoko Ono]

It’s been a Savemoney 2016 thus far and it’s far from over. Yesterday, Towkio delivered a one off with Savemoney affiliates Joey Purp and Smoko Ono entitled “PLAYIN FAIR” that’s as high powered as it is heavy hitting. Make sure you’ve got Twokio on your watch list for the remainder of the year. Word from the top of the Savemoney Army hints he’s been working with some heavy hitters.

Kweku Collins – Stupid Roses (VIDEO)

Closed Sessions’ Kweku Collins has been on a roll since his Nat Love project dropped a few months back. The young MC has headlined a fair amount of shows around the Midwest and just recently opened for Grandmaster Flash in Brooklyn. Today, Kweku released a visual for my personal favorite off Nat Love with “Stupid Roses”.

The track, which takes its slow rolling bass line from D’Angelo’s “One Mo’Gin” (another personal favorite) describes Kweku’s attempts at winning the love of a girl he’s crushing on. The video, shot in Milwaukee and directed by @claplantfilms, details Kweku running, skating, driving and walking with a bouquet of roses presumably meant for his crush. However, Kweku chooses the company of friends instead of possible love in the end, which is hardly uncommon for a 19 year old.

Keep your eyes and ears on Mr. Collins. He’s one of my top prospects coming out of Chicago for the next year.

Melo – Evicted (ft. Kweku Collins) prod. Martin $ky

“Treat this like my confessional/I swear it’s been the longest time since n*ggas had a sober night”

Everyone has had one of those nights where they got too drunk to make it all the way home. You might have slept on someone’s floor, if you weren’t lucky enough to claim the couch, or maybe found a lovely lady who you convinced to give you a late night tour of her living situation. For Chicago MC Melo, it isn’t always as glamorous.

On “Evicted”, Melo teams up with Closed Sessions’ Kweku Collins and Martin $ky for a passionate, emotional ballad filled with hard hitting 808’s about everything from getting kicked out of your mom’s crib to struggling to get the rent money in on time. It’s a mature subject for the young MC’s that will no doubt relate to the young people struggling to survive in inflation-riddled cities around the country and the world.

Joey Purp – GIRLS @ (feat. Chance The Rapper)

I’ve personally heard this track about a hundred times (courtesy of Knox Fortune) and I couldn’t be more pleased that it is finally out for the world to enjoy.

Joey Purp returns for the third single from his iiiDrops project with one of the bounciest songs I’ve heard in years in “GIRLS @”. Featuring hometown hero Chance The Rapper, fresh off the release of his highly praised Coloring Book, the track plays fun at looking for all the girls who have the all finer things. The SaveMoney duo lace hot bars over the infectious beat produced by Knox Fortune, with additional production from Peter Cottontale. I’m making this claim right now: This is THE Chicago rap song for Summer ’16.

If you aren’t excited for iiiDrops after these 3 singles…WTF IS WRONG WITH YOU???

Sweater Beats & KAMAU – Hey Ya (Cover)

“Hey Ya” by Outkast was the first song I danced with a girl to. It was at my friend Josh’s bar mitzvah, yet I can’t exactly remember the lovely young lady’s name. Regardless, if you were born in between the years 1990-1996, “Hey Ya” probably holds a special place in your musical heart.

When I saw that Sweater Beats and vocalist KAMAU had covered the millennial smash hit, I was immediately intrigued. The bass bumping production is layered with background vocal harmonies that accompany KAMAU’s lead vocals beautifully. When the chorus kicks in, we’re graced with a great summer synth line and the memories of screaming “HEY YA!” at all those bar/bat mitzvah’s, school dances, and even weddings.

So, sit back, pop in an old VHS tape recording of an episode of ABC’s Saturday Morning Cartoons, and enjoy your hearty taste of nostalgia for the day.

Kaytranada – Lite Spots (VIDEO)

I’ll tell you right now: I have an unparalleled softness for when robots develop feelings. So when I pressed play on Kaytranada’s new video for “Lite Spots”, from his 99.9% album that dropped last Friday, I couldn’t help but get a little choked up.

In the video, Kaytranada creates a b-boy robot with artificial intelligence, which allows it to pick up on people’s dancing and recreate their moves. The track is also one of my favorites from Kay’s new album, 99.9%, which features guest appearances from Syd the Kid, Anderson Paak, Craig David, and Vic Mensa.

You can stream Kaytranada’s new album on Apple Music and Spotify as well as purchase it in the iTunes store.

Joey Purp – Photobooth

Chicago’s Joey Purp is back with the second single from his highly anticipated, solo debut iiiDrops with “Photobooth”. An beat I couldn’t classify any other way besides “bonkers” pumps through speakers as Purp laces together bars challenging his superiors, his rise to greatness, and enjoying the perks of newfound success. The track was produced by West Coast producer GARREN, with additional production courtesy of Chicago’s Knox Fortune (you’ll see him all over the iiiDrops credits.)

Make sure you’re at the iiiDrops release show at Metro on May 27th, and keep your eyes peeled as Purp is still announcing special guest openers.

JMSN – It Is

Detroit’s JMSN, or Christian Berishaj, has been putting out solid releases one after the other for the last four years, but it’s hard to say any have been as soulful and emotionally packed as It Is, which dropped online yesterday. The 13 song project, written, produced and mixed by JMSN himself, is an impressive artistic step for Berishaj (who adopted the moniker JMSN in 2012) who has drifted through the music industry since he inked his first deal with Atlantic Records 10 years ago.

Throughout the album, JMSN flexes his vocal abilities through poetic lyrics about his love for a girl. At times, he grazes the surface pertaining to his experiences overcoming obstacles, never failing to bring it back around to marvel on how beautiful life can be. It Is is a project that skates between its highs and its lows without little hiccup in between.

You can cop tickets to JMSN’s show with 1833 at Double Door on June 9th right here.