ALL: Opening Acts

Here Come the Big Steppers

Memorably deployed by Kendrick Lamar, the phrase “big stepper” usually means what it suggests. But it has also led to some surprising interpretations.

P4K’s 250 Best Songs of the 90s

Pitchfork’s latest retrospective list, a ranking of the top 250 best songs of the 1990s, embraces a girlboss theme. The top five slots belong to women.

Jean Grae

Jean Grae and Hip-Hop Heresies

In light of Jean Grae’s identification as nonbinary, Shanté Paradigm Smalls’ Hip-Hop Heresies, a book about queer identity in hip-hop culture, is enlightening.

Fake Musicians and The Source

ProPublica’s story about internet clout chases contains a detail about The Source, the magazine that remains a famed example of golden-era rap journalism.

Sammus on AI

With controversy surrounding “augmented reality” act FN Meka, it’s worth reading Enongo Lumumba-Kasongo’s story on artificial intelligence in the rap industry.

Hua Hsu on Suspended in Time

Hua Hsu, a staff writer for The New Yorker, discusses his new zine Suspended in Time, which also serves as a preface for his forthcoming book, Stay True.

Cadence Weapon, Teen P4K Critic

In a long-ish essay published in The Walrus, Cadence Weapon recounts his time penning reviews for Pitchfork as an enterprising Edmonton teenager.

UHHM and Russell Simmons

It remains unclear why disgraced rap mogul Russell Simmons is associated with Universal Hip-Hop Museum, which is scheduled to open in the South Bronx in 2024.