There's a vibrant music scene within the Tezos community. It's home to a variety of genres and it's got a deep talent pool when it comes to hip hop. In this post we're presenting some of the most essential tracks representing Tezos hip hop.
Perfect Cell by Cannon Jones
Cannon Jones declares Perfect Cell as, "One of the most ferocious hip hop diss tracks to ever come out of Newark," and he delivered. Cannon's lyrics hit hard, delivered with crystal clear precision. You can hear the mastery he wields over his voice. It's raw with a sense of polish, much in the way the Tezos blockchain itself often feels.
Tezos - Decentralization by Jovan Smith & KustomBeats
This track is special because it is an early example of music about blockchain and features Jovan Smith, one of the most respected bakers, or validators, on the Tezos blockchain. He was notable for the sheer amount of bakers he helped get started, including his educational video guides like his Proof of Jack series. Jovan passed away in August of 2022 and his music and legacy live on with Tezos.
House Made of Glass by Jburn & TAN-TAN
House Made of Glass is a brilliant pairing of music with equally enticing visuals. Jburn's collaboration partners treat the artwork with the same care as the audio, making this piece with TAN-TAN an extremely strong piece no matter which way you cut it. Jburn's consistent quality and output makes him arguably one of the most well rounded musicians in Web3, not being afraid to explore more of the R&B side of hip hop in a lot of his work. His range and production values are among the elites in Web3.
Black Powder by Kane Mayfield
"Black Powder" from Kane Mayfield is a tribute to one of his heroes, legendary Black Panther H. Rap Brown, whose voice is sampled throughout the song. Kane's delivery and lyrics are in a league of their own, punching their way into existence every rhyme. He has a reputation amongst his peers as one of the most brilliant lyricists you can find, using complex rhyming schemes that often reveal deeper meaning the second and third times through. He's your favorite underground rapper's favorite underground rapper.
Stolen Adidas by Slyme
Slyme's craftsmanship and attention to detail is evident and showcased brilliantly in Stolen Adidas. It begins with a delightful piano intro, after which it switches up into an entertaining song celebrating shared joints and pilfered Adidas with friends. This is a great, approachable introduction to hip hop on Tezos.
Actions by Slyme, Jburn, Rocknitty, SDN Gabi, & MazamizArt
Actions makes the cut here for a few reasons - it's got a very strong group of musicians with Slyme, Jburn, Rocknitty, and sdn_gabi writing and performing in the track and mazamizart doing the animated cover. With some of the best voices you can find across the Tezos ecosystem, the Tezos Hip Hop group showcases how easy and how often Tezos community members will band together for the good of the squad. Tezos fosters genuine community. While the Tezos Hip Hop group was a relatively short lived experiment, we look forward to seeing them again and for others to crop up.
Hip hop started as a DIY underground phenomenon in the 1980's out of Brooklyn. DJs and emcees had to grind it out, running on pure conviction to hone their craft and hustle to make a name in the local scene. In the 1990s, "reality rap" birthed the golden age gangsta rap many of us grew up on, further drawing on that need for authenticity. Soundcloud rappers and independents today show creators don't need major labels to find and connect with fans and community. The Tezos hip hop scene brings all of this together with that original DIY spirit and a community building ethos of direct relationships with fans and other artists. Hip hop has always required commitment, focus, and sheer will, and Tezos artists suceed because the community recognizes determination and talent.
What songs would you include on your Tezos music essentials? Let us know what you think on Twitter or Discord! If you think there's artists and musicians we should feature, tell us about them.