ICYMI | Rolling Loud at SXSW, BONES Drops New Music, Smokin Grooves Return to LA and More

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It’s only Tuesday and yet so much has already happened. Here’s this weeks’ rundown of news and new music from some of your favorite artists in the game.

JELEEL Steals The Show at Rolling Loud x RapTV SXSW Showcase

Rolling Loud brought their festival know-how to Austin, Texas for a two-day event at South by Southwest with RapTV that included headlining sets from Sheck Wes and Don Toliver. The lineup also featured a medley of Gen-Z rappers who are breaking ground this year including SSG Kobe, Monaleo, Danny Towers, Billyracxx, and many more. Beyond the collective effort of stellar performances across the board, the turning point of the weekend came with JELEEL!’s “Dive In!,” which included adept gymnastic dives into the crowd. As the song started, he pranced around the stage in a robot-like fashion before ripping his sleeveless top in half and doing a standing backflip. The rest of the weekend played out like your quintessential RL experience; long lines and mosh pits. And yet, hundreds of fans filled the standing-room only space at Stubbs BBQ each night with a smile on their faces. 

JELEEL! performs at Rolling Loud x RapTV SXSW showcase at Stubbs BBQ in Austin, Texas on Friday, March 18, 2022 (credit: Rolling Loud / @smithdurogene)

BONES, grayera – TheOne

BONES links with TeamSESH producer grayera for his first single of the year, “TheOne.” Naturally, BONES is known for using softly-sung hooks as a means to convey what he’s feeling. Through ill-defined concepts and somber tones, he’s become a mainstay of the underground rap scene, revered by many for his experimental soundscape. This new track deals in self-reflection and heartbreak over a guitar-led sequence, championed by a palpable sense of vulnerability that’s strangely comforting. 

Denzel Curry – Troubles (feat. T-Pain)

Denzel Curry is primed to have another standout year in music. Ahead of his highly-anticipated album Melt My Eyez See Your Future – due for release this Friday, March 25th – Denzel recruits fellow Floridian, T-Pain, for a grayscaled video single that covers his rags to riches story. With “Troubles,” the dynamic duo exchange verses over a Kenny Beats production, spotlighting the everyday struggles of life. Interestingly enough, the perils of fame are no different than the unforeseen issues that come with success; more money, more problems.  

Smokin Grooves Returns to LA With Erykah Badu, Nas, The Roots, and More

Smokin Grooves made its triumphant return to live music with a star-studded lineup. This past weekend, thousands of people made their way to Los Angeles Historic Park in LA for one of the most well-curated festivals this year. In addition to Erykah Badu’s headlining performance, which has received some backlash because of a shortened set, the lineup featured Nas, The Roots, Jhene Aiko, Miguel, The Internet, Thundercat, Smino, and more. Despite LA’s sound curfew ruffling the feathers of concertgoers, Smokin Grooves was a rare opportunity to have so many pillars of culture in the music space share the same stage. The eclectic mashup of contenders in neo soul, rap and r&b made for an inclusive festival experience that honors newcomers in music as well as veteran performers. 

Erykah Badu performs at Smokin Grooves 2022 at Los Angeles Historic Park in Los Angeles, California on Saturday, March 19, 2022 (credit: Smokin Grooves / @gregnoire)

About the Author

Derrius Edwards
Derrius is a music industry professional with experience in content strategy and editorial writing, sharing relevant and resonating stories as a conduit for hip-hop culture advancement.

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