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Report: The Jazz Plan To ‘Retool Around’ Donovan Mitchell After The Rudy Gobert Trade

Entering the offseason, the Utah Jazz stood at a pivot point in the trajectory of their franchise. Their loss in the first round to the Dallas Mavericks unearthed all their playoff demons of years past with inconsistent perimeter defense against a 5-out offensive system that neutralized Rudy Gobert. All season, a cloud of uncertainty hung over them highlighted by consistent rumors of locker room issues and the ongoing questions about Donovan Mitchell and Gobert’s relationship on and off the court. After five seasons without a conference finals appearance for the duo, this first round loss felt like the last nail in the coffin.

That’s why there was little surprise when ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Gobert had been traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves for Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Walker Kessler, Jarred Vanderbilt, and four first-round picks. The draft capital and lack of a high-end young player indicated a full rebuild could be on the way, while Victor Wembanyama, the prize of the 2023 NBA Draft, projects to be a generational player and one that is worthy of tanking an entire season.

Trading Mitchell could add to the war chest of assets the Jazz have already acquired from their trades this offseason. However, Wojnarowski went on to report that Utah will not tank, and instead, will retool its roster around Mitchell. That was echoed in additional reporting by Tony Jones of The Athletic.

Jazz general manager Danny Ainge does have the ammo to build a roster entirely around Mitchell, should he opt to go in that direction. Utah was due for a huge shakeup regardless of what happened with Gobert and Mitchell, so this may be just the first move for Ainge as the league waits for the remaining dominoes to fall this offseason.

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Quinton Brock Expresses Fear Of Himself In The Revelatory ‘My Shadow’

Quinton Brock addresses a fear that many people may not speak on too often in his new record — the fear of himself, but more specifically, his shadow. “My Shadow” is an energetic indie-pop record that is as introspective as it is an outpouring of vulnerabilities. His voice yields heavy emotions throughout the one-minute, 49-second track, balancing strong delivery with punctuated messaging. There is always some form of darkness following everyone, and the inability to escape it is horror-inducing. Through it all, he makes it sound beautiful.

“My Shadow” arrives alongside Brock’s announcement that his debut album, My Shadow, will arrive on July 8 via Shadow Panther. He has been all over social media expressing his excitement for this moment, even going so far as to say he will “change rock music forever” in all capital letters.

Though the statement is bold, the talent level matches the confidence as, leading into this release, he has dropped off the tracks “To The Moon,” “There For You,” and “Touch.” The Buffalo artist has captured the ears of many with the aforementioned records as he provides indie, rock, and pop flavor. Brock is looking to do the same with his introductory LP.

Check out Quinton Brock’s “My Shadow” above.

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B-Real Shares The Real History Behind The Cypress Hill Classic ‘Hand on the Pump’

This week the truly iconic Cypress Hill joins People’s Party with Talib Kweli sharing their incomparable journey in hip-hop and beyond. Cypress Hill broke ground lyrically and culturally with their unique flows, groundbreaking beats and weed-laced rhymes. Their formula catapulted them into global stardom almost instantly and doesn’t seem to be slowing down.

One of the band’s biggest initial hits was “Hand on the Pump.” On this episode of People’s Party, B-Real tells Kweli that the violence expressed on the song had authentic roots but its impact was unexpected.

“We didn’t know that this song was going to have such an impact on people when we play it,” he notes. “It became the blow-up song,”

Reflecting on the dangerous mix of rap life and thug life in LA at the time he tells Kweli, “That’s who we were. We had those pistols on us. We had the pumps on us. It wasn’t uncommon for us to go party out with like fifteen cars and everybody has got weapons in the cars.”

Prior to getting into rap, both B-Real and Sen Dog had a history in the gang life of Los Angeles. In the 1990s, as crack took over the hoods, gang life gave birth to a wave of street warfare previously unheard of on American streets. Earlier in the episode, B-Real speaks frankly about dancing on the razor’s edge between shooting rap videos and shooting at rivals.

“We were very much living that shit,” he says. “Because coming out of the gangbangin’ into the music, I know that there are gonna be some motherfuckers who forget about who I am [in the LA street life] and be like ‘that motherfucker’s disappeared.’”

According to B-Real, the original concept for the song came from his friend Bret Bolden aka Bret B [from the LA Crew 7A3]. Thinking back he says, “Bret started the song. And he knew me. He actually taught me how to turn raps into songs. Before we were just writing rhymes on paper. We didn’t actually know how to write a chorus.”

The end result of their collaboration was one of hip-hop’s greatest anthems. And Cypress Hill’s self-titled album went on to sell more than 2 million units.

Watch the full incredible conversation on People’s Party with Talib Kweli.

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The Best New Hip-Hop This Week

The best new hip-hop this week includes albums, videos, and songs from Cardi B, City Girls, Gucci Mane and more.

Alas, we have reached another month. June was full of surprises, and July definitely came with a few heavy hitters leading into the 4th of July celebrations (or Juneteenth Deluxe for those not so patriotic). While this week may feel light in the mainstream, of course, I’ve got to give you some gems worth your spins.

Here is the best of hip-hop this week ending July 1, 2022.

Albums/EPs/Mixtapes

Earthgang — Ghetto Gods (Deluxe)

Earthgang Ghetto Gods Deluxe
Earthgang

Earthgang’s February release of Ghetto Gods was well-received, so they decided to up the ante with the deluxe version arriving today (July 1). With six new tracks and features from Smino, Wiz Khalifa, Currensy and Blxckie added into the mix, the Atlanta duo continues to show they can bend genres and break barriers with their versatile sound. The highlight for me is “Ambeyonce” with Smino Grigio.

Strick — The Machine, Vol. 3

Strick The Machine Vol 3
Strick

Strick is a special talent, like many of his YSL peers. The Machine, Vol. 3 showcases this to its fullest with contributions from Lancey Foux, Idris Elba, Denham and Marty. Free YSL.

Singles/Videos

Gucci Mane ft. Lil Baby — All Dz Chains”

Yet another example of the Atlanta family tree supporting one another comes this week in the form of rap OG Gucci Mane and young star Lil Baby linking up for “All Dz Chains.” This is one of the best Gucci verses in quite some time, which says a lot because he’s aged gracefully when it comes to the bars. Perhaps it’s the competitive energy Baby brings to every song he’s placed on.

Wynne — “Ex Boyfriend”

Wynne is fun to cover so often in this column because she gets better with each entry. On “Ex Boyfriend,” she flexes her singing pipes with a rap flow over an uptempo beat, generating an overall fun hybrid track. It’s a pivot from the “Churchill Downs” freestyle she posted to Twitter earlier this week, but just further proof she can do a lot of different things well.

G Perico — “Confessions”

G Perico has the type of rap voice I would enjoy hearing from a stand up comedian I go see, but his flow and punchlines solidify he is in the right profession. “I ain’t do it for the hood, I did it for myself” is an affirmation coming from a man who recognizes focusing on everyone else may be to his detriment. Right on.

Ray Vaughn — “Mannequin”

There’s a lot of concern about the future of TDE as Kendrick Lamar is headed on his way out, but Ray Vaughn shows the future is bright on “Mannequin.” He, too, utilizes fun voice inflections and punchlines like K Dot and Baby Keem, but thankfully he sets himself apart. The internet is quick with the copycat allegations, but Ray Vaughn is not that.

Gabby Gabanna — “Pretty Girls Still Love Trap Music”

Have no fear 2 Chainz, your claim from 2017 stands firm with Gabby Gabanna’s latest record “Pretty Girls Still Love Trap Music.” She raps circles around the beat, beaming with confidence and a focus that will do her well in the long-run. It’s the cadence switches for me.

Headie One ft. Frenna — “Bigger Than Life”

Headie One is one of the best spitters overseas and “Bigger Than Life” adds an air of luxury to his usual lyrical barrage. Frenna’s melodic hook is the icing on the cake.

Lola Brooke — “On My Mind”

Lola Brooke is Brooklyn’s finest, and while Brooklyn women rappers have usually struck fear in listeners, Brooke opts for a hood love song. She dismisses strangers and yearns to be close to her lover, so much so that their “heart becomes her neighbor.” Who is cutting onions?

Lloyd Banks ft. Conway The Machine — “Menace”

Lloyd Banks is a seasoned veteran, and Conway The Machine carries himself as such though the world has only known about him for a few years. “Menace” functions as a generational collaboration in terms of Hip-Hop eras, and it’s the bar fest one would expect when seeing these names. Just another example of the fact some rappers do get better with time when locked in. Conway especially goes off and it really is crazy, looking at his output, how consistent he is.

Kai Ca$h, Niko Brim and K Wales — “Sunday Service”

Kai Ca$h, Niko Brim, and K Wales are special talents. Every time any of the three links up, the repeat button is mandatory, and “Sunday Service” adds to that collection. They find a way to be three very different performers yet mesh together seamlessly. It’s like the first person who decided to combine bacon, eggs, and cheese. Three very different flavors make magic together and now you want one every day.

Mic Strong and Anoyd — “Talk Different”

Who doesn’t love a good soul sample and powerful rap voices? “Talk Different” shows Mic Strong is aptly named and I’m far from *Anoyd listening to this record. “See the boy bubble like a tablet in water when it dissolve” is a face-scrunch-worthy bar, and that’s just one of many. These are two gentlemen you ought to pay attention to.

Gucci Mane is a Warner Music artist. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.

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Cardi B Wants To Release A Whole Project With Offset, An Album In Spanish, And A Song With Latto

As one of the biggest superstars in hip-hop today, a lot of people want a lot of things from Cardi B. Judging from a recent Q&A session Cardi held with fans on Twitter, those folks have a better idea of which of those things to expect in the future, as Cardi detailed some of her loose goals, from dream collaborations to future album plans.

One fan asked whether Cardi would ever work with Latto; Cardi answered in the resounding affirmative. That one makes a lot of sense because Latto was one of the three rising rappers Cardi featured in her raunchy “WAP” video with Megan Thee Stallion. They are also two of the most popular women in rap today, and Latto previously expressed her admiration for Cardi in an interview with Hot 97.

When another fan pointed out that some of Cardi’s biggest hits were in Latin music styles like reggaeton, citing “La Modelo,” “Taki Taki,” and “I Like It,” Cardi gave a two-for-one answer, replying that she wanted to release a full Spanish album, as well as a joint mixtape with her husband Offset.

Cardi also shared a few details about her upcoming album, although she took care to give vague answers to give herself a lot of wiggle room for changes. For instance, she teased that the album will have “more than ten” tracks, but “less than twenty.”

You can see more fans’ questions and Cardi’s answers on the #AskCardi hashtag on Twitter.

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Appalachian mom’s speech on Kentucky’s proposed abortion ban is a must-hear for everyone

Many people felt a gut punch when the Supreme Court issued its decision on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned the decades-old Roe v. Wade decision that protected a woman’s right to an abortion. However, for some this was a call to action.

Danielle Kirk, 27, a mom of two and an activist on TikTok, used her voice in an attempt to educate the people that make decisions in her small town. Kirk lives in Kentucky where a trigger law came into effect immediately after Roe v. Wade was overturned. Being a former foster child, she knew she had to say something. Kirk spoke exclusively with Upworthy about why she decided to speak up.


Kirk hadn’t planned to speak at the Pikeville rally, a protest against Kentucky’s Human Life Protection Act, triggered in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling. But when the organizers asked for speakers, she felt compelled to make her way to the podium. “I felt like what I had to say had not been said before, coming from someone that had been in the system,” Kirk explained. “There’s so much of a gray area when it comes to this issue and they’re trying to make it black and white. The law in Kentucky does not give way to people that I know.”

She further explained that the wording of the act is so unclear that doctors she knows personally are afraid because there’s no clear distinction on what is considered a great enough threat to the mother’s life, which is the only exception given in the state’s law.

@daniellekirk731

I didnt plan on speaking today, but something told me to. For so long our voices have been silenced into sumbission. No more. Its time for us to all band together, create the support systems we need HERE, turn our tears and anger into outreach. If they want to pass this back to the states, let your state representives & congressmen know that they work for us, if they cant, we’re coming for their jobs!!!! @appalachian_nana thanks for sending me this video

Kirk asked the question, “Do I have to be on my death bed to have an abortion?”

Appalachia is an expansive territory that spans 13 states, including Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky and Mississippi. Of those 13 states, five have trigger laws and four others are either fighting in court to enact bans on abortion or plan to call a special session to enact a ban. In the state of Kentucky, where Kirk lives, the trigger law does not allow for any exceptions for rape or incest, even if the victim is a child.

Kirk has two small daughters and is a victim of childhood sexual abuse herself, which gives her a unique perspective on why this extreme ban is harmful. She was raised by her biological mother for only a short period of time before her mother’s death, and she spent time in and out of the foster care system where she experienced sexual abuse. Being born and raised in rural Appalachia, first West Virginia, then Kentucky, Kirk understands what this ban would mean for the people in her small town and other towns like hers across the country.

At 15.2% of the population, Appalachia has some of the highest poverty rates in the country. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the 2020 national average poverty rate was 11.4%. Resources for people living in Appalachian areas are scarce due to the remote locations that most of the population lives in. Most rural areas don’t have public transportation or Uber to take them places. There are regions in Appalachia that don’t even have internet access. So being able to get appropriate medical care when pregnant can be a challenge for those living in the region.

Poverty doesn’t only stop at transportation, the area’s residents are also challenged in terms of employment as well as access to grocery stores, clean water or even running water. It’s a population that is struggling to survive on limited resources.

@daniellekirk731

I understand a lot of people have been warning of this, & they didn’t listen in the past. But young voters here are tired & ready to fight. #Kentucky #606 #OrganizeAppalachia

Which is why Kirk’s speech is what government officials need to hear. It’s also what people who are supporting the abortion ban need to hear. Because sometimes, speaking the truth of your personal experiences is the only way to change the minds of neighbors and politicians. And things can seem far removed when you don’t personally know someone affected by larger decisions.

During our interview, Kirk expressed hope that the trigger law could be halted. In fact, on June 30, a Louisville Circuit Court Judge issued a temporary restraining order to block the state’s abortion ban. This means abortions can continue in the state, for now.

Kirk said she feels it’s important for people to see someone that talks like her taking a stance against something that is supposed to be popular in a conservative state like Kentucky. “People have been silenced into submission,” she said. She hopes that others might be inspired to speak up and even become motivated to run for local or state office—something she is considering for when her children are a bit older.

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Jack White Issues A Statement Refuting Claims That He Plans To ‘Re-Edit’ Prince’s Fabled ‘Camille’ Album

Back in March, we reported that Jack White and Third Man Records had acquired the rights to Prince’s famed, mythic Camille album from 1986. For the uninitiated, Camille is the album where Prince pitch-shifted his vocals to sound like the feminine alter ego that bears the album’s title. And in fact, each of the eight tracks on Camille has been released by Prince in the past, either as a b-side or as some other under-the-radar format, but never as the entire album that Prince had laid out in the mid-80s. But it seems as though some people have misconstrued White’s intention with Camille and assumed that he would be re-mastering or re-editing the recordings in the Third Man Records release.

To be fair, White didn’t do himself any favors when he told the Daily Star newspaper’s “Wired” column (as NME reports), “We are able to re-edit it as it was originally planned.” Adding that, “[But]I don’t think [releasing] it goes against his will, because he ended up issuing many of the songs on different recordings over the years. It’s not like he didn’t want them to see the light of day.

This statement found White under fire from fans, as outlets like MSN have taken liberties in their headline writing and insinuated that White was going to alter the composition of the material. “I want to make sure the message is clear, neither I nor third man records, have any intention of “editing” or “remixing” Prince’s music,” White said in an Instagram post, calling the headline “misleading.” He also added, “I was referring to simply putting the songs in the original order that the album Camille was in, as those songs have been put out in multiple releases since Camille was first taken off the presses. I would never mess with Prince’s music. Hopefully, that clears up any misunderstanding, and this album can see the light of day in its original form.”

Effectively, in saying “re-editing,” White just meant “sequencing.” But this is the nature of hearsay: You have to say it explicitly, especially when it comes to Prince, his legacy, and his fans.

No official release date has been set yet for Camille.

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Report: Rudy Gobert Is Getting Traded To The Timberwolves

The Minnesota Timberwolves are the winners of the Rudy Gobert sweepstakes. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Timberwolves have put together the package that convinced the Utah Jazz to do a deal for the best defensive player in basketball, and as a result, Gobert will stay in the division but suit up for another team.

Tony Jones of The Athletic confirmed the deal.

The package that Utah got for Gobert, per Wojnarowski, includes four first-round draft picks and players who were part of their rotation this past season, along with 2022 first-round draft pick Walker Kessler out of Auburn.

The Athletic’s Jon Krawczynski has the specifics on what picks Utah will get back.

Gobert’s name has been kicked around in trade rumors all offseason after the Jazz once again saw their time in the playoffs come to an early end. The Timberwolves were one of the teams mentioned as a potential landing spot for the big man, as the team wanted to give Karl-Anthony Towns a partner in the frontcourt who can protect the rim.

Now, a Minnesota team that snuck into the playoffs via the play-in tournament last season got a player who very well could help them compete in the Western Conference, while all eyes in Utah turn to what the future holds for Donovan Mitchell. Last season, Gobert averaged 15.6 points, a league-best 14.7 rebounds, and 2.1 blocks per game.

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Behold, KEBENDERANT

There have been some pretty exciting eureka moments in human history. Sir Isaac Newton getting dinged by that apple and discovering gravity, Benjamin Franklin flying a kite in a lightning storm to figure out electricity, Chris Ford hucking the first 3-pointer, but they all pale in comparison to two Phoenix Suns fans.

After the Twitter account SunsUniTracker posted a mockup Kevin Durant jersey when the current-but-soon-to-be-former Net requested a trade, kicking off the true fury of free agency NBA fans lust after like demons for blood, Suns fans got to work. To be fair, Phoenix had yet to re-sign Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton is still is assumed to be leaving the team, so the franchise’s fanbase being a little riled up was warranted.

The first attempt at real-world application of invention, in this case, saw a simple, crude cross out of an old Dragan Bender jersey (kudos to the owner of this artifact, and to Bender, wherever he is, because the Dragan really never leaves his body) that replaced BENDER with DURANT, over the number 35. Replies were generally encouraging until Ed Ongaigui replied with the bolt of clairvoyance the exercise needed.

Lo, the collaboration of the century was born.

Like the aforementioned eureka moments, there are some pretty important inventions that came from duos. There’s flight as we know it (and by extension, John Collins’ airplane dunk in 2019’s Dunk Contest) from the Wright Brothers, Drs. James Watson and Francis Crick figuring out DNA, Ben & Jerry, and, the very conduit for this fertile collaborative ground, the internet, invented by Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Anyway, this tops them all.

What I like to picture, and also did myself the first time I saw this and finally stopped laughing, is Mr. Witt softly mumbling “Keb-en Der-ant” to himself, many times, as he used the markup feature on his phone to trace, with a trembling finger, the letters to this masterpiece.

While it’s still unclear where Durant is going to end up after spending a single season in Brooklyn playing for the super team he helped to create (hey, Dr. Frankenstein was not all that thrilled about his monster, some ideas are better let on the table), at least in the ongoing chaos of NBA free agency we were given a masterpiece: Keben Derant.

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The Big Red Is Our Official 4th Of July Cocktail — Here’s The Recipe

When it comes to making cocktails while igniting small explosives, you kind of want to go fast and easy. You don’t need a shaker in one hand and a rocket fuse in the other. That’s just basic safety, folks.

That’s why the Big Red is the perfect cocktail for your 4th of July festivities. This highball is a very modern classic. The recipe is attributed to Casey Elsass of Bushwick Kitchen and is meant to be the ultimate summer refresher. The actual drink is a simple whisky highball that eschews the usual fizzy water for a very fizzy light beer and a kick of ginger beer. If that sounds a little odd at first glance, stick with us. It’s a damn good summer drink.

This is a very easy-to-make recipe, so let’s halt the preamble and just get right into it. We all have some fuses to ignite after all.

Also Read: The Top Five Cocktail Recipes of the Last Six Months

Big Red

Big Red 4th of July Cocktail
Zach Johnston

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz. Johnnie Walker Red Label
  • 2 oz. pale lager
  • 2 oz. ginger beer
  • Ice

The original recipe calls for a standard bottle of Budweiser. And that’s fine. I don’t like the overly corn-sweet vibes of that beer. So I’m going with a fairly neutral and very fizzy Peroni. It’s a tad more balanced and a lot less sweet. The reason I go for a drier pale lager is that the ginger beer is already adding a good amount of sugar to this drink. You don’t need sweet on sweet on top of whisky.

As for the whisky, Johnnie Walker Red Label is the “red” in “Big Red.” Arguably, that’s the one ingredient that’s unnegotiable. No one is going to call the cocktail police if you use Johnnie Black, mind. But you should be using a simple mixing blended whisky with a twinge of peat in there to balance this drink. That thin line of smoke is what makes this a cocktail and not just a bunch of shit thrown in a glass. It’s balanced by the sharpness and sweetness of the ginger beer and the dryness and very thin malt of the beer.

All of that being said, you can put bourbon in there if you want. Again, no one is going to call the cocktail police on you. This highball is, after all, about convenience and simplicity.

Big Red 4th of July Cocktail
Zach Johnston

What You’ll Need:

  • Highball glass
  • Straw
Big Red 4th of July Cocktail
Zach Johnston

Method:

  • Add the ice to a highball glass.
  • Pour in the Johnnie Walker. Pour the beer over the whisky and top with the ginger beer.
  • Gently stir with the straw. Serve.

Bottom Line:

Big Red 4th of July Cocktail
Zach Johnston

I drank about three of these without really thinking about it. It’s super refreshing, especially on a sweltering day. The sharp spice of the ginger beer is the perfect counter to the earthy Johnnie Walker.

Frankly, I didn’t really think the pale lager added anything. So I tried this drink with the same amount of fizzy mineral water to compare the two. And I was wrong. The beer added an almost creamy (malty-ish) texture to the drink that just wasn’t there with the bubbly water. I wouldn’t go any bolder than your favorite pale lager (think beers between a Miller High-Life and a Coors Banquet), but the beer absolutely adds the texture/mouthfeel to this highball.

In the end, I’m going to be making these well beyond the 4th of July long weekend. It’s freaking delicious and a lovely summer sipper.