When you combine one of the industry’s most sensual voices, Tory Lanez, with sampling from the crème de la crème of R&B hits made in the 2000s, what you get is a straight-laced, chart-topper: Chixtape 5.

Following months on-end of fans awaiting the well-hyped album, the Interscope Records‘ artist, “a proud student of 2000s R&B,” finally launched his exclusive project, an 18-track album dedicated to remaking the greats from the 2000s, and in less than two weeks from the release date of Chixtape 5, Tory Lanez crowns the second spot on the new Billboard 200 (right after Celine Dion).

Not only does Lanez remake the greats, he features the artists who birthed them. Chixtape 5 sees immaculate, honey-dipped links track-after-track between Tory Lanez and each original artist stepping in on the new remake of their classic.

Chixtape 5 features Jagged Edge, Jermaine Dupri, T-Pain, Snoop Dogg, Ashanti, Lloyd, Lil WayneChris Brown, Ludacris, Mýa, The-Dream, Mario, Trey Songz, Fabolous, Slim & Nyce… do we need to say more?

Listen now below.

– After the passing of Notorious B.I.G, Bad Boy Records had big shoes to fill. However, the release of Harlem World back in 1997 showed that Mase was the right man for the job.

Mase originally rose to fame as a member of the Harlem hip-hop group, Children of the Corn alongside Cam’ron and Big L. However, following the death of 2 group members, including its founder, Big L, Mase signed to Bad Boy Entertainment. Soon after, Mase received widespread attention from his appearance on Notorious B.I.G’s hit single,“Mo’ Money, Mo’ Problems” and the rest was history. Mase soon became Puff Daddy’s new protégé as he began to promote Mase as Bad Boy’s main attraction.

On October 28, 1997, Harlem World was released and was an immediate success. The project was #1 on the Billboard Pop and R&B LP charts while also selling 270,000 copies in the U.S during its first week. Harlem World also included quite a few hits such as “Feel So Good” (U.S. #5), “What You Want” (U.S. #6), and “Lookin’ at Me” (U.S. #8).

While it’s clear to every hip-hop fan that Notorious B.I.G was an irreplaceable talent, it is also easy to understand how Mase became Bad Boy’s next leading artist. His smooth and laid back delivery joined with his clever and eloquent lyricism was reminiscent of B.I.G himself – not to mention, Mase’s flow matched perfectly with the R&B-esque production style of Puff Daddy and his production team, The Hitmen. Besides Puff, other Hitmen Producers who worked on Harlem World included Deric “D-Dot” Angelettie, Carl “Chucky” Thompson, Nashiem Myrick, Carlos “6 July” Broady, and Stevie J. Dame Grease, Jermaine Dupri, and the then unknown Neptunes also contributed to the album’s production.

If Mase’s own lyrical ability and the all-star production lineup wasn’t enough to make Harlem World an instant classic, the list of featuring artists definitely did the trick. That list includes Jay Z, Monifah, DMX, The Lox, Kelis, 112, Total, Black Rob, Lil Kim, Busta Rhymes, Kelly Price, and even 8Ball & MJG — just to name a few.

Although Mase’s initial exit from hip-hop was unexpected and his following releases became more sporadic, he has still managed to put his own stamp on the game. Mase is among the few rappers who have been able to collaborate with as many other legendary artists as he has. As a hip-hop fan, there’s simply no way to escape Mase’s entire catalogue of music despite how small it may be. Then again, why would you ever want to?

Check out the full album and “Feel So Good” music video above!

Written by DJ Robinson

As hip-hop continues to evolve and the sounds that made Jay Z a legend continue to dissipate, music from the hip-hop mogul becomes more of a rarity. On the other hand, HOV has shown us in the past few years that he still has the bars and hit-making abilities necessary to compete and excel on the performance side of today’s music industry. Thus, Jay Z’s latest works have not only become rare but also increasingly sought after, and, for those concerned, he seemingly intends to follow through on expectations. However, we all know that Jay Z is not just a businessman; he’s a business, man. With that being said, even after signing Yo Gotti and The Lox, he continues to make some big moves in terms of expanding his Roc Nation label.

Over the past few days, Rick Ross has shared some iconic pictures of himself in the studio with none other than Jay Z via Instagram. The posts expectedly went viral as people speculated what their conversation could be about, or, more importantly, what they could be working on together. Rozay’s upcoming album Rather You Than Me is projected to be coming soon, so we expect the two are aiming for the chemistry captured on Jay Z’s 2013 track, “Fuckwithmeyouknowigotit”.

Jay Z has also been seen in the lab with Gucci Mane’s #1 producer, Zaytoven, apparently on a quest for new sounds. With the rise of Atlanta’s trap vibes and its special place in the hearts of so many of today’s artists, producers, and music fans, maybe Jay Z has an interest in challenging the youngsters at their own game.

JAYTOVEN

A photo posted by Zaytoven (@zaytovenbeatz) on

On the executive side of things, Jay Z has signed another New York veteran, Fat Joe, to a management deal. If you recall, the two settled their ongoing beef with a picture at Beyoncé’s Formation Tour. They then sealed the deal when HOV hopped on the “All the Way Up” remix.

Also, judging by behavior from Weezy himself, it’s looking like Lil Wayne will soon be a part of the Roc Nation camp. This past weekend, during his performance at Miami’s LIV Nightclub, Lil Wayne chanted, “When you see me it’s Y-M-R-O-C”. He then proceeded to throw up what is assumed to be HOV’s trademark dynasty sign with his hands.

Let’s also not forget about Wayne’s Roc Nation shout out during his performance of “I’m Me” back in November.

Besides bystander speculation, sources close to Jay Z (one being Jermaine Dupri) have said an album is definitely happening. Also, sources close to Lil Wayne have reported that his Roc Nation outbursts aren’t so random. Rumor even has it that Jay Z and Kanye West have settled their differences and are currently planning a new collaboration.

From the looks of things, no matter how we turn it, we have a lot to look forward to from Jay Z and camp this year.

Written by Devin Robinson Jr.