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Papoose Named Head of Hip-Hop at Music Distributor TuneCore

Mixtape messiah and occasional "Love & Hip Hop" series star Papoose has been named Head of Hip-Hop at DIY music distributor TuneCore.

The company, which hails itself as "the leading development partner for self-releasing artists—owned by Believe, one of the world’s leading digital music companies" announced the partnership on Tuesday.

"When hiring executives I look for expertise and experience," TuneCore CEO Andreea Gleeson said of the company's reasoning behind the move in a statement.

"Papoose’s years of hustling and success in the industry make him uniquely qualified to advise Hip-Hop artists because he’s been in their shoes, he understands what they’re going through and he knows first-hand what works.”

The Brooklyn-bred wordsmith, who celebrated the news with several posts on his social media, said the new role would allow him to help others forge their own path to success in an industry notorious for its pitfalls.

“For my whole career, everyone has known what I stand for: independence,” Papoose said. “For me, being in this position with TuneCore where I can directly contribute and help other self-releasing artists on the come-up is like magic. I understand what it’s like to be in the studio, to be on the road, to chase your dreams as an artist, and I’m excited to help up-and-coming artists make their dreams a reality.”

In addition to scouting talents on behalf of the music distribution service, Papoose will oversee its artist ambassador program for hip-hop and rap along with education and career advice workshops.

The deal furthers a relationship between TuneCore and the artist that began in 2021 when he had the idea of releasing an album a month. Papoose credits TuneCore as the only distributor that allowed him to release music at that rate.

"When everyone else slammed their doors in my face I was lucky to discover TuneCore, the only distributor that allowed me to share my music at such a high rate," he told Rock The Bells. "Giving me this freedom allowed me to make history by becoming the only artist to release an album a month for a whole year, and that helped me gain support from genre giants like Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Swizz Beatz, Fabolous Timbaland, and others."

Papoose also announced the release of his latest single, “Makin Plays (feat. Jim Jones and Jaquae)” out February 10th. He described the song as a high-energy anthem about creating your own opportunities for success and hitting whatever your goals might be.

Legendary Hip-Hop Band The Roots Perform at Kennedy Center In New PBS Special

Grammy Award-winning hip-hop group The Roots will be the subject of the next episode of "NEXT at the Kennedy Center," a primetime series from The Kennedy Center and PBS that spotlights cultural leaders from the worlds of hip-hop, jazz, folk, comedy, modern dance and more.

"The Roots Residency," an hour-long special that will air on PBS at 9 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 27., promises to give audiences rare insights into the band through one-on-one interviews with its founders Questlove and Black Thought bookended, by an electric performance by an "electric performance" filmed during its residency at the Kennedy Center.

“The Roots have existed at the forefront of culture for over three decades. They are deeply committed to ensuring that generations of artists and communities see themselves powerfully reflected through their work and at venerable institutions like the Kennedy Center,” Simone Eccleston, director of hip-hop culture and contemporary music at The Kennedy Center, said in a statement.

"The Roots Residency’ is a testament to their capacity to not only change the lives of individuals but also to transform institutions. The impact of our partnership is that we are forever changed as an organization. Through their residency, The Roots have created powerful platforms for the celebration of multihyphenates, cultural leaders and emerging artists. We hope that viewers experience their genius as performers, curators and cultural catalysts.”

Formed by Questlove and Black Thought in 1987, while they were students at the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts, The Roots have been a mainstay of hip-hop culture for over 30 years.

Its pioneering use of live musical instruments, a revolving lineup that has featured as many as 12 members at a time and an eclectic approach to rap and other genres they dabble in have branded the group as innovators. While their deep discography, The Roots have released 16 studio albums, featuring hits like "Things Fall Apart" and "Phrenology," has earned the group critical praise and three Grammy Awards.

When they are not selling out venues are working on their 17th studio album, "End Game," The Roots serve as the house band on NBC's "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon."

Watch some of the highlights from The Roots' performance below. 

Rihanna Earns First Oscar Nomination for Black Panther Soundtrack Single 'Lift Me Up'

Rihanna’s “Lift Me Up” is a 2023 Academy Awards Nominee

It looks like 2023 is shaping up to be the year of Rihanna.

The Barbadian billionaire was already scheduled to headline Super Bowl LVII on Feb. 12. Tuesday morning it was revealed that she has earned her first Oscar nomination.

Her song "Lift Me Up," the lead single from the soundtrack for the film "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever," is contending for best original song at the 95th Academy Awards

Not bad for the first solo effort by the 34-year-old star on a track since 2016.

While Rihanna provided the vocals and took part in the writing process for the ballad, it was a team effort.

Singer-songwriter Tems, the film's director Ryan Coogler and composer Ludwig Goransson shared writing credits on the record and in the nomination. 

Tems is the first Nigerian musician to be nominated for an Oscar.

"Lift Me Up" was previously nominated for a Golden Globe but lost to "Naatu Naatu" from "RRR" in January.

The Academy Awards ceremony will be broadcast live on March 12 from the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles.

Below is a complete list of the nominees for best original song.

Best Original Song
“Applause” from Tell It Like a Woman, Music and Lyric by Diane Warren
“Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick, Music and Lyric by Lady Gaga and BloodPop
“Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Music by Tems, Rihanna, Ryan Coogler and Ludwig Goransson; Lyric by Tems and Ryan Coogler
“Naatu Naatu” from RRR, Music by M.M. Keeravaani; Lyric by Chandrabose
“This Is a Life” from Everything Everywhere All at Once, Music by Ryan Lott, David Byrne and Mitski; Lyric by Ryan Lott and David Byrne