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The MacArthur Research Network on Youth and Participatory Politics (YPP) formed out of recognition that youth are critical to the future of democracy and that the digital age is introducing technological changes that are impacting how youth develop into informed, engaged, and effective actors.

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Updated: 1 hour 5 min ago

Celebrating Father’s Day Without a Father

June 16, 2019 - 8:00am

I grew up without my dad. being raised just by my mom felt normal. but there were often times where I wish I had a male role model.  

My father lives in another state. We only talk once in a blue moon. When Father’s Day comes along, my phone call to my dad feels like a chore. Our conversations are three minutes or less. Things are awkward with him.

I’ve come to terms with my dad’s absence but there have been situations where having my dad around would have made things easier.

Like dating. In middle school, I felt uncomfortable asking my mom for advice on relationships or how to dress. Those were moments where it would have been nice to have a father figure around.

That’s where my mom stepped In. She broke the ice — and initiated these uncomfortable conversations about how to be a man.

I began to see that often my mom filled the absence left by my dad. She became my role model and the person I confide in. So this Father’s Day, I’m celebrating my mom. She was such a great single parent that having a dad stopped feeling like a necessity.


The post Celebrating Father’s Day Without a Father appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Skepta Makes a Statement with ‘Ignorance Is Bliss’

June 14, 2019 - 5:32pm

Although it’s Skepta fifth studio album, “Ignorance Is Bliss” carries as much enthusiasm and fervor as that of a rookie debut. The project itself feels determined as Skepta crusades to declare himself the voice of a generation. The English grime MC is most known for his fast and fervent rhymes, showcasing subtle aphorism and eloquent rhetoric over gritty instrumentals. While his signature sound hasn’t changed, the album exhibits more maturity than its most recent predecessor, “Konnichiwa.” With the exploration of topics like fatherhood, politics, and the everyday life on the streets of London, it’s clear Skepta seeks to step into the best version of himself with “Ignorance Is Bliss,” and it’s a growth you have to witness for yourself.

Bullet From A Gun

An intro track is usually reflective of what you can expect from the album. Making a statement with your intro track sets the tone for the rest of the project. Ideally, production or the lyrics stand out. That statement can be braggadocious or reflective, as it’s definitive. Skepta’s “Bullet From A Gun” checks all of those boxes. This intro track successfully sets the theme for “Ignorance Is Bliss” as a reflective, celebratory stomping grounds for Skepta’s exuding confidence. Not only that, but the track’s statement lies on how he skims over his past experiences which have served as lessons. His experiences with girls, his family, and success have taught him to break free of dark thoughts.

Greaze Mode (feat. Nafe Smallz)

“Greaze Mode” clearly stands out from the rest of the tracks on the album.  Although being a grime artist, Skepta embraces a modern trap sound that has been popularized over the years. Skepta is unyielding and self-assured in “Greaze Mode,” although it’s so gently abrasive, you can’t help but admire it. Fellow Londoner Nafe Smallz offers a dulcet break in between verses. Offering a hook so infectious that it’ll be a challenge to keep yourself from humming it for the rest of the day.   

No Sleep

“No Sleep” serves as a dedication to the MC’s personal climb to the top. Skepta talks about the balance of overcoming struggles while also expressing how he desires to live lavishly. The urgent grime track feels like it mimics insomnia itself, reminiscent of the chaotic energy you find in a huge metropolitan city.

Gangsta (feat. BBK)

This braggadocious track feels like it was plucked straight off a radio station’s queue from 2004, back when crunk was taking over mainstream radio stations. “Gangsta” is one of my favorites off the album, not just for the nostalgia but also for how unapologetic it is. Skepta assembles other members from his collective/label Boy Better Know to address and critique the current rap/grime scene in the United Kingdom. In a line, Skepta says “No need to pretend/ I don’t wanna hear you talk greazy again/ Never shot food, never shot no skeng/ Talk about gangster, I was like ‘When?’” – which seems to be a direct jab at artists that adopt an ingenuine “gangster” persona for clout.

Love Me Not (feat. Cheb Ravi & B Live)

While this album boasts a unique mesh of sounds that is pretty extreme for Skepta to experiment with, “Love Me Not” shocks in its pop-sensibility which shuns away from the experimentation; the song embraces an electronic dance atmosphere. “Love Me Not” is a nod to the UK garage scene, containing a sample of “Murder On The Dancefloor” by Sophie-Ellis Bextor— a 2002 U.K. hit. With a fast-paced electronic beat, Skepta raps about dismissing love that feels inauthentic, “She told me she loved me, I was like how? / Must be because I’m at the top right now.”

The post Skepta Makes a Statement with ‘Ignorance Is Bliss’ appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Songs with the Best Ad-Libs

June 14, 2019 - 5:15pm

In the current world of hip hop, the use of ad-libs has become a critical creative component to a record. Some of the highest charting songs in hip-hop can point to the power of the ad-libs they include as part of their success. The new generation of rappers seems to be leaning heavily on the use of ad libs maybe even more so than their overall lyrics and melodies. While contemporary rappers have taken ad-libs to new heights, we can trace the significant use of ad-libs by older, well known MC’s who have utilized them in songs to enhance their music in different ways as well. In this playlist, you’ll be able to hear a wide range of how different artists have used ad-libs throughout hip hop history from past to present.

The post Songs with the Best Ad-Libs appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

How To: Put Your Team On

June 13, 2019 - 2:05pm

Why hire a team of strangers when you can put your own people on? Why wait for your friends to make it when you can take them to the top with you? If you’re a true supporter of what your patnas bring to the table, follow these steps below to create your industry dream team with the people you already rock with the most.

Step 1: Figure Out WHO Your Team Is!

Think about the people around you. Who is ready to grind and go as hard as you are?

You can most likely start with your good friends — friends you TRUST the most, people you’ve been through the most with, those day-one people!

Support yo patnas like how they support you! If you on, put them on!

Step 2: Delegate Roles

What are your immediate, short term and long term goals and what roles do you need to be filled to execute this game plan? Think outside the box. Create a list (mental or physical) of what your folks do, where their passions lie and what you think they will thrive in.

For example:

– Your big+tall homie? Bodyguard

-Your know-how-to-dress-hella-saucy homie? Stylist

-Understands business and handling money? Manager

-Hella turnt up? Hype man

-Got shacks? Driver

-Good at taking pictures? Photographer

Etc.

Step 3: Start Talking About It and Reach Out

Start having “that” conversation with your homies to see if they’re interested in building.

The ones who are generally happy about your success and growth are usually the ones to talk to/bring on board. But make sure its serious people ONLY! Use your boss radar to weed out the cats and bandwagon folks from the serious folks.

Step 4: Try a Trial Run

Have an event coming up? Try out a test run. Have your boy work stage security or be your bodyguard. Give your patna who’s good at taking pictures a press pass and see how they work the camera. Have your turnt-up patna be your hype man for your show/event. Give your business-minded homie the role of handling all planning and coordination. See how it plays out!

If it’s not possible to do an event trial run, don’t stress. There are other ways to figure out if the people in your circle are a fit for the job. You can assign your team some trial tasks to see if they are capable of accomplishing them. (For ex: Create alternative cover art for an existing single, style an outfit for an event, etc.). If they complete all tasks efficiently and within your time constraint, you’ll know who to consider for the job.

Step 5: Check In With Yourself

Did your trial run work? Think about what worked and what didn’t and why.

Did you encounter any major problems at your event? Was there anything your newly appointed team members should have done differently?

If you felt like certain people on your team were slacking, you may need to re-evaluate who should be on your team! But if everything went well… shout out you! You just found your team!

Putting your own people on in whatever ways you can is important, but also remember — this isn’t a time to be nice! Building your team is one of the most important parts of executing your goals. So while it’s key to look to the people closest to you to fill certain roles, it’s equally important to prioritize business when business needs to be prioritized.  If they can’t get the job done there’s nothing wrong with patnas just being patnas.

The post How To: Put Your Team On appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

DACA Students Struggle to Get a College Education

June 13, 2019 - 12:33pm

I’m a senior in high school, and I spent much of the past year applying for college. But I’m also a DACA student (aka Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipient) and came to the U.S. as an undocumented child, meaning that the college application process was much more complicated for me.

For instance, I had to use the California Dream Act Application, the financial aid application for undocumented and DACA students living in California. My status also means that I am excluded from many scholarships only available to U.S. citizens, shrinking my pool of choices. The most tedious of my college search tasks included sending proof of being a California resident to every school I applied to, just so I could qualify for in-state tuition rates and financial aid packages.

As exhausting as my college application process was, I acknowledge that I have many privileges as a student with DACA in California. I didn’t even consider looking at schools outside of California, because here I qualify for in-state tuition rates and financial aid. Not to mention all of the resources I get at school from counselors and advisors, some of which are even DACA recipients themselves. However, for other DACA recipients and undocumented students in other parts of the country, the process is a lot more complicated.

Photo courtesy of Lisa Johnston

Rigoberto Ramirez, 20, is a DACA recipient who just finished his second year at St. Louis Community College in Missouri. Two years ago, when Ramirez was a high school senior, he planned to attend Southern Illinois University Edwardsville where he had been accepted. But then he says his paperwork became a huge issue and he couldn’t attend. “I spent many years of my life dedicat[ed] to going to school everyday, waking up, getting there and doing all the work. For what?” said Ramirez. “I didn’t really see a future. I wasn’t allowed to go anywhere.” He made a last minute decision to enroll in a community college.

Currently, only six states offer undocumented and DACA students in-state financial aid. And there are six states (Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Missouri and South Carolina) that prohibit undocumented students from receiving any type of financial aid, making college far less accessible to undocumented and DACA students.

Ramirez became a DACA recipient his junior year of high school. When it was time to think about college, Ramirez felt that he hadn’t received much help from the adults around him and that school counselors turned him away, not understanding his status. “The initial process [of applying to college] was very difficult,” he said. “Everybody looked at my documents and they were like, ‘I don’t know what this is, go talk to someone else.’”

In 1982, the Supreme Court in Plyler v. Doe decided that all students, regardless of their immigration status, were guaranteed a K-12 education. Although still in place, this doesn’t apply to higher education, giving states like Missouri the freedom to restrict college accessibility to undocumented and DACA students.

Guadalupe Medina, 19, at Lindenwood University.

For students who are U.S. citizens, scholarships are often seen as a supplement to make up the difference that financial aid doesn’t cover. But for many undocumented students (especially in states that don’t offer financial aid), scholarships are the only way to get any financial help at all, and sometimes easier to get from private, not public, schools.

Guadalupe Medina, 19, is a DACA recipient and just finished her freshman year at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri. But before getting to Lindenwood, she thought pursuing higher education was out of her reach. Although Medina knew her parents were hard workers, she couldn’t fathom how they could afford to pay for her education. She is one of four siblings, and she says her family’s finances were already stretched thin. Intimidated by the cost of the four-year universities she dreamed of, Medina looked at attending her local community college, St. Charles Community College, but that idea was quickly shut down after finding out the true cost. According to the school’s website, international and out-of-state students have to pay $5,184 versus the $2,544 in-district students have to pay each semester. Because of Medina’s immigration status, she would have had to pay the international tuition cost. “My family didn’t have the money to pay for that,” said Medina. We still don’t have the money to pay for that.”

Medina says she felt discouraged and thought she would never be able to attend college, but her college mentor encouraged her to apply anyway — whether or not she would receive financial help. To her surprise, she was accepted to Lindenwood, a private university that offered her a full ride. “I ended up getting really lucky,” she said. But Medina is an exception.

There are still thousands of DACA students in the same situation that Ramirez and Medina found themselves in as high school seniors. They face steep tuition rates with little financial aid available to them as their legal status sits in limbo.

However, some states are changing their laws to provide more services to DACA students, and some members of Congress continue to push legislation that would provide DACA students legal status. Last month, Colorado passed a bill which made in-state financial aid available to undocumented and DACA students. Most recently, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would extend legal protection to those with DACA. However, President Trump has already announced that he will veto the bill.

The post DACA Students Struggle to Get a College Education appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

The Debate over Gun Training to Prevent School Shootings

June 12, 2019 - 8:06am

Alexis Buxton is 18. She lives in Scott City, Kansas. It’s a small town — like less than 4,000 people small. And like many kids there, she grew up around guns.

“My mom has a concealed carry gun, my dad has a gun, my sister and her husband are both avid hunters,” Buxton said.

So she was excited when she reached the point freshman year when she could take a course on hunter education where she’d learn how to use guns safely, and for class credit.

A relic of the past or a solution for the future?

In Kansas, teaching hunter education in school has long been funded by the state’s Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism. It even has its own promotional video. In the video, an adult instructor stands in front of a class of gangly teens and walks them through the basics of gun safety, while a narrator explains the program’s virtues.

“If I walk up to Alex and hand him a firearm, what’s the first thing he should do?” the instructor asks the students in the video. “Point the muzzle in a safe direction, right?”

The damage guns can do to humans — and how to prevent it — has been on a lot of people’s minds in the wake of high profile mass shootings. And in places still reeling from school shootings, hunter education brings up serious concerns. Matthew Harris is a graduate of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. After the shooting in Parkland, he helped start March for Our Lives Tallahassee at Florida State University. He feels skeptical about hunter ed.

“Gun training is not unimportant,” he said. “But I think the best way to eliminate school shootings is to not have guns in schools. I’ve never been the biggest fan of hunting in the first place, but obviously since my high school was shot up, it soured me on hunting even more.”

Harris and others in the March for our Lives movement have called for tighter gun regulations as a way to prevent future school shootings.

But there are parts of the country where learning to shoot can seem as common as riding a bike. And there, some students feel it’s more important than ever to teach kids how to respect guns — through firearms safety training.

“You’ve got everyone familiar with guns around here, and we don’t shoot each other in schools with them.”

In Worth County, Iowa, Dan Block teaches courses to middle and high schoolers so they know how to safety handle and shoot guns. In his beginners’ course, students learn about the components of a gun by shooting clay pigeons, identifying the contents of a rifle cartridge and using muzzle-loading rifles.

Most states require people to take a hunter education course in order to obtain a hunting license. Iowa’s requirement is for people born after 1972. Block teaches the course year round, mostly to kids.

“I teach the kids about muzzle-loading rifles,” Block said. “And that’s a really good background on why and how a gun works. And then in the second shooting program, I teach the kids how to reload rifles, and then we shoot AR-15s.”

That’s right — AR-15s. The same kind of gun used in several recent mass shootings, including Parkland last year. Block doesn’t see the issue with teaching kids how to use these guns.

You’ve got everyone familiar with guns around here, and we don’t shoot each other in schools with them,” he said.

Matthew Harris from Parkland thinks that assumption is flawed. “It’s very naïve and very dangerous,” he said. “People can know everything there is to know about guns and still go out and commit a school shooting. Students are emotional. They are teenagers. They could decide to do something really bad.”

Alexis Buxton says she does worry about school shootings. And her school offers drills for active shooters in addition to hunter education. The way she sees it, both matter. But if she had to pick just one?

“It’s not taken lightly when there is a big school shooting [like Parkland],” Alexis said. But, she added, “I think a lot of people think that it’s more important that we get kids like out shooting and out respecting guns before something like that happens in our own community.”

So far in 2019, there have been more than 40 people killed or injured in gun-related incidents at K through 12 schools around the country.

The post The Debate over Gun Training to Prevent School Shootings appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

LIL’ THOW WOW’s Secret to Being the Life of the Party

June 11, 2019 - 6:47pm

At first glance, there is no doubt that Jonathan Anabo, or as Oakland knows him, LIL’ THOW WOW, is the life of the party. As a DJ and event host, there’s truth to that. His dance parties aim to bring a one-of-a-kind experience to the audience by having a fun atmosphere and unique props. Take a look at his “Prom Rave” party series, where his props include photo-booths and palm tree & flamingo pool floaties to deliver a unique, memorable moment. LIL’ THOW WOW makes it clear that he is the type of person guaranteed to turn up any function.

However, his performances as a DJ and party host only touch the surface of who LIL’ THOW WOW really is. When uncovering the layers, you’ll find that Jonathan is a family man at heart, with DJing being only one of his many hustles. The other curiosity-driven efforts reside in the kitchen, barbershop, and in the studio where he is working to keep his Filipino culture and story alive. His next venture is in film, where he is currently planning to release a documentary. It’s clear that LIL’ THOW WOW is always searching for more, especially when it comes to staying true to the hustle.

Whether his endeavors be in music or in film, LIL’ THOW WOW always makes sure he gets everything done on his to-do list. LIL’ THOW WOW walks us through how to host parties, while shining a light on his roots as a Filipino DJ. He shares how he got his name and the story of how his grandpa pulled his grandma.

Your DJ Name, LIL’ THOW WOW, is pretty funny, tell us the origin behind it.

Ah man, I was with my boy, DJ Jack, and he was the one who showed me a lot about DJing early on. I remember we were in his room chillin’, and I was like man alright, “If I’m going to come to DJ with you at this party I need a poppin’ ass name. I need something that’s hella dope.” We were just going back and forth, and then it finally hit me: “ahh, LIL’ THOW WOW!” just cuz I thought, I wanted to pay homage to E-40 in a way, to let people know, “Oh look, I’m from the Bay.” It kinda has a Bay feel to it. I feel people can have a connection with it, off rip, just reading the name or hearing the name they connect it to E-40. It forever made myself a youthful character in the Bay.

How did you get into DJing?

I was always making music and would make beats all the time. I would get kinda frustrated because you would have to deal with different people to try to get your music out and I was really personal about my stuff. I would go to a lot of the homies’ events and stuff. My boy Jack and also Raphique had a weekly, every Monday, at Radio Bar. It was a whatever little dive bar, I asked if I could DJ a little bit and that’s how I got started. He showed me a couple of things, and from then on I was just cooked! People were dancing to the songs I was playing and then I just got obsessed with it. I loved making my own flyers for events. I loved inviting people and seeing people come out to support me. It’s a pure gift to see and have people dance. That was my whole thing.

Did you learn producing from YR Media? How did that come about?

I was already producing a little bit. When I came to YR Media in high school, I got more of a breakdown, mathematically and sonically, as far as what you can do with music and beats.

Do you Feel like DJing was more of a way to give back to your community and have more of a personal connection with music?

Yeah… and also to express myself. To have an outlet, and to just to create a fun environment for myself and the people around me

What makes you want to focus on the happiness?

Because of how the music industry is now and the type of music is being created. A lot of it is fun but the music that’s negative in some ways doesn’t feel appropriate. This is me trying to show people you can have fun doing something around music. Once I knew that my name was going to be LIL’ THOW WOW, I felt like people were gonna gravitate towards the energy I wanted to bring coming into the game. Who wants to be at a party that’s not smackin’?

How is it negative?

You know how people talk about guns or sipping lean, just very explicit lyrics, but is kinda a part of hip-hop. Look at Lil Pump, for example, he has such a large fanbase and he just can’t switch up and be a J. Cole all of a sudden. As an artist, you’re putting your intentions out there and people can already feel that from your name off tops. I try to be very cognizant of that. Kinda like the alchemist, it’s written, you kinda write your own page in the book and go with it.

You have a history of hosting parties, you’ve founded Prom Rave and you threw day parties at Eli’s Mile Club, so what got you into hosting rather than DJing.

It’s all one thing, it all goes hand in hand. To be a DJ you don’t have to be great technically. You just need to be all around. You gotta be an artist. You need to be a dope ass DJ, and you need to be a sick ass party promoter and a dope host. All of that goes hand in hand when creating your brand. When I approached my girlfriend to do Prom Rave, I was just putting ideas together for one cohesive experience. I was making flyers, collecting emails, emailing blogs, finding sponsors, then reaching out to get a photo booth. If I reached out to someone else to do that, then the party wouldn’t have happened or wouldn’t have turned out the way I wanted it. If you wanna be a DJ, go out and be a DJ, but you’re only gonna be limited to a few things. When you’re more original, more hungry, more creative, you can step out of those boundaries and create something new and exciting. That’s where my head is at, I want to be in control of the experience.

What’s a song that you know will get people turnt up no matter what?

It depends, it depends! If you’re a good DJ, you’ll know how to read your crowd. You can play a slappin’ r&b song but for some reason, it might be a sleeper and no one is going crazy. However, if you play it at the right party, in the right sequence, it might hit. As far as a song that always gets it poppin’ I’m playing an ALLBLACK song or whatever, that’s a LIL’ THOW WOW vibe. I’m going to fuck around and play ALLBLACK, or I’ll play some fire remixes and some r&b songs, then drop some Mike Sherm like, enjoy you’re welcome.

I want to put a spotlight on your monthly Filipino sets that you do.

Oh yeah, shout out to ET, he’s the guy that’s putting that together, he reached out to me. I guess he saw me do a lot of stuff with Chitae, another Filipino DJ collective.

How do you feel being able to give back to your community by putting on these DJ sets?

Aww man, it’s a great honor. Not only do they get to hear a set that I worked on, but I’m at home tripping myself out listening to the music that my grandfather, grandmother, mom, and dad grew up listening to. All the music I was pullin’ up was funky stuff: rock, indie, and hip-hop. It’s like Filipinos are super talented, we’re musical, and we revolve around a beat. We just don’t have that spotlight yet in America.

What were some of the artists that your grandma and grandpa showed you?

My grandpa was telling me this crazy story about how he pretty much pulled my grandma. My grandma used to work at a restaurant on the side of the road. The restaurant had a jukebox, but everyone over there was hella poor. My grandpa figured out how to hack the jukebox with a skinny stick and make it access the songs. He would make it seem like he was putting quarters in, but he was triggering to play music. He played this one love song all the time, “Habang May Buhay” by The Flippers. He would say that everyone would like him over there because he played music but no one knew he was rigging the jukebox. He was a DJ before all of us.

How do you feel about fellow other filipino DJs like SOSUPERSAM and Noodlez?

I think they’re great and I love that they are getting recognized for what they do. Some other DJs I rock with and look up to are Jugg Mac, Mister Jazzbooth, Salty Sherlon, Drewskee, Stag Palmer. These cats got the flavor. They inspired me with it all the time. They’re super professional and got their own things going on. We’re a team. We can come together. Lean on each other if need be. I think all the recognition Filipinos are getting, music wise, DJs or not is dope. Especially like with acts like P-LO and Another Parth Fam. It’s about time and way definitely overdue.

Is there any advice you’d like to give to those who wanna host parties and how do you do it? I know you mentioned making flyers, can you break down the process?

If you’re going to host a party, my only advice is to meditate on it. Have an intention behind your party. Don’t limit yourself and don’t let self-doubt get in your way. If it does well or does terribly, try to think of it as a learning experience and use that momentum to fuel your next party. The goal is to bring people together at your party or put a dope party together with people who are going to bring people out. Before the party, concentrate on collecting emails. That way you have a running list of people you can promote to in the future. Marketing your party is also important, so hire a photographer or videographer so you have content! If you’re hosting a party, and you want to have artists make an appearance or performance, make sure they sign a contract via email or via text. Having a record of the agreement, that contract can be, “Hey you gotta post this flyer three times” or “We need you to show up at 6 o’ clock.” Lastly, make sure you’re organized, personable, that you show up on time, and that you’re flexible.

What’s the other side of LIL’ THOW WOW that people don’t get to see when the party’s over and when it’s time to turn down?

Man, LIL’ THOW WOW is a foodie, dawg. Right after a gig, LIL’ THOW WOW wants to eat and relax. He is a people person you know. He’s willing to shed a layer of himself to have the people around him so he can get to know them better. After it’s all said and done, LIL’ THOW WOW knows the bills aren’t gonna pay themselves. I’m working til’ I’m living good. I swear to god, I gotta cut some hair after this, and that’s me. That’s the type of grind I bring. When the beat turns off, you gotta turn the grind up.

I feel like you’re definitely the epicenter of the culture. In a sense that every culture has its own food, every culture has its own things to have fun, music, and you’re definitely at the epicenter of it all.

I get to mix it with different things that I like. I’m not just throwing down on tables, I’m going down in the kitchen and I’m cutting in the barbershop. My next venture is getting into cinematography and telling my story on the big screen. I want people to hear and see my narrative through film. That’s my next goal in life. I don’t just wanna be known for being a DJ, or known for working at a Filipino restaurant. I want to take LIL’ THOW WOW, the brand, or myself, to new heights. I want to live off of my creative work and have multiple ventures.

The post LIL’ THOW WOW’s Secret to Being the Life of the Party appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

5 Things You Missed in Music Business News

June 11, 2019 - 1:37pm

Things are constantly changing in the landscape of the music industry and it’s important to stay on top of trends and news updates, especially as an independent artist. We’ve got you covered with a weekly recap of the top stories you need to know.

Rihanna Dubbed Richest Female Artist in the World

According to Forbes, Rihanna has surpassed Madonna, Celine Dion, and Beyonce as the wealthiest female artist with her fortune totaling up to $600 million. The success of her brand Fenty Beauty, which brought in $100 million in sales the first week, and her partnership with LVMH, a French luxury goods company, has her dominating the game!

Streaming Expected to Bring in $80 Billion Revenue in 2030

Research predicts that music revenue will generate about $131 billion by the year 2030. Stats show people in the 18-34 age demographic are spending more on music than past generations, with Millenials averaging about $163 a year on music streaming. Streaming is coming to the forefront as music downloads are rapidly declining.

Apple is Tossin’ Out iTunes!

Apple is making the decision to discontinue the iTunes app. They plan to replace it with a pack of three apps: Apple Music, Apple Podcasts, and Apple TV. Don’t weenie out, Apple clarified that music previously purchased through iTunes will still be available to users.

Billboard Dropping ‘Top Producer’ & ‘Top Songwriter’ Weekly Chart

Billboard is introducing two new weekly charts ‘Top Songwriter’ & ‘Top Producer’ that will be based on radio airplay, unit sales, and streaming. The charts will debut on June 15th acknowledging top creatives behind the music.

Kanye Launching Program to Support Designers on the Come Up

Kanye West is launching an “incubator” program to provide mentorship and financial assistance to promising talent in the area of fashion and design.

The post 5 Things You Missed in Music Business News appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Snapshots of Life in California

June 11, 2019 - 11:49am

Earlier this year, we had a photo contest with our youth media partners from across California.

Young people from Sacramento to Los Angeles were tasked with giving a snapshot of their communities. Using their cameras, they captured moments in time unique to where they live. Take a look below and let us know your favorite.

Fresno: The kNOw — Photo by Patrick Antunez

This photo, taken on February 7, 2019 during Fresno’s monthly Art Hop, shows Fresno’s diversity and displays our daring attitude to boldly be who we are.

Merced: We’Ced — “Early Morning” by Layla Ornelas 

Taken during a student’s morning walk to school, this photo represents embracing the fresh start of a new day and the enjoyment of the sun rising as one’s daily routine.

Coachella: Coachella Unincorporated — “La Belleza De Vivir En El Este” by Bryan Mendez

“The photo was taken on a rare rainy day in the Eastern Coachella Valley. I remember a time when rain usually meant a day off for all the capesinos like my parents.” – Bryan Mendez

A son of immigrant workers, Bryan Mendez included this image in his photo collection, “La Belleza De Vivir En El Este”, to celebrate and uplift the stories of immigrant farmworkers in his community.

Richmond: Richmond Pulse — “Richmond Takes Tri-County Title Over Pinole Valley” by Denis Perez

The 2019 Richmond High School soccer varsity team celebrates their victory over Pinole Valley High School during their 2-0 win at the Tri-County Athletic League (TCAL) Rock Division finals on Feb. 8 at De Anza High School. The Richmond Oilers advanced to play in the Northern California Section tournament. 

Oakland: YR Media — Photo by Seth Marceau

This picture was taken at the FEELS 6 festival in Richmond, California. This was a case of “life imitates art” where I noticed Noah Holt aka DJ Edel wearing shoes matching the color scheme of an art piece at the exhibit. The reflection of the shoes is almost like a painting in itself. In the Bay Area artist community, sometimes artists who have never met can be on a similar wavelength via different mediums, from fashion to painting (and in a case like this, they even bridge the gap to create something new.)

Long Beach: Voicewaves“For the Pursuit of Happiness” by Alvin Engo.

Taken at Cal State Long Beach during a counter-protest against the alt-right group Turning Point USA on October 24, 2018. This represents my community’s ability to struggle and fight against those that seek to take our happiness away … that we will rise up for Long Beach so that we, the people, can be free.

Bakersfield: South Kern SolPhoto by Lizette Chavez

A young girl marches in the 2019 Women’s March in Bakersfield holding a sign calling for the release of children at the border.

Boyle Heights: Boyle Heights Beat — Photo by Oscar Vargas

Fanny Ortiz and her family at a Homeless Storytellers event in Boyle Heights on Nov. 8, 2018. 

Sacramento: Access Local TV — “The Masked Man” by Bruce Tran

This photo was taken during a Dias De Los Muertos event in Sacramento’s Oak Park Neighborhood. A man wearing transitional Mexican garments stares into the camera lens, his eyes behind a mask which shields his true identity. The community where this event was held is currently experiencing high levels of gentrification. To many from the outside looking in, things look appealing but within the deeper layers much remains unknown, just like the Masked Man.

Follow more stories from the California Youth Media Network on Twitter.

The post Snapshots of Life in California appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Race, Activism and ‘Facebook Jail’

June 10, 2019 - 1:49pm

Black activists are saying they’re being banned from Facebook for posts that call out racism.

Frank Matthews, a Black Lives Matter activist in Birmingham, Alabama who has been routinely suspended from Facebook, sees a double standard in the content that gets censored.

“I had one post where I called out [Alabama Governor] Kay Ivey [who is white] on the highway deal, saying it won’t help African-American communities,” Matthews said to YR Media in a phone interview. “I said, ‘That’s what poison Ivey does, push her poison,’ and I got suspended for 30 days.”

Alternatively, when Matthews writes “bad things” about Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin, who is a black man, he says he never encounters a problem.  

“It’s racism as far as I’m concerned,” Matthews said.

Samreen “Sammie” Lewis and Erica Morales say they have experienced something similar.

They told YR Media they have been locked out of their accounts and landed in what many call “Facebook Jail” multiple times for their posts. So has the page Three Token Brown Girls that they started together.

“A lot of the bans were for calling out white privilege and attempting to educate folks about it,” Lewis said.

Lewis and Morales have had to restart their Facebook page multiple times. They’ve lost thousands of followers as a result. Three Token Brown Girls has just under 900 likes. The now-removed former page had more than 6,000, Morales said.

“I’ve contacted Facebook multiple times when I’ve been banned,” Lewis said. “But nothing came of it.”

Facebook removes posts that it believes violate its community standards, one of which is hate speech.

On its website, the company defines hate speech as “a direct attack on people based on what we call protected characteristics — race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, caste, sex, gender, gender identity, and serious disease or disability.”

The race category includes all races. As a result, Facebook may flag posts calling out “white people” or “white privilege.”

“If I speak out against the idea of white pride or white nationalist groups, that can be considered hate speech. But why is that considered hate speech? They are a hate group, a terrorist group,” Morales said.

Matthews says the Facebook bans aren’t just frustrating, they also affect activists’ ability to do their work.

“You can reach a lot of people with a long message on Facebook, so being suspended or banned is just a total disadvantage in terms of getting my message out and organizing protests,” he said.

Fifty-three percent of black Americans say social media is very or somewhat important to them in terms of “giving them a venue to express their political opinions,” according to a 2018  Pew Research study. Only 32 percent of white people say the same.

Facebook admits it isn’t perfect on the issue of content removal but a ban or suspension is almost never the result of one violation, said Ruchika Budhraja, a Facebook spokesperson,

“It is an awful experience for us and the people who use our platforms when, whether because of where we’ve drawn the line on the definition of hate speech or through an error in enforcement, we take down something that should have stayed up,” Budhraja told YR Media.

But Morales thinks the Facebook bans are a form of silencing black activists.

“This isn’t a new system. It goes back to when we were denied the ability to read and write. If we start speaking out about the injustices that we face, our marginalization or our oppression, we get more freedom,” she said.

To avoid censorship, many activists no longer use the term “white,” replacing it with “yt” or  “whyte.” But Lewis doesn’t see that tactic as a long-term solution to the issues she and others have with Facebook.

“Facebook needs a better understanding of systems of oppression, power dynamics and what hate speech actually is,” Lewis said.

Budhraja admits there’s room for improvement at Facebook and emphasized that the company is working to address these issues.  

“We are engaging with groups in the U.S. and from around the world who have expertise and perspectives that are incredibly valuable, and every single time we do that, we get better,” she said.

The post Race, Activism and ‘Facebook Jail’ appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

My Spanish Teacher Helped Me Reconnect with My Culture

June 9, 2019 - 8:00am

I’m Mexican on my dad’s side. I’ve always regretted not learning Spanish as a child. But one dedicated high school Spanish teacher was able to make all the difference.

I always felt like kind of an outsider, being half Mexican and unable to speak Spanish. My family would talk and I’d just sit there waiting for my cousins to translate.

I tried learning Spanish. I’ve been in an out of classes for years. But this year, I had a teacher who changed everything for me. She made class engaging and fun. We’d yell Spanish terms in competencias to gain extra credit, and laugh at her jokes during the listening portions of tests.

Over my time in the class, I began to catch myself comprehending conversations. For Christmas, I asked my mom for a book. She gave me a collection of Spanish poetry. As I opened it, I felt such pride as I began to take it in.

It’s overwhelming the difference one teacher can make. My Spanish teacher didn’t just give me a grade. She gave me a gift — of connecting to my culture and family through language.

The post My Spanish Teacher Helped Me Reconnect with My Culture appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

How To: Make a Music Hyperlink

June 6, 2019 - 6:08pm

Need help marketing your music as an independent artist? Hop on the new wave! Making a Linktree or Hyperlink for your new release is an easy and smart tool to get your followers to directly stream your music. A hyperlink, in this case, refers to a link someone can click on to pull up direct links to all the various places to stream your music. Allowing your followers quick and easy access to your music is an effortless way to build engagement and present a professional rollout strategy. This easy step-by-step process for creating a hyperlink offers plenty of benefits with no strings attached; not to mention it’s free!

Step 1: Go to Toneden.com and Sign Up

(FYI – there are multiple sites that create hyperlinks however ToneDen is free and fast!)

-Create an account by inputting basic info (it’s fast and easy – don’t be lazy bruh)

-Add your artist name

-Add your social media accounts (optional)

Step 2: Choose the “Music Link” Option

-They offer a few different types of links to use depending on what you’re trying to promote (either music, an event, tour, podcast, etc.). In this case, choose the “Music” option.

Step 3: Input a “Source”

-In the case of “Source,” they are referring to the streaming link for whatever you want to promote (i.e., your single, EP, album, mixtape, etc.). This can be in the form of a SoundCloud link, Spotify link, or whatever link you have of the project you plan to promote.

-Press the “Create Link” button

-ToneDen will take the link you give them and use it to generate links to all the other platforms your music is available on. They will take all of these links to compile into the single hyperlink.

Step 4: Choose Which Platforms You Want Displayed on Your Landing Page

-ToneDen gives you options to choose from, however, keep in mind you can only choose up to six to display on the landing page of your link. I recommend choosing the most utilized platforms like iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, SoundCloud and Youtube. 

-If your project link doesn’t automatically generate on one of the platforms you want to be displayed, you will have to manually search and copy that link.

-Click “Continue”

Step 5: Customize Your Landing Page

-This is where you can customize what fans see when they click on your hyperlink

-Fill in the “Title” field by entering the name of your project

-In the “Description” field enter your artist name and whatever else you want to be included here

-Pick your “Landing Page Image.” I recommend using the cover art for your project (This will be the main image people see when clicking your hyperlink).

-Pick your “Background Image.”  You can use your cover art again (highly suggested) or another picture pertaining to your project for aesthetic reasons. However, you do have to upgrade your account for this feature. 

Step 6: Customize Your Preview (Optional)

-ToneDen creates an audio preview of your song which will play on your landing page if you’d like.

-Choose which platform you want your preview to be on (Spotify, Youtube, SoundCloud, or Deezer)

Step 7: Metadata (Optional)

-This step is to customize how your project link will display on social media posts. ToneDen already completes this for you so you don’t need to do anything, however, if you want to change it that’s all you, Bro.

Step 8: Edit Your Link (Optional)

-The hyperlink they create for you is already hella short (for example fanlink.to/bxw9), so you’re welcome to leave it like that or create a custom link (for example fanlink.to/(Project-Name))

Step 9: Create Link!

-Click “Create Fan Link” and the hyperlink is ready to be shared with the world!

-You can copy and paste the link in your IG and Twitter bio, share with the homies to promote your music for you, or email blast that thang out to your fan base.

The post How To: Make a Music Hyperlink appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

When Religion Denies You Health Care

June 6, 2019 - 4:39pm

Evan Minton was denied health care at a large Catholic hospital during his transition, and now he’s fighting to make sure the anguish he had to go through doesn’t happen to other transgender folks.

The post When Religion Denies You Health Care appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Following in My Parents’ Footsteps, Without Repeating Their Experiences

June 5, 2019 - 1:19pm

When my parents were teenagers, they fled from a war between Eritrea and Ethiopia. In their 20s, they settled down in California. My parents and I have a generation gap and a cultural gap. On top of that, they survived a violent, historic event that robbed them of their adolescence.

My mom often tells stories about her childhood in Eritrea in relation to mine. When I was 14, I was anxious about entering high school. When she was 14, she was doing chores for her five-person family. When I was 16, I was worried about midterms and when I could see friends. When she was 16, she was crossing a desert to save her life.

Recently, I forgot to do the dishes. When my mom saw a pile of dirty plates in the sink, she scolded me. She said that at 18, she was working as a maid in Italy and taking care of her brothers, while also learning Italian. If she could handle that, then I should at least do the dishes. I felt inadequate saying that I forgot because I had debate practice and homework.

At times, I feel like I’m disappointing my mom by not living up to the standards she set.

As I’ve grown older, I realized my mom’s experiences are unique and important. But so are mine. That’s when I started looking at our stories side by side, rather than measuring my life experiences against hers.

I realize I can follow in my parents’ footsteps without repeating their experiences. For instance, although my mom took care of her family at 18, it doesn’t mean I have to take care of my entire family now. It means that I should work hard for myself and those I care about.

By changing my perspective I was able to build a stronger relationship with my mom, and honor her journey — a journey that led to this life I have now.

The post Following in My Parents’ Footsteps, Without Repeating Their Experiences appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Will Arming Florida Teachers Protect or Harm Students of Color?

June 4, 2019 - 12:20pm

A Florida law that would allow public school teachers to be armed has been met with controversy. Some civil rights advocates and students of color worry it opens the door for racial bias.

According to the legislation, which Gov. Ron DeSantis signed earlier this month, teachers who want to carry weapons must undergo 144 hours of training, including firearm instruction, precision shooting, active shooter scenarios, and diversity training. They also must pass a psychological evaluation and a drug test.

While implicit bias is a required part of the training, groups like the NAACP question whether this law will actually keep students safe, especially black and Latino students.  

Students of color are already under stricter supervision in schools and adding guns to the mix could make matters worse, said Tiffany Dena Loftin, director for the NAACP Youth and College Division.

“If a teacher who I know constantly suspends students of color because of their behavior, if at any point they feel unsafe, them having access to [a gun] — on their hip, in the classroom, under their desk, wherever it is — could result in continuing the catastrophes that we’ve seen across the country when it comes to endangering black lives,” she said.

The law comes more than a year after the Parkland, Florida shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. And despite the criticism, some lawmakers say it’s a necessary safety provision and believe an armed teacher should have the ability to protect their students in an emergency situation.

“We need to stop treating our teachers like second-class citizens,” said Republican Rep. Dane Eagle. “Grant them the opportunity — not the mandate, but the opportunity — to protect themselves and others if they choose to do so.”

But many students and teachers of color believe that placing guns in classrooms is not the answer.

“I think this law is a step backward,” said Janice Robinson-Celeste, who previously taught in Flagler County, Florida. “Then you add in teachers who don’t understand children of color and you have a disaster in the making.”

Jaylin Cole, a rising junior at Middleton High School in Tampa who is also African American, thinks firearm training will be insufficient for teachers with no background experience in emergency situations.

“These teachers don’t know how to handle themselves in these situations, and you can’t expect them to,” Cole said. She added, “In schools like mine where we have a large population of African American kids, you can see that some teachers are automatically not going to know how to handle students of color….A teacher’s job is to guide and help students further their academic success. We’re trying to turn them into police officers or soldiers, and that’s not what they signed up for.”

Florida’s teacher gun training program is available statewide, but is only active in counties that choose to opt-in and currently there are 30 counties registered.

“I’m honestly scared for the students that are in those counties,” Cole said.

The post Will Arming Florida Teachers Protect or Harm Students of Color? appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Coming Soon to Your SAT Score: A “Disadvantage” Index

June 3, 2019 - 2:04pm

The College Board is receiving a mixed response to adding what’s been dubbed an “adversity score” to the SAT.

In mid-May, the company announced that it will be making an “Environmental Context Dashboard” (ECD) available to colleges alongside its SAT score reports.

The ECD compares students’ SAT scores to those of other students at their high school and assigns each student an “Overall Disadvantage Level” score between 1, least disadvantaged, and 100, most disadvantaged.

Thirty-one factors related to a student’s school and neighborhood inform the disadvantage level score, including median family income, poverty rate, percentage of adults with a college degree, unemployment rate and crime rate.

For now at least, the ECD will only be visible to college admission officers; students cannot see their own ECD. The score also doesn’t account for the student’s individual characteristics or life experience, which is in part why the College Board rejects the term “adversity score” to describe the index.  

“Selective college admissions officers already do these kinds of things but in an informal, ad hoc way,” Morgan Polikoff, an associate professor of education at the University of Southern California, told YR Media. “This gives a way for that to be done in a more standardized way so that it really accounts for the relationship between various forms of adversity and student performance. So I was enthusiastic about it when I first heard about it.”

“It’s about efficiency,” said David Hawkins, the executive director for educational content and policy at the National Association for College Admission Counseling. “Colleges have access to a lot of the information that goes into the score, but they have a short window to review applications.”

The College Board has faced heavy criticism over the years for the SAT test, which many claim gives an unfair advantage to wealthy and white students.

For 2016 high school graduates, the average SAT score was 1230 out of 1600 for those with a household income of above $200,000. It was 970 for those with a household income of less than $20,000.

For years, the College Board has presented SAT scores by themselves, letting colleges make determinations about students’ backgrounds. The ECD is changing that.

“The Environmental Context Dashboard shines a light on students who have demonstrated remarkable resourcefulness to overcome challenges and achieve more with less,” said College Board President David Coleman in an e-mail statement provided to YR Media.

The College Board piloted the ECD program this past school year at 50 colleges, including Yale, Florida State University and Trinity. This coming academic year, more than 150 colleges will receive the ECD attached to student score reports.

Jerome White, who directs media relations and external communications at the College Board, said the company found students with higher disadvantage level scores were more likely to be admitted at these schools this past year when admissions officers had ECD information than in previous years.

He also claimed admissions officers found the ECD particularly helpful when evaluating applicants from schools they were unfamiliar with.

Despite these results, the ECD has faced criticism.

Some have claimed that it will encourage gentrification, as wealthy families move to poorer areas to beat the system.

Others have suggested the current ECD cannot accurately assess a student’s disadvantage level because it doesn’t include race.

“My inclination is that I would prefer [the ECD] included race,” Polikoff said. “We know that systemic racism and structural forms of racism go well beyond just socioeconomic status. That suggests to me that race is still a highly salient factor that should play a role.”

Another concern still is that the score may unfairly penalize low-income students living in wealthy areas.

“In the 70s, they really clustered low-income families in one area,” Hawkins said. “Now, the trend is to distribute families more evenly throughout a locality. If you’re in a place like Arlington, Virginia, low-income housing is being built among some of the higher-priced dwellings in this county.”

The College Board is adding the ECD to the SAT at a time when some are questioning the worth of the test and an increasing number of colleges are making it an optional component of the application.

Hawkins expects this trend to continue, even with the ECD in place.

“By no means does this new measure solve all of the challenges we have with standardized testing in this country, and we’re still on a historical arc toward more colleges dropping standardized admissions tests as a requirement,” he said.

The post Coming Soon to Your SAT Score: A “Disadvantage” Index appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

5 Things You Missed in Music Business News

June 3, 2019 - 1:04pm

Things are constantly changing in the landscape of the music industry and it’s important to stay on top of trends and news updates, especially as an independent artist. We’ve got you covered with a weekly recap of the top stories you need to know.

LIL WAYNE TAPS TRAVIS SCOTT & MEEK MILL TO HEADLINE WEEZYANA

Lil Wayne’s 5th annual Lil’ Weezyana Festival is set to take place on 9/7 in New Orleans. For this year’s lineup, Lil Wayne recruited Travis Scott and Meek Mill to headline, as well as Trey Songz, Kash Doll, Megan Thee Stallion, and more.

MONSTA X SIGNS TO EPIC

This K-pop group is next in line following BTS to sign a major label deal in the U.S. After a year of success with sold out shows and millions of streams, they are signing with Epic Records to take them to the next level.

SoundCloud Launches DJ Software Integration With Native Instruments

SoundCloud recently launched a DJ integration software in partnership with Native Instruments. With this new update, Traktor DJ 2 users are allowed to choose music from a pool of 200 million songs. DJs can now stream music for their live sets without having to go through the trouble of buying or downloading music.  This is a game changer right here.

JAY-Z HOSTING PRINCE’S ALBUM LISTENING PARTY VIA TIDAL

Jay Z set to host a listening party for the upcoming Prince album titled, “Originals” in Los Angeles on June 6th. The 15-track LP features 14 unreleased songs set to be released on June 7th exclusively on Tidal.

WARNER BROS RECORDS NAME CHANGE?

The widely-known record label formerly named Warner Bros. Records is undergoing a (minor) name change. From now on the record label will legally be titled Warner Records (no more Bros.).  This is due to the expiration of a 15-year deal that gave the label rights to the “Warner Bros.” name after splitting with Time Warner Corporation.

The post 5 Things You Missed in Music Business News appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

This Week’s Rotation: 5 New Albums to Check Out

May 31, 2019 - 4:55pm

What’s great about living in this current digital era of music is that there are always new releases at your fingertips. The days of waiting on the radio to tell you what’s hot or depending on your circle of friends to put you on to new songs are over. If you’re one of those people that are always exploring and looking for something fresh to add to your library, here is a list of five new albums to check out. Find what you like to liven up your playlists, and then you can become the one to put your friends on to the latest jams.

Flying Lotus – “Flamagra”

Marking five years since his last project, “You’re Dead!,” Flying Lotus is back with “Flamagra.” The 27-track LP is a peregrination into modern-day psychedelic funk and features artists such as Solange, Anderson .Paak, Toro y Moi, and more. If you’re looking to take an hour-long break from the world, “Flamagra” will take you on a spiritual journey you didn’t even know you needed.

Song to Check Out: “Burning Down The House (feat. George Clinton)”

Steve Lacy – “Apollo XXI”

With summer just around the corner, there’s no better way to start it off than with a Steve Lacy project. His debut album “Apollo XXI” treks into multi-generational territory, combining the grooviness of the ’70s, the colorfulness of the ’80s, and the easy-going nature of the ’90s all into one album. Reminiscent of Prince’s style and flare, Lacy creates a body of work that is both energizing and compelling, and it couldn’t be a better introduction for the artist.

Song to Check Out: “N Side”

YG – “4Real 4Real”

YG released his fourth studio album, “4Real 4Real,” which was originally scheduled for an April release but was pushed back due to the death of a friend and fellow rapper Nipsey Hussle, to whom the album is dedicated to. The album embraces the best of West Coast rap, both old and new school, and features some of rap’s heavy hitters, such as Meek Mill, Ty Dolla $ign, and Tyga.

Song to Check Out: “Play Too Much”

Shay Lia – “Dangerous”

Shay Lia dropped her first single on SoundCloud back in 2014. Since then she’s had several Kaytranada-assisted singles, and over the years she has been making a name for herself. After occasionally dropping singles in between features on Kaytranda projects, Shay Lia unleashes her full self with her first EP “Dangerous.” Lia delivers a record full of laid-back, head-bumping jams ready for a summer full of dancing and fun. Drawing influence from house music while still keeping the grooviness of R&B, “Dangerous” is the perfect soundtrack to your personal dance party.

Song to Check Out: Voodoo

Beast Coast – “Escape From New York”

If you are unfamiliar with Beast Coast, let us clear up some of the confusion. Beast Coast is a rap collective that consists of three smaller collectives, Flatbush Zombies, The Underachievers, and Pro Era. All three come with their own specialty; Pro Era comes with introspective lyrics, Flatbush Zombies bring energy and creativity with their wordplay, and The Underachievers display a flow similar to Olympic gymnasts. All three rap groups come together like a Megazord. “Escape From New York” proves how dynamic the scene can be when they come together to create a chaotic-yet-intriguing album.

Song to Check Out: “Far Away”

The post This Week’s Rotation: 5 New Albums to Check Out appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Mark-Up: An Annotated YR Media Opinion Piece

May 31, 2019 - 4:47pm

There’s a lot about journalism that applies no matter what outlet you’re writing for, so we won’t spend time here going through the basics.

Instead, we want to focus on something a lot more specific but harder to pin down: the YR Media News Tone. 

Our contributors cover a huge range of beats from every corner of America, but there’s a certain set of qualities we look for in all our stories. Take a look at how YR Media News Tone shows up in this opinion piece we annotated for you!

The post Mark-Up: An Annotated YR Media Opinion Piece appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

Mark-Up: An Annotated YR Media Listicle

May 31, 2019 - 4:36pm

There’s a lot about journalism that applies no matter what outlet you’re writing for, so we won’t spend time here going through the basics.

Instead, we want to focus on something a lot more specific but harder to pin down: the YR Media News Tone.

Our contributors cover a huge range of beats from every corner of America, but there’s a certain set of qualities we look for in all our stories. Take a look at how YR Media News Tone shows up in this listicle we annotated for you!

The post Mark-Up: An Annotated YR Media Listicle appeared first on YR Media.

Categories: Blog

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