Michael Saponara

Trying to find my way one article at a time.


Vibe Magazine, Billboard, DailyMixReport



Kanye West's '808s & Heartbreak' Turns 9: Ranking the Album's Tracks

After completing his transition to global superstar, and a trilogy of ground-breaking educational themed albums, Kanye West was looking for his next mountain to climb. Disaster then pierced the heart of West, who seemed unbreakable through his ascension. His mother, Donda West, whom he was very close with, unfortunately passed away from cosmetic complications in November 2007. Yeezy also broke off his year-and-a-half-long engagement with ex-girlfriend Alexis Phifer in early 2008.

RZA & DJ Mathematics Talk 'The Saga Continues', Politics, & Wu-Tang's Evolution

“We said Wu-Tang is forever, so we’re always going to keep that theme going, whether it’s performed by us or the next generation that’s inspired by us." So says RZA of the inspiration behind the Wu’s latest offering, The Saga Continues. DJ Mathematics has been in the Wu-Tang Clan camp for a long time, as RZA even had him design the iconic “W” that has become synonymous with the legendary group.

Lin-Manuel Miranda Talks Helping Puerto Rico & Notching First Top 40 Hit: Exclusive

After embarking on an all-encompassing media tour of NYC Tuesday (Oct. 17), Hamilton director Lin-Manuel Miranda's night culminated at the TIDAL X concert at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn to continue his non-stop relief efforts for Puerto Rico. Billboard caught up with Miranda on the red carpet prior to the star-studded event where he continued to advocate for the people of Puerto Rico as he has since day one of the post-hurricane crisis.

8 Highlights From Brooklyn's Star-Studded TIDAL X Concert With JAY-Z, Stevie Wonder, Cardi B & More

"€Hip-hop was started with blacks and Puerto Ricans hand-in-hand. Hip-hop has to be a huge supporter of Puerto Rico because it doesn'€™t exist without them,"€ Vic Mensa told Billboard prior to Tuesday night (Oct. 18) TIDAL X concert for disaster relief at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. When artists come together and use the power of music to heal, the unthinkable can be reached. All ticket proceeds were donated to a handful of foundations to help those victimized in the recent natural disasters.

Lil Uzi Vert's 10 Best Songs: Critic's Picks

Born Symere Woods, Lil Uzi Vert has rose to prominence as the leader of the youth in part because of his refusal to conform and marginalize his unique persona. Hailing from Northern Philadelphia, Uzi carved out a lane for himself as more of a rock star than a conventional hip-hop artist, striking fear into older rap heads. With co-signs from producer Don Cannon and DJ Drama, the 23-year-old'€™s SoundCloud run culminated in "€œXO TOUR Llif3"€ winning Song of The Summer€ at the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards.

NFL Star Pierre Garcon Talks Giving Back to Haiti and His Favorite Rap Albums

Pierre Garcon has been an underdog for much of his life. Playing college football for a division III school in Mount Union, then becoming a sixth-round pick of the Indianapolis Colts in 2008, the 31-year-old has defied the odds overcoming every obstacle thrown his way. Fast forward to 2017, Pierre is entering his tenth campaign in the NFL after inking a fresh five-year contract to go out West and reunite with old coach Kyle Shanahan, this time as a San Francisco 49er.

Grammy-Winning Engineer Anthony Kilhoffer Recalls Memorable Studio Sessions From Kanye's 'Graduation' Album

"€œI wanted to cross genres and show people how we could still express ourselves with something fresh, that'€™s what hip-hop'€™s all about. And momma, all I'm going to do is keep making you proud, we run this." Kanye West then proceeded to walk off stage with his statue for best rap album at the 2008 Grammys. After putting the sophomore slump narrative to rest with Late Registration, the Stanley Kubrick-inspired West craved a new mountain to conquer.

2 Chainz Dominates NYC's Terminal 5 on Pretty Girls Like Trap Music Tour, Broken Leg Be Damned

On Wednesday night, 2 Chainz finished off his NYC run of the Pretty Girls Like Trap Music Tour with back-to-back sold out shows in front of thousands of fans decked out in tour merchandise wanting a taste of the trap life. Inside the teeming Terminal 5 venue featured a diverse fan base, including an older crowd familiar with the Atlanta native since his Playaz Circle days and a younger scene who more recently got accustomed to the 39-year-old'€™s trap movement.

'You're Better Off With Us in Control': The Cool Kids on New LP 'Special Edition Grandmaster Deluxe' & YouTube Series 'The Shit Show'

"We were always going to get back together, claims a confident Chuck Inglish, who makes up one half of The Cool Kids duo along with smooth Chicago MC, Sir Michael Rocks. After reuniting in 2016, the "€œBlack Mags" artists are ready to offer up their real first album from scratch properly titled, Special Edition Grandmaster Deluxe, which releases September 15th and is now available for pre-order.

Leonard Ellerbe, Mayweather Promotions CEO, Talks Superfight

Leonard Ellerbe once had prize-fighting aspirations of his own growing up in northeast Washington D.C. as an amateur fighter until hand injuries derailed his boxing passion into another direction. After meeting Mayweather through the boxer’s uncles early on in his career, Ellerbe left a six-figure job as a strength and conditioning coach to join Mayweather’s team to do security. “Nobody starts at the top. I started at the bottom and worked my way up,” relays Ellerbe.
Daily Mix Report

Winners And Losers Of The Kyrie Irving To Boston Trade

Here we are the day after the eclipse and the NBA drops its biggest bomb of the summer on August 22nd.  I didn’t think the Cavs would get a good enough offer to dump their 25-year-old star and I damn sure didn’t think they would do it with the team closest to dethroning them in the East. This has to be the first time two powerhouses in the same conference swap franchise cornerstones. A rare NBA blockbuster that makes sense for both teams.
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