Hip-Hop Duo speakers Cranks Up the Volume


There was once a time when it was cool to just be a hip-hop artist. Now, it’s all about the mystery, the fusion, and confusion of musical genres. Singer-rapper Keon B and musician-producer Blair Taylor—otherwise known as speakers (with a lowercase “s” because the music is more important than their name)—refuse to be defined. “We make all types of music. It’s a mix of hip-hop, R&B, dubstep, house, techno,” Taylor tells Rap-Up.com, “and the list goes on.”

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R&B Songbird Cherlise Takes Flight


The baddest R&B chicks are known to roll with an entourage or at least a bodyguard or two, but Cherlise does it a little differently. The 23-year-old singer gets her support from her nine brothers and sisters—”All from the same parents!”—she playfully adds. Hailing from just outside Miami, Cherlise knows about the party life but credits her family for keeping her grounded, even after being signed to Rico Love’s Division1/Universal Republic imprint and having Fat Joe (“He’s the biggest teddy bear”) as her mentor.

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British Songstress Jessie J Invades L.A.

Jessie J

The future of pop is here, and her name is Jessie J. Rap-Up.com attended a showcase for the U.K. singer-songwriter at Stone Rose Lounge in Los Angeles this week, where U.S. tastemakers witnessed the power of the rising star. At 22 years old, Jessie has made a name for herself co-writing Miley Cyrus’ chart-topping record “Party in the U.S.A.,” and has a voice much bigger than her 5-foot-9-inch frame.

Among those singing her praises are Kelly Rowland, who was in attendance, super-producer Dr. Luke, and Justin Timberake, who called Jessie the best singer in the world right now. Not a bad endorsement.

The petite Brit blew away the industry crowd with material from her Lava Records/Universal Republic debut Who You Are, including the reggae-tinged “Stand Up,” feisty “Mamma Knows Best,” B.o.B-assisted “Price Tag,” and first U.S. single “Who You Are.” She also won over new fans with her first live performance of “L.O.V.E.,” rumored to have been written for Alicia Keys. Watch below and find out why we’re in L.O.V.E. with Jessie.

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Unrapped: Teen Dream Aaron Fresh

Aaron Fresh

Relaxing under a cabana on the rooftop of a high-class hotel in Hollywood, 17-year-old Def Jam artist Aaron Fresh takes full advantage of his free time, taking in the sights of a poolside view. Yet lounging in the sun isn’t what he considers a hobby. The Trinidadian admits his passion is entertaining the masses with his single “Dirty Girl” featuring Cory Gunz, shooting hoops, and battling the best in a game of Halo. “I love playing sports and always entertaining people both on and off camera,” Fresh tells Rap-Up.com. “I go hard in any sport, but I love playing Halo. Me and Justin Bieber should play a game one day.”

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Unrapped: Roscoe Dash Turns Up the Volume

Roscoe Dash

Lounging in a high-rise office on a snowy morning in Manhattan, 19-year-old Atlanta native Roscoe Dash seems unfazed by the blizzard happening outside in the streets. Much like the heavy snowfall, the rapper hit the masses with little warning, yet no one could’ve predicted the impact he would have on the music industry. His debut single, “All the Way Turnt Up” featuring Soulja Boy Tell’em, and follow-up single “Show Out,” have quickly captured listeners’ attention. Even Roscoe himself couldn’t have guessed the outcome. He may be a Southern spitter, but his sound has spanned the U.S. and beyond.

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Unrapped: Hip-Hop Freshman bONE


Imagine attending college with a slew of rap stars. Think it doesn’t happen? Ask rap newcomer bONE about his experience at Prairie View A&M University and he’ll admit it does. “You know Superstarr, the one that wrote ‘Halle Berry’?,” bONE continues, “Him, Dorrough ['Ice Cream Paint Job'], and Party Boyz ['Flex'], they all went to Prairie View.” The Texas native may have a full load of studies to tend to—he’s a senior majoring in history—but he’s set on following in the footsteps of his hip-hop peers.

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Unrapped: Alabama Rapper Yelawolf


Don’t be fooled by the complexion. Alabama-born, Atlanta resident Yelawolf may look like a skateboard-thrashing rock head, but he’s actually a rapper known more for the hypersonic lyrics he spits. Though one of his favorite pastimes is riding on a deck, these days, he’s got a collection of beats to ride.

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