Pretty Bird (Freestyle) – Jhene Aiko (feat. Common): Song of the Day 9/13

Not only has she been blessed with a beautiful voice but Jhene Aiko has paired lyrics to match in her music. Now away from the mixtapes and EP’s, Aiko has graduated to the full-length and her skills have made seemingly simple tracks like”Pretty Bird (Freestyle)” standout.

One of the few tracks to include a feature off Souled Out, “Pretty Bird (Freestyle)” brings Common and Aiko together for what could be classified as a poem more than a true freestyle. Stripped down and raw, Aiko’s lyrics are quite limited to the title of the track but her emotion combined with Common’s thoughtful spoken words make “Pretty Bird (Freestyle)” take flight.

Listen to “Pretty Bird (Freestyle)” below.

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Hustle Harder – Common (feat. Snoh Aalegra & Dreezy): Song of the Day 7/25

Being from Chicago, Common knows just how hard him and his brothers worked to escape violence and poverty. But even he knows that compared to the males in Chi-Town, its the females who just “Hustle Harder”.

Always one to to speak his mind about the strength of women, Common does it again with “Hustle Harder”. With a poetic intro by Snoh Aalegra and a hot verse by relative unknown Dreezy, “Hustle Harder” certainly has its female imprint but its Common well written bars which have him in the good graces of all the hard working ladies.

Listen to “Hustle Harder” below.

Diamonds – Common (feat. Big Sean): Song of the Day 7/13

Over the course of his career and thus far in his run towards Nobody’s Smiling, Common has thrived with politically and social charged tracks. But for his latest single, the G.O.O.D. Music MC is switching it up slightly by getting the clubs to throw their “Diamonds” in the sky.

While it may not be his norm or strong suit, “Diamonds” is a banger on which Common thrives. With Big Sean by his side who has made his living off tracks like this, “Diamonds” won’t be the track on Nobody’s Smiling that stands out because of it’s differing content but because it is one of the hottest tracks on the album.

Listen to “Diamonds” below.

Kingdom – Common (feat. Vince Staples): Song of the Day 5/30

Club records, hype records, and much else that is bring produced in hip-hop is all well in good but if you are looking for a track which dives into greater issues always look for Common. Once again Common has released a track which will have you thinking about what is going on in this “Kingdom” of ours.

The third track to be dropped from his upcoming album Nobody’s Smiling, “Kingdom” addresses a familiar topic for Common. Street violence has been an epidemic in Common’s home town of Chicago and while he hails from the West Coast, Vince Staples who provides the guest verse, has had his own experiences with violence in his “Kingdom”.

Listen to “Kingdom” below.

War – Common: Song of the Day 1/8

To outsiders Chicago is the land of deep dish pizza, the Cubs, and Mike Ditka. However, for a man like Common who grew up in Chi-city the violent reality of his beloved hometown is clearly evident. So much so that he is calling the situation a “War”.

The first single from his newly released 10th studio album, Nobody’s Smiling, “War” is the poignant, socially conscious track which has become synonymous with Common. With so much violence is Chicago, Common compares the city to the death and distraction happening in the Middle East over No I.D.’s militaristic production.

Listen to “War” below.

X.O.X. – Elijah Blake (feat. Common): Song of the Day 5/22

He may have moved on and found someone new but Elijah Blake can’t shake the feelings he developed with his ex. It has been some time since he said goodbye to her but this R&B newcomer wants her back as he explains in his debut single “X.O.X.”.

After gaining some publicity when he was featured on Rick Ross’ God Forgives, I Don’t, Blake and his soulful voice are ready for their solo debut. Alongside Common who reminisces about his past relationship, Blake contemplates how he will break it to his current girl that he still loves his old chick. He may be caught in the past, but with “X.O.X.”, Blake’s future is shining bright.

Watch the official video for “X.O.X.” below.

Switch Up – Big Sean (feat. Common): Song of the Day 4/7

In sports, players switch teams. In the workplace, people change companies. In the music industry, artists swap teams. While all of these have become commonplace, there is something special about staying loyal. Big Sean has that sense with G.O.O.D. Music and you best believe that Sean is not about to “Switch Up”.

The second single from his upcoming album Hall of Fame: Memoirs of a Detroit Player, “Switch Up” is all about staying true to those closest to you. With fellow G.O.O.D. Music member, Common, jumping on the beat next to him, Sean flaunts his style and riches on “Switch Up”. But even with all this new found glory, Big Sean has remembered those who have stood by him and proclaims he will never “Switch Up” on his clique.

Listen to “Switch Up” below.