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  • Writer's pictureJoey Karandy

The New York Artists You Have to Hear

Throughout rap history we've come to recognize the massive influence of New York hip-hop. Although southern rappers and the southern sound seems to be at the forefront in much of what the everyday listener hears today, most of the first rappers came from New York. Currently there are several rappers in New York, creating dope music, that I feel aren't necessarily receiving the love and listens they deserve.

Sha Mula:

Sha is coming straight from Brooklyn and when he applies pressure to the beats his producer drops for him, he doesn't let them breathe. Sha's flow is most comparable to an AK-47 or an Uzi. When throwing on one of Sha's tracks you can expect to hear countless lyrical punchlines bar after bar and line after line. His songs contain some of the traditional New York lyrical content older hip-hop lovers are so desperately looking for in this age of rap. "On Go" is one of his breakout songs, where he and frequent collaborator Chase Benji trade bars back to back throughout. Listening to this song only results in you being motivated or wanting to get after the bag. Another track that by Sha you can't ignore is called "Smart," hailing from his project "Plots and Plans," where Sha attacks a beat containing a catchy steel drum rhythm. Sha's militant flow is what makes him a definite add on the playlist and what lands him on my list. Look out for his upcoming project "Chase'N Mula" coming summer 2019.


Lonely, some may know him as dalonelypimp, is the only producer on this list of New York artists you must be in tune with. Hailing from Albany, lonely has some of the most intriguing beats I've heard. In some of my favorite lonely produced projects, such as "Wuss Poppin" by Krimelife Ca$$, lonely creates a very upbeat mood using quick hi-hat hits, which help create solid cadence for the rapper. Lonely is responsible for a lot of production for the very talented music and fashion collective G-corp/Glockstar. But lonely's talent doesn't end at up-tempo beats, as he's also sampled older rap beats and modernized them into absolute bangers. The song I'm talking about in particular is "Cassie" by Glockstar Dimi, where lonely takes P. Diddy's Cassie beat and alters it into an innovative creation of its own. You can't help but sing the chorus, "Life's a game, say-less, I finesse, huh." Another song I want to highlight where lonely mixes some abstract sounds with rapid hi-hat hits is "Bling" by Comethazine. To check out more of Lonely's work, look out for the Glockstar Friday's where new music is posted to the G-corp SoundCloud each Friday.

Chase Benji:

Also born and raised in the borough of Brooklyn, chase originally gained traction from consistently posting his freestyles to social media like YouTube, Instagram, etc. Chase contains the same lyrical potential as Sha Mula. Chase brings a different approach to the beat as he usually throws a few lyrical jabs in a row then lets the listener absorb the content. "The old me" is one of my personal favorite songs by Chase, where he adds a slower melodic flow with hard hitting lyricism. Chase is most known for his quotable similes, ie: "I feel like Kaepernick, my team move with 49's" (Song: My Dogs – Flamelist EP) Chase also excels at bringing thought worthy punchlines to more modern, 808 heavy beats.

ABG Neal:

Last but not least, one of my personal favorite artists to listen to right now on the list is ABG Neal from Brooklyn. Although ABG is rapping in an era where drug use is prominent, he himself does not enter into that realm, due to seeing mass drug use in the community he grew up in. ABG Neal has a personality built for rap. He has a 50 cent like attitude with the way he carries himself. No one can tell him anything, he does him. With regards to the music ABG is hands down one of the hardest rappers coming out right now.  His strong and gritty delivery is what really draws me to his music."Who's dat?" is one of the tracks by ABG Neal right now that is jumping. Neal’s captivating personality, combined with his jaw-dropping catchy bars like, "I don't care if you cute, B**ch I just want your car," is going to propel his sound in the genre of rap.

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