The Top 13 Hip-Hop Songs For Summer

Free lunch, fire hydrants on full blast and beach chairs on the sidewalk—yep, the summer's here Need a hand composing a playlist to go along with a hot and lazy day's activities? Just in time for the official start of summer (and today's 90-plus temperatures), SOTC has put together a list of the best songs we like to hear while poolside, seaside, passenger-side, or just sitting in front of a fan watching Do The Right Thing. (No, "Hot In Herre" is not on the list.) Drums, please...

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The 10 Best Posse Cuts of 2010 (So Far)

Posse cuts are like friendlier versions of the WWE's Royal Rumble -- a platform designed to showcase all of the stars in the game, both up-and-coming and certified. Think back to the Main Source's 1991 "Live At The Barbecue," featuring Akinyele, Joe Fatal, and the debut of a rapper named Nas, or Big Pun's "Banned From TV" remix, featuring the murderer's row of N.O.R.E., Nature, Cam'ron, Jadakiss, and Styles P. More recently, there's been 2008's "Swagger Like Us"--T.I., Kanye West, Jay-Z, Lil Wayne, and M.I.A.--or last year's "Forever," featuring Drake, Kanye West, Eminem, and Lil Wayne.

This year in particular, the posse cut seems to be in vogue. Kanye West has been the most visible artist to use the posse cut approach recently, stacking the majority of his G.O.O.D. Friday freebies with numerous MCs and singers. West also recently announced "All Of The Lights", the third single from his upcoming album, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, will feature 11 artists (including Elton John!). But it's not just West calling all MCs to the booth. For whatever reason, great rappers have been teaming up a lot lately, and the result has been a hip-hop fan's wet dream. Every week, there's either some new remix or original song with numerous MCs trying to lay down the verse fans will talk about long after the song is playing. Here are ten of 2010's best posse cuts so far, complete with a verdict on who won each one:

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Gucci Mane, DMC, Andrew W.K., Cool Kids, Big Freedia, Tim Harrington, And Doug E. Fresh Played The Last Jelly Pool Party, Possibly Ever

And so it ends, the fifth and most calamitous season of Jelly Pool Parties, with a finale abruptly canceled and grudgingly reinstated, in the end overloaded with a semi-secret parade of random-ass rappers, semi-secretly headlined by your friend and mine Gucci Mane. Never has the line "I don't wear tight jeans like the white boys/But I do get wasted like the white boys" had so much resonance.

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Footage of Under 100's Final Show Surfaces

Well, probably the final show, anyway. [Update: Guess not. Word we just got says there was a Grooms, Ducktails, Talk Normal, and Marnie Stern show there last Saturday night. Has Dame changed his mind about shutting things down?] This These Are Powers/Cool Kids/Jay Electronica footage (not all from the same night) was filmed in the now infamous Dame Dash basement spot in the two weeks before undue press attention (ahem) got the place shut down, likely for good. But video survives--even Dame looks like he's having fun. Ah well. [Street Logik/Creative Control]

The Cool Kids Just Do Not Stop Soundtracking Basketball Commercials

For those who count such things, let the record show that this is the second basketball related commercial the Cool Kids have soundtracked in the last year, following an NBA2K9 spot in which Kevin Garnett inexplicably danced to "Pennies." Here, "A Little Bit Cooler" plays over a really long one-on-one game between puppet Kobe and puppet LeBron. Nuff respect to whoever operates these marionettes--this Nike commercial features a full fifty seconds of muppets dribbling--but this clip would be interminable if not for the audio, which sounds as mean and slick and swaggerish as it did when we voted for the track as one of the ten best of last year.

The Cool Kids Have Officially Gone Fishing

Unabashed '88 rap obsessives Cool Kids, the two flat-out most competent and savvy young rappers currently doing hard time as objects of internet affection, have a new mixtape out: Gone Fishing, available for free download at Both Mikey Rocks and Chuck Inglish produce, although one gets the sense it's mostly Chuck, and in this respect, they are their own best friends: Inglish's beats are exactly as bass-thick, synth-wide, sample-heavy, and ambling as the duo's throwback raps, which here are in fine form. Note the vicious internal rhyme in Mikey's "Popcorn" couplet, "Man I toe the line a lot I'm trying to write a book 'bout/How to get vagina when you're hanging at the cookout," which tells you pretty much everything you need to know about the cheeky and charming way craft and subject matter mingle in the songs these two write.

The Teenage Cool Kids Scorn Lawyers, Attempt to Challenge the Cool Kids to Veggie Dog Eating Contest, Tempt Fate, Patience

Having never been personally served with a cease-and-desist order (we stick to misdemeanors, mostly), we can't pretend to know what the appropriate response to one might be. But a hunch tells us that going on YouTube to challenge the Cool Kids--who've just served your band, the Teenage Cool Kids, with a C&D letter of notification re: what appears to an outsider to be a relatively justified instance of sorting out just whose band is going to be called what--to a veggie dog eating contest might not be the shrewdest route to take. Legally speaking. Also: Somehow we doubt the lawyers for the Cool Kids will feel much threatened, or even slightly swayed, by the sight of two glasses-wearing indie-rock dudes in their bedroom talking into a laptop, the blue light from the screen regrettably reflecting off both pairs of lenses. [h/t Walkie Talkies]

The Cool Kids Will Not Tolerate You Naming Your Indie-Rock Act Teenage Cool Kids Or Otherwise Interfering In Their Unrelenting Music Industry Ascent

The advent of our client's ascent in the music industry has been unrelenting.

So it turns out your reward for having a surprisingly magical SXSW--in which your Built to Spill-reminiscent band with its Cool Kids-reminiscent bandname plays a few good shows out in the sun with Eat Skull and Ponytail--is a March 24th-dated cease and desist order. Teenage Cool Kids--"four shark-tooth-necklace wearing bros" from Denton, Texas who play pleasantly Merge-era indie-rock--were served on Tuesday by lawyers purporting to represent the other Cool Kids, hipster rap duo extraordinaire out of Chicago, Illinois. To wit:

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    Please be advised we represent Creating Art for Kids Everywhere, LLC ("CAKE"), the owner of all right, title, interest in and o the United States registered trademark, THE COOL KIDS (the "THE COOL KIDS MARK")(attached hereto as Exhibit A is Registration Certificate). It has come to our attention that your use of the name, TEENAGE COOL KIDS (the "Infringing Name") in commerce associated with entertainment services, audio performances, live music, live online concerts, recorded music, and concerts, infringes our client's federally registered trademark rights and dilutes the products and services associated with THE COOL KIDS Mark.

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