Nicki Minaj, Blu and Nottz and More – New Hip-Hop Projects

todayDecember 8, 2023 5

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The holiday season is still going strong and so is hip-hop when it comes to new music. Gift rapping this week finds a female rap icon delivering an album surrounded by hype, a proven rapper-producer duo paying homage to their ancestry with an entire EP, a melodic rhymer repping Los Angeles putting out a new project and more.

Nicki Minaj Drops Pink Friday 2 Album on Her Birthday

Just in time for the Barbz to celebrate her birthday, Nicki Minaj finally blesses her rabid legion of fans with her long-awaited new album, Pink Friday 2. The Queens-bred icon led the LP’s rollout with the September release of her pop-rap hybrid track “Last Time I Saw You.” The ATL Jacob-produced single peaked at No. 23 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and has since raked in over 42 million Spotify streams.

Also included on Pink Friday 2 is the complete version of “Big Difference,” a hard-hitting 808-driven track packed with battle bars that Nicki previewed during her performance at the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards. Five years in the making, Nicki’s fifth studio offering was originally slated to drop in October. However, after pushing the release back to Nov. 17, Minaj ultimately declared via Instagram Live that she would put out Pink Friday 2 to the masses on the date she was born, Dec. 8.

Leading up to the official release date, Nicki Minaj teased PF2 as “one of the greatest albums of all time.” The LP comes one month after Nicki and Ice Spice’s “Barbie World” was nominated in the Best Rap Song category for the upcoming 2024 Grammy Awards.

Read More: Nicki Minaj Sends Out Veiled Threats to Anyone on Her ‘List’ Ahead of Pink Friday 2 Release

Blu and Nottz Reunite for Their Third Collaborative EP Afrika

Blu and Nottz reunite for the release of their new EP, Afrika. For their third collaborative effort, the rapper-producer combo comes through with a 10-track concept project that they view as a “celebration of the rich history and culture of their ancestral homeland.”

Last week, Blu and Nottz previewed the EP with “Marcus Garvey” featuring Quelle Chris and Shad, a socially conscious track titled after the late world-renowned political activist of the same name. Afrika also includes guest appearances from Mickey Factz, Cashus King, Bloodmoney Perez and Black Shakespeare, among others.

In speaking on the project ahead of its release, Blu offered some insight into the direction of his lyrical content.

“These are lyrics that I needed to express to those who support my music so they can hold with them what I hold most important to who I am, African,” the former XXL Freshman explained in a statement. “I hope this project inspires many others to speak on the father and home of humanity, Afrika.”

Read More: Blu and Nottz Remember ‘Yesterday’ on Song With Sene and Elisa Meri

Kalan.FrFr Comes Through With Not Hard 2 Understand EP

After his last album 222 was praised as one of the best hip-hop projects of 2022, Kalan.FrFr closes out 2023 in the form of his new EP Not Hard 2 Understand. Throughout the six-song project, the Los Angeles rap-crooner stays true to the classic West Coast G-funk sound in a modern way with production from the likes of Mustard, Hitmaka and OG Parker, among others.

Singles from Not Hard 2 Understand include “Butterfly Coupe,” a catchy bop featuring Quavo, and “Ain’t Nothin,” a smooth, lighthearted take on enjoying the luxuries of life. In promoting the project, Kalan joined the Off the Porch podcast to offer some insight into his latest offering.

“It’s straight to the point,” Kalan.FrFr says bluntly as he explains why the EP is called Not Hard 2 Understand. “It’s straight to the point. It’s gon’ be the hardest s**t out.”

Check out other new projects this week from Night Lovell, Yung Bans, Rowdy Rebel, Hitkidd and more below.

  • Pink Friday 2

    Nicki Minaj

    Republic Records/UMG Recordings

    Republic Records/UMG Recordings
  • Afrika

    Blu and Nottz

    Nature Sounds/New World Order

    Nature Sounds/New World Order
  • Not Hard 2 Understand


    Roc Nation Records

    Roc Nation Records
  • Vol. 6

    Yung Bans

    1 Of 1/AWAL Recordings America Inc.

    1 Of 1/AWAL Recordings America Inc.
  • I Hope You’re Happy

    Night Lovell

  • Black Cottonwood

    Quelle Chris and Cavalier

    Old Soul Music

    Old Soul Music
  • The Warmest Winter Ever

    James Fauntleroy

    Sounds of Crenshaw, LLC

    Sounds of Crenshaw, LLC
  • Trophies

    Berner and OhGeesy

    Bern One Entertainment, LLC/Empire

    Bern One Entertainment, LLC/Empire
  • It’s Me, I’m the Problem

    Lil Poppa

    CMG/Interscope Records

    CMG/Interscope Records
  • Renegade

    Hitkidd (Gloss Up, Aleza, K Carbon and Slimeroni)

    Blac Noize!/Campsouth Records

    Blac Noize!/Campsouth Records
  • Merry Bhrismas

    Baby Stone Gorillas

    Park Money Records

    Park Money Records

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Written by: jarvis

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