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What Are You Listening To?
Three New Yorkers take off their headphones and chat.
By Austin Duerst
What were you listening to when I came up to you, Danehsia?
"So Fresh, So Clean" by Outkast.
Listen: Outkast - "So Fresh, So Clean"
Are you a Big Boi or Andre 3000 kind of girl?
Andre. I didn't hear Big Boi's new CD, but I want to.
Have you heard the rumors that Andre 3000 has a solo album in the works?
[enthusiastically] Yes! And on the low, I think it'll probably crush Big Boi's.
On a scale from one to ten, how excited are you for it?
I wouldn't bootleg it, so that's like an eight [laughs].
What do you like particularly about his music?
I like that it's a mash-up of different kinds of artists, and that he finds inspiration in everything. I mean, every artist finds inspiration in the artists they grew up listening to, pieces of their favorites that they take from and put together to create their own thing. But I think because he's so far out there, it becomes something fresh. He's a lot like my favorite artist, Q-Tip. I would marry Q-Tip [laughs].
Are you excited for the A Tribe Called Quest documentary?
I already saw it! I intern for Hot 97, so we got advance tickets. I was looking for Q-Tip so hard at the screening! The movie is surprising, actually. I didn't know Phife Dawg and Q-Tip were actually beefing, but I think it was over some petty stuff — a he-said-she-said kind of mess. They have one more album that they want to do, and it's been rumored that they'll be working with Kanye West. So I'm excited about that.
What are some albums that have come out in the last year that you've really liked?
Everyone is going to say Beyonce, but I really don't care for Beyonce. It's weird. I listened to her new album, 4, and I was just like, "Eh..." It's regular Beyonce. Nothing new to me. Frank Ocean's new stuff is great. I know what's out is not his "official" album, but that's my summer jam. I just like how it's so different. Yeah, he uses Auto-tune, which sometimes people get on R&B artists for using because it's "cheating." But the stories he creates in such a short space of time are amazing. He can make you feel like you're there with him. That's the main album I'd say I've been truly smashing every day of my internship.
Whose album are you excited for that hasn't come out yet?
Kanye West and Jay-Z's Watch the Throne. It's going to be ridiculous. Two lyricists who are well known in the hip-hop game who are coming together to do their thing. It kind of reminds me of back in the early '90s when Native Tongues came out, which had members from De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest, and the Jungle Brothers. When they all came together to do those songs it was hot, and you couldn't say no to it because you had at least one favorite member in there. I think it will at least be a better combination than Jay-Z and R. Kelly. [laughs]
Listen: Kanye West and Jay-Z - "H.A.M."
What's a Kanye collaboration you'd love to see?
You never know what he's going to do. I wouldn't be surprised if his next project was with some opera singer. I'm trying to think of a nice, peanut-butter-and-jelly kind of answer for this question... I'd like to see Kanye and Adele. I would listen to that. I'd be crying.