| Cult of Mac

Beastie Boys Story relives the beer-soaked glory days of hip-hop’s original hell-raisers [Review]


Beastie Boys Story: Mike Diamond, Adam Yauch and Adam Horovitz in 1993 from an archival photo used in “Beastie Boys Story,” premiering globally on Apple TV+ on April 24.
Beastie Boys turned hip-hop on its head, and a new doc captures the magic.
Photo: Apple TV+

Beastie Boys Story, director Spike Jonze’s endearing Apple TV+ documentary about the first white rap phenoms, proves as powerful as it is screamingly funny.

Jonze, a confidant and collaborator of the group since the Beasties’ experimental mid-career, exhibits an easy candor with his subjects. That familiarity allows all of them to open up, which is important when it comes to discussing their failures and losses.

Apple Music rebrands one of its most popular playlists


Apple Music's focus on hip-hop continues.
Apple Music's focus on hip-hop continues.
Screenshot: Apple

Apple Music has switched the names of one of its most popular playlists. “A-List: Hip-Hop” is now branded as “Rap Life,” and comes with a new show on Beats 1 radio.

The change was orchestrated by Ebro Darden, global editorial head of hip-hop and R&B at Apple Music. “Rap Life” will be promoted as a segment during Darden’s daily show on Beats 1. Apple is also launching a self-contained “Rap Life” show on Beats 1 every week.

UK hip-hop DJ Charlie Sloth leaves BBC for Apple Music


Charlie Sloth 1
Sloth during one of his famous "Fire in the Booth" segments.
Screenshot: BBC/YouTube

Following in the footsteps of fellow ex-BBC presenter Zane Lowe and others, UK-based hip-hop DJ Charlie Sloth will be leaving his job presenting on the BBC to join Apple Music.

Sloth is a presenter on both BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra. He has been a BBC broadcaster for the past decade, and is best known for hosting the popular rap freestyle segment, “Fire in the Booth.”

Apple Music hires another hip-hop expert from the BBC


Ryan Newman was formerly editor of 1Xtra, the BBC's main hip-hop and grime radio station.
Photo: Apple

Apple recently hired Ryan Newman, a key player from the BBC’s main hip-hop and grime radio station, 1Xtra.

It’s not clear exactly what role Newman will perform at Apple Music. However, he was one of the brains behind shaping and implementing 1Xtra’s musical direction. He could perform a similar job at Apple.

How Jimmy Iovine plans to save Apple Music’s ‘soul’


Apple Music boss Jimmy Iovine at WWDC 2015.
Photo: Apple

Apple Music has already racked up more than 30 million paid subscribers, but according to boss Jimmy Iovine, the company still has a long way to go before its satisfied with its streaming service.

The former Beats CEO turned Apple exec sat down for a new interview along with Beats 1 DJ Zane Lowe to talk about the future of the service. During the wide-ranging discussion, the Apple Music team revealed how it thinks music streaming has to change in order to dominate free rivals like YouTube.

Jay Z takes shots at Jimmy Iovine and Apple Music on latest album


Jay Z
Jay Z's got 99 problems, and Apple Music is one.
Photo: Flickr/NRK P3

The new album from Jay Z is nearly impossible to stream through legal methods this week, but if you are one of the lucky few that gets to listen to it, you’ll hear the Jigga Man taking shots at one of his biggest rivals: Apple Music.

On one of the tracks for his album 4:44, Jay Z — owner of the struggling music streaming service Tidal — calls out Apple Music boss Jimmy Iovine and talks about his beef with Apple saying he wants more than what Apple offers artists.

DJ Khaled is getting his own Apple Music show



Photo: DJ Khaled/Instagram

One of the biggest producers in hip hop (and Snapchat) is coming to Beats 1 Radio.

DJ Khaled revealed on Instagram that he has signed a deal to produce a weekly show for Apple Music called ‘We The Best’ that will broadcast every Friday night. To kick things off, Khaled is going big by exclusively debuting Future’s entire new album Purple Reign.

Check out the trailer below:

Soulja Boy’s latest repetitive trap song is all about iPhone


Trappin off my iPhone.
Trappin off my iPhone.
Photo: Soulja Boy

Rapper, producer and dance meme-maker Soulja Boy finally removed his regrettable Gucci forehead tattoo over Christmas weekend, and to celebrate he released a fresh new song that’s all about his love of Steve Jobs’ greatest gift to gangsters: the iPhone.

The new meme-worthy trap song blasts the same highly repetitive lyrics and catchy trap beats that turned Soulja Boy into a sensation in 2007 with his hit “Crank That.” Aptly titled “Trappin On My iPhone” (but not to be confused with Bigg Quan’s “Trappin Off My iPhone“), the ridiculous new song contains more than 40 iPhone references and talks about why true CEOs of the streets manage drug empires with the best smartphone, instead of a lame flip-phone burner.

Listen to the song below: