5 Hip Hop and R&B Artists to Watch Out for in 2020

At the top of the year, it’s time to see which hip hop and r&b artists will be dropping new projects to hit the airwaves.

Without a doubt, 2019 proved to be another successful year in hip hop and r&b music. Rappers such as Tyler the Creator and Anderson Paak continue to impress listeners with genre bending projects like Igor and Ventura, while artists like Ari Lennox and Maxo Kream provide a throwback to the days when soul and hardcore rap reigned supreme. As the rest of 2020 rolls on, we look forward to new releases from some of the game’s hottest and up and coming figures.

The Weeknd – After Hours

Following a relatively quiet 2019 after the release of 2018’s My Dear Melancholy, The Weeknd returns on March 20th with the release of his fourth studio album After Hours. The first single,” Heartless,” finds the singer shrugging off relationships over a gritty Metro Boomin production, while “Blinding Lights” hearkens back to the 1980s synthpop influence of past projects such as “Starboy.” The self-titled track has been compared by some fans to his earlier work, most notably Trilogy, for its atmospheric production and dark lyrical content. Make sure to check out his After Hours Tour with opening acts Sabrina Claudio and Don Toliver, coming to San Diego on August 9th.

Drake – Untitled 6th Album

Following the meteoric success of 2018’s Scorpion and re-release of his seminal 2009 mixtape So Far Gone last year, it’s only a matter of time before the 6 God returns to dominate the airwaves again. As revealed in his Rap Radar interview with Elliott Wilson, Drake is working on a new album, with consideration towards a shorter track list akin to 2013’s Nothing Was the Same. His recent tracks “War,” “When to Say When,” and “Chicago Freestyle” all seem to hint at an introspective and aggressive rap-heavy vibe reminiscent to fan favorites like “5 AM in Toronto” and “0-100/The Catch Up.”

J.I.D – Untitled Album

The Atlanta-born MC has had a great 2019, largely off the strength of his 2018 album DiCaprio 2 and his contributions to the label compilation Revenge of the Dreamers III alongside fellow Dreamville Records label mates, most notably J.Cole. The sky is the limit for the rapper, as he plans to drop new music as revealed at the Grammy Awards. Whether it is a joint project with veteran producer No I.D. or not remains to be seen. Nonetheless, if you’re a fan of fast flows and complex rhyme schemes, J.I.D.’s upcoming work will be worth a listen.

Smino – Untitled Album

Smino has been hard at work since the release of his 2018 album NOIR. The St. Louis born rapper maintains his pace with the release of singles like “Trina” and “Reverend.” Additionally, he and fellow rappers Saba and Noname formed a trio called Ghetto Sage, with a single called “Haagen Dazs.” Smino’s features on Chance the Rapper’s The Big Day and Revenge of the Dreamers III raises the stakes for his next project as he builds his following.

Brent Faiyaz- Make It Out Alive

As previously covered in my previous article, Brent Faiyaz is part of a new wave of 1990s-esque r&b singers, with the release of his EP Fuck The World on February 7th. However, he is not done yet. As reported by Billboard, Faiyaz plans to drop his next project Make It Out Alive “as soon as possible.” Listeners may already have a taste of what to expect with the track “Been Away” off the aforementioned EP. Anyone looking for some r&b with some grit should watch out for Brent’s next moves for 2020.

Get ready for what 2020 has in store for us, whether the heavy hitters of the past decade sustain their run or a new wave of artists change the landscape as we know it.

Written By: Kristian Gonzales

Brianna’s Fauxchella

The sun is getting warmer; the flowers are starting to bloom; the fringe is coming out of storage! A combination of all three of these elements can only mean one thing… festival season is now upon us.  This weekend will be Weekend 1 at Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. Now I’m a struggling college student trying to stay on top of my Netflix bills, so with that being said, no. I have never been to Coachella, but I hope one day I can dance in the desert to the sounds of EDM and classic rock. Since I can only dream about this music festival I was offered to do a collaboration with TickPick since they are my resource for purchasing tickets fee-free.  Together we came up with a personal “fauxchella” that will fill my eardrums for this weekend. Here is my pick if I were to come up with a festival lineup:

Pearl Jam 

Now I am a big, BIG fan of Pearl Jam. They have been playing and performing together for ever 25 years. They have been on multiple world tours, selling out venues all over the globe. Now I haven’t seen them perform live, but it is definitely on my bucket list. I’ve read about their concerts, and I’ve seen tons of snippets online. Performing live is in their blood, and they know how to do it. Frontman, Eddie Vedder, instantly connects with the audience by singing straight into their eyes, giving away tons of tambourines, and sharing his setlist with the crowd. He is also known for sharing multiple bottles of wine with whoever is closest with an empty glass. Pearl Jam continues to rock, and they would be that perfect classic rock to headline for my line up. Sidenote: It is one of my dreams to get a tambourine from Eddie… so Eddie, if you’re reading this I am your biggest fan. Come over to my house for dinner after the show – whenever you’re in San Diego next.

 

Fleetwood Mac

I’m keeping that classic rock vibe going and to co-headline my lineup next would be Fleetwood Mac. I feel like they have some real happy grooves that will get the crowd going. Many songs from their 1977 album Rumours would be absolutely perfect. Also Stevie Nicks’ wardrobe from the late seventies will fit in just right from the flowy wraps and flower patterns.

Drake

Before you even say it, yes I know. Two classic rock bands and then Drake?! Yes! His rap songs will round out perfectly. The grooves to his songs will give a nice combination of different musical genres. Some of my personal favorite songs are Energy and one of his more recent tunes Right Hand. I feel like his lyrics are relatable, and the crowd would have fun watching him.

Ellie Goulding

I would be so excited to finally see Ellie Goulding perform live since she is like a festival queen! Some of my favorite songs from her are Army, I Need Your Love, and Love Me Like You Do. She is also able to collaborate will various DJs like Calvin Harris. She would be awesome at my festival because the whole crowd could jump up and down in anticipation of the beat getting dropped.

The Chainsmokers

Lastly I would have The Chainsmokers to add some more electric tunes to my festival. I like them a lot because their music is upbeat and deep. I can totally imagine myself checking out the art side of the festival with some Roses in the background.

 

I think that my personal fauxchella would be fun to go to – lots of options for any music lover out there. I want to give a big thanks to TickPick for reaching out to me and giving me something to think about! My personalized graphic is amazing! If my festival ever were to actually happen you could pick up your concert tickets on their website or if you are more into sports you could get the hookup on their NFL tickets page!

Have fun at all the music festivals coming up! Stay hydrated and wear sunscreen!