Keeping it on the smooth tip, Swizz Beatz wraps up his Monster Mondays with a new joint from wifey, Alicia Keys. This one is called Speechless ft Eve and it rides that Devil in a New Dress beat from Kanye’s album. Hotness.

Click here to download.  If you missed any of Swizz Beatz’ excellent Monster Mondays, click here for a great recap from Nahright.com.

Vado and Raheem DeVaughn make some gangsta Quiet Storm hip-hop with It’s You. Check it out.

This one is surprisingly dope.  Vado and Raheem mesh much better than you would expect.

Click here to download.  It’s a fine line between corny and laid back, but when a hip-hip ballad is done properly it’s a good look.  Here are a few others that have straddled the line well:

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You heard how Asher Roth and Nottz get down on Dontcha Wanna Be (My Neighbor). Now check out how they rock the mixtape.

If you missed, Dontcha Wanna Be (My Neighbor), it was on the criminally slept on Nottz album You Need This Music. Click here to download the mixtape and listen below:

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Is 50 Cent done as a rapper? Not if you listen to his new song Sunday Morning.

It’s not vintage 50, but it’s still worth a listen (or a few).

Click here to download.

Respect your roots. Hip-hop was built on jazz, soul and FUNK. Tonight hip-hop lost funk legend Teena Marie.

Teena Marie: 1956 – 2010. There will be many tributes to Ms. Marie, who was known to bring the funk both solo and with her longtime partner in crime, Rick James, but tonight we will let the music do the talking. Tonight, we celebrate Lady Tee:

Behind the Groove

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Square Biz

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Lovergirl

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Fire and Desire

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And, of course, her classic Ooh La La La

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…which spawned these hip-hop classics:

The Fugees – Fugee-La (the sample starts at 1:07):

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Grand Puba – Fat Rat (the sample starts at 1:32):

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Props to whosampled.com for the sample info.

Merry Christmas to all. May your years only get better.

Christmas Rap

Christmas in Hollis

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Christmas in Harlem

T’was the night before Christmas and all through the house the mouse was rocking to the new Rick Ross mixtape.

The mixtape will drop later today.  In the meantime, check out RetroSuperFuture ft Wiz Khalifa, which will be on the mixtape.

Click here to download.