Happy Birthday, America! It's hard to believe you're 238 years old already.
Though I am well aware of your bloody history, and have lost all faith in the ability of your leaders to serve your citizens, I still love you, and will always call you home.
Our founding fathers constructed this great country on the belief that we are all endowed with the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
With that in mind, what better way to pursue happiness and celebrate the independence of our nation (besides blowing shit up, of course) than with some great, free music? Enjoy!
Amerigo Gazaway - The Big Payback Vol. 3: J.B. & The Soul Mates (Radio Edits)
Amerigo Gazaway did it again, this time combing an all-star lineup of lyricists with the funk-driven soul of none other than James Brown. With guest appearances from Bob Marley, Nas, Busta Rhymes, The Notorious B.I.G., and more, Amerigo pays tribute to the God Father of Soul in a way that few producers can. Feel free to bump this at your 4th of July cookout - it's all radio edits, so it's safe for the kids. If you see anyone not dancing, or at the very least bobbing their head; kick them out, they have no soul.
Radarada- First Edition
First Editon is the debut album from Radarada, "Buffalo's freshest hip hop outfit." They're fairly new to the music scene in the city but if you've been to a few hip hop shows over the past year, you've probably seen them, and are well aware that this band knows how to rock a live show.
First edition is more of the same unique fusion of live jazz & funk combined with rap lyrics and crooning. The album is available for free stream on the group's bandcamp/soundcloud, as promised (after all this is free music Friday); so you could just do that, but you should support local music and buy it for just $3.
The Stepkids - Wanderers
Recording artists approach their work from many different perspectives, thinking about what might work in a live setting, or with their friends or a particular audience. The truest approach might be to record for oneself. The three songs on The Stepkids latest release, Wanderers, were originally written for their latest album Troubadour, but ended up being completed free from any limitations of what might work in any setting. The band explains:
"The songs in this collection are different than anything else we've done. We wrote and recorded them at the height of our experimentation. We spared no artistry and weren't limited to any business strategy, a target audience, single considerations, or limitations to the style that we established with our first album. In other words, for better or worse, you will never again hear anything like this from us, let alone anyone else. Enjoy." – The Stepkids (Jeff, Dan, Tim)
You can download here.
Klaus Layer - For the People Like Us
This dope instrumental album comes to us all the way from Germany. Its 12 tracks are reminiscent of golden era, early 90's hip hop. The songs have a rough, lo-fi quality to them almost to make it sound as if it's being played from a tape deck. Check it out.