The top 12 beards in Philly hip-hop

Photo courtesy of the artist
Photo courtesy of the artist

What Philly emcee has the best beard? That’s a question writer Michael Trampe set out to answer in his article The Top 12 Beards in Philadelphia Hip-Hop. Trampe writes:

Ask a Hip Hop fan to describe a Philadelphia Emcee only using a few words. I guarantee “Big Beard” will be in the description. Philadelphia has been widely known for it’s beards, and in Hip Hop it is no different.

Some of the top 12 beards in Philly hip-hop include Questlove and Black Thought, 4 Horsemen rappers Hollowman and Kre Forch, Tana Da Beast and Tone Trump. Our pal Reef The Lost Cauze is on the list and Freeway takes the number one spot. Reef’s got a new collaboration with producer and beat maker Emyndalbum, The Fast Way. Below, watch a Key Studio Session we did with Reef a couple years back in the WXPN studios. Check out the full list here, and let us know who’s missing from the list.


Reef the Lost Cauze releases new single “I Woke Up Early On My Born Day”


Reef the Lost Cauze | photo via
Reef the Lost Cauze | photo via

Reef the Lost Cauze celebrated his birthday last week with the release of a new single “I Woke Up Early On My Born Day.”  Opening with a string of thank-yous to Haj (of Dumhi, the producer of the track), his fans, family and son, the song covers broad Philadelphia territory name dropping LeSean “Shady” McCoy, Riley Cooper and Amaroso’s rolls just to mention a few.


The Week So Far: 10 must-read stories on The Key (incl. Jessica Pratt, Northern Arms, Gene Shay)

Father John Misty | Photo by Noah Silvestry |
Father John Misty | Photo by Noah Silvestry |

Get caught up on the week’s shows with reviews and photos from appearances by Miguel, Pearl Jam and more [link]

Congratulations to XPN Folk Show host Gene Shay, who will be inducted into the Philadelphia Walk of Fame today [link]

Read XPN host Mike Vasilikos’s review of Dr. Dog‘s B-Room, this week’s featured album [link]

San Francisco’s Jessica Pratt performed unreleased songs for this week’s Folkadelphia Session [link]

The Wonder Years’ Nick Steinborn will release a solo EP next month; listen to a new song now [link]

Blayer Pointdujour & The Rockers Galore are throwing a Kompa party at The TLA with T-Vice in December [link]

Delco Pacers will celebrate the release of Stereo Streets at Milkboy on 11/14 [link]

Reef the Lost Cauze has announced a free show at Hard Rock Cafe tonight and a free song called “92 Flow” [link]

Northern Arms stopped by for a mysterious and powerful Key Studio Session [link]

Local rock band Rob, Lately has released a new EP called The Liar [link]


Free new song, free concert from Philly rapper Reef the Lost Cauze


Illustration via

Philly hip hop chameleon Reef the Lost Cauze and prolific South Philly producer/ beat extraordinaire Haj of Dumhi collaborate on the track “92 Flow” available for FREE here.

In addition to the free track, Reef will be performing with special guest STS (Sugar Tongue Slim) of the Roots crew and Caliph NOW this Thursday, October 24 at Hard Rock Cafe in Philly. The best part? The show is FREE, too.

If you’re not familiar with Haj, he’s been creating beats for a slew of underground artists to lay down on for years, from Reef the Lost Cauze to Burke the Jurke to Ethel Cee. Reef, who’s been rhyming since the tender age of 8, is no stranger to adding his lyrical insignia to Haj tracks. Aside from the Sirens on Snyder EP (featuring “92 Flow”), the two have worked together on plenty of collaborations since meeting in 2008. “92 Flow,” with its jazz-brass influence and funk beats, perfectly embodies the repeated line “listen to the groove, this how brothers rapped back in ’92,” and is guaranteed to have you toe tapping and head nodding the whole way through. Be sure to check out the FREE show at Hard Rock Cafe 10/24.


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark at Union Transfer, Family Vacation at Steel City Coffeehouse, JD McPherson at World Cafe Live, Reef the Lost Cause and Voss at The M Room

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark have been around since the late 70s, garnering critical acclaim as masters of new wave and earning the title “intelligent pop” from the release of their self-titled 1981 full length. Except for a small gap in the 2000s, the group has been consistently releasing material since the late 70s, including their most recent release, English Electric, which came out this summer.  Tonight, the godfathers of new wave play Union Transfer.  Click here for ticket info and check out one of their classic hits below.

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Download the new Reef The Lost Cauze x Haj from Dumhi EP Sirens on Snyder

Cover art by Kevin Jackson - @Chuise
Cover art by Kevin Jackson – @Chuise

The new Sirens On Snyder EP, a collaboration between Reef The Lost Cauze and producer Haj from Dumhi is out now. The EP features Random, Burke The Jurke, Ethel Cee and Side Effect and was produced by Haj, who writes this about the EP’s background (and his background with Reef):

Back in 2008, I met up with Reef the Lost Cauze for the first time. We made a song called “Squeeze” that night. We have made a LOT of songs together since.
Last October we were recording what would become B.Dawk and Reef was like “we might as well just knock out a little Ep, man.” I was like, “Let’s go!”
I won’t do anymore dialogue in this email. I promise.
So while Reef and Caliph were finishing up “Reef the Lost Cauze is Dead”, I started sketching some beats together and in about January, we started rocking out on Wednesday nights in the basement.

You can check out the music video for “Moonshine” here and stream / download the album below.


Tonight’s Concert Picks: Parquet Courts at PhilaMOCA, Sir Sly at Johnny Brenda’s, Alo Brasil at Underground Arts, Lentil Fest at The Fire and more

parquet courts

Post-punk quartet Parquet Courts headline an eclectic line-up at PhilaMOCA tonight.  Back in Philadelphia for the third time this year, Parquet Courts continue to tour in support of their debut full-length Light Up Gold, which just got a proper label release through indie label What’s Your Rupture.  Tickets and information for tonight’s all-ages show with Scott & Charlene’s Wedding, Amanda X and Household can be found here.  Watch Parquet Courts perform “Master of My Craft” and “Borrowed Time” live on WNYC below.

One of the stand-out bands at March’s SXSW, Sir Sly make their way to Philadelphia tonight for a show at Johnny Brenda’s.  With an EP plus a few more tracks released, the band has quickly made it clear that they will operate in the realm of expansive, catchy pop hooks.  Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show with JMSN and The Last Royals can be found here.  Watch a new video for “Found You Out” below and download “Gold” here.

Local Brazilian band Alo Brasil plays Underground Arts tonight.  More than just a performing band, Alo Brasil features an interactive live show influenced by African rhythms like samba, maracatu and more.  Though often accompanied by costumed dancers, for their recurring “Underground Sessions” Alo Brasil has a refreshed line-up of musicians.  Tickets and information for tonight’s 21+ show can be found here, or on the Facebook event page here.  Watch a promo video for Alo Brasil below.

Lentil Fest continues at The Fire tonight, with performances by Kuf Knotz, Nicos Gun, Reef the Lost Cauze, Mike “Slo-Mo’ Brenner, Gedeon Luke and Brady & the Bear.  In support of Lentil the french bulldog (born with a cleft pallate), all proceeds will benefit the French Bulldog Rescue Network, Street Tails Animal Rescue and  Tickets and information can be found here.  Watch Kuf Knotz perform at the 2011 XPoNential Music Festival below.

Also happening: XPN welcomes The Smithereens to The Sellersville Theater; XPN welcomes Free Energy to the North Star Bar.  Tickets and information for both shows can be found on the XPN Concert Calendar.


Lentil Fest! benefit with Kuf Knotz, Nicos Gun, Reef The Lost Cauze, Sean Hoots, The Lawsuits, and more at The Fire on May 4

seanhoots On Saturday, May 4th and Sunday, May 5th, The Fire plays host to a benefit with proceeds going to The French Bulldog Rescue Network, the Street Tails Animal Rescue (STAR), and the Children’s Craniofacial Association. Performers on Saturday, May 4th include: Kuf Knotz, Nicos Gun, and Reef The Lost Cauze. On Sunday, May 5th, the lineup includes: The Lawsuits, Spirit and Dust, North Lawrence Midnight Singers, Anjuli Josephine, Attia Taylor, and Sean Hoots. Go here for tickets and more information about the shows.


This Is Radio Reef! Download episode 2 of Reef the Lost Cauze’s Podcast

RadioReef2Philly rapper Reef the Lost Cauze is back with the latest two-hour episode of podcast, Reef Radio. He kicks it off riffing on Brad Paisley and L.L. Cool J’s much-panned collaboration “Accidental Racist” before moving into the Color Me Badd classic “I Wanna Sex U Up” and an extended guest appearance from New York MC J-Zone, who talks about his new book Root For The Villain: Rap, Bull$hit, and a Celebration of Failure. Listen and download the podcast below.