Lil Peep’s Cause of Death Confirmed as Overdose of Xanax and Fentanyl

Lil Peep’s cause of death has reportedly been revealed.

According to TMZ, the Pima County Medical Examiner’s office found that the rising rapper died from an an overdose of Fentanyl and Xanax, confirming previous suspicions surrounding his cause of death. The toxicology report states there was no alcohol found in his system; however, there were traces of various other drugs, including marijuana, cocaine, Tramadol, Hydrocodone, and Oxycodone.

The medical examiner’s office deemed the cause of death “accidental.”

The news arrives nearly one month after Lil Peep was found dead on a tour bus in Tuscon, Arizona, where he was scheduled to perform. He was 21.

In the wake of his death, a number of hip-hop figures have spoken out about rampant drug use within the genre. Wiz Khalifa told Complex he has encouraged his friends to stop consuming lean; Lil Uzi Vert announced he was giving up drugs; and Vic Mensa ​called out rappers who glorify drug use in an effort to sell records.  

“To be honest, it’s like, on one hand I almost don’t even feel that I have a right to chastise anybody because I’ve fucking done it […] I regret it,” Mensa told Billboard. “I don’t rap about it anymore, but I have some lines about taking Xanax. I just think that we’re in such a dangerous place now because it’s been normalized and the drug abuse has been reduced to like a marketing tactic.”

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Quavo and Donald Glover Are Back in the Studio

Quavo and Donald Glover (Childish Gambino) are up to something.

On Friday night, the Migos member shared an Instagram photo of him and Gambino standing in the studio, presumably working on a new project. He captioned the image: “H U N C H O G L O V E R N A W F A T L A N T A.”

 

H U N C H O G L O V E R N A W F A T L A N T A

A post shared by QuavoHuncho (@quavohuncho) on Dec 1, 2017 at 8:20pm PST

Fans have been holding their collective breath for a Gambino x Migos record since 2015, when the “Redbone” rapper revealed he had contacted the trio’s management to get something rolling. Anticipation grew after Gambino’s 2017 Golden Globes acceptance speech for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy. The Atlanta creator praised the trio for contributing to the series and delivering one of the biggest hits of 2016.

“I really want to thank the Migos—not for being in the show [Atlanta]—but for making ‘Bad and Boujee,’” Gambino said. “Like that’s the best song ever.”

Shortly after the awards ceremony, Gambino told TMZ that a collaboration between him and Migos was inevitable.

“I have to. They're Zone 6. That's Atlanta,” he said.

Offset also confirmed a collaboration was on the way.

“When we did the [Atlanta] episode, I went ahead and told [Gambino], I was like ‘We got to get into the studio after this […] We going to keep building an empire with this. We might as well get into the studio’,” Offset told TMZ. “[Gambino] was also with it.”

Back in October, Quavo shared a silent video of Migos, Gambino, and Lil Yachty hanging out in the studio. Because there was no sound or any details—other than an Oct. 8 timestamp—fans were left to speculate. Could the long-awaited Migos x Gambino record be around the corner? Could it appear on their upcoming Culture II album? Stay tuned.

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Post Malone Says There’s Not a Lot of ‘Real Sh*t’ in Hip-Hop These Days

Post Malone claims contemporary hip-hop is lacking “real shit.”

During a filmed interview with Poland’s Newonce, the “Rockstar” artist advised people to stay away from the genre if they’re looking for something deep and intellectually stimulating.

“If you're looking for lyrics, if you're looking to cry, if you're looking to think about life, don't listen to hip-hop,” Malone said at around the 7:20 mark. “There's great hip-hop songs where they talk about life and they really spit that real shit, but right now, there's not a lot of people talking about real shit.”

It’s a pretty bold and surprising statement from someone who has had a decent amount of success within hip-hop; however, Malone insists there is a time and place for the genre.  

“Whenever I'm trying to have a good time and stay in a positive mood, I listen to hip-hop,” he explained. “Because it's fun. I think hip-hop is important because it brings people together in a beautiful, happy way.”

You can watch Malone’s full interview below. He touches on a wide variety of subjects, including Kylie Jenner’s influence, working with Metro Boomin, his love for Elvis Presley, and Kanye West’s creative process.

On Monday, Malone announced his highly anticipated sophomore album, Beerbongs and Bentleys, would arrive next week. The rapper revealed the news during a podcast interview with H3.

“It's gonna be done. I'm gonna finish it this week,” he said when asked about the project’s status. “It'll be out December 1 at midnight.”

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Meet Willo Perron, the Creative Genius Behind Jay-Z’s ‘4:44’ Album Art and Tour

Hunched over his laptop, Willo Perron is scrolling through a digital mock-up of an unreleased project for Jay-Z’s 4:44 album. Over several peach-colored pages, in simple black Larish Neue font, there are release dates for 4:44 in different countries, photos of the 4:44 ads plastered on billboards, buses, taxis, and subway stations that teased the rapper’s thirteenth studio album, and more. “It’s really a manual for the 4:44 brand,” he says, sitting in his West Hollywood studio on an October afternoon.

Perron, a multi-disciplinary designer and director, collaborated with Jay-Z to concept the packaging and creative direction for 4:44. He designed the album artwork and played a seminal role in the brilliant rollout that included the mysterious “4:44” ads and the black and white teaser starring Oscar winner Mahershala Ali, which premiered during the 2017 NBA Finals. “We went through a few other iterations of what the record was going to be called,” Perron says in his first extensive interview. “When we landed on 4:44, I was like, ‘It’s just this color and these digits.’ We wanted to do a really didactic campaign.”

While he won’t say much about it, he also designed the set and stage visuals for the official 4:44 Tour, which kicked off late last month. During the show, Jay-Z performed on an octagonal stage, placed in the middle of the stadium, with eight vertically-suspended screens hovering above him that showed various camera angles from the stage and footage of peers and family, some of which he erased himself from.

Perron first worked with Jay-Z on the rapper’s 2012 American Express UNSTAGED performance at South by Southwest. But he’s been behind the scenes of other memorable album covers, live shows, retail spaces, and videos for years. In 2008, he worked on Kanye West’s critically acclaimed Glow in The Dark Tour. Rihanna has enlisted him to creative direct many of her performances, including her Diamonds Tour, ANTI Tour, and her 2016 MTV Video Vanguard Award production. “I guess after years of successful Kanye and Rihanna stuff, you eventually get that call [from Jay-Z],” he says. He also designed the set and stage visuals for Drake’s 2013 Would You Like A Tour? and built several of Stüssy’s retail locations. Most recently, he was responsible for the blockbuster Nike x NBA global launch, where the league’s new jerseys were revealed behind three moving big screen monoliths.

The titles creative director and art director have become commonplace today. Nearly all of the top acts in music have at least one consigliere in their team. The Weeknd has La Mar Taylor. Mike Carson oversees Big Sean’s project. West, over the years, has built an entire team of collaborators under Donda, his well-regarded creative company. But when Perron first worked with West, the profession didn’t exist. He didn’t set out to become one either. “Back in the day, I think that was more management in the artists’ ears,” he says. “I don’t think anyone really cared about titles, but I was like, ‘If I’m going to do this everyday, with this guy, it can’t just be ‘Kanye’s entourage has a couple creative guys in there.’ It felt like a lack of respect for the craft. But it definitely wasn’t intentional.”

“Willo is the original,” adds Matt George, the man behind streetwear emporiums Nomad and Stüssy in Toronto and Vancouver. George has known Perron for almost 15 years and has worked with him on various projects, including Stüssy’s brick and mortar locations. “Willo’s one of the guys that made that term synonymous with these kids. You hear people all the time now say they’re creative directors, but he is the truest sense of that word.”

For the last two decades or so, Perron has masterminded some of the biggest projects, for some of the biggest artists and brands in the world. But after all the success, where does he want to go from here?

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Disney Unveils ‘The Lion King’ Cast Featuring Donald Glover and Beyoncé

Disney revealed the full voice cast on Twitter.

Here’s Why Drake’s ‘More Life’ May Not Be Nominated for a Single Grammy

Do you remember where you were when Drake dropped More Life? I imagine most of you do, with headphones up LOUD to the Apple Music broadcast of the playlist that felt like the best of Drake's albums. That's right, even if it's one of the best albums of 2017 (so far), Drake's always considered this to be a playlist (which would explain the volume of collaborators throughout the release). That said, it's still surprising that, according to HITS Daily Double, Drake has not entered More Life for “any 'genre album' awards.” Even the official Grammys website took a look at Drake riding the wave of the digital revolution with this playlist, but the question is, why?

It's hard to say. Many have been conflicted on what to call More Life. Sure, Drake says it's a playlist, but what do we, the critics, call it when it comes to breaking down the best releases of the year? It's hard to ignore the release when literally every song hit the Billboard Hot 100 chart. It could also just be a sign o' the (digital) times, where the confines of what denoted an album or a mixtape or a “project” or whatever are virtually unnecessary. The thing is, just doing a bit of a glance at Drake's history can (hopefully) help us shed some light on why More Life would not have been submitted for genre album awards for the Grammys.

Drake still doesn't consider it an album

Drake, and his crew, are adamant that More Life should be treated as a playlist, and not a proper album follow-up to Views. Nineteen85 told Billboard that because Drake had “so many good ideas,” he “just wants to put it out without making it a big ordeal.” He also alluded to the idea that Drake “has a bunch of people in a space, hanging out,” as well as saying More Life somehow helped “introduce new music and new artists to the rest of the world.” You might think that's crazy, but the average Drake listener wasn't up on Black Coffee or Jorja Smith before he featured them on this release.

Even the “more tune for ya headtop” drop during the initial release (which debuted on OVO Sound Radio before popping up on Apple Music) made this feel more like Drake just running through a gaggle of bangers that he was sitting on without a proper destination, as opposed to a refined statement. Hell, it was 22 tracks, with little to no interludes, which made for more of a mixtape vibe than anything.

Drake has some issues with the Grammys

Back in February of 2017, Drake sat down with DJ Semtex for an interview that was recorded the day after the Grammys. In it, Drake explained why he wasn't feeling the Recording Academy for, in essence, pigeonholing him and his output, primarily because of “Hotline Bling,” which won two Rap Grammys (Best Rap Song and Best Rap/Sung Performance) despite Drake not spitting a single bar on the track.

“I’m a black artist, I’m apparently a rapper, even though 'Hotline Bling' is not a rap song,” Drake said. “The only category that they can manage to fit me in is in a rap category, maybe because I’ve rapped in the past or because I’m black.”

Maybe Drake decided to be super petty, dropping a project that he knew had some Grammy-worthy heat on it that he wouldn't submit to the Grammys out of spite. You almost hope that these rumors are true and Drake never speaks on it, just because he can. Keep it 100: even if Kendrick Lamar and Jay Z put out some critically-acclaimed albums in 2017, going up against Drake's More Life in a Rap Album category would be interesting.

The bigger statement here, though, is Drake sort of carving a lane all his own. He can and does rap on the regular, and has had loads of success in the rap game, but he's also surpassed the usual “rap” goals, and is a bona fide pop star. No one wants to be looked at as one particular thing, especially when they've exhausted that box. Maybe Drake is just looking for his proper respect and figured ducking the Grammys was the best statement he could make.

Drake's more focused on his next album

Oh, you didn't know? You must not be following Drake on the 'gram. The 6 God has been posting a number of studio shots since the tail-end of summer 2017, and said he was “about to go back to making this new album” during OVO Fest back in August. With no real word on when we will be hearing new material, or when this new album would be released, it really has been quiet on the new Drake music front. He's taking in movies and basketball games, and we have to imagine that these exercises are breaks for inspiration outside of the studio, where he has to be hyper-focused on topping Views.

At the end of the day, these aren't confirmed rumors; we won't 100 percent know that More Life isn't up for anything until the 60th Grammy nominees are revealed on Nov. 28. That is, unless Drake comes out and confirms these reports. Again, he might not even need to, though; mans might not even be thinking on the next batch of Grammy awards. Drake's probably so focused he's working on the 61st Grammys ceremony.

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Carmelo Anthony’s Son Is One of the Main Reasons He Ended Up on the Thunder

When Isaiah Thomas got traded to the Cavaliers as part of the Kyrie Irving deal this summer, he wasn’t happy about it. At all. In fact, he’s still not all that thrilled with the way things went down, and he has committed himself to not speaking to Celtics General Manager Danny Ainge for the foreseeable future. But there was one person who was ecstatic when he found out Thomas had been traded: His own son James.

“LEBRON! LEBRON JAMES!” his son yelled when he found out about the trade, according to a piece Thomas penned for The Players’ Tribune. “Dad—Dad. You get to play with LeBron James!”

And it sounds like there’s another famous NBA player’s son who was also incredibly happy when he found out that his dad had been traded to a contender.

Carmelo Anthony spoke with The New York Times this week, ahead of the Thunder’s season-opening game against the Knicks on Thursday night. He revealed that long before he considered waiving his no-trade clause to accept a trade that would take him to Oklahoma City, his son Kiyan came to him and told him that he should consider making a move to the Thunder. Carmelo hadn’t thought about it much up until that point, but he said it definitely played a role in his final decision to go to OKC.

“My son said he wanted me to play for OKC,” Carmelo said. “Even before OKC was in the picture.”

Carmelo suggested it wasn’t the only time he had discussed the possibility of a trade with his son, but he said Kiyan was pretty adamant about the idea of him playing alongside Russell Westbrook and Paul George.

“My son has a basketball mind,” he said. “So I will always throw little topics at him. He was like, 'Dad, where are you getting traded to?' I told him, 'I don’t know, where do you think I should go?' He said: 'You really want me to give you my opinion? I think you should go to OKC.' It worked out.”

It sure did—and OKC fans have Kiyan to thank.

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Elsewhere in his interview with the NYT, Carmelo addressed the fractured relationship he had with Phil Jackson. He admitted that he only spoke to Jackson twice all last season, and accused Jackson of trying to trade him away from the Knicks “for a bag of chips.” He also spoke on how difficult it was to deal with it all while also trying to focus on playing basketball.

“When I signed with the Knicks, I wanted to be in New York and I believed in Phil,” he said. “Then last year it went to: I was being pushed out. There were things being said about me that I didn’t know where they were coming from. And I still had to go to the gym and play and practice and deal with the media, answer all those questions every day.”

You can check out the Times’ full piece on Carmelo ahead of his game against the Knicks here.

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Aaron Rogers Carted off Field With Throwing Shoulder Injury (UPDATE)

Green Back Packers Pro Bowl quarterback and former league MVP Aaron Rodgers is questionable to return to game action after a tackle by Minnesota Vikings linebacker sent him to the locker room. The play in question happened during the first quarter with Rodgers rolling out of the pocket to his right with Barr pressuring him. As Rodgers released the ball, Barr landed a hit that caused Rodgers to land awkwardly on his throwing shoulder.

Rodgers could be seen voicing his displeasure at the hit, and he was carted off the field immediately back to the Packers’ locker room. 

There was heavy speculation that Rodgers has a separated shoulder or possibly a broken collarbone, but presumably pending an MRI, the Packers are officially calling it a “right shoulder injury.”

Per ESPN’s Tristan H. Cockcroft, Sunday marked the first time Rodgers has missed a snap during the first three quarters of a game since the 2014 season. The immediate results didn’t look particularly impressive with another QB under center.

Upon Rodgers’ exit, backup signal-caller Brett Hundley promptly threw an interception to Vikings’ cornerback Xavier Rhodes, which led to a Vikings touchdown drive.

Meanwhile, Packers fans, and those who appreciate good quarterback play, in general, held their collective breath. Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman was one of the first to send Rodgers well wishes.

The Packers are scheduled to take on the New Orleans Saints next Sunday at Lambeau Field, and it appears the team will be without Rodgers for remainder of the 2017 campaign after it's revealed that the star quarterback suffered a broken collarbone. 

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Dannon Swaps Cam Newton for Dak Prescott After Sexist Remarks

Carolina Panthers quarterback and 2015 NFL MVP Cam Newton lost his Dannon endorsement deal after making sexist remarks to Charlotte Observer beat reporter Jourdan Rodrigue during a news conference last Wednesday, but it appears the company has quickly found a replacement.

One day after saying, “It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes like … it’s funny,” Dannon dropped Newton, who was the pitchman for their subsidiary Oikos.

“We are shocked and disheartened at the behavior and comments of Cam Newton towards Jourdan Rodrigue, which we perceive as sexist and disparaging to all women,” read a statement from Dannon released in the wake of Newton’s comments. “We have shared our concerns with Cam and will no longer work with him.”

So yeah, take a good look at the ad below, because Dannon will likely be replacing it and any accompanying ads very soon.

Newton released an official apology for his Neanderthal-like remarks Thursday, and some of Rodrigue’s previous racist tweets were brought to light also, although the latter received far less coverage. The Panthers QB also revealed he’d lost additional sponsorships besides Dannon.

The refrigerated dairy company moved quickly and reportedly signed Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott to replace Newton. The move should be familiar territory for Prescott, who already has endorsement deals with Adidas, Pepsi, Frito-Lay and Beats.

According to ESPN, no NFL player has more endorsement deals than Prescott, and a cursory glance at his Twitter feed backs up that statement. Sponsored tweets from Keurig, AT&T and other companies dominate Prescott’s timeline. The Dallas QB is reportedly shooting his first commercial this week with Dannon, as the company continues to distance itself from Newton by removing existing advertisements.

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Is This the Real Reason LaVar Ball Pulled LaMelo Out of High School?

LaVar Ball shocked some people earlier this week—which is pretty hard to do these days, when you consider some of the other things he’s done in recent months—by announcing that he was pulling his son LaMelo out of Chino Hills High School to homeschool and train him over the next two years. At the time, LaVar said he was doing it because he was tired of dealing with the Chino Hills basketball coach, and he also said he didn’t want “no distractions” for LaMelo moving forward.

“I’m going to homeschool him and make him the best basketball player ever,” LaVar said.

But it sounds like there might be more to it than that. The Los Angeles Times did some digging around and discovered that, prior to pulling LaMelo out of school, LaVar may have overstepped his bounds (no way!) by trying to convince Chino Hills coach Dennis Latimore to add several players to his team prior to the upcoming season. It’s unclear if those players were already attending the school or if LaVar was trying to bring some of his AAU players into the mix, but either way, Latimore and Chino Hills principal Isabel Brenes both reportedly refused his request, which was why LaVar then decided to take LaMelo out of the school.

Wayne Joseph, the superintendent of the Chino Bills school district, spoke with the Times on Tuesday and confirmed that version of the story.

“He suggested he put four or five kids on varsity,” Joseph said, while also taking the diplomatic route and adding that LaVar and his wife Tina “have done a magnificent job with their kids.”

If this side of the story is true, it seems as though LaVar overstepped his bounds even more than usual, and Chino Hills probably isn’t all that upset about seeing him and LaMelo leave. The Ball boys have obviously put Chino Hills on the map in recent years, but it sounds like LaVar was really becoming a thorn in the side of the school’s coach and administration.

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