Summer 2011: 5 Albums To Look Out For

Guest contributor Tedisha Mitchell gives us her pick of 5 albums to keep an eye out for throughout the summer.

Ahhh summer…my favorite time of year.  When the ballers ride around with their tops down … and the not so balling (myself included) ride with their windows down bumping the latest summer bangers.  So allow me to keep you in the know with some albums to look out for this summer.


1. BEYONCE- 4 (JUNE 28TH)

beyonce 4 200 Summer 2011: 5 Albums To Look Out ForIf you are a true [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Beyonce[/lastfm] fan then you know her favorite number is four. She was born on September 4th; her husband [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Jay-Z[/lastfm] was born December 4th; they got married on April 4th (4/4/2008);  and it is also her number of solo projects. Accordingly, she titled this album 4.

In an interview with Billboard, Beyonce discussed her creative process stating:

I recorded more than 60 songs: everything I ever wanted to try, I just did it.

With the album’s first single, Run the World (Girls), receiving very mixed reviews, she wasted no time releasing 1+1 and Best Thing I Never Had. Plus, the blogs got their hands on Party,  which features Mr. 3 Stacks himself ([lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]André 3000[/lastfm]). So it shouldn’t have been too much of a shocker when 4 was leaked in its entirety on June 8th, 3 weeks before its official release date!

Bey took to her Facebook page to address the leak stating:

My music was leaked and while this is not how I wanted to present my new songs, I appreciate the positive response from my fans. When I record music I always think about my fans singing every note and dancing to every beat. I make music to make people happy and I appreciate that everyone has been so anxious to hear my new songs.

Some folks over at Rolling Stone got to listen to the leaked album and this is what they had to say:

4 is a more relaxed, personal set that emphasizes ballads over bangers and showcases the singer’s nuances; it’s very much the sort of album a pop star makes when she doesn’t feel like she has anything to prove.

With super fans vowing not to listen to the album until they have purchased it, I pray the leak won’t impact her album sales much.

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NEXT PAGE: Big Sean-Finally Famous

2. BIG SEAN- FINALLY FAMOUS (JUNE 28TH)

bigsean200 Summer 2011: 5 Albums To Look Out ForAfter being well-received in the mix tape circuit, Detroit native and G.O.O.D Music recording artist [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Big Sean[/lastfm] held a release party for his debut album, Finally Famous, in New York City on June 7th. If you didn’t know, Big Sean performed a freestyle for Kayne West outside of a Detroit radio station and the rest was history.

You can visit Amazon to see the complete track list, but the album is to include features from [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Kanye West[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Chris Brown[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Wiz Khalifa[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Lupe Fiasco[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Pusha T[/lastfm], and [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Pharrell Williams[/lastfm] just to name a few.

There will also be four bonus tracks included on the LP and production from the [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Neptunes[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]No I.D.[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]WrighTrax[/lastfm], and more. Kayne West sang his prodigy’s praises during the album release party, saying:

I believe Sean’s story is one of the most amazing ever because he literally got signed off of a freestyle. I feel like he could be like what Beyoncé is to RnB, he could be that to rap music.

We hope you’re right Mr. West, because we will be listening.

NEXT PAGE: Jill Scott-The Light Of The Sun

3. JILL SCOTT- THE LIGHT OF THE SUN (JUNE 21st)

jillscottlight200 Summer 2011: 5 Albums To Look Out For[lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Jill Scott[/lastfm] is definitely one of the most respected in the game. So of course her fourth studio album, Light of the Sun, is one that is highly anticipated. Essence.com developed a web-series dedicated to the album called Light of the Sundays, which started May 8th and will continue every Sunday until the album drops.

In the series Jill explains how she wants her fans to experience her new album:

I hope they bump it in their cars, I hope they make love to it … All of those things. I make music for people.

Listeners can expect to hear Scott‘s usual fusion of hip hop, spoken word, RnB, jazz, and funk; but with a freedom that was absent from her previous albums. In my eyes, Ms. Scott can do no wrong, but you be the judge.

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NEXT PAGE: DJ Khaled-We The Best Forever

4. DJ KHALED- WE THE BEST FOREVER (JULY 19TH)

khaledimon200 Summer 2011: 5 Albums To Look Out For[lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]DJ Khaled[/lastfm] is used to making street anthems and having hip hop’s elite on his tracks. The We The Best Music Group founder signed with the Young Money Cash Money family back in September, and now he will be releasing his debut YMCMB LP this summer.

In an interview with Vibe magazine, Khaled explained:

You’re going to have all your favorite artists on there. Me collaborating with Cash Money—making amazing records and coming out with amazing songs.

And I’m sure we will hear the usual suspects: [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Rick Ross[/lastfm], [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Plies[/lastfm], and it is said that [lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Kanye West[/lastfm] will make an appearance on the project. Well, if this album will sound anything like the current single, I’m On One,  this might be the project with all the summer hits.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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NEXT PAGE: Lil Wayne-Tha Carter IV

5. LIL WAYNE- THA CARTER IV (AUGUST 29TH)

lilwaynecarteriv200 Summer 2011: 5 Albums To Look Out ForAh, Mr. Weezy F. Baby has been making us wait on Tha Carter IV for what seems like forever and a day. After being pushed back multiple times, August 29th is now the time when we can expect to get our hands on what is arguably the most highly anticipated album in hip hop and rap for 2011.

With his recent single How To Love[lastfm link_type=”artist_info”]Lil Wayne[/lastfm] seems to be taking a different direction creatively. When speaking on the single in an interview, Weezy said:

When I listen to it I get goose bumps. And I feel like the song is gonna take me somewhere that I’ve never been musically.

Describing his quest to be recognized as “more than a rapper” Wayne says:

When they make a billboard and put whoever they gonna put up there to define the word ‘music,’ I wanna be there.

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What do y’all think of the list? Have you guys heard of any other albums dropping this summer? Feel free to sound off.

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