Good For Humanity


dr dre jimmy iovine college

From founding the now Apple-owned Beats Electronics to developing superstars like Eminem and 50 Cent, it’s fair to say Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine have made a lot of money together. But last year, the powerhouse pair gave back with a $70 million donation to the University of Southern California to launch a four-year bachelor’s degree on the ever-changing music industry.

With the inaugural class halfway through its first semester, one student reached out to HYPETRAK to provide some first-hand insight into the unique and forward-thinking program, officially known as the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for the Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation.

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Brad Pitt Between Two Ferns

Thank you, Universe! Even if this day turns out monumentally shxtty (it probably won’t, we’ll be checking out a nice PartyNextDoor show and Timbaland is launching his Epic label as well), at least I can be thankful for this gift…A new episode of Funny or Die’s Between Two Ferns, with host Zach Galifianakis! And special guest Brad Pitt…or as Zach calls him Bradley Pitts.

Zach: Is it hard to maintain a sun tan?
Brad: Huh? Why?
Zach: BECAUSE YOU LIVE IN YOUR WIFE’S SHADOW!

Oh, it’s so so good. So damn good. And there’s even a surprise interlude with Louis C.K. (Mikey…did you hear me? LOUIE!)

Watch the only thing that really counts today…
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hip hop depression

Between a college professor’s English course on good kid, m.A.A.d city to 9th Wonder’s “Hip-Hop in Context” class at N.C. Central University, hip-hop has been introduced into the curriculum in many ways over the years. The latest — and perhaps most interesting — comes via England’s prestigious Cambridge University, whose department of psychiatry has launched a “social venture” to promote hip-hop as a treatment for various mental health problems.

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Kendrick Lamar

A crowd of 20,000 youth and volunteers packed into Toronto’s Air Canada Centre on Thursday afternoon for We Day 2014, an annual youth empowerment event aimed to motivate young people to get involved in social change. Organized by the Free the Children charity, the 7th annual day of celebration and learning featured appearances from Nelly Furtado, Big Sean, Joe Jonas, Katie Couric, Kardinal Offishall, Hedley’s Jacob Hoggard, and plenty more global leaders, social activists, and entertainers.

The event also featured a surprise appearance from Kendrick Lamar, who performed his new inspirational song “i” for the first-time live. A song fitting for the overall theme of We Day, watch the moment below and learn more about the non-profit organization here.

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kanye west wheelchair
(Image via Consequence of Sound)

Following a rather unfortunate misunderstanding involving two handicapped fans at a show during his Australian tour earlier this month, Kanye West has found himself at the center of a new controversy dubbed “wheelchairgate.” There’s been plenty of media debate and angry wheelchair activists (here’s one disabled writer who slammed Kanye over the incident), which prompted Ye to give a lengthy and, at times, vulnerable speech during a recent concert. But now, Mike Dean, Kanye’s long-time engineer and producer, passed us this heartfelt letter from a handicapped rapper in support of Mr. West.

Read the letter below…

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kanye west australia

By now we’ve all seen Kanye West scream at the top of his lungs about how he’s the next Steve Jobs or Walt Disney, but his mid-show speech in Brisbane, Australia last night was… different. Amidst controversy surrounding a recent wheelchair incident (recap: he asked every member of the audience to stand up, and after confusion surrounding two handicapped fans he didn’t realize were unable to stand, the show continued), Mr. West hit back at the media for unnecessarily sensationalizing the story and intentionally slandering his character.

The interlude almost felt like a casual conversation between Kanye and the crowd as he vented his frustration with reading biased reports about himself, at one point pleading, “take a step back for a second and look at this: I’m a married Christian man with a family.” However, perhaps Ye’s most powerful statement came when he asked the audience, “How many people here ever heard one of my songs on their way to work or they heard it and it made them feel better?” And as “Spaceships” instantly enters our minds, we’re reminded that Kanye, the kid from Chicago who made music to help us get through our shitty day, is still in there somewhere behind that diamond-encrusted mask.

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twitter buy button

Twitter had made some big changes over the last 12 months, including a completely new profile layout and the first ever real-time Billboard chart, but this latest one is easily their most commercially ambitious. Today the social network began testing a new “buy” button, a feature which allows users to purchase products — whether it be clothes, electronics or indeed music — directly from their timeline.

Pharrell, Wiz Khalifa and Eminem are among some of the early musical adopters of this new service, while brands and organizations like Home Depot, Burberry and (RED) are also onboard. The button is currently only available to a small percentage of U.S. users during its testing stage, but Twitter promise that number “will grow over time.”

See how the new feature works below…

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lupe-fiasco-jennifer-hudson-common-su2c

Many of entertainment’s finest in film, music, and sports gathered for a greater cause in support of the Stand Up to Cancer benefit concert on Friday night. A fundraiser organized to bring awareness to cancer and treatment, the event hosted by Gwyneth Paltrow and Joel Gallen was broadcasted over various major networks simultaneously, live from the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

Jennifer Aniston, Halle Berry, Pierce Brosnan, Dane Cook, Will Ferrell, Ben Stiller, Reese Witherspoon and more made appeareances, lending a hand answering phones and accepting donations. Meanwhile, the show featured live performances from Dave Matthews Band, The Who, and Ariana Grande, who hit the stage to perform the song “My Everything” off her recent No. 1 album. With help from fellow Chicago natives Common and Jennifer Hudson, Lupe Fiasco closed the benefit concert out with “Remisson,” a song made to empower those facing the deadly illness and celebrate survivors.

Money raised from the commercial-free show supports cross-disciplinary research toward new cancer treatments. Head to standup2cancer.org for more information and to donate.

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rihanna-als

Eminem and Rihanna add their names to long list of supporters for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. During the second night of “The Monster” tour at Detroit’s Comerica Park, Slim Shady and RiRi accepted challenges from various celebrities throughout the past week. Slim Shady, who was called out by mentor Dr. Dre earlier this week, sat in a chair on stage as Rihanna threw a bucket of ice water on his head.

Next up was Rihanna’s turn in the chair, as two members from the stage show doused the pop star with frigid water. Both artists join a long list of celebrities who have participated in an effort to bring more awareness and raise money for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Chris Brown, Drake, Dr. Dre, Kendrick Lamar, 50 Cent & G-Unit, LeBron James, Justin Bieber, Kate Upton, T.I., Jennifer Lopez, and more have all accepted challenges, taking social media by storm this week.

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talib kweli don lemon

Talib Kweli is the latest rapper to make the trip down to Ferguson, Missouri to mourn the death of Mike Brown and show support to the community. Never one to bite his tongue, the Brooklyn MC made an appearance on CNN earlier today, where he took Don Lemon — who isn’t exactly wildly popular among black viewers — to task.

Right off the bat, Talib put the media on blast for presenting an inaccurate narrative of events in Ferguson. Naturally, Lemon disagreed with him and claimed that his network have “done really great coverage here,” which is when Kweli took the safety off and let the chopper fly. At one point, while being continuously interrupted by Lemon, Kweli even walked off camera and threatened to leave the interview.

#Arewegood?

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