Get the behind the scenes as Nick talks to Common about Chicago and hangs backstage with Save Money’s Vic Mensa and Chance The Rapper, Z-Trip, Run The Jewels (Killer Mike, EL-P and Trackstar), Fitz and The Tantrums ‘ Noelle Scaggs, and Chromeo. Video also Chicago rapper ADD-2 giving us insight into Chicago and performances from Vic Mensa and Chance The Rapper. Cant forget the Chicago deep dish! After hearing all the hype we had to try it out for ourselves! Thanks to the good folks at Canon for making Nick and Hard Knock TV part of their #BRINGIT campaign! All footage from festival was filmed with VIXIA Mini X and Canon 5D Mark III.


Take a journey with Hard Knock TV’s Nick Huff Barili as he visits Chicago to experience Lollapalooza for the first time. Along the way Nick hangs backstage with Save Money’s Vic Mensa and Chance The Rapper, Z-Trip, Run The Jewels (Killer Mike, EL-P and Trackstar), Fitz and The Tantrums ‘ Noelle Scaggs, and Chromeo. Video also includes performances from Vic Mensa, Chance The Rapper and Run The Jewels with guest appearance by Z-Trip. Make sure you check out the Behind The Scenes video for more! Thanks to the good folks at Canon for making Nick and Hard Knock TV part of their #BRINGIT campaign! All footage from festival was filmed with VIXIA Mini X and Canon 5D Mark III.

Chris Brown, Game, and More Play at Hard Knock Hoops 3X3 Tournament

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On Saturday August 9th, Hard Knock suited up with the homies for our annual Hard Knock Hoops 3×3 celebrity basketball tournament which took place at LA Live this year. The star-studded event saw the likes of Chris BrownGameTaco (of Odd Future)QuincySteelo BrimPac DivThurzDJ Khalil, DJ Bizzy and Ben Lyons among other industry influencers, all going head to head for the chance to take home that prized number one slot. As it turns out, your boy, Chef Dubble, knows how to do a little more than just flambé some lamb chops. The celebrity chef and his squad came out on top, proudly walking away with the Hard Knock Hoops division trophy and some seriously well-deserved bragging rights.

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Singer-Songwriter & Rapper, Luke Christoper, Talks About Writing For Women and Producing All of His Own Music

timthumbI recently stopped by the studio of up-and-coming recording artist, Luke Christopher, to chop it up about the different projects he had brewing. When I walked in, he was mid-meeting with one of Hip-Hop’s most prominent DJ/producers, busy politicking about some unannounced collaborations on the down low. But from the jump, the good vibes were infectious. The young hit-maker spoke about his music with a fire in his eyes, and when it was my time to chat with him, I understood why.

The Los Angeles native has so much to look forward to in the near future: a position locked in to begin a West Coast tour with Juicy J, an independently released mixtape in the works, and his official debut album dropping soon after that.

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Sir Michael Rocks Talks New Solo Album, Banco, And Cool Kids Reunion

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Only hours before Sir Michael Rocks dropped his debut solo album, he agreed to some good ol’fashion Q&A with Hard Knock TV, blessing us with an exclusive perspective on the highly anticipated project.

The 15-track full-length, titled Banco, sees the Cool Kid rapper taking a matured approach to his music, hitting us with overloads of symbolism and personal philosophies. Even with a heavy line-up of featured artists, including Mac Miller, Iamsu!, DJ Mustard, Twista, Too $hort, and, fellow Cool Kid, Chuck Inglish, Mikey isn’t overshadowed as he keeps a ferocious, yet cool, stance throughout the creative brainchild.

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In part three of our in-depth interview with Young Guru, he talks with Nick Huff Barili about a couple post he made of twitter. Nick asks Guru to elaborate on what he meant when he posted: “No offense but Jean-Michel Basquiat can’t touch this man. Dondi was king!!! Style Master General!!!…” Guru explains that Basquiat gets more praise because certain “taste-makers” co-sign him as one of the greats but in his book Guru thinks Dondi Cia is the best. Guru thinks that Basquiat theory of art is great but Basquiat actual pieces don’t resonate with him. There is also the debate of Street art vs Gallery art. Dondi did a lot of his work in the train yards where he had to be on the look out for authorities and other crews as well as dealing with other elements that an artist doing gallery pieces wouldn’t have to deal with. The second topic Guru addresses is his post that stated “When the news stays on a story this long with no new information, it’s time to pay close attention to the government.” Guru points out that the law to create Federal Reserve system was slid in the day before people went on Christmas break so that no one would object to it. Such a monumental law which Guru points out is illegal by our constitution, should be debated and not just passed under the radar. Guru says that when news media is focused solely on one story for long periods of time, that there are other stories not being covered. He makes sure to particularly pay attention at those times to see what is not being told.

Dilated Peoples Return After 8 Years Apart With “Directors of Photography”

Business As Usual: Dilated Peoples Return After Eight Years Apart With Their Release, Directors of Photography

There are few things in life that one can take a significant time away from, and then resume with the same level of skill as if they had never left. Riding a bike, or swimming might come to mind, but generally speaking, it is more difficult than easy to just “pick up where you left off”. The same could be said for friendships and relationships, though when the situation occurs where time and distance doesn’t interfere with the original chemistry, it can be a beautiful thing. In music, these examples seem more a rarity than common occurrence, but for the L.A. based hip-hop trio Dilated Peoples, it appears being apart hasn’t hindered them one bit. In fact, their upcoming release titled, Directors of Photography might prove that Continue reading


In part two of our in-depth interview with Young Guru, he talks with Nick Huff Barili about what makes a great song. Young Guru drops some serious wisdom on part 2 of our conversation as he breaks down the anatomy of a song, which is no different than what makes a great movie, book, etc. Tension & Release. Arc. Air and Vibrations. The Cycle of life! As we continue our conversation with Guru he lets us in to what makes a great audio engineer, why he thinks its the #eraoftheengineer, plus he shares advice for upcoming engineers and producers.

Hennessy Celebrates Launch of Limited Edition Bottle designed by Shepard Fairey

There was a distinct buzz in the air Thursday evening as a select group awaited the unveiling of a new Hennessy V.S. collaboration with renowned artist Shepard Fairey. Held at Create Nightclub in Hollywood, Hennessy treated attendees to a night of music, art, digital interaction, and of course, cocktails, all in celebration of a limited edition bottle designed by the “OBEY” originator. Continue reading


In part one of our in-depth our interview with Young Guru, he talks with Nick Huff Barili about making the transition from being Jay Z engineer to teaching at USC. Along with talking about Hip Hop in academia, Guru addresses “Curators” in Hip Hop who don’t know the roots of the culture and haven’t even listened to KRS-One’s Criminal Minded album or a De La Soul album. Guru states that it’s important for people who know and care about the culture to teach it and preserve it. Guru states that Hip Hop is lucky that its forefathers are still around and that we should make sure to learn from them while they are still alive.  Guru goes on to say that Hip Hop is not a color based thing and that there were early graffiti artists who were white and b-boys that were Latin that should not be left out of the Hip Hop history. He also points out that there is no denying that artists like The Beastie Boys, MC Search and more recently Macklemore are Hip Hop.  Although Guru points out that some of Macklemore’s fan-base might not be up on the culture. Guru elaborates that Hip Hop is one of the few places that has realized Dr Martin Luther King’s dream where its not about the color of your skin but your skills. Part 1 of our interview ends with Guru distinguishing the difference between a beat maker and a producer. Stay tuned next week for part 2 of our conversation with Young Guru.