Jacky Kickz – “Face//Off” ft. Rugby Lo Sport [Prod. StripesIII]

By: Seamus Fay

Scrolling through my Twitter feed earlier today, I was greeted by the link to a song entitled “Face//Off” – the newest collaborative release from Boston natives Jacky Kickz, Rugby Lo Sport, and Stripes III. Admittedly, I had only heard of Rugby and Stripes prior to listening to this song, but after just a few listens, I soon realized that Jack Kickz is most definitely an artist to pay attention to in the future. The three hold an unrivaled level of chemistry when collaborating together, and by making sure that all of their most recognizable talents are held at the forefront of the release, there’s no question as to why “Face//Off” comes across as such a well-done, thoughtful song.

Featuring a hazy, sample-based instrumental from Stripes III, this track takes form as an ominous look into the sophisticated artistry that Kickz has grown into. His sleek rhymes seemingly float over the beat in the most complimentary manner possible, and Rugby Lo Sport only seconds this, adding his own charisma to the song to make for an unbelievable release overall. That being said, whether you dissect the sound of this track, the sonic atmosphere in which it thrives in, or the lyricism, there is no aspect of “Face//Off” that doesn’t impress me as a listener. Boston’s deep array of talented artists is only growing, and Jacky Kickz is ready to pave his own lane.

Listen to the newest single from Jacky Kickz, Rugby Lo Sport, and Stripes III at the link below:

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cWave$ – ‘Loading…’ [Mixtape]

By: Seamus Fay

Here at Graduation Music, cWave$ has been on our radar as one of the eccentric, promising young artists in the Boston area. His music never fails to impress as both hypnotic and dense in the aesthetics that it brings to the light, and in this way, his catalog has grown to become one of the best-kept secrets in the area. Today, cWave$ is here to prove his prowess with yet another spectacular new release – a mixtape by the name of Loading…  featuring stellar guest spots from Stripes III and Dex LaMurda as well as an abundance of atmospheric production to light the way.

As the title entails, this rising talent’s artistry always seems to be growing and developing, and no body of work could prove this fact better than the 10 tracks that his newest offering brings to the spotlight. No moment is anything short of entertaining, sticking to cWave$’ unapologetic personality which he communicates over the mic with seamless skill. I could go about this project all day, but the fact of the matter is that the music speaks for itself on this one. Be sure not to sleep on cWave$ and his strong new release, Loading….

Click play at the link below and enjoy:

An Interview With Stripes III

By: Seamus Fay

I vividly remember my first interaction with the name Stripes III. It was directly after the release of his debut EP, Baby Flame, and once hearing such a cohesive, artful approach to music, I quickly realized this was an artist that I simply had to keep an eye on. And now, just over 7 months removed from this first impression, Stripes has done nothing but work to fulfill the potential shown so early in his career, making his whole city proud and beginning his inevitable rise to the top.

Aside from this, as you may have heard, Pusha T recently stumbled upon Stripes’ music and contacted him via social media. Following up throughout the past few weeks, the Boston native has been in talks with the likes of Pusha himself, Steven Victor, and more, in hopes of reaching a deal in the very near future. Considering these recent events as well as the ample supply of talent that this rising star holds, Graduation Music figured there would be no better time to connect with Stripes to figure out how his career in music came together.

That being said, enjoy our interview with Stipes III below!


Where are you originally from and what was your childhood like?

I’m originally from Sandusky, Ohio. We ain’t got shit but an amusement park and water slides, lol.

Growing up, what artists were you listening to that inspired you to make music yourself?

From a baby until like 6, I only resonated with Michael Jackson forreal. That basically transitioned into R&B until about the age of 10, then once I heard Lil Wayne I left Earth.

Where does the name “Stripes III” come from?

The name “Stripes III” comes from my second home: Boston, MA – Grove Hall, to be exact. But you know like the “3 for the stripes” throwback Boston slang, I guess it’s an Adidas thing.

Lyrically, you tend to translate your life experiences into verses. How has living in Boston influenced your music?

Thanks, and Boston basically made me learn how to rap like “yo yo uh check it” lol – boom bap shit. I believe that’s essential to the culture, but more than anything I’m influenced by my niggas. I love my brothers.

Describe your sound to someone who has never heard your music before.

I pretty much sound like I’m on fire in the booth, like literally. I be in there blowing n shit, lol… super saucy, super slutty at times, but it also makes you feel something. I’m always open to growth, though. Gotta stay fresh, ya dig.

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Describe the process of making your Baby Flame EP. How did that project come about?

The whole Baby Flame EP was like 5-track click bait, lol. Super fun, pink vibes showcasing my range of talent n shit. But it’s offline now, I’ll be putting those songs back out soon.

In the past, you have released two remixes of songs from Frank Ocean’s Blonde. What does that album mean to you and how does it inspire you?

It’s crazy because I lowkey remixed all the tracks on Blonde in 2 days just so I could have a real first listen, like in detail. Shit’s so beautiful.

What Boston artists inspire you?

Lowkey the artists that inspire me from Boston are Teamarrr, OG DOMO, cWave$, Boogie Da God, Chi, Alejandro Blanco, Bully, Maka, Tony Bodega, Pistola, Bouve (Booty Bae), and so many more. Can’t even get into all the wild producers and videographers, but those are just some of my favorite musicians off top. BIA’s my all time favorite, though, lol. Grammy family, respect it! <333

What are your top three dream collaborations?

Dylan, Dylan, Dylan.

Lastly, what can fans expect from Stripes III in the rest of 2018?

A full-fledged fire, lol. But forreal, I don’t exactly know at the moment. I’m just going with the flow, trusting my journey and where it leads me. Recently been in connection with Pusha T, too. He has shown nothing but love, man, kinda taking me under the wing in a way and introducing me to a lot of his people. You know, setting me up for the win, lol.


Connect with Stripes III on:

The Top 50 New England Songs of 2017

By: Seamus Fay

Looking back, 2017 was a year of immense growth for New England and specifically Massachusetts’ budding music scene. We were fortunate enough to see the rise of many new talents as well as watch some of the more established artists prosper in their own ways, and frankly, it was inspiring to us to see the work that the artists, the producers, the photographers, the graphic designers, the mixers, the managers, etc. have been putting in. Without all of these people playing their respective roles, our scene wouldn’t be where it is today.

Having said that, we here at Graduation Music collaborated with Fresh Out The Mint to compile a list of the “Top 50 New England Songs of 2017” (in our humble opinion). Below is the playlist of all the tracks – enjoy!

Thank you sincerely to everyone for supporting us throughout 2017 and making our first full year as a blog a successful one. We greatly appreciate all the love and can’t wait to show you what we have in store for 2018.  

  • Young Seuss – “123”
  • Big Leano – “Broke” [Prod. Tee-WaTT]
  • Vintage Lee – “Bless You” [Prod. Jew Paidro]
  • Millyz – “Lessons” [Prod. Achillies]
  • VALLEY – “Atari” [Prod. Stoop Kid]
  • Caliph & Jefe Replay – “The Mood” [Prod. Obeatz]
  • MyCompiledThoughts – “Romeo and Juliet”
  • Cousin Stizz – “Lambo”
  • DJ Lucas – “Doubt”
  • Lonny X – “Believe It” [Prod. Gravez]
  • Juxi – “Leave Me Alone” [Prod. Banbwoi]
  • Jiggz – “Excuses” [Prod. digitLIX]
  • KREW$ – “Dog Days” [Prod. DMND]
  • RAMS – “Disease!” [Prod. Maka]
  • Rothstein – “Jaded” ft. Supa Bwe [Prod. Shepard]
  • Patrick Michel – “Perfect” [Prod. GrandCruu]
  • Alejandro Blanco – “Give It To Her” [Prod. TFresh & SSB]
  • Jefe Replay – “Stay Ugly” [Prod. Humbeats]
  • Mizzie Cash – “Maneuvering” [Prod. Rob $urreal]
  • Lord Felix – “Power” ft. Marvelous Stefan [Prod. LoLoTheGod]
  • Plad Fine$$e – “Cheese” [Prod. 4oTo Roles]
  • Maye Star – “Adjacent” ft. CH!LD [Prod. Sevnth]
  • WHYTRI – “XURWIFI (Remix) ft. Lily Rayne [Prod. Cecil]
  • Stripes iii – “Henny Down” [Prod. K.C.B.]
  • Khary – “1-800-IDGAF” [Prod. Cloud Atrium]
  • SuperSmashBroz – “Replay Interlude” ft. Jefe Replay [Prod. LDG]
  • Michael Christmas – “Not The Only One” ft. Tobi Lou [Prod. Durkin]
  • $ean Wire – “Moonlight” [Prod. Tropicana Bwoy]
  • Pistola – “Jokes On You” [Prod. Stoop Kid]
  • CAVE – “Who’s Next” [Prod. Maka]
  • Maka & Durkin – “Waterworld”
  • Gio Dee – “Buzz Lightyear” [Prod. MLVN]
  • Humbeats – “Monday” ft. Austin Fair & TeaMarrr
  • StupidGenius – “Palm Trees” ft. Capito [Prod. Lil Rich & Gruca]
  • Garrett Merk – “Simple” [Prod. Frace]
  • Danny Diamonds – “Can’t Talk”
  • Gogo – “Cocaina”
  • Polo $ummers – “$ad Boi” [Prod. WaVe GoD]
  • SuperSmashBroz – “Still” ft. Big Leano & Vintage Lee [Prod. Tee-WaTT]
  • Haasan Barclay – “Live For You”
  • CHE – “Thii”
  • Avenue – “Ain’t Shit Funny” (Remix) ft. Prano, Millyz, Le$, Al-Doe & Chase N Cashe
  • Donald Grunge – “Shade” [Prod. Maka]
  • Boogie Da God – “Get Well Soon” ft. Jefe Replay
  • Marvelous Stefan – “Double Tap!” ft. Saint Lyor [Prod. Trevor Powers]
  • Black EL – “Another Dose” [Prod. Durkin]
  • $wooli – “Rainy Days” ft. Rachel Aiello
  • Rosewood Bape – “Miss Me” [Prod. Kin Rich]
  • TeaMarrr – “The One” [Prod. Ky Thompson & Keith Bell]
  • Michael Christmas – “Top Turnbuckle” ft. OG Swaggerdick

Boogie Da God – ‘It’s Been Real’ [EP]

By: Seamus Fay

If you’ve been following Graduation Music for a while now, you probably know of our well-documented love for Roxbury artist Boogie Da God. His old-school touch and carefully crafted lyricism never cease to impress, and with an incredible ear for finding the right production to excel over, the wave he’s running right now is unmatched in its soulful energy. Today Boogie is back on our pages with his latest offering, the It’s Been Real EP.

6 tracks in total, the hypnotic production on this one gives way to an unbelievably entertaining listen with credits from fellow local artists Stripes III, Jefe Replay, Brandon James, 4oToRoles, and SenecaBeats. Not only does Boogie float over each instrumental with an effortless style that has proven to be one of the best in its lane, but each feature goes just as hard, displaying a seamless chemistry that makes this nostalgic release near-flawless in every nature. I can’t say I’ve heard anything I even remotely dislike from Boogie Da God before, and he’s definitely not starting now with the standout EP to front his journey to the top. Give It’s Been Real a listen below and enjoy the soulful approach to music that the Roxbury native takes.