What's up with hip-hop

Future, the Atlanta rapper who you hear on the radio approximately five times an hour these days, swung through Baltimore in November to officially announce that he was signing local hip-hop mainstay TestMe to his Freebandz Entertainment. In January, Future unveiled his new roster of artists on the F.B.G.: The Movie mixtape, including his collaboration with TestMe and another Baltimorean, Sisqo of Dru Hill, on "See It to Believe It." One surprise in the tracklist, however: his name is now just Test. Brenda's Baby, his first solo mixtape as Test and as a Freebandz artist, is coming soon.

Baltimore rapper Mike Lee is featured in the Feb. 19 issue of national rag Hip-Hop Weekly. Lee, whose next mixtape Tears of Noise is due out on March 27th, has a photo and brief bio in the magazine's Indie Grind Spotlight section.

One of the hardest working men in Baltimore hip-hop, Profitt has always kept busy with his own rap career, running a studio, directing videos, and putting on events. Lately, he's been steadily bringing national stars to 5 Seasons. Late last year, Freeway headlined the venue, and this week, on March 2, J.R. Writer will hit the 5 Seasons, with Baltimore's own Blue opening. Saigon will headline Profitt's birthday bash on April 6, with Skarr Akbar opening, and more shows are in the works. Profitt's latest mixtape, Profnation, is out, including the single "Pop Up" featuring Comp and Skarr Akbar.

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