If the family and musical intrigue on “Empire” isn’t enough for you (because when have you ever had enough?), we’ve got a dope audio solution to check out next.
NPR’s “Microphone Check” is an interview show featuring conversations with musicians and business figures from across the hip-hop universe of the past and present, led by co-hosts Ali Shaheed Muhammad of the legendary hip-hop group “A Tribe Called Quest” and NPR Music editor Frannie Kelly.
While it may sound strange — launching a program that pairs public radio with an urban genre of music aimed specifically at youth — the premise of “Microphone Check” actually highlights the one major commonality between two entities that appear to exist on opposite ends of the cultural spectrum: their unwavering commitment to the oral tradition.
Prominent guests include Leila Steinberg (former manager of Tupac Shakur, currently working with Earl Sweatshirt), Big Sean, DJ Quik, J. Cole, Andre 3000 and T.I..
Muhammad and Kelly make a great team: with the latter maintaining the structural integrity of the interview and the former providing thoughtful observations, drawn from his own experiences in the music business over the year, to keep the conversation moving.
You can find “Microphone Check” on Soundcloud or subscribe to the podcast through iTunes.