If Wiz Khalifa were stuck on a desert island and could have only two things, there's a very good chance he'd be packing kush (AKA cannabis) and orange juice. Although his most recent release, 2010's Kush and Orange Juice mixtape, makes a much stronger case for the first.
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The hype-worthy, 20-track tape is his eighth independent effort in the past five years and his most successful since leaving Warner Bros. in 2009. As a free download, it generated major Internet buzz, becoming a number one trending topic on Twitter and Google Hot Trends while scoring favorable reviews from Pitchfork, PopMatters, and Entertainment Weekly.
Hailing from the same city as mashup maestro Girl Talk and the Steelers — he has affectionately dubbed his hometown "Pittsburgh, Pistol-Vania" — Wiz doesn't exactly come from a place synonymous with hip-hop. But he never let that get in the way of his grind. Over the past couple of years, he has dropped his second full-length album, Deal or No Deal, to much acclaim, toured rigorously, appeared on the cover of XXL, and turned in notable performances at CMJ, SXSW, and this summer's Rock the Bells tour. Not bad for a heavily tattooed, 22-year-old indie rapper and kush aficionado.
With Mayday!, J Nics, and John Payan. 8 p.m. Friday, December 3, at University of Miami, UC Patio, 1314 Miller Dr., Coral Gables; hurricaneproductions.org. Free for UM students, faculty, staff, and alumni.