Louder Than A Riot

Louder Than A Riot

Hip-hop emerged from the voices of the unheard. But freedom doesn't ring the same for everyone. Inside all corners of the culture, Black women and queer folk have dealt with the same oppression the music was built to escape. Season 2 of Louder Than A Riot examines who hip-hop marginalizes, and how misogynoir — the specific racist misogyny against Black women — is embedded into the fabric of the culture that we love. From Rico Nasty facing harassment from toxic fans, to Saucy Santana's unapologetically femme aesthetics in a queerphobic industry, to the assault case that put Megan Thee Stallion's image on trial, each episode of Louder Than A Riot unpacks the unspoken rules of rap that discriminate against a select few and have held the entire culture back. Hosted by NPR Music's Sidney Madden and Rodney Carmichael, Louder Than A Riot confronts power from every angle – from the power the genre wields over its artists, to the power plays that its rulebreakers take in order to get heard. In the midst of a so-called Renaissance for women in rap, these stories reveal a rot at the core of the culture that reflects how voices, bodies, and rights are still policed in America.

Episodes

September 16, 2020 1 min
From NPR Music, Louder Than A Riot traces the interconnected rise of hip-hop and mass incarceration. Hosts Rodney Carmichael and Sidney Madden investigate the criminal justice system through the experiences of rap artists. Episodes available starting Thursday, October 8.
Mark as Played
Bobby Shmurda. Nipsey Hussle. Mac Phipps. DJ Drama. What happens when hip-hop stars come into contact with the criminal justice system? In Louder Than A Riot, a new podcast from NPR Music, hosts Rodney Carmichael and Sidney Madden explore the interconnected rise of hip-hop and mass incarceration through the stories of artists at the center.
Mark as Played
October 8, 2020 51 mins
In this first episode, a mysterious conspiracy letter sends us on a journey to find out just how entangled hip-hop and mass incarceration have become over the last 40 years. We travel back in time to 1980s Atlanta with Killer Mike, 1990s Oakland with Too Short and beyond. From Reagan's war on drugs to a secret NYPD dossier of the world's biggest rappers, it's all connected — and, as Killer Mike says, "The proof's in the pudding."
Mark as Played
When New Orleans rap phenom Mac Phipps signed with Master P's No Limit Records, he knew his dream of hip-hop stardom was within reach. But in February 2000, Mac was accused of murder and the dream became a nightmare. Over the next three episodes, we investigate this story of race, corruption and rap lyrics on trial.
Mark as Played
October 15, 2020 56 mins
"A bullet in your brain." What right does the justice system have to decide whether a rapper's words are imagination or intent to kill? In this continuation of Mac Phipps' story, police pressure witnesses, while prosecutors use the artist's own lyrics to build a murder case against him. And Mac isn't the first: From a century-old folk tune to Ice-T's "Cop Killer," we examine the history of policing Black creativity to reveal a phen...
Mark as Played
October 22, 2020 60 mins
Exploitation of prisoners. Sexual assault allegations. A Supreme Court ruling that could hold the keys to freedom. In the third and final installment of Mac's story, we follow the ripples of Mac's case two decades after the verdict was handed down. What do the roadblocks in Mac's fight for exoneration say about liberty and justice for all? And how does his imprisonment affect the loved ones he's left behind?
Mark as Played
October 29, 2020 65 mins
In the early 2000s, mixtapes transformed Tyree Simmons into DJ Drama and molded T.I., Lil Wayne and Jeezy into rap superstars. But in 2007, those same mixtapes landed Drama in jail with a bank account balance of $0.00. In this episode, we break down the raid that turned the mixtape from cultural innovation into criminal conspiracy, from the perspective of the man who took the fall when the cops came knocking. "If they can lock up D...
Mark as Played
Just like his legendary disappearing hat, Brooklyn rapper Bobby Shmurda's career was on the rise in 2014. But so was the evidence in a murder case against his crew, GS9. In the first of three episodes exploring Bobby's story, we look at his come-up through the eyes of former Epic Records exec Sha Money XL, who guided Bobby on his tightrope walk from the streets to superstardom. What happens when the industry capitalizes on a crimin...
Mark as Played
November 12, 2020 45 mins
Two young men grow up just blocks apart, each with aspirations to make it big. But while Bobby Shmurda sees his dreams come true, Bryan Antoine is killed by members of Bobby's crew. This is the story that lingers between the lyrics of Bobby's viral hit, "Hot N****." We talk to the family grieving Bryan's loss and review hours of incriminating GS9 phone calls. How does the true story behind the song complicate stereotypes about gang...
Mark as Played
November 19, 2020 59 mins
Six years after his arrest, Bobby Shmurda's fans are still anxiously awaiting his return. The rapper ultimately stayed loyal to his crew in court, but the chokehold of conspiracy law also left him with few other options. In our final chapter of Bobby's story, we follow his legal drama: cycling through defense lawyers, being strong-armed by prosecutors and making last-ditch outbursts in court. Finally, we sit down with Bobby in pris...
Mark as Played
Hip-hop loves a hero's come-up, but the culture often has a hard time seeing women as heroes. Two years ago, when Louder Than A Riot editor Chiquita Paschal discovered she had a sister — who rapped — she quickly saw how that double standard can take shape. Chiquita's sister is Mary Enoch Elizabeth Baxter, aka Philly rapper Isis Tha Saviour. In this episode, Chiquita takes us on Mary's hero's journey — from her time as a ward of the...
Mark as Played
December 10, 2020 65 mins
After LA rapper Nipsey Hussle was murdered in 2019, city officials praised him for his community advocacy. But NPR has learned that behind the scenes, some law enforcement officers branded Nipsey as a gang member, and that label meant another man from Nipsey's neighborhood would be sent to jail — just for interacting with him. So why did California's Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation lie to us about it? And what does tha...
Mark as Played
December 17, 2020 68 mins
Yo Gotti grew up in Memphis just across the state line from Mississippi State Penitentiary (aka Parchman) — so this year, when he learned about the squalor its inmates were living in, he wanted to help. Gotti enlisted Jay-Z and Roc Nation to sue the department of corrections for human rights violations. In our finale episode, we ask how much celebrity activism really helps the prison reform movement, and sit down with rapper Noname...
Mark as Played
After 21 years in prison, Mac Phipps has been recommended for clemency, which could mean early release. As we reported in our first season, Mac was convicted in 2001 of manslaughter, for a crime he has always said he did not commit. Now, we follow the former No Limit rapper as he navigates the clemency process — and for the first time, we get to talk with Mac himself. What does justice mean after he's spent half his life in prison?...
Mark as Played
June 1, 2021 48 mins
What happens to police officers who use excessive force, tamper with evidence or sexually harass someone? In California, internal affairs investigations were kept secret from the public — until a recent transparency law unsealed thousands of files. On Our Watch is a limited-run podcast from NPR and KQED that brings you into the rooms where officers are interrogated and witnesses are questioned to find out who the system of police a...
Mark as Played
Last week, two of Atlanta's biggest rappers Young Thug and Gunna were arrested under the RICO Act. The DA charged their crew YSL as a gang and the indictment read more like a lyrical analysis than a police report. If this sounds familiar, it's because these same tactics were used in cases we explored with DJ Drama, Bobby Shmurda, and Mac Phipps. In this bonus episode, we speak with NPR's Ayesha Rascoe about the impact of YSL, and h...
Mark as Played
Inside all corners of hip-hop, Black women and queer folk have dealt with the same oppression the music was built to escape. Season 2 of Louder Than A Riot examines who hip-hop marginalizes, and how misogynoir — the specific racist misogyny against Black women — is embedded into the fabric of the culture that we love.
Mark as Played
It felt like the December 2022 trial of Tory Lanez sparked a divide in hip-hop, but it just stoked the flames of a 50-year-long battle for Black women to be heard. In the first episode of our new season, we take you into Megan Thee Stallion's testimony to unpack the impact of misogynoir on rap.
Mark as Played
Decades before hip-hop's current renaissance of women rappers, there was MC Sha-Rock. Despite her influence on future generations, her contribution to the craft of hip-hop is not widely known. In this episode, we break down legacy: who gets to leave one in hip-hop and who gets left out.
Mark as Played
The male gaze looms over everything, but hip-hop is its favorite entertainment. Those under its watchful eye feel objectified or shamed if they don't give it what it wants to see. In this episode, we share the stories of three artists who are pushing back on the male gaze in their personal relationships, social interactions and even industry-wide.
Mark as Played

Popular Podcasts

    Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.

    Math & Magic: Stories from the Frontiers of Marketing with Bob Pittman

    How do the smartest marketers and business entrepreneurs cut through the noise? And how do they manage to do it again and again? It's a combination of math—the strategy and analytics—and magic, the creative spark. Join iHeartMedia Chairman and CEO Bob Pittman as he analyzes the Math and Magic of marketing—sitting down with today's most gifted disruptors and compelling storytellers.

    Crime Junkie

    If you can never get enough true crime... Congratulations, you’ve found your people.

    BG2Pod with Brad Gerstner and Bill Gurley

    Open Source bi-weekly conversation with Brad Gerstner (@altcap) & Bill Gurley (@bgurley) on all things tech, markets, investing & capitalism

    Stuff You Should Know

    If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks, then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

Advertise With Us
Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.

Connect

© 2024 iHeartMedia, Inc.