Kipp Stone’s “Cheap Sangria”

Will Schube takes a look at the East Cleveland rapper's latest single.
By    August 31, 2020

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Will Schube can’t take you phonies when his blood sugar is low.

Kipp Stone is the definition of a working man’s MC. By day, he’s what we now deem―but has always, at its core, been―an essential worker at a long-term care facility. At night, he takes off the scrubs and steps up to the mic, spitting relatable bars for the 9 to 5ers Aesop Rock first anthologized way back in ‘01. Kipp produces his own music and hails from East Cleveland, which, according to a website called, “…looks like a ghost town and [is] very dangerous. East Cleveland is not a good place at all. The stores down there do not open the way they should. It’s loud most of the time and raccoons are everywhere.”

While the review is probably entirely untrue, there’s a worn-down ‘seen it all before’ approach to Kipp’s lyricism that makes it both immediately relatable and uniquely his. I’d happily rent a car Cleveland Hopkins International and join Kipp for a glass of sangria…hold the fruit.

After 2017’s Dirty Face Angel made waves in the underground, Stone linked up with the perennially solid Closed Sessions and “Cheap Sangria” is the first collaboration between the rapper and label. It’s a broken jam with melted guitars and a head-nodding beat that Kipp makes feel more like a lead weight atop your dome than any impetus to tap along. But Stone’s personality shines through bars of despair and squashed optimism. Anyone can rap about running out of money, few can turn the sentiment into opting for a noxious bag of wine that only tastes good when you can’t afford it.

Even though the depression is palpable, Kipp expresses it with such acute insight that it’s hard not to agree. He raps, “Wine money dried up on me so now we sober/dime bitch lost time for me so now we lonely/time flies when you spend it drowning in the sofa/life on bullshit let’s start over.” It’s the perfect tune for our canceled summer, so fish the melting ice out of the not-cold-enough freezer and start chopping fruit. We have no money in our pockets, but some booze is cheaper than lint.

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