(Last Updated On: February 18, 2015)

Did you get your loved one some records for Valentine’s Day? If not, you’re probably doing it wrong.

Thankfully you can make up for that with a couple of items from this week’s Needle Drop.

This Friday, Ziggy’s has teamed up with Rogue Concerts to present Blackout Mardi Gras, which is an 18+ event. There’s going to be lasers, black lights, confetti cannons and CO2 blasters, as well as a contest to crown the Rogue Mardi Queen 2015. Costumes, masks and body paint are most certainly applicable here, so don your best masquerade get-up and get down at Blackout.

As far as the music you’ll hear, go ahead and expect some of the more recent bangers making the rounds at shows. DJs RDJ, Cameron Shaw, and John E. Johnson will be holding things down on the decks. RDJ drops some of the more big room stuff, sprinkled with bits and pieces of trap remixes – most notably a recent stab on O.T. Genasis’ “CoCo,” which gets the big room sound treatment and takes the song outta the trap and into the sound systems. Check RDJ’s Soundcloud to get a preview of some of his tracks, plus you can get updates with his series of podcasts and mixes.

MC Slim City will be manning the microphone for the evening, which starts at 9 p.m. and costs $15.

If Friday night in Winston-Salem doesn’t wear you out (which it shouldn’t) then you can get your hip-hop fix for the weekend over at the Blind Tiger with DSB 18 Champions Edition. Hosted by Ed E. Ruger and Phillie Phresh, two locals whom you may be getting more familiar with thanks to a recent album release from the Ruger called “Guerilla Grind.” You can find that at

Anyway, DSB 18 is going to be a shit show in the best way possible. Ruger and the Iconoclast Crew managed to cast the net pretty wide and wrangle 16 producers into the competition. If you’ve never been to a beat battle, this might be the one to pop your cherry: You’re going to see a spectrum (OK, so actually just like, 16) of styles and original productions, as well as the musical chops of some of the hungriest up and comers in the Triad.

It’s made pretty clear that this is a beat battle, which voids all lyrical skills for this competition, but you’re more than welcome to lay down a freestyle in the crowd while you’re enjoying the show.

Tickets for DSB start at $8 and go up to $10 at the door day of the show. !