My bestie and I were in the car one unseasonably warm winter night, listening to some of our favorite trap music after a night of awesome food and drinks. I forget which song exactly begins to permeate our very existence in her Fiat, but there DEFINITELY wasn’t enough space (mind you, there’s barely enough space on Earth for both our personalities) for BOTH of us to turn up. But, we didn’t let that stop us. I needed a blunt of sour to turn down afterwards….lol.
It brought to mind the fact that no matter how many absolute BANGERS the man has produced, no matter how vicious the bats or how refreshingly vulnerable he can be at times, nor how so very interestingly intricate his wordplay can be….there are people out there who still don’t fuck with Drake!! Like…..HOW?!?!
No one ever said he had to tote guns in every, or any, for that matter, verse. Nor does he have to belittle or degrade women so he can be “down”. So, what’s with the lack of acceptance?! What does the man have to prove to you?! If you’ve ever found yourself SERIOUSLY attempting to string together words that not only rhyme, but ring true while appealing to the ears of anyone listening, then you know how hard it is to rap!
The man can rap. I dare you to do better. Seriously! Send me a demo, I promise once I’m done vibing out to “Two Birds, One Stone”, I’ll listen to it. I once used to call myself a rapper. From about 1994 to somewhere around 2001, all I wanted was to be the best rapper I knew. Fuck the fame, later for the money. There are too many different ways to slice bread for me to sacrifice my dignity in order to make a couple of dollars. All I wanted was to wow whoever was around when it was my turn to shine. And I was damn good at it, too! So, I know just how phenomenal of a rapper this guy is!
Now, no one is saying he’s the best to ever do it. I’m not even saying he’s the best rapper out right now, lyrically. I’m just drawing your attention to the fact that the dude might be a little better than you’re giving him credit for! I don’t care if he’s a thug. I don’t care about where he’s from. I don’t even care that he rhymes about the money he has, because let’s all be real for a second, we ALL wish we could be that young and rich. Don’t play yourself. Right now, though, I want you to close your eyes after setting your “This Is Drake” or some similar compilation of his music, and allow yourself to just become one with the music. Allow it to do to you what music is supposed to….touch you without judgement or comparison. Just be there for the music! You can’t tell me that doesn’t feel dope!!
You can’t lie and say there weren’t verses he’s dropped that made you feel like you were right there with him and 40 and whoever else!
Comparing him, or anyone around for about the same length of time or shorter, to some old school rapper is counter progressive. Firstly, times change. So, the music, being art and thereby reflective of life and times, will change. So, saying things like “rap ain’t the same” is dumb. It’s not SUPPOSED to be!! It evolves, as we all do as we grow! Hip-hop, specifically is a force powered by the youth of the times. So, if you’re an old head complaining about Drake, just know that you sound like our parents talking about the Wu-Tang Clan or Eminem. Antiquated, and damn near useless, opinion-wise.
Listen to his verses. Like, REALLY listen!! Consider the production, the beats. The flow is on point, the words aren’t as predictable (which SHOULD be important to any true master of this craft) as most other rappers, it all makes sense (unlike a lot of Greg Nice’s verses of Nice ‘N Smooth), and it HITS!! Don’t lie to yourself!! This is more than just some cool ass driving or getting dressed for a party music! He’s changing rap! And, when he collabs with Future, it’s like Jesus is saying “I got you, baby!”