From Diddy calling it a modern day masterpiece to the countless glowing reviews, it’s safe the say that Pusha T’s Daytona is already one of the best rap efforts of the year.
The seven-track long album is Pusha’s third solo effort under the G.O.O.D. label, of which he is President, and was fully produced by Kanye.
Pusha T brings lyricism to a forefront on this project and Kanye, still showing he has it, throws him perfect pitches every time. As he described in several interviews during his press run, the album’s title was named after Pusha’s favorite watch, the Rolex Daytona. It represents the luxury of time. In an interview, Push said,
“I feel like me and Ye are letting the world see that this album is us having the luxury of time to create it. A lot of people don’t have that luxury, a lot of people gotta keep throwing out trash, whatever the case may be. We really crafted this.”
With that time Pusha and Kanye managed to do something special. Here are ten of the hottest bars from Daytona.
1. “Games We Play”
This ain’t for the conscious, this is for the mud-made monsters
Who grew up on legends from outer Yonkers
2. “Hard Piano”
Never trust a bitch who finds love in a camera
She will fuck you, then turn around and fuck a janitor
We don’t do vegetables, niggas get flatlined
Welcome all beef, then we heat ’em with flat irons
4. “What Would Meek Do”
Angel on my shoulder, “What should we do?” (we do)
Devil on the other, “What would Meek do?”
Pop a wheelie, tell the judge to Akinyele
The lyric pennin’ equal the Trumps winnin’
The bigger question is how the Russians did it
It was written like Nas, but it came from Quentin
6. “The Games We Play”
This is for my bodybuilding clients moving weight
Just add water, stir it like a shake
7. “If You Know You Know”
You don’t take these type of risks, boy
‘Cause this boy been throwin’ that D like Rich Boy
8. “Come Back Baby”
All my dopeboys, we like kinfolk
BMore burnt spoon, DC glass pipe
VA sent bales, ’bout that trap life
Salute Ross ’cause the message was pure
He see what I see when you see Wayne on tour
So I don’t tap dance for the crackers and sing Mammy
‘Cause I’m posed to juggle these flows and nose candy
Playboi Carti, Young Nudy, A$AP Mob, 21 Savage, and Rich the Kid have all hopped on Pi’erre Bourne beats in the last year. It’s been a wild ride for the son of a military mother, who’s gone from student to studio engineer to multiple platinum producer and opening for Drake on a tour of Australia in a matter of months.
A post shared by Pi’erre Bourne (@pierrebourne) on
He said he understands, “what the A&R’s doing, the producer, the homeboy rollin’ up the blunt, the engineer that’s recording, the artist performing; that shit’s crazy.”
This multifaceted approach has obviously helped Pi’erre make waves in hip-hop, but he also has a holistic education in styles of music.
Growing up in a military household, Pie’rre moved from Kansas to North Carolina to South Carolina, but his grandma’s house in Jamaica, Queens was his real home base.
Pi’erre explained to The Fader:
“My family’s from Queens, and every summer for school breaks, I would come up and be there all summer since I was a baby. My grandma’s been in the same house since the ‘70s. I got introduced to hip-hop just being on the block, I was a fuckin’ kid, just seeing people rapping. I tried to do it, but I didn’t know which words to use to rhyme, ‘cause I was so young. My uncle was like, You just need to write it down, you got it!”
Pi’erre learned about hip-hop in Queens and he considers himself a Queens kid, “I might be from down south, but I’m a Queens nigga.”
But while he was educated on the sacred tenants of “real hip-hop” in Queens, he was also a gamer kid who spent hours on the internet, listening to the sounds of the Dirty South. This combination makes his production compelling, combining new school and old school elements for a completely unique sound.
When his uncle first introduced him to the production software Fruity Loops, Pi’erre initially thought it was just another game,
“I thought he was playing a video game, ‘cause [my uncle is] really into computers and shit, and I didn’t know how he did that shit. I was like, lemme try. He usually just lets me go ahead, he knows I’ll figure it out.”
After spending entire summers in front of his uncle’s computer, obsessively playing with Fruity Loops, Pi’erre’s uncle just gave him his computer. From there, Pi’erre kept making music, graduated high school, and enrolled at music engineering school at SAE in Atlanta.
In Atlanta, hip-hop’s current epicenter, Pi’erre assumed he’d have a better chance of linking up with up and coming artists as opposed to in New York,
“I thought about it, after finishing school, where the fuck am I gonna work at, and who am I gonna work with in New York that’s lit? Imma go to Atlanta. There’s somebody blowin’ up every six months. I felt like going to Atlanta would better my chances. Because I didn’t know anyone, I felt more comfortable. Moved out there by myself, and did it. It was hard as fuck at first, but it was definitely worth it.”
From there, Pi’erre got a job working as an engineer at Epic Records, literally sleeping in the studio between mixing records. He learned to perfect song structure by engineering country music, ballads, and acoustic rock music, again allowing him to wear multiple hats in the studio.
Epic also gave him free studio time as part of his gig. Pi’erre would work all day, then at night he’d sneak rappers like Young Nudy into the studio and get to work. Some of Pi’erre’s best work has been with Nudy, the Atlanta rapper and cousin of 21 Savage.
On “Judge Scott Convicted”, Nudy flows with no hook over Pi’erre’s budding organs.
“Barbeque” again shows how Pi’erre’s soft synths complement Nudy’s voice.
Pi’erre’s production isn’t inherently “hard” like Metro Boomin’s horror movie beats or Southside’s drilling 808s, so matching his instrumentals up with Nudy makes for compelling listening.
Nudy goes off on “Hell Shell”, backed up by Pi’erre’s video game bleep-bloops.
It’s special when a duo like Nudy and Pi’erre elevates each other’s respective skills with the product they put out.
Pi’erre Bourne told The Fader that he and Nudy are working as hard as ever as they watch the people around them blow up out of nowhere.
“We gotta keep killing shit. As soon as we slow down, somebody else is gonna come through and fuckin blow up. Coming to Atlanta, I’ve seen niggas blow up every year. That’s why I had to quit [my job]. 21 Savage blew up before my eyes, and Lil Yachty. Like, man, I done seen enough of this shit, we gotta blow up.”
While his time with Epic allowed Pi’erre to work in the studio, he left about a year ago in order to truly pursue his own music. At first, he was terrified, but a call from a certain other midwestern transplant producer in Atlanta validated his decision.
Bourne said to The Fader,
“The day I quit, I kid you not, I got a call to work with Metro Boomin for the first time. I was like, ‘I guess this is the sign I need.’ I quit, went to the studio with him that evening, worked with him, Southside, and Spiffy Global. That session was the coolest session I’ve had. We all make beats, and we all use the same program, and we all know the same board. If it was a spaceship, we all would know how to fly it. I would just get up, not worry about anyone fuckin’ it up or nothing. That was the best thing. We was just like, smokin’ blunts, rolling backwoods, just making dope ass beats. I was like, bro, this is what I wanna do!”
And now he’s doing it.
His beats have shaped the sounds of Summer ’17, Pi’erre crafted the infectious anthems “Magnolia” and “wokeuplikethis*” on Playboi Carti’s eponymous debut mixtape.
His beat was allegedly given to the Brooklyn rapper Tekashi69 for his wild Harmony Korine homage “GUMMO”.
Pi’erre isn’t just a producer though, he makes his own music.
A tour through his prolific SoundCloud and YouTube pages reveals a massive discography of songs, three full-length mixtapes from his Life of Pierre series with another on the way, and a pretty different lyrical approach to his production than most of the artists he’s worked with.
His songs aren’t about drug dealing and hitting licks, but instead describe relationships, dealing with sudden fame, and enjoying the shit out of life.
Pi’erre softly sing-raps over his own instrumentation, adding a different texture to the music than his work with Nudy or Carti.
He even went acoustic on “Mad”, calling out the haters over a simple guitar melody (that time at Epic clearly paying off).
Most recently, Pi’erre Bourne was an opening act for Drake’s Australia tour, a pretty wild achievement for someone that was sleeping at their job just a year ago.
And as for the future, Pi’erre told HotNewHipHop that he wants to keep playing live shows.
“I really wanna start touring a lot, this tour shit’s been lit… The money’s cool but it ain’t even about the money. I just-bro I waited my whole life for people to be screaming my name, it’s addicting now. So now, after I get off stage, I be wanting to run right back on stage and just keep going. ‘Cause it’s like, when I be like ‘everybody put your hands up’ and they do that shit, I just be like ‘Oh, shit, everybody got they fuckin’ hands up.'”
Pi’erre Bourne can do anything he wants in the studio. As he keeps fine-tuning his skills, it might be a wrap for all these other producer/rappers.
Don’t expect to stop hearing “Yo Pierre, you wanna come out here?” anytime soon.
On August 21, 2020, Lecrae dropped his ninth solo album titled Restoration.
Now, some people may not know of Lecrae. Although he’s a veteran in the industry — winning two Grammys and going gold on his last album — the 41-year-old rapper from Houston definitely has a niche following.
You see, Lecrae is considered a Christian rapper. He became the first hip-hop artist to win the Grammy Award for Best Gospel Album and in 2015 became the first rapper to win the BET Award for Best Gospel Artist.
Yet, with this kind of success — between the critical acclaim and record sales — one could ask why more people don’t know about Lecrae or why he’s considered a gospel rapper when he’s won multiple times classified as such?
The label of being a “Christian” artist can be a double-edged sword. On one hand, you’re unashamedly putting on for your beliefs and doing it in a way that relates to you and people like you, which is important in its own right. But it also detracts.
Music that’s filed under the Christian genre doesn’t do as well in the mainstream. It’s possible to have a career as a Christian artist, but there are realistic hindrances to anyone with sights at the top of the charts.
And while Lecrae has seen chart success before, topping the Billboard 200 back in 2014 with his album Anomaly, proving himself in the Christian music world in the process, he’s looking for that crossover success.
That’s why you may see him with new singles featuring familiar names like Ty Dolla $ign and Tori Kelly. It’s also why you’ve seen him struggle with how he’s labeled in interviews.
In the interview, he’s asked if he’s okay with being labeled a Christian rapper and he responds:
“At the end of the day it’s good music it’s good lyrics, [and] you can find whatever you’re looking for inside of it. I don’t call myself that. I don’t go by any of those genres/titles.”
And he’s right. At the end of the day, it comes down to if you got bars or not. And as Lecrae gears up for his newest album, it’s a good time to see if he has them or not. Here are ten times he brought it.
“Manolo” | Trip Lee feat.Lecrae
“I flip that page on em my trigga finga stay workin (pop pop pop)
I got plenty ammo got old and new they both testify, my Lord”
“That’s backwards, and I lack words
For these actors called pastors
All these folks is hypocrites
And that’s why I ain’t at church”
“I ain’t popping, rolling and I ain’t burnt
So tell Mary and Molly I don’t need ’em to party
Someone woke up in the lobby trying to locate they wallet
While I’m nine holes in trying to work on my hobby”
“Blessings” feat. Ty Dolla $ign
“I’ve been punchin’ in the clock
Tryna keep the kitchen stocked
Man it’s a blessin’ ’cause we ain’t ever had a lot
But all we need is all we got”
“I’ll Find You” feat. Tori Kelly
“They say ‘Don’t get bitter, get better’
I’m working on switching them letters
But tell God I’ma need a whole lotta hope keeping it together”
“All I Need Is You”
“And I’m all or nothing cause (all I need is you)
To hold me down like bed straps to the psych ward
It’s killing me but you still with me when I fight hard
And (all I need is you)”
“And everybody watching thinking that you made it
The truth is for a few designer labels and a little bit of paper now you 12 years slaving
Hey but you ain’t Lupita
So why you beat up and pushing people to lean on a double cup
And a seizure”
“Tell The World” feat. Mali Music
“I got the old me in the rearview
Now the new me got a clear view
And I was so dead, I couldn’t hear you
Too deep in sin to come near you”
“Don’t Waste Your Life”
“People think they livin’ for a job
Make a lil money start living for a car
Get em a wife, a house, kids and a dog
When they retire they living high on the hog”
Lil Uzi Vert, along with Lil Yachty, seems to have become the object of much of the criticism and ire towards the new generation of “mumble rappers”.
We can trace the origin to the “mumble rap” term to Wiz Khalifa on an interview with Ebro on Hot97. Wiz told Ebro,
“We call it mumble rap. It ain’t no disrespect to the lil homies, they don’t want to rap. It’s cool for now, it’s going to evolve. Those artists, if they want to stay around, they’ll figure out the next thing to do. But right now, that’s what’s poppin’.”
We want to thank Wiz for his contributions to hip-hop and holding it down for the shmokers, but introducing the mumble rap term into the zeitgeist has been counterproductive to say the least.
Ironically enough, Wiz Khalifa actually signed Lil Uzi Vert, went on tour with him and Fall Out Boy (lol), and has a song with the Philly native.
Mumble rap has become the favorite phrase of that kid on your freshman year floor who had every Tribe album on vinyl and claimed Dead Prez was the most important rap group of all time.
We get it, lyricism is dead bro and hip-hop just isn’t what it used to be, but shit changes and music is not immune to this phenomenon.
So while the “mumble rap” haters are busy telling you Camp Lo is better than Future, we’re gonna do some fuckin’ journalism and investigate whether or not Lil Uzi Vert has bars.
In order to do said journalism, we combed through Lil Uzi’s catalog from some of his earliest work, including his first major release in 2015 Luv is Rage, 2016’s Lil Uzi vs. the World and The Perfect Luv Tape, as well as his many features.
We found some of the most provocative and fascinating lines and analyzed them with the necessary seriousness and critical eye that Lil Uzi deserves.
And yes, to the Lil Uzi heads out there, we know he has other mixtapes and whatnot somewhere on the internet, but we’re keeping this investigation Spotify exclusive.
For our first entry we’re taking an excerpt from “Super Saiyan” on Uzi’s Luv is Rage mixtape. Here we encounter a rather confrontational Lil Uzi, seemingly with something to prove. These bars are pretty demonstrative of some of the themes throughout Lil Uzi’s catalog.
We’re gonna get a lot of anime references, there will be some uhh questionable lyrics about women (usually in some sort of cuckolding form but not in this case), drug references throughout, haters who are not up to Lil Uzi’s standards, and the relative age and size of Uzi’s money.
Now as representative as this excerpt is, we need to get down to the bars themselves. First off, no idea how Vikings have sex, so we’re gonna call that subpar barrage. The lean/Viking fan thing makes more sense and the whole dirty lean/dirt bike wordplay is very nice stuff (shoutout Philly).
I’m not personally one for horoscopes, but I gotta respect the general mystic theme, Lil Uzi is doing some interesting shit here! And of course shoutout Joe Biden. These are solid and funny bars.
When a song opens with the line” I woke up in the morning, brush my teeth smack my bitch ass” you know you’re in for some general fuckery. And in “Canadian Goose” fuckery does transpire.
The general theme of the song seems to be that Lil Uzi is “literally cold as fuck” and that the amount of jewelry he has means that he needs a large coat, namely a Moncler or Canada Goose.
He also just caught a Mewtwo, not sure if that’s like a Pokemon Go reference or if that he is making a connection between Japanese women and Pokemon but I think we can go ahead and say these are not especially strong bars.
Sidenote: if you have a friend that really loves “lyrical rap” or whatever, definitely play this song for them and watch the smoke begin to billow out of their ears.
“Money Longer” is definitely one of Uzi’s better known songs, and for good reason, shit is hot. This is an entire song dedicated to the general largeness of Lil Uzi’s money, which seems to just keep on growing.
In fact, Lil Uzi’s money is so long he can go out and get that blackened salmon, which is definitely some cool shit. And when he’s with his girl they’re as fly as Pharrell and Vashtie, but then Uzi throws a curveball and realizes that he and his girl won’t last.
Uzi realizes that as great as his life is and as long as his money is, it can’t prevent him from losing his partner, that’s a tough realization.
I’m down for introspective Uzi, even if the next line after this is “In that pussy, you know I like it rough, then I’m just blastin'” which… just fuckin chill Uzi.
I assume we are all picking up on some themes here. Lil Uzi likes salmon, this we can confirm. His haters, who are not doing shit, are rather prevalent as Uzi continues to get longer and longer money.
Throw in some random booty line and you got a Lil Uzi verse. These are good bars, folks.
Know I’m flexin’ on your clique
Blink of a eye, know that I would take your bitch
I cannot lie, I cannot live life like this
Cause if I lie then I know it is not real, yeah
You can’t forget
Baby, please, don’t forget about me Yeah she saw my Rollie won’t forget about me
Addicted to my flexin’ now can’t live without me
This shit right here is why Lil Uzi is an interesting artist. We got some standard cuckolding ok ok, talking about how real he is, but then we get into some downright existentialism.
Life isn’t real if you’re lying, but is the connection between Uzi and his supposed “baby” even real? Uzi tries to reassure himself that his Rollie and said anonymous woman’s addiction to his lifestyle means she can’t forget him, but does he really believe this?
Perhaps all of this posturing and boasting is merely a facade hiding a more vulnerable and insecure Lil Uzi? Nahhhh she addicted to the flexin’,