I’m not going to lie, I was a latecomer to the Gunna bandwagon.
In my defense, the 24-year old rapper from College Park, Georgia has only been rapping since 2016 (when his Drip Season series first began) and when I did hear him, he didn’t sound like an artist fresh on the scene.
On Young Thug’s “Floyd Mayweather”, a highlight of the 2016 studio album JEFFERY, Gunna’s presence was not overshadowed, but instead he was on par with Gucci and Travis Scott’s verses. He blended in; almost too well.
His cadence, flow, and feel matched up so well against his much more experienced contemporaries that I just assumed he was someone I knew already.
Even his 2017 tape, Drip Season 2 was egregiously overlooked. The project compiled plenty of Atlanta’s scene with the assistance of Duke, Playboi Carti, and Young Thug, but somehow I didn’t catch wind.
On February 2nd, however, young Gunna gave us all another chance, swerving that bandwagon back around with his third mixtape Drip Season 3.
Released under Young Thug’s YSL label, which is a subsidiary of 300 Entertainment, Drip Season 3 took over the sound waves by storm. The momentum and reps Gunna got during the first two tapes all came together on this project.
My unfamiliarity was quickly erased once it graced my ears. It was one of those instances where the music found me. I didn’t have go out and look for it — the sound had a magnetic pull that I couldn’t resist.
For Drip Season 3, Gunna recruits rappers Young Thug, Lil Uzi Vert, Lil Yachty, NAV just to name a few, and gets production assistance from the likes of Metro Boomin, London on the Track, and other hitmakers. Gunna somehow takes what is probably the most popular flow and trap sound out, and simply does it better.
Drip — the theme, mantra, and name of the tape — is the metaphorical sauce he inhabits. From the beats he chooses and the verses he spits, there is an undeniable bop to Gunna’s music that translates from the first track on down.
Gunna’s influence are Young Thug and Future and it shows. He knows exactly the pitches to use, when to incorporate what melodies and how to ride a beat, almost as well as his mentors.
What Gunna brings to the table as an artist is far more than just rap content, it’s an essence of a lifestyle. It feels like exactly what the Atlanta scene is right now, and I’m not sure if there is an artist out there capturing it better.
Being that he’s only three projects in, it’s safe to say that we’ve yet to see the best from this Atlanta drip master. Let’s hope he builds on his sound and comes out with ever more heat.