Everybody is driven by something. Whether that be money, fame, sex, notoriety, or a pat on the back. There's a long list of factors that drive people to do whatever it is that they do, but not everybody really wants to put the work that it takes to gain the benefits. Some people are just cut out differently than others, and they find themselves constantly achieving whatever it is that they are searching for out of life. This next dude has that old school hustler mentality that helps him to continue to be a driving force in the entertainment industry.
My Krazy Life
March 18, 2014
For those old enough to remember, MySpace was the spot when it came to listening to the newest of the new music. It was the SoundCloud platform for artists way before it was even thought of. And if you were really on the hype, you would find the newest music and put it on your profile so that when people went onto your page they'd be like "This guy always got songs on here that I've never heard of." Back when the Jerkin' phase was just starting to get hot, a teenage YG was dropping some of the hardest dance songs out with a hood twist. "I'm Still Poppin" had to be the hardest jerkin song I ever heard. I don't even know if he intended for it to be a dance song, but I was rocking my purple skinny jeans doing all kinds of crazy leg moves in Downtown Modesto slapping the 4Fingaz mixtape out of my Geo Metro. Had the hatchback open so you could hear the bass, probably looking like a damn fool.
For a good 5 or 6 years, all we had was the constant release of mixtapes from YG, so by the time it came for his debut album to finally drop, the world was already prepared for the future. He did not disappoint and delivered with the whole world watching. The most anticipated debut in Los Angeles rap since Snoop Dogg's Doggystyle not only lived up to expectations, but could be considered a certified classic at the end of his career. My Krazy Life gives us a glimpse into the street life of Los Angeles for a gang affiliated artist with dreams of making sure his mom and dad never have to work again.
The release of the megahit worldwide single in "My Nigga" months before the release of the album only built the anticipation. Young Jeezy not only was featured on the first single, but was the Executive Producer for the album. Having a man in his corner who has been in the rap game for a long time could only help YG in his rise to stardom. Following his first hit single, he followed it with another chart topper that featured worldwide pop singer Drake in "Who Do You Love?" YG came with some hot lyrics that could only be created by someone who has really gone through it, and made himself extremely relatable to the masses.
But enough about the singles that as my wife says all the time are played out. I'm like Bangers never get played out, but she doesn't care she skips them anyway. But I don't blame her, because the tracks on this album that weren't for the radio were exponentially better and contained much more substance than that of those popular songs. In case you didn't know where he was from, he lets you know right from the start. After his mom calls for him to come inside, stating his whole name as Keenon Daequan Ray Mutha Fuckin Jackson, his song "BPT" lets you know where he is from and what raised him.
Nigga I'm from BPT
Westside (x4) TTP
What block? (x4) 400 Spruce Street
What y'all doin? (x4)
Nigga kill off all beef
I’m a Westside get brackin' in the back like what’s happnin'
That 40 Glock snap like Insta, ain't no need for a caption
I got put on by four niggas, wasn't need for no bandage
I did my stuff like a young nigga, that's how I'm s'posed to handle it
Here's a little translation for you guys: BPT=Bompton aka Compton; TTP=Tree Top Piru. Listening to YG's music is sometimes like listening to an entirely different language, but it represents what he is. A young man who grew up in a city that treats those of the same gang affiliation like family, and his heavy use of Blood terminology is a nod to his upbringing. But it's not all guns and violence with YG, his music is his weapon of choice, and he uses it to try to create a better future for his family. He expresses some of his truest feelings and allows the world to feel what fuels his fire in "Really Be"
I be goin' through shit, losin' bitches and homies
If I don't make it with this rap shit, nigga, I might be homeless
My moms don't got a job, my pop's checks ain't enough
If I ain't bringin' home that money, my whole family is fucked
That's why I move like the Mob, I'm watchin' movies too much
If niggas wanted you dead, what would you suggest?
That last line really resonates with me as I've listened to this album for probably the 50th time through. He knows that most of his listeners won't ever know what it is like to go through what he has gone through. To have people that want you dead definitely would give you a different perspective on life. He shows that he knows how powerful his art can be, and that if he uses it correctly he can keep himself safe, and allow his mother and father to live the lives he believes they deserve.
That's all most of us really want, right? For any of us who have parents or whoever guided us through life, we want to make them proud and give them the opportunity to live comfortable. You may not understand why YG talks about guns, sex, and gang violence, but his art allows you to at least see what he is doing it for. If he grew up around those influences, he has to share those with the world. It gives the listener a chance to see who someone real looks like. A lot of rappers, especially from Los Angeles, try to create the appearance that they are from the hood or had a tough upbringing or whatever. But when you listen to YG, not only do you hear him, but you feel his words.
Life is a feeling process. If you don't have the ability to feel someone's emotions through their art, then this probably isn't for you. But for those of you who have an ability to understand that everyone has different backgrounds, and you can respect someone who represents what they are about, then you will understand what I mean when I say you can feel his words. Not only that, YG just gives you the hood shit that most of y'all beg for in rap. The real West Coast shit that came from the 90's is all here in this album, mixed in with a little bit of G-Unit as he can teach you how to stunt.
It's obvious what YG does it for, his family, himself, and the people who created a lasting influence on his life and music. But what do you do it for? What drives you? There may be a person ten thousand miles away who is a different race, have a different background, and has gone through different life experiences than you. But it is very possible that you have the same common goals as that random person. I see a lot of myself in YG, not in appearance with the tattoos, the gang language, and the fact that he is black and I'm more of like a medium brown, but in the fact that I'm doing what I do for my family. So I encourage you to listen to this album with a mindset of understanding. Because once you are able to understand others, it will only make others more understanding of you. Real shit.
Putting mama's in a music video is a BIG MOOD...
Just a man trying to make the most of his time on this planet.