Thursday, December 8, 2011

Proud of Drake

How can I not like this guy?

I'm admittedly a bit late jumping on the Drizzy bandwagon, but I'm definitely on it now that I picked up his "Take Care" album. For years I only semi- paid attention to his lyrics, his stories, and his relevance, but like everyone else in this city, I was proud of him nonetheless.

Proud of what he represented. Proud of his mannerisms and the way he carried himself. Exceptionally proud that every time I stepped into the U.S. over the last two years because their top hip hop stations and clubs were downright over-saturating the airwaves with this guy's hits.

Proud is probably an understatement.

We take our people real seriously, don't we? I remember when Kardi was on Jay Leno a few years back performing his hit "Dangerous," I damn near had tears in my eyes! Didn't know the brother personally, but I knew the environment from which he came, and the great footsteps he was taking on behalf of all of us.

Even in sports! Toronto native NBA player Jamaal Magloire is signing with the Raptors this week, and can't help but get that sentimental feeling.

It's motivating to see one of our "own" (whether we know them or not) achieve their goals. Maybe this is commonplace in New York, LA, and other major cities. But for Toronto, we feel each success strongly. We realize the impact of these movements, and the hard work, the dedication, and ultimately the perseverance that it takes to get to that place.

We know, firsthand, that it ain't easy.

So I did the patriotic thing and finally bought a Drake album, "Take Care." And it's great!

I can't lie...I bought the Rihanna "Talk That Talk" CD the same day, and was a lil bit surprised to hear that Rihanna's album was edgier than the rapper's. Rihanna's album had me moving...Drake's had me...reflective I'd say.

I thought to myself, as their collaboration "Take Care" came on..."this is the album that will inspire me to finish my latest book."

I've mentioned this many times before, that I can only write when I'm creatively or emotionally inspired. Sometimes that means every day. Sometimes that means I don't write a thing for weeks. Sometimes I am in a complete literal standstill! But right now I can thank Drake for penning the soundtrack to my latest Urban Toronto Tale.

I can't even break it down track by track yet. I'm still taking the album in collectively. It's inspiring something in me, and if I analyze it too closely, I might lose the very inspiration that I am seeking.

It does remind me in essence of my dear Kanye, in that there's lots of choral sounds, lots of instruments. It's like real mood music to me.

What threw me off was that Drake went all KC-I and Jo Jo on us, with the high falsettos and R&B vocals. Wasn't quite expecting that, but I guess he's just riding the riddim and following his soul. I can tell that Drake has an inner Keith Sweat to him that he really can't keep back. As much as he's a rapper...this boys loves to sing!

Not mad at that.

It's boooooooooooooooooooorderline corny just how incredibly sensitive he is...but at the same time, I believe it shows his confidence. Yeah, he'll sing about women, and love, and sadness, and heartache and he doesn't care who wants to judge him!

Again, why this boy is so appealing. He's cool. Confident and cool, without trying too hard. Yes, he can maybe tone back the Yankee accent at times (your dad is from the south, we get it), but otherwise I think Drake's as authentic as they get.

What is appealing to me--now that I'm a fan--is how he conducts himself in interviews, his humility, his ability to articulate himself, and really and truly that he has mastered the game of music and entertainment, and probably has the intelligence and talent to stay on top for a good while.

This isn't so much an album review as it is a slight tribute to our homeboy Aubrey. I will joyfully add this CD to my collection (yes, I'm old school and don't do iTunes...or bootleg). I will put it in rotation with my Rihanna and "Watch the Throne," and I will allow his stories, music, and rhythms help me to formulate the plot of my next book.

I absolutely live for this. Music is my fuel!

Written by Stacey Marie robinson for Kya Publishing's Urban Toronto Tales blog.


  1. Pretty good read. I cannot understand why there are so many people who show Drake no respect, but, I must admit, he has found his way in the music industry.

    Beforehand it all merely HYPE. Now, Drake has proven himself, imo.

  2. Right! He is who he is! Definitely an original, and definitely making moves for his city.

    Thanks :)