“It be the closest of niggas that change on you quick and know most fo your business.”
I sometimes liken Meek Milly to the elusive Edward Snowden; much like the whistle blower who alerted us to the fact that US agencies were spying on us, he alerted us to the fact that hip-hop’s greatest writer had a couple of monkeys on typewriters behind the scenes. Another commonality is that they were both drug through the mud afterward. Meek’s lack of a timely response to Drake’s Grammy award winning diss record Back To Back had many uttering phrases like ‘washed up’ and his career’s over.’ That, though, couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s unfair to pit his success against a more ‘radio-friendly’ artist like Drake and reduce his accolades to insignificance, or an outward display of failure. He made stacks (and stacks) on tour with his gorgeous girlfriend Nicki Minaj, he has earned three gold and one platinum plaque for his wall in the last 365 days, has a net worth of $4 million, and is — figuratively — shitting on a lot of rappers. His latest effort DC4Life, which blazed the internet overnight, is a testament to a lot of what I just mentioned. It’s good to see that despite all the chatter after his beef with The Game and issues with Beanie, he can just concentrate on what matters most — the foundation of his brand. Music.
On the cinematic album opener, “On The Regular,” Meek defiantly reminds all the haters that he isn’t regular — rightfully so. On records like “Blessed Up,” “Shine,” Meek does an excellent job of separating himself from the naysayers and bullshit. The definition of what ‘starting at the bottom’ means differs, although it’s easy to lump all the interpretations together it together. Meek was really on the streets and worked his way up the ranks. On the aforementioned records, he mentioned a couple of things that resonated with me — he truly acknowledges his blessings and realizes that there was likely more than a few close calls that could have ended his career before it popped. One line that I felt was “If it weren’t for this music I’d be probably dead.” Real shit — and he’s lost people out here.
This mixtape does a great job of reasserting why many of us were all about Meek before he — unintentionally — gave Drake a chance to come out as a tough guy. In all honesty, though, it’s fair to say that there isn’t as much cross over in listeners as you may think — Drake isn’t a street rapper. Period. DC4 has crazy production, a-game contributions from the likes of Quavo, Thugger, Pusha T, and the late Lil’ Snupe — along with French Montana — on the mixtape Outro. If you didn’t like Milly before, you probably wouldn’t like him now, but I’m not sure he cares. For those who either have been fans for a minute or are impartial in all the alienating and distracting non-music nonsense, DC4Life is a dope listen.
Philly stand up!