XXL caught up with my favorite producer of all time, DJ Premier, to talk about new cats that are nice with the pen. Not surprisingly, Premo mentioned the up-and-coming Roc Nation affiliate, J. Cole. However, the veteran deejay also told XXL that he believes Drake is somewhat responsible for bringing lyrical content back to the forefront. On Drizzy, the veteran deejay stated, “he brought lyricism back…For a 22-year-old man, he brought lyricism back. When [Gang Starr’s] Step In The Arena came out, I was 22-years-old. And I just thought about it, I was like, Damn, I was a youngster. I wasn’t 30, 31. I was 22 and coming with heat. And that’s why I like that he’s bringing stuff back.”
As far as a collaboration goes, nothing is set in stone, but Prem knows the former Degrassi star is open to the possibility. “I saw Drake at the Yankee Stadium [concert with Jay-Z and Eminem] and he [was] just like bowing and all that,” said the 44 year-old producer. “I’m like, ‘Nah you ain’t gotta do that, man.’ And he’s like, ‘Dude, I wanna work with you.’ And I was like, ‘Dude, I wanna work with you.'” Personally, I thought Drake’s official debut, Thank Me Later, was lyrically sound, but overall a little too poppy for my ears. Hypothetically speaking, would Drake sing on this supposed track or let Prem do his signature scratches? DJ Premier is currently readying the release of a compilation of previously recorded tracks entitled DJ Premier Presents Year Round Records: Get Used To Us. The album features collaborations with Royce Da 5’9″, Joell Ortiz, Styles P, KRS-One, Saigon, and Papoose, amongst others and drops December 7th.
Update: You know why Premo’s a true O.G.? Because Nelson Mandela personally requested to meet with him last time he was in South Africa. According to Prem, Nelson was “just chillin.” No doubt!