‘More Life’ proves Drake to be a cultural leader in more ways than one

Drake’s More Life was tweeted about over 2.5 million times this weekend and hopefully, you have found time to binge-listen to the 22-track playlistMore Life experiments with UK grime, British vocals, dancehall riddims, and ATL-inspired trap within new parameters – created by the 6 god himself. 

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Drake’s More Life is good for music and culture. Source

Here are four reasons why Drake is an innovator of culture:

Nothing but Teenage Fever

Let’s be real, DraLo didn’t sit well with us. Even when we had receipts, the PDA wasn’t adding up and had people speculating a fake romance. Fake Love aside, after listening to Teenage Fever we all feel better that at least good music came from it. Teenage Fever is nostalgic as it takes us back to the early 2000s when J.Lo was still Jennifer Lopez and reminding us that Love Doesn’t Cost a Thing and R.Kelly was teaching us how to Step in the Name of Love. Samples from If You Had My Love is just one of the many samples throughout the playlist. In classic Drake style, he continues to use samples to create something familiar but at the same time something new.

It’s a London ting

Looks like Drake is cheating on Toronto with London as it continues to be a place for his inspiration and innovation. Consequently, the British sound has found its way onto More Life with features from UK-artists like Skepta, Black Coffee, Sampha, and Giggs. On tracks like Free Smoke and No Long Talk you may question the 6 god’s British accent, which many people were quick to bash, but let’s look at it was showing appreciation for a new culture that he actively seeks to be a part of. Drake continues to use his platform to experiment with new sounds and blur the boundaries of what it means to be a black rapper on a global scale or better yet the next Michael Jackson. And perhaps, Europe is the best place to do that because according to Samuel L. Jackson, in the UK racism doesn’t exist.

Out with the old, in with the new

Dancehall-inspired sounds on tracks like Blem and Madiba Riddim and introducing British sounds like on Jorja Interlude and Sketpa Interlude, further solidifies Drake as more than a rapper, but a pop artist. And yet, he continues to use hip-hop and rap for as the basis for new ideas. When More Life débuted Saturday evening on OVO Sound Radio, it was reminiscent of BET’s Rap City when Big Tigger would chit-chat in the basement with MCs and rappers before heading into the booth for 30 seconds to spit new fire. Once again Drake uses More Life as an outlet to reinvent hip-hop by merging it with new platforms and new sounds that he can only make omnipresent.

It’s not a what . . .

With projects like Views and More Life, Drake is blurring the boundaries of what defines a rapper, and in doing so continues to influence the ways in which we consume music. From his partnership with Apple Music to a playlist that promotes binge-listening, listeners will need 81- minutes to listen to the entire collection. The format of More Life can be described as an evolution from the mixtape, which gives Drake the creative freedom to release whatever work he wants without having to follow guidelines that anyone tries to hold him to. Unlike an album or even a mixtape, the playlist brilliantly lacks cohesiveness, which provides the many different sounds of Drizzy: old Drake, Toronto Drake, London Drake and One Dance Drake. Which Drake is your favourite?

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