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You know, I’m feeling quite salty that Drake pulled a pump-fake with the Popcaan version of Controlla. What a tease! Replacing it with a Beenie Man sample doesn’t do the song justice, jus’ mi two cents. If you read my write-up, I was hype about it. It’s such a sexy song and then here comes Beenie. Le sigh, #why. It’s like that moment when you’re vibing and dancing by yourself and some random guy comes to dagger. Just stop.

No one really knows why Popcaan isn’t on the album and I’m quite curious to know what really happened. But anyway, let’s talk about the rest of Views.

Drake seems to be highly influenced by Caribbean culture, specifically Dancehall in the newest album. “9”, starts off with him saying “fi di dawgs dem, you know?” in his best Caribbean accent. It could use some work but we see you and I love the song. The track samples “Dying” by Mavado feat. Serani, a 2007 hit.

One Dance, which is now no. 2 on the Billboard 100, is an afrobeat-dancehall influenced song, and we all know azonto and afrobeats has been on a continuous rise and crossover in the Caribbean music industry. The young woman singing “Tell Me, I Need to Know, Where Do You Wanna Go” is actually from Kyla’s “Do You Mind,” which is a 2008 UK house music vibe. It also features Nigerian music sensation, Wizkid, who is best known for songs like P-Squared, Show You The Money, and Ojulegda, which was actually remixed featuring Drake just last summer.

I’m sure growing up in Toronto and being surrounded by the culture has much to do with Drake’s musical diversity. “Find Your Love”, released on May 5th, 2010, has a dancehall-hip hop riddim and was filmed in Kingston, Jamaica. Mavado makes a cameo playing the gully-side gangster whose girlfriend was having a love affair with Drake. The video was then criticized by the Jamaican ministry of tourism because of the violence and how the island was portrayed.

Let’s not forget the recent dancehall-pop favourite, Rihanna’s “Work”, which I recently touched on, that is still in the top 10 of the charts. It’s a bare bashment setting choreographed by the biggest choreographer from Toronto, Tanisha Scott, who also assisted Drake with his moves in the Hotline Bling video.

The Caribbean influence is also prevalent in other artistes, for example one my favorites, Major Lazer. They are mostly known for selling out EDM concerts worldwide and have done recordings for an album in Jamaica. They’re known for collaborations with Busy Signal, Vybz Kartel, T.O.K., Machel Montano, Bunji Garlin, and Faye Ann, just to name a few. By the way, two thirds of the group are from the Caribbean. Jillionaire, born in Trinidad & Tobago, and Walshy Fire, hailing from Jamaica, never fail to represent for the islands. Something about this music makes people want more sazón in their life. There’s so much bad going on the world and feel-good music is a healer.

I’ve always been a fan of Drake and I say the whole album has something for everyone to enjoy and it doesn’t disappoint. When he first started singing and rapping, he was clowned by most saying he wasn’t hip hop or a real rapper. Let’s face it guys, he’s dope and it works for him. His songs have probably gotten most of you past first base, so don’t hate. The fans are from all over the world and being exposed to the Caribbean through music is never a bad thing.

The Summer Sixteen Tour launches on July 20 in Austin, Texas. but let’s not talk about these tickets and how they sold out in 2.5 seconds. I need answers.

One Love.

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