When It’s Unacceptable For Drake To Have A Ghostwriter
The ghostwriter is one of hip-hop’s most protected treasures. From the days of Puff Daddy’s verses being written by multiple Bad Boy artists up to claims that Jay Electronica wrote most of Nas’ Untitled album, a lot of people refuse to believe that their favorite rapper doesn’t write his own rhymes. Some actually have embraced it and still made a strong career. Dr. Dre, Eazy-E, and Diddy were never affected much by admitting they had writers. So, after a memorable Twitter rant brought forth by Meek Mill, why is it unacceptable for Drake to have one?
Meek Mill made claim that Drake doesn’t write his raps, including his contribution to “R.I.C.O.” Soon after, OG Maco jumped in to give more authenticity to the tweet, citing a fellow Atlanta artist named Quentin Miller as the man behind some of Drizzy’s finest. What people are observing is that Quentin’s name is listed on four songs off IYRTITL, so he has writing credits. Steve-O, Maco’s manager, points out that the whole issue is that he’s possibly writing more than what he gets credit for.
There begins a problem. Drake’s music often feels personal, like he’s inviting you to sit on his luxurious couch to tell you his life tales by way of hot cocoa and a fireplace. He writes about past flings not working out and how that’s affected his mind state. What if that’s all a lie? This would be the biggest exposing in hip-hop since Rick Ross was confirmed as a former C.O. We connect with Drake because he can relate to us through his experiences. He knows just what to say to us. If that was taken away, it’d be hard to accept it.
Somebody is reading this thinking, “who the hell cares? It’s good music.” That’s fine to think too. There’s no right or wrong opinion on the matter, but personally I’d be disappointed. Maybe it’d be temporary and go away with time. I don’t care that Will Smith had ghost writers, or Sisqo didn’t even write his biggest hit (“Incomplete”). R&B writing is a whole different ball park that we’re going to avoid.
More flexible, yet flame emoji-approved, songs like “Energy” or “HYFR” wouldn’t matter if Quentin or anybody else wrote them. Dre’s “Still D.R.E.” has Jay-Z’s fingerprints all over it, but you couldn’t tell unless somebody told you. That’s how Drake records feel. Quentin’s Soundcloud has about a project or two’s worth of music that is low quality and shows potential, but it’s not blowing anyone away like the supposed Drake contributions.
Drake is going through the same situation as Lil Wayne, except Quentin isn’t Gillie The Kid. At some point, Wayne probably spit a verse or two or three that Gillie wrote. He was around too much and you can pinpoint some rhyme patterns and slang from GDK. But that’s all it is, a little bit of contribution. Gillie isn’t solely responsible for Wayne’s golden era, rather a puzzle piece to a bigger picture.
This is likely Quentin Miller’s similar situation. He’s credited for verses and/or just lines here and there, but Drake is still doing the majority of the work. At least, I’d hope so. It’s hard to tell, and we may never find out the whole story like GDK. As long as Quentin is making a fortune to pen parts for Drake and gets his royalties, he will probably never comment on the matter. We can sit back and enjoy Drake’s music, or be one of those weirdos who lets this end our musical relationship with him. I vote for the former.
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Check out some of my other pieces: An Open Letter to Lil Wayne, From One Love To Another, Future’s Codeine Inspired Run, Tyrese Is Done As A Solo Artist & Nobody Cares, Vince Staples’ ‘Summertime ‘06’ Disappointed Me, and OG Maco’s Intelligence, Social Media & Being Outspoken.