Tech N9ne says he was up against a wall when it was time to record “Fragile,” a song featured on the Strange Music rapper’s new album, Something Else.
“It was crazy, because I was so busy,” Tech N9ne says during an exclusive interview with HipHopDX. “I knew it was going to be a big song, because what Mayday! gave me with Kendall Morgan singing on it. After I wrote my verse, it was my second show in Seattle. We did two shows, because I sold out both shows. There was like 2,000 the first night, and another 2,000 on the second night. So it was like, ‘Whoa, we sold out both shows!’ I was already tired from the night before, and we already had booked the studio time in Seattle. I went there, and I finished the last four bars of the verse I wrote. I wrote most of the verse—the first eight bars—on bus. It was getting closer to the show, and I wrote the last four bars at the studio because, our meet and greets aren’t an hour anymore. There’s like 300 people or 400 people, so you’re there until 6 pm now instead of 3 or 4. Now we got to go the studio, and I gotta be on stage at 9 pm, so it’s coming down to the wire…I still have to eat and whatnot. But I did it, and after I did it, I’m like, ‘Ooh, the verse is elite.'”
Tech N9ne says that he took a moment to reflect on his own rhymes. “I looked back at it, and I said, “Some of the people appointed to give an opinion / Never do get it / I want you to come on and gobble a jimmy and… die / Nina be givin’ the remedy and why / Critics are really the enemy, and I / Can’t stand the way they slam today’s gifted / Effin’ incredible, get fanned away with grands to pay / This jam will lay scripted / Deaf and impeccable…'”
Even though “Fragile” already featured Mayday! and Kendall Morgan, Tech N9ne says that he wanted to include another rapper on the song with him. “It was already elite, so I needed somebody who could come after me, and there aren’t too many who can do it,” Tech N9ne says. “Twista can do it, Busta [Rhymes] can do it, Eminem can do it, Kendrick [Lamar] can surely do it, and that’s who I heard on that beat. That was music we were doing, when you can hear that beat, it’s music. It’s empty, but it’s music. The beautiful acoustic guitar and Kendrick is musical to me. I felt like he could speak on that. I wasn’t sure if he could speak on that…but he spoke on it. People love him, and I didn’t know if he had critics that had said something bad. I wasn’t sure if he could speak on it, because people love him so much. But he spoke on it, and it was pretty raw. He held that second verse, and it’s like you ain’t mad at it at all.”
Tech N9ne has deep ties to Kendrick Lamar. Lamar is in the group Black Hippy with Jay Rock, who is signed to Strange Music. Both Kendrick Lamar and Jay Rock toured with Tech N9ne in 2010 and Tech N9ne and Kendrick Lamar appeared with Machine Gun Kelly, Big K.R.I.T. and B.o.B at the 2011 BET Hip Hop Awards Cypher.
Additional Reporting By Omar Burgess