On Los Angeles rapper ScHoolboy Q’s newly-released album, Oxymoron, gang history is one of a number of topics the TDE emcee touches on. Although Q has openly addressed his gang past, during an interview on the Juan Epstein podcast, he revealed that discussing that particular part of his life can be embarrassing at times.
In addition to shunning his gang past, ScHoolboy Q detailed joining a set in his neighborhood on accident at the age of 12.
“Like I said, I tell people this story all the time,” he said. “When I joined the set it was an accident. Like my homie said he was about to do it. I’m like ‘I’mma go too. Let’s go.’ You go to the block where all the homies be at or the homies could be on your block. You know what I’m saying? Y’all have a conversation. You get put on or whatever it is. You know what I mean? The homie went to the park. I followed him…You have to grow up in the set, for one. For two, you have to know at least more than one person. You know what I’m saying? You gotta be kicking it with him—y’all went to school together or something. He know your mama or auntie or something. And three, shit, you can’t be no mark. You gotta have a little heart…Some people fold under pressure and some people don’t.”
According to the West Coast wordsmith, his involvement in a gang not only took him away from his daughter, but also made him unable to support his now four-year-old daughter for two years.
“It’s not something I’m into no more,” ScHoolboy Q said. “It’s embarrassing for me to even really be talking about it like in detail. From me going to what I was to now like I look at it as like retarded. Why would I go and do all that type of stuff. You know what I mean? Take time away from my daughter and not being able to support her. [I] went two years before I could support my daughter. She was born for two years; I didn’t have like a dime on me.”
Today’s (February 25) release of Q’s Oxymoron album comes nearly a year and a half after fellow Black Hippy member Kendrick Lamar released his Grammy-nominated LP, good kid, m.A.A.d city. In a past interview, ScHoolboy Q did reveal that those at TDE can be “real competitive” and while speaking with Peter Rosenberg and Cipha Sounds, Q explained that he did study Kendrick’s album in order to perfect Oxymoron.
The rapper was also critical of artists who release a number of records and mixtapes in a short period of time rather than focusing on one project.
“That album [good kid, m.A.A.d city] is incredible. It came out 2012,” he said. “People act like it came out two months ago. You get what I’m saying? Like that’s a strong album. I had to step back and really understand do I want my album to be hot like the rest of these niggas for four months? Like these rap niggas that’s why they gotta keep dropping mixtape after mixtape, album—like what type of nigga drop five records in one month. Like how you drop five records in one month?”
Oxymoron serves as a follow up to ScHoolboy Q’s 2012 album, Habits & Contradictions. Q’s newly-released album received a 3.5 rating from HipHopDX and is described as boasting “a familiar mix of dark, introspective rhymes peppered with some youthful irreverence over top-notch production.”
The LP includes guest appearances from Jay Rock, SZA, Raekwon, Kendrick Lamar, and a handful of other artists.