During a week that saw DaBaby cop a new Mercedes Maybach, Saweetie get a new Bentley from her Migos boyfriend Quavo and DaniLeigh cruise around with DaBaby in a red Lamborghini, rap artists flaunting their wealth on social media seems to be at an all-time high.
As fate would have it, MC Eiht’s latest interview with HipHopDX couldn’t be more well-timed. Speaking to DX Senior Writer Kyle Eustice, the Compton’s Most Wanted legend talked about what makes his music so relatable — and flexing on his fans has nothing to do with it. Instead, his catalog is peppered with vivid hood tales in songs such as his 1993 magnum opus “Streiht Up Menace” and 2017’s DJ Premier-executive produced album Which Way Iz West.
“I always try to tell people that life is still real, reality is still,” he tells DX. “There’s a lot of people who don’t wake up and drive Bentleys, put on $100,000 chains and can’t go buy Birkin bags and shit like that. There’s a lot of us who live in reality still and, you know, there’s gas bills, light bills, you gotta pay your mortgage and you gotta buy groceries, so that kind of puts that in a reality state of life isn’t a party.”
Eiht continues, “Even though I might not be dead broke and eating out of the garbage can, still as an average muthafucka, life is a struggle. A lot of people don’t tend to realize that. You get a lot of music and emceeing where people depict that ‘everything is great, life is perfect, I get to drive a Lambo around.’
“OK, good for you but let’s not forget, 80 percent of those people buying your music are probably struggling and average muthafuckas every day.”
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Of course, social media only compounds the issue. Eiht is cautious about waving those material things in front of his fans’ faces and inadvertently becomes more accessible and relatable to the every day person.
“If people like your music, you should be careful about the music you make and things you say to fan because, you know, everybody’s not holding stacks of money to their ear with a million dollars of jewelry on,” he says. “You makin’ songs like, ‘I’m this, I’m that and I got everything,’ and you want the average muthafucka to come spend they money on your record when to me, it’s kind of braggadocious to your fanbase.
“Just make good music and if you. makin’ money, you makin’ money. If you bought you a $100,000 chain, OK, fine, but I feel like it’s a different case when you just wanna put it in people’s faces. ‘Yeah my chain costs a million, my car costs $2 million,’ but the dude who buying your record? He working 9 to 5 every weekend, getting a regular paycheck, so don’t alienate your fans to make them feel like they ain’t shit ’cause they can’t buy Birkin bags and million dollar chains.”
Eiht concedes “there’s a time and a place for it” though.
“If some people want it, some people can have it, but I just feel like the state of rap where I came from and struggle and knowing that the struggle is real — it’s not fake, it’s real — I feel that being braggadocious, being flashy and flossing kind of puts you in a different era,” he continues. “And you wanna gain the respect from your fans ’cause let’s face it, they the ones spending they money to make you have those Birkin bags and $100,000 cars. Certain shit should be kept to self.”
Eiht is coming off a highly productive year that saw him drop two projects — Lessons and the double album Official featuring Xzibit, Problem and Tha Chill. In a 2018 interview with DX, he also confirmed he has a Which Way Iz West sequel in the works but no release date has been revealed.
In the meantime, his next project Revolution In Progress is expected to arrive in 2021. Check out the cover art below.
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