The Compton, California-based rapper’s second album, called “Still Brazy,” dives into figuring out who shot him last year, gangster culture, anti-police brutality and his hatred of Donald Trump. Heavy? Perhaps, but YG isn’t afraid to get into it.
“I’m talking about the s— I’ve been through with my homies, my robbing history when I was young, my gang s—, all that,” says YG, whose birth name is Keenon Jackson. “That [was] dangerous so it just stand out the most.”
“Who Shot Me?” is the fearful, incredibly intimate highlight on his follow-up album to 2014’s “My Krazy Life.” In an exasperated tone, YG repeats the simple question over minor beats. “It was real,” says the rapper of the song. “I just got shot like two nights before, so it was real dark for me.
The record ends with three timely tracks: “FDT (F— Donald Trump),” “Blacks & Browns” — about racism against African-Americans and Hispanics — and “Police Get Away Wit Murder.”
He even named his fall tour the F— Donald Trump Tour. YG explains, “You kept hearing this motherf—er say and do disrespectful things toward our people, our culture, our race.”
West Coast roots
“She gave me my style,” he says about his hometown, Compton. “She gave me my outlook on life. She gave me my mama. My mind-set — [I’ve ] seen a lot, did a lot, been through a lot.”
From early on, the rapper heard his mom play West Coast hip-hop legends like Dr. Dre, N.W.A. and Snoop Dogg as well as ’90s R&B.
“That 100 percent has something to do with my rap style and the way I rap,” he adds. “The beats I choose. My flows and all of that.”
And he isn’t afraid to experiment, either: the Drake-featuring, hook-laden “Why You Always Hatin’?” could be a Top 40 hit.
A rallying cry
While YG notes that he’s mostly telling his stories, he does hope his political songs inspire young fans.
“There ain’t really no message on here except at the end of the album when I get political. I’m just really talking to the youth and trying to get my fellas to wake up and get more involved with what’s going on,” he encourages. “Speak up and use your voice.”