The Interesting Case of Waka Flocka Flame

I’ll be the first to admit that, in 2010 or 2011, if you said that “in 2014, Waka Flocka Flame will have moments where he would be considered ‘lyrical,'” I would’ve laughed and went back to blaring the hell out of “Grove Street Party” or the Duflocka Rant mixtape. Then, Flocka was known as an artist who had chant-worthy ad-libs before Migos et al. He was known for going hard in the paint and screaming “BOW BOW BOW” and having EDM collaborations. Fast forward to this year’s I Can’t Rap Vol. One, and I was left eating my words.
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He starts off saying that he was “I was playing with this rap shit at first,” and then proceeds to deliver a mixtape where he actually goes all the way in. I found myself legitimately rewinding tracks to catch some of the stuff he was going in on. He says that “y’all musta forgot that I’m still a New York nigga,” and it’d seem like the “New York” in Waka is coming out now (in other words, he’s actually spitting). So, that poses a question:
Was Waka Flocka really playing with “this rap shit at first?”
Did Waka Flocka Flame just do trap rap because it was an easier way to get on? Now, that’s not doubting Waka’s pedigree or anything. It’s more saying that “hey, maybe Waka actually could drop bars all along, but he saw that trap rap was a faster way to get on, so he [and I hate this term] dumbed himself down.” Or maybe it’s like “I can ‘rappity rap’ and I can ‘rap,’ so lemme rappity rap on my tapes now and ‘rap’ for the mainstream.” I mean, even newer stuff like “Slippin'” features more lyricism than what his earlier stuff had. Who knows, aside from Waka, I mean. However, all that I’ve gotta say is this: Waka is quickly becoming an artist to legitimately look out for and not just for catchy hooks or ad-libs.
Speed on the Beat

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