The state of Michigan has a produced a surplus of great musicians ranging from Madonna to The Red Hot Chili peppers. However, when it comes to the mitten and rap, most people could only give you one name: Eminem. This is for good reason. At the height of his popularity, Eminem’s second record, The Marshal Mathers LP, sold 1.76 million copies in its first week. It became the fastest selling album of all time, surpassing Britney Spears’ …Baby One More Time. Since then Slim Shady has become unanimous with Rap and the city he is from, Detroit.
Fast-forward to 2012 and you will find a new rising star from the D fighting for position as one of the city’s musical elite. And yes, he is a rapper.
His name is Big Sean, and if you listen to any of Michigan’s popular music radio stations, you have probably heard of him. This is mostly due to a combination of young talent and an experienced work ethic.
For the last year, Big Sean has been flooding the music industry with a hit after hit. In mid 2011 he released his first studio album, Finally Famous and received favorable reviews. Since then, Sean has not slowed down. He recently contributed to Cruel Summer, a compilation album produced by the ever-controversial Kanye West. At the same time he dropped a free mix-tape labeled Detroit.
Since jumping into the spotlight, BIG has always made it a point in his music to emphasize his pride for the city where he grew up. Now he has released several tracks whose whole basis is founded on that pride. The mix-tape features a variety of sounds. “How It Feel” has a smooth, jazzy track that you would expect from the Motown, while “Mula” and “RWT” brings out the gritty inner-city rap. Several “big” artists are also featured in the album including Chris Brown, Wiz Kalifa, Juicy J, J. Cole, and many others. Sean adds a personal touch by throwing in short interviews with other rappers on what Detroit means to them.
Oftentimes, rappers spend little time on mix-tapes and simply add new lyrics to old beats. The logic is you shouldn’t expect much from free music. However, Big Sean raises the bar with all new material, from the rhymes to the beats, everything on Detroit is new. It is also free.
Download the mix-tape and tell us what you think of Michigan’s newest musical sensation.