Pusha T Talks Presidency, Activism in Hip-Hop, and New Album [By Kiyya K]

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It’s been 13 years since we first got acquainted with Def Jam Recording artist, Pusha T.

When Clipse stepped onto the scene with, “Grinding” it caused a “disruption” in the Hip-hop world, as proclaimed by the G.O.O.D. Music President himself.

With more than a decade passed since his first project, Pusha remains relevant in the culture, through other avenues and opportunities that have presented themselves over the years.

Tuesday, Pusha T took some time to chat with a few DJs and journalists on the Def Jam Conference Call, about what’s next for him as a rapper and an executive. 

On the call, Pusha was mainly asked about his upcoming project, “King Push:Darkest Before Dawn,” which features some heavy production collabs with Timbaland and also tracks with Q-Tip and Jill Scott.

Pusha says that with this album he is focusing on the type of Hip-hop that is dark, street, and lyric driven.

“You know, not worried about the melodies; it’s about the lyrics. I’m really dialing into those people who care about Hip-hop.”

The Virginia native prides himself on the longevity he has achieved in this industry, and says that what he does, never goes out of style.

Using what he calls, an “unorthodox formula,” Pusha T has remained a consistent name in this current Hip-hop climate, which, at times can be hard to navigate.

And in that formula, comes the opportunity to work with legendary producers like Timbaland, and create timeless music.

This being their first collaboration, Pusha said he appreciated being able to work with a producer on his level.

“He is just as much entrenched in the music that I am.”

During his tenure, Pusha has been able to work with some of the greats, but says he regrets not having worked with Missy yet.

Who knows, maybe if we’re good, we can get that collab as a Christmas present.

During the call, Pusha noted that new artists have to do things a tad bit differently than when he was first trying to get his start.

He referenced the fact that rappers now have to have a significant presence on social media, and already have a huge following on those platforms to be competitive.

“You have to be consistent and meticulous…in your touring and in your social media presence. Today, to be hot, you gotta compete with the next man.”

Pusha also weighed in on how he feels this current generation of Hip-hop artists is contributing to activism, as compared to earlier Hip-hop artists.

True to his 80s roots, he referenced none other than Public Enemy when he said that we have yet to see a group so dialed in as we did with Public Enemy in the 80s.

“Public Enemy was a dedicated group,” said Pusha. “The message isn’t being carried that strong yet. It was aggressive. It doesn’t resonate the same way…that younger, angry perspective, we don’t hear that.”

He did note that rappers like himself and J. Cole infuse the social issues in their music, so there are pieces of it, just not at a level where we have seen it before.

Fans will get to hear some of that infusion on this new album on a song called, “Sunshine” featuring Jilly from Philly herself.

“King Push: Darkest Before Dawn” is certainly hyping up Hip-hop fans everywhere, especially with productions from Yeezy, Puff, and of course Timb.

But he’s not stopping with just the music, with the release of his new adidas sneaker, “Black Market,” Pusha is making sure fans stay ready for whatever he has in store.

He even has some big plans for G.O.O.D. Music, with talks of a possible G.O.O.D. Music tour or festival.

“Right now I’m focused on 100% fan engagement.”

We hear you Push, and we thank you for it.

-Kiyya K

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