For those who know the root of trap music understand Jeezy’s value to the Southern rap subgenre. At the dawn of this sound, which was birthed in the ‘90s, the artist movement had one goal — achieve financial success. The algorithm was simple: introduce a unique sound to the record label, blend it with grind and hustle, and then you get money.
While sitting in Atlanta with Jeezy during his photo shoot for this week’s cover of rolling out, we talked about brand positioning, specifically how to be sonically unique and creative. His answer, “Make your own lane, a place that only you can go. When you step to the mic, people know for sure it’s you and that brand proposition will win.”
It’s crystal clear whether you are calling shots in the boardrooms on Wall Street or from the sidewalk in the streets since its introduction to the masses, trappin’ has taken on a new meaning.
There’s Master P, an eloquent music mogul and industry titan who created an innovative brand and engendered music moments that shaped hip-hop’s history.
Jeezy has done the same with his contributions to trap music. His branding ideology can elevate the grocery store clerk and the college freshman to be innovative, become an expert and start a movement.
Women are embracing Solange’s new single “Don’t Touch My Hair” which spawned a movement that combats cultural appropriation and imitators.
When you hear Jeezy rap, you know exactly what he represents. His monster single, “My President” emphasized the importance of Obama’s presidency and voting. But we continue to rationalize whom we will not vote for and why we won’t show up at the polls this election. And, we don’t take into consideration the implications. When you say you don’t identify with #BlackLivesMatter, then you don’t know what it means when Solange sings “Don’t Touch My Hair.”
There is a political movement right now in which we must stake a claim. Making our own lane is important but we have to coexist in the collective community. Stop thinking negatively and start thinking creatively. Look for success that reflects what you desire for your career. Jeezy’s music movement may take you out of your comfort zone; complacency is inertia’s invitation.
Applying Jeezy’s success principles to your business could help you pivot. Be a part of the movement or move out of the way.
Having an opportunity to associate with greatness is a beautiful amenity in Atlanta. I talked about my book with Jeezy and he offered praises and asked me to sign one for his daughter. I signed the book for Jeezy’s daughter and it made me proud to know that one day she would read my name and would know that her dad and I came together collectively to do something that we hoped would motivate her and showcase her destined greatness. I wrote, “dream big, love to learn” and I looked at her father and said I was very proud of him, and he said, “OG, [I’m] proud of you too.” That moment made me appreciate brothers being able to meet and help one another.
While listening to Jeezy and Solange we must understand that music can motivate us to look at ourselves, evaluate ourselves, and then be ourselves.
L.A. Reid said he’s a music man and he understands the business. He’s been an author-artist and it’s important for individuals who want to be successful to map out a plan to attain prominence in their chosen industry, whatever it is.
Collectively, men and women around the country want better for our children and to be a part of something great. Make sure that whatever you’re doing will feed others new information and motivate them to join a great movement for success.