Rolling Out

Atlanta rapper Alexander Coope says a poem jump-started his career

Atlanta rapper rebrands himself
Atlanta rapper Alexander Coope says a poem jump-started his career
Photo courtesy of Christian Coope

Alexander Coope is a rapper based in Atlanta. Coope began rapping when he was in high school, and since then has rebranded himself and given his listeners a flow that correlates with his life and personality. Coope says the rap game in Atlanta is evolving, and he sees himself evolving right along with it.

The artist spoke with rolling out about why he started rapping, what sets him apart from other rappers in the city and the current state of hip-hop in the city.

What inspired you to start rapping?

When I was in high school, I was really good at poetry. I never wanted to be a stereotype like “Oh, here goes another rapper from Atlanta.”

My guidance counselor was going to Georgia State at the time and had a paper that he had to write, and with the paper, he had to turn in a poem. It had to be about double consciousness, and it was talking about how a Black man has to basically live the American way, but still try to keep his heritage or something like that. So he needed me to write a poem for that.

At first, he didn’t want me to do it and he was going to give it to someone else, but I told him that I got him. He ended up getting a perfect score. From then I kept putting rapping off to the side, and then it just kept coming back. Eventually, me and my homie went [into] the studio, and he paid for the studio time. It was the first time I ever went to a studio. We recorded a song and it kind of started from there, four or five years ago.

What do you think sets you apart from other Atlanta rappers?

If you have 100 rappers, once 75 of them get to that point where they can’t figure something out, they’re going to quit. I feel like the thing that separates me is actual ability and consistency. For the most part, consistency and actual talent will separate me from the pack of people because a lot of them are not going to stay the course. A lot of people are not going to be consistent and they might fall off because they don’t make music that will be around for a long period of time. So it’s really about just staying the course and being able to stay consistent through everything.

How do you see the current state of Atlanta hip-hop?

I’ll say it’s a lot of negativity, but I feel like if you subtract the negativity, the state of Atlanta’s music and hip-hop, in general, is a little better because people are now starting to wake up and become independent, and they’re starting to realize contracts and paperwork. In my opinion, I feel like this is probably the best that we’ve been in years.

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