The major difference between releasing a mixtape and dropping a studio album is something that many artists have been unable to grapple as time has progressed.
Although a rapper might believe that they should deliver their hardest material to the mainstream, there is a compromise that must be handled as there are extra politics when big checks are involved.
Mixtapes are like the audition tapes, but albums show that an artist is well rounded and can come up with actual concepts and not just rap.
Gearing up for the release of his debut album Thank Me Later, rapper Drake is one dealing with the major transition and developing that structure needed for an official release.
Even with a million smash hits, without a real layout, a blaze can quickly fizzle down to a lowly camp fire and the momentum will be for nothing. Even worse is the fact that giving all of the best material in the first course will only cause issues when trying to come around for the second offering.
During an interview with Billboard, the Young Money member spoke on what he liked about So Far Gone and what he must get used to with Thank Me Later.
“The best part about So Far Gone was that I didn’t focus on structure. The only thing that was consistent was the story and the emotion. That’s what I want to do with this album. I make music for people to get lost in it, so, as long as it takes you somewhere, then I’ve succeeded.”
So far, the album has started off with high expectations as “Fireworks”, “Shut It Down” and “Light Up” featuring Jay Z have all been confirmed by the young phenomenon.
Looking to continue telling his story, the retail release of So Far Gone EP featured an exclusive track known as “Fear” which Drake stated would serve as the bridge to connect the EP to the actual debut.
Drake will also keep moving even after he drops his debut as he will maintain his buzz and stay riding the wave that he has built so high since the mixtape dropped.
“I have a special plan to keep the free flow of music going after the album is released. This is definitely a unique path I’m setting out on, and honestly, it’s great. I’m honored to be in this position.”
“Successful” Unreleased Verse