This Is Why The Drake Hate Is Just… Hate

As I sit here listening to “Menace” by Roy Woods, an immense talent, I wonder why he isn’t a bigger star yet. But then I remember that he’s signed to Drake.

A brewing concern around the OVO camp is that the artists signed to the label aren’t getting the proper push to help them reach stardom. Aside from an Instagram post or tweet of their new single, video, or album, there isn’t any other type of promotion from OVO given to their own artists.

An artist can take whatever song he/she wants, but if he/she can’t execute it, then it’s not going on the Billboard Hot 100.

But, this isn’t problematic only to Drake, but to many artist-label heads who are struggling to promote their artists, too. Look at Dreamville and J. Cole’s artists. They have great talents like Cozz, Bas, and Ari Lennox, but they’re relatively unknown due to the lack of promotion. But how come Drake is the only one getting trashed for this?

Probably because Drake is Drake, and when you’re arguably the biggest superstar in the world, you will always have a target on your back.

But I think it’s time for us to be less critical of Drake. Let me explain.

Drake

“But OVO artists give him their best songs.”

Dating back to his 2011 masterpiece, Take Care, Drake has taken songs, hooks, and ideas from artists he has signed or wanted to sign. Now before you screw your face at this spicy take, just know that Drake has been on the Billboard Hot 100 list for 430 weeks. That’s 8 years of being on the list, with many of his songs reaching the top ten. That kind of run is legendary.

This is the type of run that comes from an artist that wants to cement his legacy. The type of legacy that sets an artist as a best of this generation, or even best of all-time.

The fact of the matter is, to be a culture vulture, you must only take and not give.

Quincy Jones, a legendary musician, producer, and composer, has written numerous hits for the likes of Michael Jackson, but did MJ get this kind of hate? No.

An artist can take whatever song he/she wants, but if he/she can’t execute it, then it’s not going on the Billboard Hot 100.

“But he’s a rapper, why does he have people write for him anyway?”

In the eight years since Drake put out his largely successful mixtape “So Far Gone”, he’s never put out a body of work that contained rap content for the entirety of the album. Early in his career, most of his projects were mixed with a new R&B sound which has taken on life in itself, but now he’s infused dancehall, afro-pop, and even bachata into his discography.

He does brag and boasts about being the best rapper, but before the ghostwriting allegations, people pointed towards his singing as to why that claim was false, but now it’s the fact he has others writing for him. In R&B, it’s history has come from people writing for other artists, or producers already having a song ready for the artist just to lay over what is already there.

In rap, artist borrow hooks and flows, and with technology, it’s becoming more apparent. This doesn’t excuse Drake from contending as the best rapper, but it’s just to point out that it is common, and there are other culprits of this act.

“But Drake is a culture vulture.”

This by far is the funniest one I hear via social media or just having a casual conversation with people about music. The claims are that he takes other artists flows or their songs and use it to his advantage.

The fact of the matter is, to be a culture vulture, you must only take and not give. Drake has given so much to the rap game, that accusations about being a culture vulture are comical.

He brought light to a city that had no representation in hip-hop which is now a popular touring/party hot spot. He also carved a lane of R&B/dance hall/afro-pop which is used heavily by a number of artists.

Those few facts show how much Drake gives to the game, so the culture vulture term doesn’t apply.

“So is he immune to any criticism?”

Criticism? Yes. While major hits were written for the likes of Rihanna, DJ Khaled, and Drake, OVO artist PARTYNEXTDOOR struggles to find success among the cache of artist he’s written for, and part of that blame has to go to Drake.

Musically, I also think that Drake could use a break from releasing a studio album. Since 2009, he’s dropped an album or mixtape (IYRTITL was marketed as much) every year except for one, with the same formula for each album. There is no disputing Drake can’t make a bad album, but with the same product, a break in-between projects would make the music more diverse and cherished.

The biggest criticism I could give Drake is to stop taking these records from the artist he’s signed. I know, before I chalked it to legacy, but now in 2017, there is nothing left for Drake to prove. The focus should now be creating a life and lane for music without him, and it starts with making his label a staple in the R&B and Hip-Hop community.

Songs like Hold On We’re Going Home, Faithful, and Legend are all songs crafted by OVO but used for Drake, which could’ve helped advance their success and notoriety.

What do you think? Is the Drake hate fair?

Let us know on Twitter, and if you haven’t, check out our free weekly playlist full of hits and classics here!

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