Logic Says "Hip-Hop Is In a Renaissance" - Is He Right?

The Def Jam emcee spoke to Hot 97's Peter Rosenberg about his focus on creating an album.
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The Def Jam emcee spoke to Hot 97's Peter Rosenberg about his focus on creating an album.

Logic seems to be doing pretty well these days.

His debut studio album, Under Pressure, was released through Def Jam last October to favorable reviews and a number 4 spot on the Billboard 200. He's about to get married soon, and he spent the early half of the year touring North America and Europe. It was during his trip to Chicago for Lollapalooza that he sat down with Hot 97's Peter Rosenberg to discuss a variety of topics, including his personal life, relationships and his upcoming album.

The highlight of the conversation comes around the 4:30-minute mark when the two discuss Under Pressure and Rosenberg asks how many copies the album sold. Logic responds and goes on to talk about the phases of hip-hop and the music industry in general as it relates to crafting an album. 

"I think 300,000 domestically. And obviously there were ups and downs from the label, but it’s—Hip Hop is in a renaissance. Back in the day, the pop stars, people like Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Elvis, all these people. It was all about the vinyl. It was all about the single. Then you get to the '50s, '60s, all the way I believe up until the early 2000s, it was the album. Creating an album. There’s always been the one-hit wonders and the people who do singles, but then it was about actually creating this cohesive body of work. And then as of recently, probably mid 2000s up until now, it was ringtones. Singles are super big again. And so I feel like you have certain artists—I do my best to do it, Kendrick, Cole, Drake. There’s some people out there that really do their best to put together incredible albums... there's a lot of people but not like it was."

It's long been thought that the album had essentially bowed down to the single throughout the last decade, and this has been especially true for hip-hop. The last year has started to shift the tide back in favor of the LP, however, and it's artists like Logic and the ones he lists making the difference right now. Great albums have always existed, even during the Ringtone Era, but recently they have been high profile projects from superstars, setting the tone throughout the industry that it's time to get back to creating cohesive bodies of work.

The critical acclaim has been there, and with the commercial success seen even for tougher to digest projects (TPAB), it can be assumed that the trend will continue.