When you hear the name Logic, inevitably Kendrick and Cole often follow. One name, though, that doesn't get mentioned a lot when discussing Logic’s success is Wale. But as Logic himself points out in an interview with 95.3’s Peter Parker, Wale played an integral role in his ability to become one of hip-hop’s most promising, young superstars.
They say “you are only funky as your last cut.” That's true, but you're also only as funky as your hometown. As much as we’d love to think talent wins out over everything that’s really just a pipe dream. The reality is where you are from matters. For a region rich in black culture, the major rapper cupboard is surprisingly bare.
Think about it. Besides Wale and Logic, what other DMV rappers have really seen any kind of long-term, mainstream success? Shy Glizzy? Fat Trel? Phil Ade? All noteworthy names to readers of our pages, but none have the clout of a Wale or Logic. As a DMV native myself, and a hip-hop writer, it’s something I’m cognizant of and it's beyond frustrating.
At the same time, it really makes me appreciate Wale even more. Wale gets shit on by a lot of people and, though I myself have been critical of his music at times, he’s always someone I’ve respected and admired. Wale really did put DMV hip-hop on the map and paved the way for Logic and the next generation of young talent; he broke out of a market that nobody had ever been able to break out from before.
As DMV rappers pop up more and more, and as a select few begin to achieve major label success, it’s important to recognize Wale for paving the way. Plus, he got me into Go-Go and for that, I will be forever grateful.