21 Savage is a very convincing man. His deadpan delivery and menacing production pair to make him one of hip-hop’s coldest orators, and in his newest interview with GQ, Savage used his power to shout out Drake’s benevolence.
“Drake just a genuine-ass good-hearted person,” he said of Drake, “The Co-Sign God.” “He did a lot of shit he didn’t have to do. He do a lot of shit for up-and-coming rappers, period. I don’t think he get his respect for that. Every fuckin’ year, he pull a new artist up. Ain’t no other artist on his level do that shit.”
21 Savage is not wrong. In just the past couple years, Drake has been instrumental in bringing Skepta to US markets, uplifting Jorja Smith, helping give Lil Baby his biggest mainstream look, launching BlocBoy JB’s career, and more. A$AP Rocky would probably agree, too, as he's credited Drake for putting him on and funding his creative pursuits.
Many might hold the opinion that these co-signs simply work to boost Drake's own profile and credibility with younger artists in an attempt to "ride the wave" of hype, but more often than not it's the artists themselves—like 21 or A$AP—assuring us that Drake's intentions are not selfish ones.
The list of artists Drake has helped goes on, and the greater truth is not simply that Drake is a generous rapper sharing the spotlight, but that he is a model for how artists can use their platforms to help music evolve.
Too often we hear of rappers, Joey Bada$$ for instance, claim that hip-hop is dying. While it’s easy to shout about problems into the void of Twitter, more artists should follow Drake’s lead and put on the types of artists and sounds they believe in to help hip-hop grow. This goes for the local level, too—if you’re an artist and you see other acts you believe in, support each other. One co-sign can change someone’s life forever.