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DJ Drama: Food For Thought

Step away from the turkey for a few words from Mr. Thanksgiving himself.

The food’s been cooking all day and it’s finally ready. The fam is in close proximity, but you have to ask yourself, what would Turkey Day be without Mr. Thanksgiving? After a year of Fed raids and name changes (his official name is now just “Drama”), the DJ is finally set to give hip-hop fans a new reason to be thankful when he releases his long-awaited AMG/Grand Hustle/Atlantic debut Gangsta Grillz: The Album on December 4th. Pay attention!

It’s good to hear that the Gangsta Grillz album is finally getting released. Why should fans be thankful?
Well, because it’s quite possibly the biggest, best mixtape album ever. It’s right around Thanksgiving season and I come to feed the streets. Because it’s quality hip-hop music in its finest form. My album is a symbol of us overcoming the powers that be, after the tumultuous year we had in hip-hop and because the shit is crazy from beginning to end.

What about the making of the album sticks out in your mind?
When I got raided, I had to put the album back together in two weeks. So for the early part of this year, I was hustling and bustling trying to get the album done. Oh, then there’s the OutKast song [“The Art of Storytellin’ Pt. 4"]. I gave Dre 3000 about 20 different beats before we actually landed on that song. I really didn’t think they were going to make the album because him and Big Boi were so busy and he just wasn’t connecting on anything I sent him but they ended up making the final cut. Also, we pretty much put the whole video ["5000 Ones"] together ourselves. A lot of people around the Aphilliates didn’t think we could get it done but we just went in there and banged it out and got the video done. And it came out great. A lot of the best parts of the album actually came about after the raid and when we got locked up. When you hear the album, there’s a good storyline to it.

What’s the storyline like?
Oh naw, I can’t give it away. You just gotta check the album out [laughs]. The Feds definitely make an appearance.

December 4th is shaping up to be a pretty big release day for hip-hop. Where will the Gangsta Grillz album rank amongst those?
You know…It’s quality street music, but that’s not really for me to decide. That’s for the fans to decide. If I was a fan and I had enough money, I’d buy all of them. I’m going to buy all of them myself. It’s about supporting hip-hop and everybody needs to show support. Shouts out to Wyclef. Shouts out to Hov. Shouts out to Styles P. Shout out to Scarface. Like those are all OGs in my book so I’m definitely going to support each and every one of them.

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