Studio Time
Interview: John Kennedy
Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared in the Winter 2019 issue of XXL Magazine, on stands now.

Famous Dex is a certified studio workhorse. In the creation of his sophomore LP (due for release early 2020), the Chicago native estimates that he cranked out about 15 songs per recording session, and approximately 800 tracks in total. Dex, 26, believes the resulting output is a goldmine of source work from which to whittle—likely a nightmarish, yet fruitful selection process for his A&R. The follow-up to Dex Meets Dexter features a strong roster of guests, from DaBaby to Diplo to Dex’s Rich Forever brethren, Jay Critch and Rich The Kid. Here, Famous Dex offers a preview of his upcoming release.

“Groupie” Featuring DaBaby
“DaBaby did the song when I first met him. I was a fan, and he wasn’t who he is right now. He liked this song so much. He was like, ‘Bro, I need to do both of the verses.’ That man went crazy. I’m looking at him in the booth like, ‘Would you just stop rapping?’ He wouldn’t stop. He just kept going.”

“Proofread” Featuring Wiz Khalifa
“Growing up, like, when [Wiz Khalifa’s] Burn After Rolling dropped, I always had the patch in my head, Chuck Taylors, tube socks. Wiz has always been my role model. Him getting on my song was like, bro! I had this song in my notes and the whole song went with what I was going through. He was on tour—he recorded his verse on the bus. When I heard it, I dropped my phone and started crying. I’m was geekin’. It was a dream come true.”

“Confession” Featuring Diplo
“‘Confession’ with [producer] Diplo is [for] a diverse crowd. I take my clothes off when this song come on and give them my rock star shit. I was rapping about losing my mom, coming from Englewood into who I am right now: this guy with three kids who’s doing what he’s supposed to do. ‘Confession’ is a song about my life.”

“Solar System” Featuring Trippie Redd
“Trippie Redd, he’s a rock star slash pale devil guy. Heartbroken, lovable guy. He’s on the hook singing, ‘Got a lot of weed in my system.’ Everybody right now smokes weed. It’s so fire. I had a show at Alabama College and I performed it and they knew it. I was like, What the fuck! I said to myself, This got to be on the album. That’s one of them jumping-up-and-down songs.”

“Asthma Attack” Featuring Jay Critch and Rich The Kid
“What I always say about me, Rich and Jay Critch [is] I got the energy, Rich is going to talk boss shit and Jay Critch got the bars. Jay Critch bodied it. He went crazy. Simple as that. How y’all say it in New York? He OD killed it. That’s why I call it ‘Asthma Attack,’ because everybody is gonna be like [gasps].”

Check out more from XXL’s Winter 2019 issue including our Travis Scott cover story, a ghostwriting expose and interviews with Moneybagg YoYoung M.AConsequence and his son Caiden, and Doja Cat plus Show & Prove features with Pop Smoke, Calboy and Lil Tjay.  

Travis Scott's Winter 2019 Cover Story Photo Shoot

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