Authenticity is a word often used in hip-hop. However, few artists are ever who they say they are. That's not the case for West Coast MC G Perico. The 28-year-old spitta was shot earlier this year after he left his South Broadway studio. Instead of taking it easy in the hospital, he went on to perform at The Roxy that same day with a fresh wound and blood dripping down his leg. The streets and gang bangin' was the major focal point of G's life until music came along.

After moderate success last year with his single "G Shit" off his Tha Innerprize Two mixtape, the South Central native made a huge leap with his newest project that released this year Shit Don't Stop. The mixtape was one of the best projects to come out of the West.

"The project is definitely putting me on the map and setting me up to line my ducks up to knock out my ultimate goal," he tells XXL. "Doing the process of that project…it’s the same thing that’s going on now, street life. I would say that project for me is letting people know I’m here to be an artist. I’m through being a crazy nigga in the streets. That’s behind me."

He adds, "During the process I was getting tested from so many different angles because my whole entire life, I never really planned on doing anything else but being in the streets. So when I found [music] and decided that this is what I’m going to run with. I was tested from all angles. Police running in my shop, parole officer running in my house fucking with me and harassing me, getting shot, having to fuck niggas up for talking crazy, all types of shit. The project came out, it was dope and it’s letting me know, this is where I need to be."

Now the rhyme slinger—who rocks a jheri curl because "It’s basically something I always wanted and a tribute to my older homies I grew up idolizing"—is ready to take the next big leap in 2017. Pay attention before you miss out.

Name: G Perico

Age: 28

Hometown: South Central, L.A.

I grew up listening to: “I grew up listening to a lot of shit. Like everything from funk to soul to Hot Boys, Jay Z, E-40, Earth, Wind & Fire, Sade, everything. I wake up and music would be blasting. Music found me. It was pretty early because my uncle used to fuck around with it. As early as elementary school, I always was good with English so I knew how to write real well. So, it started with poems and poetry and I started writing raps. But I never shared it with nobody because I was embarrassed [laughs]. I didn’t start really rapping until like many years later.

"I recorded some shit and a lot of people in my area liked it. I was 17. But I was still so caught up in the streets shit I didn’t pay it no mind. It came to a point where I just decided I ain’t doing this street shit no more, let me try this music. So a few years back I just jumped all the way in it.

"I learned a lot as far as making music and creating from studying music. Of course the business end of it, it would change your view. If you got a passion for it naturally, you’re going to keep going, but the business side kind of like, wake you up a little bit. As a person I understand clearly what I want to do with my life. That’s music and everything else is for the birds."

Most people don’t know: “I could draw pretty well. That’s my writing on the cover [of Shit Don’t Stop]. I used to play basketball back in the day. I got wrapped up in the hood and gang bangin’ so early, I think if I kept ballin’ I probably would have been something."

My style’s been compared to: “Naturally people compare me to Eazy-E because of the curl. I don’t see the resemblance or anything. They compare me to DJ Quik too. I’m a big fan of both. I can hear the Quik resemblance a little bit. But this a different sound we’re creating."

My standout records or moments to date have been: “The biggest song for me so far is probably 'G Shit.' I did that last year on my project. It was real big in the city. The industry started to go after me."

My goal in hip-hop is to: “My goal in music is to build an audience and a legacy. I want be one of them muthafuckas that you can play 30 years from now and it will still sound fresh and still be tight. I want to last forever; solidify my face and my art."

I’m gonna be the next
: “Legend, G Perico, because a legend last forever, you will forever talk about a legend."

Follow G Perico on Twitter and SoundCloud.

Standout: Shit Don't Stop

Tha Innerprize Two

"South Central"

"G Shit"

"Uza Trikk"

40 Hip-Hop Albums Turning 20 in 2017

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