G.O.O.D. Music/Def Jam
Release Date: 6.28.2011
G.O.O.D. Music is home to many talented acts. From John Legend to Kid Cudi to CyHi The Prynce to various others, Mr. West [Kanye] is building himself is a respectable empire of adept artists, one of which includes D-Town’s own Big Sean (“Boi!”). Big Sean is G.O.O.D. Music’s flagship artist and the first to release a project under the record label of G.O.O.D. Music/Def Jam. We at Atlanta Got Sole actually interviewed Sean while he was in Atlanta on his Finally Famous tour (Watch the interview HERE). Reigning from the Westside of Detroit (thus the numerous “Westside” shoutouts), Big Sean is well-known for being a 2010 XXL Freshmen and his Finally Famous mixtape trilogy. Big Sean, who the homie Sneaker Dave says is “the artist with the coldest sneaker game”, is lesser known for birthing a style that the entire rap game is using. This style, which he calls the “Supa Dupa Flow” or “hashtag rap”, has been popularized by Drake, Nicki Minaj & the rest of Young Money, where basically “like” or “as” is taken out of a simile in a punchline. Peep a track called “Supa Dupa” featured on Sean’s Finally Famous 2 Mixtape.
Also, Big Sean is allegedly responsible for penning a decent amount of ‘Ye’s rhymes on Graduation, but that’s just speculation. Regardless, Big Sean has come a long way on the pursuit of fame. Now with the release of his debut project Finally Famous: The Album, Big Sean is…Finally Famous, boi.
1. “Intro” (Produced by Kevin Randolph & Key Wane)
On this introductory track/interlude, Big Sean briefs listeners on his story to bring them up to speed. This also serves as a prelude to the “Memories” record that appears later on the project. A nice way to set the stage for Finally Famous.
2. “I Do It” (Produced by No I.D. & The Legendary Traxster)
“I Do It” is Finally Famous’s second single. On this record, Big Sean basically informs the audience that the world is his and he let’s you live. Ehhh, it’s not really an impressive record, it’s decent, I guess.
3. “My Last” featuring Chris Brown (Produced by No I.D.)
“My Last” is FF’s first single and is definitely right look single-wise. On a smooth track that samples New Edition’s “Can You Stand the Rain”, Sean enlists Chris Breezy [Brown] to sing the hook and assist him on the importance of doing it big (no pun intended) like it’s the first & last time. Whether it’s spending money, drinking, smoking, etc., “if you don’t do it big, then you ain’t doin nothin”. “Hands up in the air!”
4. “Don’t Tell Me You Love Me” (Produced by No I.D.)
Relationships can be simply complex at times and, after hearing this song, it seems to me that Sean shares my sentiments. “Don’t Tell Me You Love Me” speaks on the complications of trying to end it and it not occurring. No I.D. provides Sean with a terrific track consisting of dope drums, guitars and a bounce to give ladies the disclaimer that whatever they do, do NOT tell him that they love him. Definitely sounds like it could be a ‘Ye record, but if you feed into the previously stated theory in some circles, then this is all Sean.
5. “Wait For Me” featuring Lupe Fiasco (Produced by: No I.D. & Exile)
On this track laced by the deadly combination of Exile (known for Blu’s Below The Heavens) + No I.D., Big Sean & Lupe Fiasco team up to discuss different situations and the examination of it being too late. Lupe rides the beat perfectly and provides the record with a superb verse. Listeners may actually have to repeat the song just to catch and comprehend everything said on this one. “Is it too late?”
6. “Dance (A$$)” (Produced by Da Internz)
The title of “Dance (A$$)” is pretty self-explanatory. On a track laced with claps and 808′s with hella bass, this is definitely a club record, specifically the strip club. It also has somewhat of Bay Area feel with the “Go stupid” or whatnot, as well as a flow reminiscent of Travis Porter, who should have been considered for a feature. The best part of this ode to the gluteus maximus is when the “Can’t Touch This” [MC Hammer] sample comes in on the hook. “Dance (A$$)” should definitely work for what it’s intended for, it’s a fun record. “A$$, A$$, A$$, A$$, A$$, A$$, A$$…”
7. “Marvin & Chardonnay” featuring Kanye West & Roscoe Dash (Produced by Pop Wansel & Mike Dean)
This is Finally Famous’s third single and they are prepping to release a video to go along with this. I think it is actually one of weaker songs on Finally Famous and that it is overrated, but that’s just my opinion, it’s not the gospel. I will say this: it does have a very nice hook via Roscoe Dash, a pretty good beat provided by Pop Wansel & Mike Dean, and a solid ‘Ye verse. This song was inspired by a little “Marvin & Chardonnay”.
8. “Get It (DT)” featuring Pharrell (Produced by The Neptunes)
I consider this record to be the best song on Finally Famous. It’s basically a get money (namely “Donald Trump Money”) anthem and about “living life like you found a check with no ink”. This track really fits Sean well and he did a hell of a job on this one. With the Neptunes on the beat, Pharrell on the hook, Big Sean is definitely *Charlie Sheen voice* “Winning!” with this one…Boi.
9. “Memories (Part II)” featuring John Legend (Produced by No I.D.)
This is the song in which FF’s intro preludes. “Memories (Part II)” is one of the few introspective moments we get from the Detroiter. Although I actually like the original “Memories” better (listen here), this is still a great and even more complete record with the addition of John Legend and revamped production courtesy of No I.D.
10. “High” featuring Wiz Khalifa & Chiddy Bang (Produced by Xaphoon Jones)
“High” is, well, about being high. With a record pertaining to such a topic, who do you guess Sean got to feature on this? Hmmm, you guessed right, none other than Wiz Khalifa, who delivers a solid verse. But the brightest point of the track is possibly from the lesser known, and one of my favorite MCs, Chiddy Bang, who delivers is a VERY potent (pun intended) verse. The beat is also provided by Chiddy Bang’s own Xaphoon Jones. It’s a cool record.
11. “Live This Life” featuring The Dream (Produced by No I.D.)
“Live This Life” has a top of the world, good life type of feeling. It’s basically about you doing you and “showing ‘em how to live this life”. This record is definitely singleworthy and is one they should consider making a single. So you reading this, tell them over at G.O.O.D. Music I said that. Anyhow, it has a great feature from The Dream, with the exception of a mediocre bridge. A Solid song.
12. “So Much More” (Produced by No I.D.)
No I.D. blesses Sean with ANOTHER nice joint for Sean to showcase his skills and tell his tale. In my opinion, his 3rd verse saved the entire song as I was going to say that he messed over a perfectly good track. He even said it was the “verse of the year”, not too sure about that, but he did bring his A game on this verse. No I.D. on the track, let the story begin…
13. “What Goes Around” [Bonus Track] (Produced by No I.D.)
No I.D. provides yet more superb production as a platform for Big Sean to give his backstory as well as talk his ish, including that he “got the whole rap game trying to sound like him” (see review’s introduction). Big Sean was very impressive on this record. I wish he did more records like this versus some of the other records on this album.
This is a smooth track where Sean narrates the good and bad sides of success and being a celebrity; a very good record to say the least.
15. “My House” [Bonus Track] (Produced by Boi-1da & Arthur McArthur)
“My House” is a record for Big Sean to talk his ish with his braggadocios flow of arrogance, which is what Sean does and does well. Although he’s not particularly lyrical or confounding, this still is a dope record. The production is enough reason to bang “My House”. Big Sean could have damn near said anything on here and it still would have been a solid record. Boi-1da & Arthur McArthur provide a banger to give you the ol’ ugly face. “Who’s house is this?!”
16. “100 Keys” featuring Rick Ross & Pusha T [Bonus Track] (Produced by Hilton and Brian Wright of WrighTrax Productions)
“100 Keys” has a feel of a DJ Khaled record or something. Nevertheless, this is a solid record that they should definitely consider shooting a video for. Big Sean enlists “The Bawse” Ricky Rawse (“Ungh”), who flows flawlessly on the track, and Pusha T (“Egchk”), who delivers a great verse, to speak on the bittersweet symphony of young n—-s getting money by what some may consider unlawful means.
Finally Famous: The Album is a decent, but somewhat disappointing debut. Here’s my reasoning behind that: debut albums usually could and should be classics, depending on the artist of course. I feel that FF could have been a classic, but it seemed as if he was TRYING to make a commercial release. A listener should not be able to tell that an artist is trying; listeners should perceive the effort as effortless (if that makes any sense). The production is there, the backing of a top label is there, so there really aren’t too many excuses. Maybe he should have gone more of the mixtape route; it seems to be to be a more natural vibe or whatnot, plus mixtapes are like new albums anyway. But who the hell am I? I’m in front of a computer and he’s in front of cameras and crowds. However, after the watching the interview below, my assumptions do not seem too far off from what Big Sean speaks upon.
Speaking on the project…
Finally Famous looked a little dim initially, but ended on a pretty high note. The story on the album is that the production carries Big Sean throughout this project, which speaks upon the phenomenal producer No I.D., who produced the majority of Finally Famous. I’ve said it before and I will continue to say it until proved otherwise, No I.D. is a better producer than Kanye West. I am a little curious as to why Kanye did not produce a single record on this project. Not that he was necessarily missed, but it was just something that crossed the mind. There isn’t much depth in terms of substance, although Big Sean’s says is favorite song is ironically “Memories (Part II)”. I feel Finally Famous could have been a much better project. With all that stated, I still gave this project an 8.1 out of 10 overall, which is still a rather high and favorable score.
Standout Tracks: “My Last”, “Get It (DT)”, “Live This Life”, “What Goes Around”
NOTE: Finally Famous: The Album debuted at number three on the US Billboard 200 chart, with first-week sales of 87,000 copies in the United States. Be on the lookout as Big Sean is set to release another mixtape in the next couple of weeks.
Visit Big Sean’s website HERE
Follow Big Sean on Twitter HERE
Purchase Finally Famous: The Album HERE
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