Following the release of “New York City,” a record in which Brooklyn emcee Troy Ave references fellow rapper Kendrick Lamar, the New York City-based wordsmith has finally shed some light on the K-Dot mention some may have felt was a diss.
On the Raekwon, N.O.R.E, and Prodigy-assisted record, Troy Ave raps, “It was Big, Jay Z, now Troy Ave here after / But Kendrick Lamar's just a weirdo rapper.”
According to Troy Ave, his mention of Kendrick being a weirdo was a fact and not a diss. While addressing the weirdo mention on “New York City,” Troy also went on to question the Compton rapper’s street credibility, stating that Kendrick is more so from the streets than in the streets.
“Because I was stating a fact,” said Troy during an interview on New York City’s Hot 97. “It wasn’t a diss or nothing. That’s like somebody being like, ‘Troy Ave is a dark-skinned rapper.’ Alright, it’s a fact. Weirdo is—Right now, with social media and the internet there’s a lot of different groups that are getting mixed and gelled into one. And it doesn’t go like that. Like with rock music you have different genres of rock. You have pop rock. You have classic rock. You have—help me out here—alternative rock. Now with rap music you can’t just fuse all types of rap. The basis of rap is from the streets. Every artist of any era in rap history, the biggest artist has always been from the streets.
“Kendrick was raised in it,” he added. “It’s a difference between being from an area and being in the streets. It’s a difference. You know what I mean?”
Troy also named a handful of other rappers he feels are weirdos, among them were Kanye West and Brooklyn rap group Flatbush Zombies.
“Yeah, Kanye’s a weirdo. It’s a lot of rappers that’s weirdos…I like a lot of Kendrick Lamar’s records too. It’s a lot of weirdo rappers that’s out—It’s mad weirdo rappers. Y’all don’t understand it,” said the Brooklyn emcee.
He later questioned why the drug user has become more celebrated than the drug dealer in Hip Hop, and also compared himself to Malcolm X while expressing his desire to take his music to the extreme.
“This is why the game is twisted,” said Troy. “Everything is getting twisted right now because at what point did we start celebrating the drug user instead of the drug dealer? That shit is backwards…Would you rather your kids be strung out on drugs or dealing drugs…I gotta take it extreme. I gotta be extreme with this—I’m like Malcolm X with this music, man.”
Troy Ave’s interview on Hot 97 comes just days after the release of his newest project, New York City The Album. Released on November 4, the LP is one Troy says is “the best representation of New York City rap in over a decade.”
“This is going to be a classic,” said the rapper. “This is the best representation of New York City rap in over a decade. I promise. I'll give people their money back if it's not the best in over a decade. I got the classic sound and I'm improving on it. This album is like a classic car, like a Mercedes Benz, but this is the new body that came out.”
New York City The Album includes guest appearances from a number of rappers from the five boroughs, including Tony Yayo, Prodigy, Raekwon, and more.