With his Grizzly City mixtapes putting on for Fresno for years early in his career, Fashawn's latest album is his first on Nas' Mass Appeal Records. The Ecology, which is Fash's second album and a follow-up to his 2009 debut Boy Meets World, shines another spotlight on his distinct California roots.
Speaking with HipHopDX's Ural Garrett, Fashawn reflects on his hometown and stamping himself the king of the Grizzly City.
"Right in the middle of Cali, I like to call it the heart of Cali," Fash says of Fresno in a clip that debuted as a part of today's DX Daily. "Right in the middle, it's what separates the Bay from Southern California. It is the bridge. It's got a really unique style. The two giants that surround it, [there's] a lot of influences from both. It's kind of like the revolutionary mind state of like the Black Panthers in Oakland mixed with the gang banging mentality of niggas in Los Angeles in the early '90s and '80s. It's kind of like a marriage of two, our style is like a mixture of both of that, a hybrid of both. Mixed with this little unique Fresno, small-town mind state, grassroots feel. It's a really unique place. You could look to the left and see beautiful mountains and nature and you could look to your right and see graffiti and projects and poverty and look North and see wealth and a better economy and cleaner streets. It's a really unique place. It breeds people like myself."
"I chose to call it Grizzly City because I feel like I needed to plant my flag and show people, this is my generation," he adds. "Right now, starting from Grizzly City on, I'm running that. Y'all can keep everything prior but if you're calling it Grizzly City you gotta acknowledge me as king and that's end of story."