One of the things that I really like about Drake is that the niggga is just a good rapper. And, I know that sounds simple but think about it like this, when was the last time that a MC really was popular that just rapped? Everybody comes to the table with a image and a persona and I mean that makes sense because this is the music is also a business and people want to get lost in the background story as well. But, Drake doesn't have a history of drug dealing, getting shot, shooting people or even a background of being some battle MC, super lyrical wizard or a militant Huey Newton type of figure. The dude is literally a child actor who listened to allot of Hip Hop music, mimicked his favorite rappers and became very good at it.
I really appreciate that approach because when i had about a 2 year flirtation with trying to rap when i was like 18-20, I was always told that me growing up in the suburbs would hinder me or put me into a box of what I could sound like or what I could rap about and what persona I could have. I was just a kid who loved Jay-z, Public Enemy, Nas, Outkast, The Hot Boys, Ice Cube and The Roots and I wanted to rap like them. I think that with the rise of Kanye West, although he definetly has a image and a persona, he kind of took the edge off of being extra thugged out and tough and having to be from a certain neighborhood to be able to be successful in Hip Hop, Couple that with the fact that Lil Wayne has broken down allot of barriers of what people think Hip Hop should sound like, its set the stage for MCs like Drake.
As for "SO Far Gone" I really listened to it all the way through and I'm really enjoying all aspects. Im not a modern R&B fan at all and have always been a sharp critic of it. But, I feel like the soul flourishes on here have a Electronic/pop/R&B feel to it similar to what a modern Prince album would sound like. Plus, I feel like the background music is almost elegant and moody. As a rapper I do hear allot of influence from Wayne and Jay-z. I feel like Drake's almost a hybrid of the two. Its the flatfooted, cocky nonchalant aura of Jay-z with the melodic, metaphorical, string of similes and off kilter flow of Wayne. But somehow both of those combined he's more cohesive. Drake just sounds like a dude who loves Jay and Wayne and thought to himself "I can do that."
and...Wayne murders Unstoppable...