October 25, 2021

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DDG Interview on New Album ‘Die 4 Respect’

Now, his next mission is to achieve serious success as a recording artist. He’s currently gearing up for the release of his next project — Die 4 Respect, a joint project with producer and real life friend OG Parker, out this Friday (Mar. 18). DDG has steadily built anticipation for the project through his hit “Moonwalking In Calabasas” — which has garnered over 100 million Spotify streams since its release last year, as well as a spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for 11 weeks — after finding himself dissatisfied with his debut album, 2019’s Valedictorian

The title of his debut sparked a playful running joke between DDG and his fans for a while, about how he must somehow always bring up the fact that he was valedictorian of his graduating class in high school — actually true — in nearly every interview. While speaking about his teen years during his newest D4R-related interviews would be the perfect time to bring it up once again, this time he’s more consumed with speaking about his growth, and how hopeful he feels about this chapter of this life. “The music is respected to an extent now, but they’re not all the way there yet,” he says of how the public’s reaction to him inspired his new set’s title. “But after this, I’ma get the respect that I really deserve.”

Check out the rest of DDG’s interview with Billboard as he speaks about his new Die 4 Respect project, being a part of the Michigan rap scene, memories from working his retail job and the importance of simply knowing what you bring to the table.

I’m sure plenty of producers want to lock in with you after seeing the crazy numbers you’re able to put up. What made OG Parker your right-hand man choice?

I feel like OG Parker is super-duper underrated. He’s a legendary producer, and he’s touched thousands of beats that you hear every single day. We just locked in in Miami, became close friends — and when you build an actual relationship with a producer, the music just gets better and better.

You recently said that this next Die 4 Respect project isn’t going to be “no Valedictorian bulls–t.” You didn’t like your own debut album? So, what’s different this time around?

It was honestly rushed, and I didn’t really think about it like a body of work. It was 18 songs, and who is releasing that many songs on a single project? With this new project, there are even songs that I’ve paid a lot of money for and I still didn’t use them because they just didn’t fit this project. That’s how cohesive I needed it to be.

There are stories in this that you can actually go and look up — and I think that’s what’s going to make my fans really appreciate it. It’s like, “Damn, he’s speaking deeper than what we seen on the Internet.” There’s a whole lot of stuff that I haven’t talked about. A lot of personal stuff that happened before all the glam and fame. I talk about childhood things, I talk about relationship problems. I’m opening up way more than what I’ve ever said online.

My favorite song is “Treat Me Right.” It’s just me on it, and this ‘tape is a majority [of songs with] features. But on that one it’s just me — and I’m talking about my relationship, and I’m breaking it down and talking about cheating rumors and all types of s–t. When it’s just me alone, and especially with an engineer that I know, I’m able to freestyle and be myself. It was one of those songs that I just floated through. I didn’t write nothing and I freestyled the whole song. Those be the best ones. 

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