1999: 5 Year Anniversary

Joey Bada$$ is a lyricist of the highest echelon for me. An inspiration to a once struggling Brooklyn Hip Hop scene, aided by his dedication to the roots of the culture, complemented by genius of the late Capital Steez and propelled by the marketing power of the Pro-Era crew, the young entrepreneur has over the last five years won mainstream and local acclaim for his projects, including All-Amerikkkan Badass, B4DA$$ and 1999 which dropped five years ago, on this date.

Capital STEEZ Joey Bada$$

Marlon hit me with a text to hit this article and I’m ashamed I hadn’t considered such a personally momentous anniversary. See, 1999 dropped the summer I moved to New York, approximately two months. Presumptively, the locals – friends I would come to make in the city – had been bumping it in advance of my listen late December 2012.

Needless to say, the hype was real and justified. Just as my tertiary education was kicking off, a more ‘primary’ education on hip-hop and rap was taking place. I would listen to 1999 on the train, at the gym, or just chilling with friends; it was ubiquitous with good reason.

1999 propelled Joey into the spotlight and before long he was touring with Schoolboy Q, hopping on A$AP Rocky’s project with Kendrick and a host of other talents, and released an album All Amerikkkan Bada$$ to what is now expected positive reviews. Joey even scored a recurring role on the USA tech drama Mr. Robot (I’m a season behind, no spoilers.)

So, looking back on the last five years, it is easy to see how prodigious the Brooklyn MC was and is. Joey Bada$$ is responsible for overtly exposing me to the sounds of J-Dilla, MF Doom, Knxwledge as well as his own crew’s eclectic spectrum of music. I celebrate work that has come and look forward to more from the incorrigible 22-year-old.