Last night Future performed for a packed Masquerade to celebrate the release of his debut album Pluto.
The only time I’ve seen the Masquerade this packed and crazy has been for Wiz Khalifa at the HEIGHT of “Black & Yellow,” which says alot. And this the only time I can remember seeing T.I., Jeezy, Gucci and Big Boi in the same building “At The Same Damn Time.” Essentially, Future (Rico Wade’s cousin) has managed to bring together pretty much every generation of Atlanta Hip Hop. Shit, only people missing was Jermaine Dupri, Kriss Kross, Ghetto Mafia and The Hard Boys. And he’s one of the few artists in the city whose music gets the same reaction everywhere from El Bar and MJQ to Central Station and Magic City. I would say Reign/Vanquish, but I don’t be in there like that and I’m not sure if they even play rap music outside of YMCMBGOODMMG at those spots anyway.
Over the last 10 years, Atlanta’s music scene has become a fragmented one with everybody trying to get a piece of whatever is left of “the pie.” Future appears to have “the pie” in his hands right now and the blessings of those that had it before him. Granted, we all know how the game goes, everybody wants to connect themselves to the new, cool kid at school. But, with Future, it does seem like most (by no means all) of the people on the stage with him this night genuinely fuck with dude because of DF-connection and the fact that dude can probably actually tell you the names of streets before the Olympics came, knows the difference between Kilo Ali and Kilo G…and knows what a Ghetto Burger is.
The timing of it all is crazy too. I remember in a 2Chainz interview (that I chose not to come out with, unfortunately), dude didn’t get offended, but certainly took it a certain way when I asked/inferred that he rise to stardom was boosted by the fact that T.I. was in jail, Gucci was in jail, Jeezy wasn’t popping, Luda was out being rich and the DF was pretty dormant. He politely responded “I worked for mine brah.” Which is VERY true.
The same could very well be said for Future. Yes, all of the names I just named have also recorded with and “supported” 2Chainz along the way, especially in the last 3 months, but, with Future they all seem to be more excited about it. DF members especially, because it looks like the name may re-enter public consciousness again now that that Rico has chose to attach himself to it and walk Future into certain doors that may have closed on him over the last few years.
Plus, its not like the DF weren’t attempting go the “street” route that Atlanta music seemed to be going down when they put out Cool Breeze, Backbone and Slimm Calhoun. They saw it coming, just weren’t able to capitalize for reasons that we’ve all come to find out via VIBE magazine articles and what not (hi, Linda).
Whether you are a fan of his music or not, it looks like Future is the guy that Atlanta’s brass are banking on for the time being. Dude has been able to balance a street buzz with an online hustle and capitalize to actually sell real records in real life. Granted, the Pill’s and CyHi’s of the are “better rappers,” but the Future’s (who can rap when he wants to) and 2Chainz (Chainz be snappin’ too though) were able to generate better face-to-face connections and then use the internet as fuel on an already burning fire.
Let’s hope he doesn’t take it lightly and speaks and represents for us well. Because as you can tell from the many feet that graced the stage with him, he has some big, colorful and rich shoes to fill…and they are willingly being handed to him.
The ATLiens have landed…on Pluto.