August 1 st 2018 – I’ve been around the music industry long enough to sniff when a listening party is ashore. YG’s third studio album drops in two days. Anticipation has been building since he dropped his latest DJ Mustard produced hit, “Big Bank”. Last week, he unveiled the official artwork for “STAY DANGEROUS” which displays the Compton artist in a leather vest, thick gold chains suffocating his neck, hand in fist, doing a YG pose in front of a maroon dragon backdrop which might have been inspired by the nostalgically tacky photoshoots they had at your local mall in the 90s and early 2000s.
His listening party is either today or tomorrow and I know I have to be there. I asked my plug at Universal Music (who shall remain nameless) what was going down for YG’s album rollout, they sent me a flyer that had an email to RSVP with for entry. I submitted an RSVP but by 8pm I had not received confirmation, so I was forced to hit up [redacted] again to secure my entry. I was tempted to ask for a plus one, but I hate when people do that to me so I opted not to. I figured I’d probably network more efficiently alone anyways. By this time it was 10pm, I stopped by a drive-thru and drove about 30 miles north to an industrial section of North Hollywood. Unsurprisingly there was no parking. I had to park a few blocks away in an attempt to avoid a pricey parking ticket. After a hearty walk, I made my way to the front gate of Fakework Management’s compound. As I walked passed YG and his crew, I was asked by the bouncer for my name to check if I was on the RSVP list. I gave my name, praying it was added, but unfortunately, no dice. I started saying names of people I was with to see if one would help me gain entry, then finally, I said a four letter word that granted me access.
Once I entered, I was hoping I’d see someone I knew and after about 5 minutes of praying I didn’t look like a strange loner, I ran into my boy Meez of Tha Committee and KB (shoutout them) hung with them for a bit. I asked them to direct me to the free bar they had already patronized and I ran into the homegirl from Redbull. To my delight, this was another wonderful event sponsored by my favorite energy drink. I requested a red drink that was specially created for the night called a “Big Bank” it had tequila, a flavored Redbull, and some other ingredients I wasn’t interested in remembering that gave it a crimson tint. I ran into Sadboy Loko of 4hunnid records and was able to get his contact for future business. “Plug Walk” by Rich The Kid came on and Sadboy had the biggest smile on his face and said something like, “he straight out made a song for Mexicans huh, plug talk haha”. Then, a wild Cozz and Free Ackrite appeared and we briefly chopped it up before I began studiously people watching.
Mustard walked into the jam-packed room surrounded by a few people in 10 Summers gear, RJ’s lanky-ass decided he wanted to stand right in front of me and block my view of the party. Before I knew it, I was hugging the back-wall. Nothing is worse than tying your shoes in the middle of a crowded place, so when I felt something under my shoe I figured it was my shoelace. I looked down and to my surprise a coffee colored blunt was wedged between my foot and the floor. Then, I heard a frustrated bark coming from the left of me. I looked over and see a beautiful young girl in dismay because some idiot just stepped on her blunt. Quickly, I picked up the bent blunt and apologized as I handed it to her. What commenced was an awesome conversation that turned into some bumping and grinding during a performance of “Big Bank”.
At approximately 11:30pm, YG took the impromptu stage at the center of the room and began to playing unreleased songs from the forthcoming “STAY DANGEROUS” album. He began by flattering the crowd and saying it was an exclusive event and if you’re here you are an exclusive person which made me feel important. The ominous keys of the intro track “10 Times” began playing, and when the drums and hook began we all gasped collectively because the anticipation to hear the album was instantly killed like an enemy out of bounds. Bulletproof with Jay 305 followed, Jay predictably was standing next to YG with a 400 gigawatt smile. YG asked his DJ to play “Power” featuring Ty Dolla $ign which judging by the crowd’s reaction is poised to be a popular song off the album. More fire songs were premiered, but everything seemed to come to a halt when YG played “Slay” featuring Quavo. The song sounded even silkier than the dark colored du-rag of the guy next to me. I feel like I had to mention the guy in a white tank top, wearing dark shades holding up an entire pizza box and unapologetically eating it during YG’s performance, because it truly a great moment in du-rag history. The night ended by YG jumping into the crowd and rapping “Big Bank” right in front of me as I unsuccessfully scrambled to get a good picture to post on Instagram with my iPhone. I made the long walk back to my car and found a $93 parking ticket on my windshield, said another four letter word and drove away eating my cold quesadilla with no seatbelt on, staying dangerous.
Listen to the album below.