Anderson .Paak is one of the up and coming artists of the past few years. His work ethic is reflected in the projects he puts out as well as those who notice him. Releasing two albums, Venice and Malibu, as well as being extensively featured on the Dr. Dre project Compton speak to this ethic. There is also the group NxWorries which features .Paak in vocals and Stones Throw Knxwledge as producer. To top it off he has just recently been signed to Aftermath Entertainment. Anderson .Paak is defiantly embracing the opportunities around to him.
Like many, to get to this point in life was no easy feat. In listening to his songs on Malibu it becomes obvious where this work ethic comes from. In songs like “The Season/Carry Me” and “The Water” we learn how nothing was ever handed to this man. His status now is a result of the dedication he has to his art and his confidence in his creativity. Again all this is back up through his music.
One of the first projects released by the young musician was Cover Art. He decided to flip a handful of rock and blues song by injecting a nice dose of funk. According to an article in LA Weekly .Paak decided to flip soulful songs done by white artists that, “mean[t] a lot to,” to him (http://www.laweekly.com/music/randb-singer-anderson-paak-has-a-curious-new-project-4169754). Some of the songs covered are “Seven Nation Army” by the White Stripes as well as “Such Great Heights” by the Postal Service. By flipping them through a different musical perspective he succeeds in demonstrating his creativity. In my opinion it would have been difficult to listen to this in 2013 and not think this guy was going to be a star.
But the best thing about this man is his range. While he obviously can reinvent songs and display his struggle through rhyme he can also write very meaningful songs. But he does not just talk about universal attitudes concerning love or greed or whatever but rather draws from personal experience (where else would someone come up with stuff like this) to better address these attitudes. In a song like “Drugs,” off the album Venice, we learn of the issue of allowing drugs, or any material thing really, to play a central role in your love life. Like, really, how many people are singing about this type of stuff right now? Or you have songs like “I Miss that Whip” off the same album. A new take on break up songs where rather than ruminating on a break up or the person he reminisces on what he actually missed about his Ex. It really begs the question of why people make relationships in the first place. Then you have songs were he performs assault on your ear. “Come Down” off of Malibu is the best example.
If that wasn’t enough there is the Stones Throw project with Knxwledge called NxWorries. The EP was released only a week or so ago. His attitude shines on the EP in a different way from his other work. Like on the track “Suede”.Paak exudes confidence on a level reminiscent of 90s Hip Hop yet with a freshness that makes you appreciate the present (Thank you both for that one). Of course the lyrics are only half of the duo. Knxwledge’s production on the EP makes it clear why he holds the reputation he does among producers.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, Anderson .Paak is the man. The only way to classify his music is good. Go out and listen.