Upon the release of his album It’s Not Me, It’s You, rapper DDG has confessed that he doesn’t want to be deemed a “YouTube rapper” anymore.
“I’m in a space now where I want people to get rid of the stigma that I’m a YouTuber,” DDG revealed to PEOPLE. “I’m really just tryna shake that image and that stigma. Even though I am a YouTuber, I feel like it automatically comes with people not wanting to press play on the music or believing in the music. Or being harder on it. I feel like people are harder on me than other artists.”
Putting the video streaming platform on the back burner for now, DDG, born Darryl Granberry, feels he has to work overtime to push his music to the forefront. Whenever the “Moonwalking In Calabasas” artists randomly uploads a vlog now, it usually features his girlfriend and The Little Mermaid star Halle Bailey, his celebrity friends or his viral nephew “Woo Wop.”
To refocus the lens on his rap skills, DDG said the remedy is to “Put out good music.” Another piece of advice he’s received is from Jay-Z: “Be original & don’t follow trends. Give people what they came for.”
“All the music that I put out sticks over time,” he added. “I feel like I’m more of a longevity artist than anything. And I feel like a lot of people go back and they go listen to the old stuff that I’ve been putting out once they recently become fans, and they say, ‘Oh, he’d been making good songs.’ So you know, I just keep pushing, just continue to put out good music and feed the people that’s already listening.”
DDG, 24, began vlogging on YouTube in 2014, pulling in thousands of dollars a month. His content skills enabled him to buy a multi-million dollar mansion in California off of the strength of his YouTube grind alone. It was when the Pontiac, Michigan-native expanded his talents as a serious rapper that led him to ink a deal between his own label DDG Entertainment and Epic Records in 2019.
He dropped the deluxe version of his sophomore album It’s Not Me, Its You on Friday (Oct. 7). Reportedly, it’s been in the works for three years following his 2019 debut album Valedictorian.
The original album includes features from Polo G, NLE Choppa, Gunna, Kevin Gates and Babyface Ray. The deluxe comes with musical assistance from Offset, Coi Leray and Lakeyah. It also includes four new tracks — making it a 16-track project.
Take a look at DDG’s music video for “If I Want You,” starring his beau Halle Bailey, below.