“Young dreamers trying to run L.A…” is how Compton’s Problem describes the ambition that he and his brother-in-hood-arms, Nipsey Hussle, had while on their come-up in the rap game in his new single, “Janet Freestyle (Remix).” The song encapsulates the essence of friendship between two men that respected each other’s grind to the top and what it means to honor someone’s life in their absence.
“I just want to say with this song that I hope we start loving our people while they are here instead of waiting for a tragedy to happen before we give out flowers,” Problem states with intensity. “I hate that we are learning the hard way that you truly don’t know what you got till it’s gone.” And mentioning that last statement, Problem drew inspiration for the ode by a certain mega star’s hit tune from the 90s. “I originally recorded the song alone on my balcony to the beat from Janet Jackson’s ‘Got ‘till It’s Gone,’” he details. “Then I played it for Mike & Keys (producers that worked closely with Nipsey Hussle) and it immediately struck a nerve in them. So they added their magic to flip it for this tribute.” The extra love and care for the musical backdrop to this track doesn’t stop there as Problem explains, “producer E. Dan came with the keys, then my brother Terrace Martin blessed it with saxophone and vocoder to tie it all together.” The somber yet soulful vibe is felt when the track is played.
Visually the scenes are full of green pastures and spacious sunny L.A. skies. It was the goal views that Problem was looking to achieve. “For the video, (director) Joshy Gonz found that perfect location. He co-directed my film, A Compton Story, so he knew right away what I needed visually for this special song.”
Problem recently spoke with VIBE about the 20-minute short film, which is the precursor to his upcoming album on May 29th, Coffee & Kush Vol. 1, coming out on Diamond Lane/Rostrum Records.