Ahead of the 2023 GRAMMY Awards, Grandmaster Flash spoke about Hip-Hop’s 50th birthday and how elated he is that artists like Lizzo, Lil Baby, Jay-Z, Drake, and more contribute to something he helped establish.
In an interview with Billboard, Flash stayed on the topic of Drizzy and offered more praise for the Canadian heartthrob, speaking to his music and the diversity of his catalog.
“He is probably the only rapper, and I want to speak on his talent because he’s a great rapper, but he’s the only one, in my opinion, that’s daring enough to rap on a trap beat, to rap on a disco beat, to rap on a ballad beat,” the Buffalo State College honorary doctorate recipient expressed.
Drake has long been criticized for his ability to stand outside his Hip-Hop roots and create music based on the genres of drill, rap, and, most recently, dance. However, “The Message” DJ honored him for his ability to take musical risks. He even went as far as comparing the OVO boss’ creative process to that of the late Prince for his “daring” nature when it comes to Hip-Hop music production.
“I would call it like a Prince formula. When Prince makes records, it does not sound like his last record,” he explained. “Drake is daring enough to rap on all different types of beats. I think he’s a consummate genius.”
The OG’s love for the new school parallels the 2023 GRAMMY’s Hip-Hop celebration, which showed love for the genre from its inception to the modern era. Legends and rising stars took the stage on Sunday (Feb. 5) to commemorate the genre’s 50th anniversary and showed a beautiful sense of unity amongst the community.
The Questlove-curated celebration included performances and appearances from LL Cool J, Big Boi, Too $hort, De La Soul, Missy Elliott, Run-D.M.C., Queen Latifah, Method Man, Public Enemy, Busta Rhymes, DJ Jazzy Jeff, Grandmaster Flash, Nelly, Lil Uzi Vert, Glorilla, and more.