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E-40 recalls connecting Los Angeles and the Bay Area with “Function,” and says rappers are capitalizing of off Mac Dre’s legacy with their recent hits.
Yo Gotti’s Jeezy-assisted single, “Act Right” enteredBillboard magazine’s “Hot 100” chart this week, joining Drake’s 2011 single, “The Motto” on the list of recent, charting songs to pay homage to slain Bay Area rapper Mac Dre. But fellow Bay Area emcee, E-40 questioned the motives of such artists.
“Man, you know my words carry a lot of weight. I have nothing against none of them dudes, right? They just capitalizing off a great rapper that was from the Bay and passed away,” E-40 said during an exclusive interview with “They know that the Bay had love for him, so why not say his name? Can I say that they listened to him before he passed or even after? Can I say that they can quote his lyrics? I don’t know. But hey, they did come to the Bay and shoot the videos and invite the whole Bay out. It opened a lot of people to the sound when Drake did it. And with Yo Gotti, I hear it everywhere. So to each his own, man. I ain’t mad at it. It is what it is.”
Mac Dre, born Andre Hicks, was killed in 2004 in Kansas City, Missouri when a gunman fired into a van in which Hicks was riding. Known for his signature slang, E-40 added that he often feels the Bay Area gets overlooked in terms of trendsetting. Additionally, 40 praised Richmond, California emcees Calvin T and Magic Mike as influences. And he often speaks out in support of his hometown Vallejo and the surrounding Bay Area, E-40 pointed out the need for West Coast unity and how his 2012 single“Function” fit into that agenda.
The West Coast hadn’t been on for a minute,” E-40 said. “We all the way on now, and everybody wanna get some West Coast slaps…I wanted to bring the Bay Area and Lala together, because we all West Coast. It was just God that did it, because ‘Function’ wasn’t a violent song. It was just a slap, and it’s not going nowhere. I think it’s in there, ‘cause it’s played everywhere. I was glad to be with the youngsters, and I truly believe in them. All of them told me, ‘Right on, Unc.’”
After emerging on the scene with his Mr. Flamboyant EP in 1989 E-40 will continue his 21-year career in Hip Hop with the release of Block Brochure: Welcome To The Soil 4, 5 & 6 on December 10. In addition to the single “Plush,” E-40 explained that the albums will feature singles that either sample and/or interpolate “Stairway to Heaven” by the O’Jays, “Doo Wah Ditty” by Roger Troutman and Zapp among others.