Welcome to Marathon Monday, this feature has inspired by Nipsey Hussle to spread the word however I can. Nipsey meant different thing to different people, like most greats he was a complicated person. I leave everyone to reckon with that as they see fit but I knew of him as an entrepreneur, community leader, and of course an artist.
When Nipsey was murdered most will agree it hit different than another rapper or celebrity dying. Bomani Jones accurately stated on his podcast The Evening Jones “The tragedy is when somebody dies and it’s somebody with vision.” When I had several friends and acquaintances mention they hadn’t known about Nip till he died I felt like I had failed as a fan. Even if I knew some wouldn’t have fucked with it, the fact that people I would normally share music with hadn’t even heard of someone I consider myself a fan; whose music I downloaded and when Victory Lap came out purchased. I was slacking and this is my solution to that so let’s get to it.
I first came across Nipsey in ‘09 on MTV Jams with the “Hussle in the House” Video
I was never a huge west coast rap fan preferring the east coast lyricism, but that Kris Kross flip, the gangsta shit he was talking, the video in the hood, everything about Nip drew me in. That said I didn’t really keep checking for him till 2013 when I came across The Marathon Continues on Dat Piff
That tape made me go back to the bullets ain’t got no name series, Nipsey was the West Coast Jeezy in a modern era where you could see it all. You could see how he got out of his deal, you could see the proud to pay campaign, the marathon clothing, the interviews, the eloquence in his message which was all about motivation and everything seemed aspirational.
His official debut album Victory Lap came out last year in 2018, universally acclaimed, grammy nominated, but more importantly no skips all heaters.
Nipsey also did one of the rare feats of his album encompassing the same Nip we got from the mixtapes. Often the transition takes awhile or never happens but you could listen to this having never heard anything else from him and get his mission statement. Go give Victory Lap a listen then come back next week for Marathon Monday. I hope you enjoyed this small introduction to this Nipsey Hussle music.