If Comeback Season is what separated Aubrey Graham from Jimmy Brooks, So Far Gone is what separated Drake from Aubrey Graham.
I have a bad gauge of talent. I remember back in 2007 when I was making it a routine to sneak-watch episodes of Degrassi: The Next Generation over at my friend’s house. Specifically, I remember watching the episode where Wheelchair Jimmy ends up rapping and stealing the stage from his horrid girlfriend Ashley (Obviously, I never liked her. But strangely they had been dating on and off since the first season of Degrassi: The Next Generation. So I had to ship it for the culture)
But, from this performance, I didn’t really think much of it.
I just thought he was okay. It didn’t seem any better than any of the other rappers and I had grown to like up to that point. At 12 years old you can safely assume that I had a deeply matured taste for the hip-hop genre. Obviously, since then I’ve changed my opinion. Drake has proved himself time and time again to be nothing less than a star.
I vaguely remember seeing one of Drake’s first publicized singles Replacement Girl (from his tape Comeback Season) playing as 106 & Park’s “New Joint of the Day”.
It still blows my mind to see that this video dropped ten years ago. I can’t lie; I loved it. My favorite character from Degrassi matched up with my hometown hero Trey Songz? How can I not love it? But still, it didn’t make me take Drake seriously as an artist. It was just a catchy joint.
But in the effort of swaying my ever-important opinion, So Far Gone was the start of me accepting the Drake persona and separating him from Aubrey Graham the actor and Jimmy Brooks the character.
It came out at a perfect transitional period in my life (freshman year of high school) and added a soundtrack to many of my melodramatic, yet impactful life moments. From the long-distance relationship anthem, Bria’s Interlude to the honorary Gotta Make It Pt.2 Successful it hit every emotional target perfectly. The nostalgic feels are here for me when it comes to this project; I can’t even deny it.
I still think it’s one of his classic projects (along with Take Care) and I’ll always appreciate it for the quality that it showcases on all fronts. (Lyrics, Production, Features, Drake’s faux-singing voice).
Without this tape, Drake wouldn’t be the mega-star with the Midas touch that he is today. If you’re a Drake fan and you haven’t heard So Far Gone…do that. And while you’re doing that, listen to his first and second official tapes Room for Improvement and Comeback Season as well. It’s mad inspiring to witness the elbow grease that someone like Drake’s put in to sow his oats. Makes you believe anything is possible, ya’ know?
What’s your favorite Drake album/mixtape/project/song/Degrassi episode? Re-live your favorite Drake moments in the comments below.