Despite being only 19, Joey Bada$$ has the makings of a career that puts most to shame. Co-founding hip-hop collective Pro Era at the age of 14, he gained enough attention from YouTube freestyles to gain record deals for himself and Pro Era. Two acclaimed mixtapes followed, 1999 and Summer Knights. His debut album B4.DA.$$ (pronounced Before Da Money) is due for imminent release, to coincide with his 20th birthday.
Alongside Pro Era (who have recently gained surprising support from the White House) Joey Bada$$ has toured with the likes of Wiz Khalifa, performed for Jimmy Fallon, and has already racked up an impressive list of features with other artists, including A$AP Rocky’s ‘1 Train’ beside Kendrick Lamar and others.
B4.DA.$$ should cement his place as an established artist, making the transition from a promising newcomer to the scene. The album features collaborations with hip-hop heavyweights The Roots and DJ Premier, as well as fellow rising stars Raury and Maverick Sabre. His music is an homage to’90s East Coast hip-hop, echoing Wu Tang Clan and J Dilla. The sound is nostalgic, however he hasn’t forgotten his youthfulness, being perhaps the only rapper who could get away with namedropping Dragonball Z’s Vegeta in a verse alongside Michael Jackson and Ike Turner.
In addition to his hip-hop credentials, the young rapper has twice collaborated with Kiesza, proving that he also has an ear for the dancefloor and the potential to expand his audience further than B4.DA.$$ is bound to.
B4.DA.$$ is due for release on January 20th 2014, on Cinematic Music Group.