Nelly is sometimes overlooked as an early adopter of melodic rapping. The St. Louis rapper rarely spit a verse that didn't have a tune to it in his heyday, and later went even further into a singing direction with country crossover songs and the like. Drake, who also has a tendency to sing as much as he raps, is criticized by purists for not sticking entirely to hip hop. In a recent interview with VladTV, Nelly came to the defense of Drake's direction.

"Everybody don't like the mixture [of genres]," Nelly explained. "But some fans, a lot of fans - the guy sold damn near 800,000 the first week - so it's a lot of fans that like Drake's singing. I think that's all he gives a damn about. As an artist, you can't have a stigma put on yourself as far as what you can do and what you can't do. You just try to be the best artist that you can be. We're in a time right now where being an artist doesn't limit you to rapping. It just doesn't limit you to singing. It limits you to create. All your job is is to create good music. He's creating good music. Fans that don't like to hear Drake sing, then switch to the next song where he's rapping."

The rapper then revealed that he had received similar criticisms earlier in his career.

"I used to get the same thing," he said. "'You should do this more. You should do that more.' But the reality of the situation is that you have fans that like you to do both. So you try to create as a testament to your ability to do both."

The St. Lunatic argued that discouraging Drake from singing would be limiting his artistic ability.  

"I just like Drake," revealed the rapper. "It's not about whether I like him singing or rapping. He's Drake. I hate when people do that. It's almost like segregation or something. Can't the dude just be him? Let's just be a person. Let's not limit. Just be an artist."