On Being a 2011 XXL Freshman: “I couldn’t believe it when I heard that I was a part [of the Freshmen]. It feels amazing to be appreciated and very humbling to be selected out of the millions of people, billions of people nowadays. How many people are on Earth? And [also, out of] all the artists that are working hard and that are, you know, fresh… I will be here forever. I want [people to] compare me to something like Bob Dylan, somebody that will last forever, like Prince. I’m setting up to be more than just an artist. It’s about the message, the core message that I represent. That’s spreading peace and positivity. And bringing people closer together and breaking down barriers of judgment. It’s really deeper than just being a rapper.

When I got the freshmen call I was at home on the Internet as always, and I got a call from my friend and he told me, ‘Man, XXL wanna have you [as a] freshmen.’ I couldn’t believe it when I heard that I was a part of it. It was an honor. It’s a big accomplishment for me to be working so hard, [and] it feels amazing to be appreciated; and very humbling… You know what’s funny is I made a video [last year] called ‘XXL Freshmen 2010,’ [so] it feels amazing that I was chosen.

I definitely celebrated and just took it in. It’s like getting an award. [It’s] one of the biggest things you can get as a rap artist, especially coming into the game.

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