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Logic the Rapper On Learning How to Survive to Strive Against the System (Part 1 of 2)

No Pressure by Sam Spratt
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BACKGROUND

Sir Robert Bryson Hall II, also known as the Logic the rapper, is a Maryland, U.S.A. native from the suburbs of the West Deer Park neighborhood in Gaithersburg. He attended Gaithersburg High School.

Half African-American and Caucasian, Logic came from a home of poverty and drugs. His father was addicted to cocaine, and the mother was very racial to her kids and Logic. According to Greer Smith from the Churchill Observer, Logic states:

My mother took me out of school in the fifth grade because they said I had emotional problems. In actuality, my mother had a lot of problems, mental and life problems, and would put her business out there to people, and so they thought I had problems too.

Logic

He has overall seven half-siblings between his father and mother.

THE UPRISING

Logic came from a domestic household with drugs, gang activity and violence. Unfortunately, most of Logic’s acquaintances followed that path, but he was the opposite. He had dreams that he wanted to conquer and strive for. Rap was one of them. So he crafted a style of classic rap and hip-hop with a lyrical flow.

Those inspirations are A Tribe Called Quest, The Low End Theory (1991), A Tribe Called Quest, Midnight Marauders (1993), Big L, Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous (1995), Red Hot Chili Peppers, Californication (1999), and many others. Before coming into the mainstream, Logic released a mixtape called Young Sinatra: Welcome to Forever which featured Kid Ink, Trinidad James, Dizzy Wright, Jhené Aiko, Elijah Blake, Castro and Jon Bellion. Producing the mixtape involved Logic, 6ix, Swiff D, C-Sick, Don Cannon, Key Wane, Arthur McArthur, Kevin Randolph and No I.D.

WHOLE DIFFERENT LEVEL

Under Pressure (2014) Album Cover by Sam Spratt. Purpose to Distribute
Under Pressure – Album Cover – By Sam Spratt

When Logic released his first debut album, Under Pressure in 2014, it opened the new side of Logic as a lyricist and a person.

The bluntness of the album and details in the song are very greedy and relatable — for example, the song Nikki talks about the addiction of Nicotine but is used as a toxic relationship with a woman in a metaphoric way. Other pieces speak about his troubling past.

The successful narrative within the songs comes from the diverse samples. These samples are My One and Only Love by Grant Green (1985), Use Me by Bill Withers (1972), Technologic by Daft Punk (2005) and many others. A lot of samples come from different genres of music but use certain snippets of the songs such a drums, vocals and other elements.

Logic did not shy away from his past — he embraced it.

DEEPER UNDERSTANDING

Andre Grant from HIPHOPDX interviewed Logic about the reasoning behind Under Pressure, who said:

I think it’s finding myself. Like, on the mixtapes, I would talk about my family or just kind of what I’d been through. [I] definitely talked about race a lot, being black and white. But on this album I don’t talk about race at all, I talk about culture. So, for me, I think more so when diving into this album… When I first created the song ‘Under Pressure,’ the nine-minute Hip Hop ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ like Queen [Laughs], I think that’s the first song I went, ‘That is who I am. That is me.’

Stay tuned for Part 2 for a look into Logic’s expanding his horizons.

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