In what was one of the most anticipated and quality-dense rap years that we’ve seen in the last decade, 2013 produced some of the most commercially successful and trendsetting rap albums that we’ve ever seen. Within just the first four months of the year, ASAP Rocky, Lil Wayne, and Kid Cudi all released highly-praised projects such as Long. Live. ASAP, I Am Not A Human Being II, and Indicud respectively. June and July were by far the heaviest months of these iconic releases such as:
Also, between August and September, ASAP Ferg, Trap Lord, Big Sean, Hall of Fame, and Drake, Nothing Was The Same, all released commercially successful albums. Of all those albums that were released in 2013, one was a debut album for a seasoned rapper that is still making major headlines; Pusha T. Five years ago, Pusha T made his solo debut with his album My Name Is My Name.
Prior to releasing any solo projects, Pusha T was part of the rap duo “Clipse,” with his brother, No Malice. They were widely successful with four studio albums released between 1992 and 2006; Exclusive Audio Footage, Lord Willin’, Hell Hath No Fury, & Till The Casket Drops.
In 2010, it was announced that he signed a label deal with Kanye West’s GOOD Music, joining an already diverse and talented label roster with the likes of Big Sean, John Legend, CyHi The Prynce, and Teyana Taylor to name a few. Following this announcement and two mixtapes, Fear of God & Fear of God II: Let Us Pray, he was part of GOOD Music’s compilation album titled Cruel Summer in 2012. A wildly successful album, Pusha T was part of three of the most popular songs being “Mercy”, “Don’t Like”, and “New God Flow”. Prior to the release of his album, Pusha T released a promotional mixtape titled Wrath of Caine in early 2013, with one of the lead singles being “Millions” featuring Rick Ross.
My Name Is My Name was released on October 7th, 2013.
Of the 12 songs on the album, most of it was produced by Kanye West, with his production was behind seven songs. The lead singles for the album were “Pain” featuring Future, “Numbers on the Board”, “Sweet Serenade” featuring Chris Brown, “Let Me Love You” featuring Kelly Rowland, and “Nosetalgia” featuring Kendrick Lamar. The album also features production from Pharrell Williams and Swizz Beats.
My Name Is My Name was well received and highly successful, debuting at Number 4 on the Billboard Top 200, as well as selling 74,000 copies in its first week. It was also ranked at Number 33 on Rolling Stone’s list of the best 50 albums of 2013.
The album’s production is something that still very appreciated and something to not be overlooked. The heavy sound of drums in each song is executed to perfection, coupled with smooth melodies. This great combination of beats was perfectly teamed up with Pusha T’s raw rap style and grimy delivery allows for this album to still be greatly appreciated. “Sweet Serenade” and “Let Me Love You” are great examples of this while being complemented by the sweet vocals of Chris Brown and Kelly Rowland.