Drake’s long-awaited collaboration with Jay-Z, “Light Up,” has finally arrived, leaked onto the Web late Wednesday (May 26) by mixtape DJ the Evil Empire.
In the song, from Drake’s forthcoming Thank Me Later LP (due June 15), the young MC rhymes about his fast ascent to fame while Jay-Z, the elder statesman, gives the So Far Gone star a lesson in living life on the throne.
“But I just wanna tell the truth/ Before one of these haters loads a couple shells and shoots,” Drake spits. “The sh– feels like when Fredro Starr/ Was in ’Sunset Park’ stunting hard in his yellow goose, yeah/ And I’m a motherf—ing list target/ But a target nonetheless, and I just started/ Was that directed at moi? Can’t be/ They must be talking to themselves — Hov, hands free.”
Later, the Brooklyn MC talks directly to the Toronto upstart, referencing conspirators in “The Godfather” and detailing how his rise will bring detractors, and exactly how they’ll attempt to bring him down.
“Drake, here’s how they gonna come at you/ With silly rap feuds trying to distract you/ In disguise, in the form of a favor/ The Barzini meet, watch for the traitors/ Uh, I done see it all, done it all/ That’s why none of these dum-dums could dun him off.”
Earlier this year, Drake described the track as being similar to the conversations he has with the legendary rapper.
“It’s just me and Jay both rapping on it for an extended period of time,” Drake told MTV News in March. “It’s real rap. I do sing on it, but it’s just on the hook. It’s great. The perspective, the dynamic on the track — it’s me and Jay’s relationship on the song, basically. When you hear it, people will be like, ’Oh man.’ That’s how we are — just the two. He definitely has guided me a lot, as far as his words and his advice. We have a real funny rapport. I always enjoy my conversations with Jay.”
Last year, Drake revealed how “Light Up” came together, explaining how the drum-laden production made him want to recruit Jay-Z for the number. The two collaborated previously on Hov’s The Blueprint 3’s “Off That,” but Drake was only featured on the hook.
“When I heard that beat, the drums that they had come up with, it was like, ’Man, this is a moment, this sounds like where I’m at in my life,’ ” Drake said. “So, we took it and [producer Noah “40” Shebib] did what he does to pieces of music that I see potential in — he took it to the next spot.”
“Light Up” is the most recent track from Thank Me Later to leak this week, joining “Fireworks,” his Alicia Keys collaboration that popped up online on Wednesday.
What do you think about Drake’s collaboration with Jay-Z? Let us know in the comments!