When it comes to Drake and his Club Paradise tourmates, it’s all crew love. When rounding out the roster for his current run, Drizzy wanted not only to build an entertaining lineup, but to show that hip-hop doesn’t have to be all about beef.
“I just wanted people to come out and see a unity, because in hip-hop it’s always been based off of confrontation,” Drake told MTV News correspondent Sway Calloway during the May 17 Club Paradise gig in Houston . “I think one of the coolest things about where we’re at right now, it’s real united. We actually all like each other.”
For this leg of his tour, which kicked off May 7 in California, Drake tapped J. Cole, Waka Flocka Flame, 2 Chainz, Meek Mill and French Montana to ride out with him. “The rare times that I get into a girl’s car or be subjected to what someone is listening to in their vehicle, it happens to be those guys,” Drizzy reasoned.
Montana is preparing to drop his debut album, Excuse My French, this summer, so he welcomes the exposure. “We’re all crossing each other’s fans, so it’s a good look for everybody,” he said. “Look at the energy in here — we having fun doin’ it.”
Rick Ross protégé Meek Mill is also putting the finishing touches on his debut LP, and though he has done plenty of spot dates with his Maybach Music Group family, Club Paradise offers him something more. “We just put in that groundwork,” he said. “This is just my first tour going city to city and hitting markets we never even been to, performing and showing our faces and grinding.”
You don’t necessarily have to have a hit record on radio to be a part of Club Paradise. Drake shows love to the up-and-comers as well — after all, he does fancy himself an underground king. Connecticut MC Jitta entered a contest and won an opening spot on the celebrated tour. Drake chose him personally.
“I entered for a Drake competition to get on the Club Paradise Tour and they chose me, Drake chose me to get onstage. So I’m on with 2 Chainz, Waka, all of ‘em,” Jitta said. “I think it’s because I have a different style from everybody else on the tour, more of a hip-hop, laid-back type of tone.”
At the end of the day, Drizzy just wanted to give the fans something new. “More so than young in age, it’s just refreshing in talent; guys that when I go out and I see people having fun, that’s who they’re listening to,” he said. “That’s really how I put this tour together.”