8 Songs, 21 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like so many of Baton Rouge’s rap greats, YoungBoy Never Broke Again understands that there is no pleasure without pain. On his eight-track Master the Day of Judgement EP, the rapper reminisces on his violent early life in the streets as he celebrates his current-day success: “I know I won’t make it to heaven,” he sing-songs on the brooding “Rock and Roll.” But YoungBoy’s not completely resigned to his fate: On the twinkling trap ballad “Over,” he warbles, “I was done with love, but I done relapsed now,” and promises his girl that he’ll become a better person for her sake.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Like so many of Baton Rouge’s rap greats, YoungBoy Never Broke Again understands that there is no pleasure without pain. On his eight-track Master the Day of Judgement EP, the rapper reminisces on his violent early life in the streets as he celebrates his current-day success: “I know I won’t make it to heaven,” he sing-songs on the brooding “Rock and Roll.” But YoungBoy’s not completely resigned to his fate: On the twinkling trap ballad “Over,” he warbles, “I was done with love, but I done relapsed now,” and promises his girl that he’ll become a better person for her sake.

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About YoungBoy Never Broke Again

Raised by his grandmother in Baton Rogue, Louisiana, YoungBoy Never Broke Again (born Kentrell DeSean Gaulden in 1999) started recording with a Walmart-bought microphone as a teenager, writing tracks for his early mixtapes while in juvenile detention. It’s a path that would continue to cast shadows on his career. After a flurry of increasingly strong mixtapes (most notably 2017's AI YoungBoy), Gaulden made his major-label leap with 2018’s Until Death Call My Name, only to be derailed by further arrests. He bounced back later in the year with a string of similarly titled EPs (4Respect, 4Loyalty, 4Freedom, 4WhatImportant) that continued to chart his sound, featuring collaborations with Young Thug and Kevin Gates. Aggressive but soulful, Gaulden’s music feels like a natural step in the evolution of Louisiana hip-hop, echoing both Boosie Badazz (a collaborator) and Gates (who went so far as to get a tattoo of Gaulden’s face) as well as the serious, sing-song-y feel of classic Cash Money. Speaking to The FADER in 2017, Gaulden described the pressure he felt to succeed—for his family and for himself. “I can see, I can hear, I can smell, I can speak, I can touch,” he said. “Ain’t no excuses.”

HOMETOWN
Baton Rouge, LA
BORN
1999

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