Living Large with Larry June

This is a republishing of a post I wrote for my now defunct music newsletter. Substack sucks so the post is here now.

Hip-hop has always had the element of flashing one’s material success. Gold chains, expensive cars, stacks of cash etc. Larry June with his latest album The Great Escape demonstrates a less flashy but still extravagant kind of lifestyle rap. Larry is more about buying property and diversifying your investments.

I have been lowkey obsessed with this album since it came out and its been on repeat.

On Turkish Cotton:

[Verse 2]
James Bond coupe with the ceramic brakes
Out the way, eatin’ on these crumpets, but it’s sad to say
Niggas hate, got six banks just to keep it safe
Made this shit happen by myself, I ain’t ask for favors
Thinkin’ ’bout Seattle, I just might go out and golf with Jake
You niggas be weak for these hoes, I be out the way
Dom P, I done made millions with Sean C
I done cashed out for the ‘Rari, nigga, no lease
Not flexin’, just showin’ niggas that you can eat
Nigga, I was just dead broke in 2017
Merchandise, my nigga, you gotta keep the merchandise
Work it right, get it to the people, push a hard line
Start a corporation and bet on yourself every time
Put ’em on payroll, make sure yo’ taxes right

Which other rapper is talking about starting a corporation and making sure your taxes right?

Oh, and this ain’t the only mention of taxes in this album, here’s another one from 89 Earthquake:

[Verse 1: Larry June]
This that Ace of Spades shit (Man) talkin’ numbers on the jet (Damn)
Lil’ random flight to Vegas, touchdown to a check (Ayy, ayy, ayy, ayy)
Picked her up around two (Two) ordered food off the app (Man)
Two K for the Denims, somethin’ slight, all jap’ (Numbers)
Takin’ chances daily, man, you niggas all rap (What else?)
Got three cellphones, still never call back
Real millionaire shit, might put her in the Benz
Write the shit off on taxes (Man) have a five-star din’, man (Ayy, ayy, ayy, ayy)
Tell it how it is, mane, livin’ how I live, mane
Rolls gold piеce just to complement thе drip, mane
Stay up on your toes dog (Uh) make sure the money straight (Good job)
From the City of the Fog, ’89 earthquake (Ayy, ayy, ayy, ayy)

Larry continue the talk of investing in yourself and having a solid plan on Solid Plan:

[Chorus: Larry June]
The streets don’t love you, nigga, get some bread
Stop complainin’ my nigga, go hard instead
Invest in yourself, fuck what they said (Fuck what they said)
You can accomplish anything with a solid plan

I also want to mention this man’s got a thing for Porsches as well. Good taste Larry. This one is from the track Palisades, CA:

Today, I drove the Porsche with the automatic front lift
I spent a thousand dollars on candles, I’m at Saks Fifth

And there is the track Porsches in Spanish which doesn’t actually mention Porsches anywhere in the lyrics but of course the music video got some nice shots of a couple Porsches.

Of course, Larry’s lifestyle raps are not the only reason I enjoy this album. One of my all time favourite hip-hop producers The Alchemist brings his A game to this album and gives the right atmospheric backing to Larry’s laidback rapping. We even get a verse from The Alchemist on 60 Days which was a pleasant surprise.

I consider this a “vibes” album. I put it on when I want to be transported to a completely different place and vibe. I am not here for the technical merits of the rapping, just the vibes. Driving a Porsche along a California beach type beat y’know?

The features here also serve to add to the atmosphere of the album, some of my other favs like Boldy James and Curren$y are present. Those two also specialize in the kind of laid back hip-hop that Larry June also does so their presence is integrated seamlessly. I gotta say though, that Action Bronson feature on Solid Plan felt out of place thematically.

So yeah, this album is another one to add to the list of 2023 AOTYs. I expect this to be in rotation throughout this year and beyond.

In the words of Larry June: Ayy, ayy, ayy, ayy.