I usually pride myself on being up on the latest rap and Hiphop music, but in this instance I was late.
It's only been about a month since DeJ Loaf (pronounced "dayj") dropped her debut [hit] song, "Try Me," and already the track is all but a cult classic in the underground. But with the mainstream exposure she's getting -- I'm embarrassed to say that I was introduced to her by MTVJams, of all sources -- she will soon be signed to a major label.
It's only a matter of time.
She has the realest video since Freddie Gibbs provided some of the illest guns-and-drugs imagery ever depicted by a rapper.
The two videos share one key similarity in that that they both showcase the captivating yet dismal life of a Midwest housing project. I've been in some wild public housing before (hello, Pink Houses) but those Midwest PJs look insane, much like Master P's Calliope projects and Cash Money's Magnolia projects in New Orleans.
Like the aforementioned, DeJ Loaf (love that name!!!) seems quite the authentic rapper (and singer), complete with good lyrics, great rhythm, and an innovative phonetic approach (throughout "Try Me" she pronounces words with a soft assonance, such as "fom-lee" and "moh-nee"" instead of the way the words "family" and "money," respectively, normally sound. It works.
It's both catchy and original. Coupled with solid production, DeJ Loaf basically fits all my criteria for a talented and noteworthy rapper.
And her act doesn't seem forced, unlike Boss, who, in retrospect, was obviously a fraud.
It's unfair to compare her to only female rappers, though, since DeJ, unlike the majority of her current contemporaries, presents such a hard image of herself. It's no wonder an act like The LOX remixed the track for themselves.
Some of her other tracks leave a little to be desired, but that's what an A&rR is for, right?
Regardless, she does have some other heat to her music besides the ill breakout hit.
Oh, and her look is so unique for a female rapper. She's not trying to be sexy. Not even in the opening scene for "Try Me," where she's seen getting out of bed wearing what looks to be only a bra. (It gets covered up by a bathrobe quickly.) Her early-morning look is a lot more thugged-out than it is sexy. (Although a quick look at her Instagram account can at times kind of disprove that observation...)
LoadingI Gotta Different Flavor For Everyday of The Week. Tell Me How You Want It, I'm On It! 💋
But she doesn't need to be sexy, something most female rappers (and/or their managers) just don't seem to understand. In fact, I would prefer that female rappers don't rely to heavily on sex appeal, because sooner or later they resort to elective surgery to try to maintain a look that is unsustainable. Which is why I wish Lil Kim would get back to her murderous roots and spit that shit that first put her on the Hiphop map. But I digress...
If Shady doesn't scoop up his fellow Michigan resident immediately he will clearly be missing out. Just get her some Dre beats and an Eminem feature and she'll be set. Either Em or Weezy seems like the obvious route to some quick success.
Because a who's-who list of rap personalities clearly want a piece of her eventual success:
But if she stays independent and keeps producing the same type of music she has been, I don't think anybody will be mad at all.
In the meantime, I remain obsessed with all-things DeJ Loaf.