Stoked to be bringing US rapper Awon back in our feed. His new collab with UK producer Elements “Paper Off My Pager” combines upbeat jazz-infused production with Awon’s rapid-fire lyricism.
When I first heard the beat Elements sent me I felt like it had an international vibe to it. The horns and random instrumentation that fills the track actually gave me vibes of the London grime and garage scene. I instantly thought about Slick Rick, I know it seems odd, but Rick was the first international emcee I can remember, he represents nostalgia for me as well as the storytelling. I wanted to take a snapshot of my adolescence and modernize it for a new audience who may not understand the lifestyle that I along with an entire generation lived.
The 90s were really grimy and rigid, it was a different thought process of survival, getting money happened to be a part of that. While it sounds celebratory the song is really a reflection of bad decisions on top of bad decisions that led me to rap for a living. The celebration is that I survived.
I absolutely love the homage to old school soul music embroiled in the beat. There’s something beautifully melancholic about the whole thing that makes is really stand out.