How Drake is inspiring the next wave of Toronto artists
'We're all making noise.' — Swagger Rite
"I'm from this neighbourhood and here's the biggest artist in the universe shouting out your neighbourhood." — Swagger Rite
CBC Music's ongoing retrospective, Decade of Drake, looks back at the years that solidified Drake as one of the world's most successful artists. But in the latest episode of Drake's Plan, an eight-part documentary series on CBC Gem, we take a moment to look ahead and see the influence the Toronto artist has had on the next wave of artists coming out of his hometown.
Following episode 2, "Breaking Into the U.S.," which followed Drake's career as it took off in the U.S. thanks to a co-sign from rapper Lil Wayne, episode 3, titled "Taking Toronto," brings the focus back to Canada.
Here, we meet Swagger Rite, an up-and-coming rapper who grew up in Toronto's Jane and Weston neighbourhood, an area that Drake himself has shouted out in his songs. It's that sense of local pride, in addition to Drake's unabashed embrace of fusing singing with rapping, that has inspired Swagger Rite to put his music out there for the world, which is now starting to pay attention to Toronto's burgeoning hip-hop scene, to hear.
"I sing and rap because I feel comfortable in my own skin," Swagger Rite says. "Drake kind of taught us a big thing, to be comfortable in your own skin. So that's what I'm pushing. Just embrace where we're from for once."
Get a sneak peek at the episode below, and head to CBC Gem to watch the full thing. You can also head to cbc.ca/music/decadeofdrake for our Decade of Drake coverage. CBC-TV will air an abridged version of Drake's Plan as a 90-minute special on Dec. 10.