through the rap game. “I was in the projects in my back room with the homies, finding beats on Youtube. We had a mic. The spit-guard was a durag or a sock. I had to tell the whole room ‘Be quiet, I’m about to record!’ I come from that.”
Of course the Harlem rapper has come a long way since then. After getting down with Mass Appeal Records and then landing a major label deal with Def Jam, Dave East has become one of the most respected new rappers representing NYC.
“The first year I came out here [to SXSW] I can remember walking down Sixth Street and nobody stopping me,” East recalls. “This year I ain’t even been able to walk. It’s just dope to see that growth as far as the fans go.”
In our new interview, taped shortly before his performance on Live at the BBQ 2017, Dave shares the details of his come-up, and reveals why he’s never nervous before he hits the stage. Having given up on “plan A”—earning a living via basketball—and doing a little time in jail, Dave feels he has no time to be nervous. Check out the up close and personal interview up top.