Over the next few weeks I’ll be discussing a number of artists and presenting a case for why they are a contender for ‘Best Feature Artist Of 2019’. After sharing my opinion on about 15 rappers I’ll be doing a final post with my personal top 10, as well as a dissection on the group as a whole. So far I have talked about A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, DaBaby, and finally yesterday, Denzel Curry. Today in the fourth installation of the series I’ll be talking about G-Eazy!
An Intro To G-Eazy
Californian Rapper G-Eazy, real name Gerald Gillum, first began making moves in the hip hop decent way back in 2008, starting off as a producer but going on to join local hip hop group ‘The Bay Boyz’ shortly after. G-Eazy didn’t really start seeing any success with a larger audience until 2010 though, when he opened for various much-better-known rappers such as Lil Wayne and Snoop Dogg. In 2011 he started seeing success with the release of his ‘Endless Summer’ mixtape, which contained his first hit ‘Runaround Sue’. This was the start of his rise, with G-Eazy embarking on his first nationwide tour later that year, as well as having one of his songs announced for the ‘Saints Row 3’ sound track.
The next couple of years were primarily spent touring, with G-Eazy touring the US with the Vans Warped tour in the first half of 2012, and then again on a tour with Hoodie Allen during the latter half. In September of 2012 he independently released his debut album ‘Must Be Nice’, which debuted at 3 on the iTunes hiphop Charts. In July 2013 G-Eazy once again opened for Lil Wayne, this time on his ‘America’s Most Wanted’ tour, before announcing that he was embarking on his own tour, the ‘These Things Happen’ tour.
The ‘These Things Happen’ tour lasted 40 stops, coming to and end in April of 2014, followed shortly after by the release of his label debut album ‘These Things Happen’. The album went straight to number one on the Billboard hiphop/r&b and Top Rap Albums chart, and has since been certified platinum. Later in 2014 Gerald embarked on his first headlining world tour, which saw him selling out shows both in the US and abroad in countries such as Australia. By this point G-Eazy had well and truly started hitting mainstream status, which saw him playing big shows at many big festivals in 2015, most notably Lollapalooza, Bonaroo, & Made In America. He closed out 2015 by dropping his second studio album ‘When Its Dark Out’ in December, his second consecutive album to go platinum.
For the next few years G-Eazy continued his grind, balancing projects, touring, and features to keep his relevance in the mainstream ever since. 2016 saw him launch a second world tour and appear on the lead single of Britney Spears’ 9th album. In 2017 he released a collaborative EP with DJ/producer Carnage in March, collaborated on popular songs with artists such as Dillon Francis & Kehlani, and released his third platinum album ‘The Beautiful And The Damned’. In 2018 he released his ‘The Vault’ EP In May and appeared on a handful of tracks by artists such as Vic Mensa and Yung Pinch. And then finally, last year (2019) he released his B-Sides EP in the first half of the year, and then his most recent project ‘Scary Nights’ on October 18.
And that brings you up to date, and brings us to our topic of conversation! In 2019, on top of releasing 2 solo EP’s, G-Eazy had a super impressive year in terms of his features.
So Why Is G-Eazy A Contender?
Originally I hadn’t considered G-Eazy for this list, mainly because he hadn’t had any spectacular standout features, and hadn’t appeared on any real big songs like some of the others. The more I went through my playlists though the more I realised how many enjoyable songs he had appeared on throughout 2019, and I think that’s one of the main things he had going for him. He didn’t make any major plays, but was putting in enough work that he was constantly popping up on songs, and fortunately enough many of those songs ended up being ones I loved.
Below are all the songs I’ve taken into consideration, all of which feature G-Eazy and were released in 2019. I’ve included a small note on why I don’t like each of the ‘bad’ songs.
The Good (good songs with above average G-Eazy features)
• YG – Do Not Disturb (ft. Kamaiyah & G-Eazy)
• E-40 – Rain On My Parade (ft. Ty Dolla $ign & G-Eazy)
• Tyga – Girls Have Fun (ft. G-Eazy & Rich The Kid)
• London On Da Track – Throw Fits (ft. City Girls, G-Eazy & Juvenile)
• Chris Brown – Wobble Up (ft. Nicki Minaj & G-Eazy)
• O.T. Genasis – Bae (remix) (ft. G-Eazy, Rich The Kid & E-40)
• Carnage – Wait For Me (ft. G-Eazy & Wiz Khalifa)
• Guapdad4000 – First Things First (ft. G-Eazy & Reo Cragun)
• Berner – Still Alive (ft. A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie & G-Eazy)
• DaniLeigh – Cravin’ (ft. G-Eazy)
• Blac Youngsta – Cut Up (remix) (ft. Tory Lanez & G-Eazy)
• GASHI – My Year (ft. G-Eazy)
• Global Dan – W.A.N.T.S. (ft. G-Eazy)
• T-Pain – Girlfriend (ft. G-Eazy)
• Yuna – Blank Marquee (ft. G-Eazy)
• Ambrè – eternal sunshine (ft. G-Eazy & BJ The Chicago Kid)
• Marteen – Freak (ft. G-Eazy)
The Bad (bad song, bad G-Eazy feature, or both)
• OMB Peezy – No Keys (ft. G-Eazy) – ok song, but one of the most average Peezy songs on the album, and one of the most average g-eazy features
• Logic – Commando (ft. G-Eazy) – Logic has too many cringe bars and not enough impressive flows. G-eazy is nothing impressive
• Rayana Jay – Hangover (ft. G-Eazy & Beni Moun) – Actually enjoyed this song overall, but G-Eazy didn’t fit it
• Tinashe – So Mucn Better (ft. G-Eazy) – amazing production, rest is trash. Tinashe sounds bored, G-Eazy sucks on this. Ends well tho
• RJmrLA – Pretty Bitches (ft. G-Eazy & Bree Carter) – G-Eazy killed this but the rest is average, hook drags on too
So just to put that into numbers, that’s a total of 22 song’s G-Eazy featured on in 2019, and of those I personally thought 17 were good features on good songs. My Personal Favourites are ‘First Things First’ by Guapdad4000, ‘Throw Fits’ by London On Da Track & ‘Wobble Up’ by Chris Brown.
I think G-Eazy is in a weird spot in terms of ranking him. On paper he is the most consistent rapper I’ve looked at so far (77% good compared to 76% for Denzel/DaBaby so it’s close), that doesn’t take into consideration the quality of the features. For example, the first 3 artists who I discussed all had examples of them stealing the track with a 10/10 feature, whereas G-Eazy just consistently matched the quality of his collaborators, usually giving like a 7-9/10 persormance (numbers are just for comparison purposes). So despite technically being the most consistent and overall being super impressive throughout the year, he kinda lacked standout moments which may keep him from being at the top part of my end list.
All of that is just based on opinion in the end though. Regardless of that, G-Eazy had a great year as a feature artist. He has never really had much of a presence as a feature artist in previous years, so with 22 features in the year he did a wonderful job at really increasing his relevance in the mainstream, and therefore always had significant hype leading into his projects. He may not have appeared on any massive songs, but many of them were hits in there own right, and G-Eazy did a great job at jumping on these ‘club bangers’ of sorts, songs such as ‘Wobble Up’, ‘Throw Fits’ and ‘Girls Have Fun’. Apart from that he had some nice variety among his features, appearing on more electronic songs such as the Carnage song ‘Wait For Me’, and featuring on Ambré’s jazzy r&b vibe ‘eternal sunshine’ alongside BJ The Chicago Kid.
Although G-Eazy doesn’t have a lot of variety in his lyrics, 2019 saw him do a fantastic job at changing up his flows and deliveries on his features to match the vibe of whatever track it was he was jumping on. There’s certainly pros and cons, but overall I personally think G-Eazy had a super impressive year and easily his best year of features yet. He was great, but was he the best? That’s for us to dissect as the series goes on, so check back often to stay up to date!
What do you think was G-Eazy’s best feature of 2019?
Thanks For Reading!
– Shan –