A high contender for Rap Album Of The Year at Blue Rhymez Entertainment. When quality meets honesty, you get a disarmingly powerful artist. That would be Jdiggs Tha Prodigy with Uncrowned King 2: Loyalty Over Royalty. The artist shares: “When I released the original Uncrowned King album in 2014, I had actually titled it that because I released it on MLK Day. And I always felt like I could be the king of Rap in my city but I would never be rightfully given the crown. The Rap scene is more of a democracy than it is a patriarchy. In the title track of that album I rapped “ain’t no kings in this game it’s a f*ckin’ democracy” repeatedly because I was low key upset that anyone could think of themselves as the king of anything music related, myself included. I spent the next 7 years busting my ass to prove myself to so many around me that it caused me to take a step back from music as a whole for a couple years until I found who I was as an artist. In 2019, I was everywhere with my music. Building a fan base globally and locally. Making sure listeners understood that I was legit. With all the growth I went through as a man and an artist, I knew I was finally ready to tell those stories in 2021. This album has everything from a bit of my upbringing all the way to my time spent in the streets being a degenerate, hanging out in the clubs all the way to me finally stepping into my own as a person and artist. Enjoy.”
1. Fresh Prince
With an introductory electric guitar sparking a great deal of interest, Fresh Prince hints of greatness, royalty, and commitment. Those aggressive riffs have that fighting blood in their sound. And when you add the impetuous ad-libs in the background, the scenery feels like you’re about to witness a theatre play. One could easily think this is a Rock record whereas Jdiggs Tha Prodigy is a true Hip Hop head.
“My dad was a rollin’ stone turned to a pastor/ I came from a broken home call me a bastard/ My mom’s out there on her own no need for a son/ I’m the one that she shoulda chose in the long run,” puzzles Jdiggs with his first four bars. As far as we know, the Rap artist has always written his bars based on his personal life. If that’s the case for Fresh Prince, we’re bound to unclog a ton of laundry on this album, which of course, we f*cking love. Life’s too short for niceties.
The fervourous manner in which Jdiggs Tha Prodigy proceeds to rap is reminiscent of Kanye West or even Kendrick Lamar. The two K rappers are well known for elevating their narratives through the abundant use of electric guitars and the cinematic, martial vibe they go for time and time again.
“What’s a king without his crown I guess I’m a Fresh Prince/ Had no uncle in my life to Phil in in absence/ Of my father cuz he hustled day and night for the money/ Had to choose between water and the lights on the monthly,” raps the artist with stimulating delivery. The personal recount of genuine quality is astounding and becomes a perpetual surprise. The ’90s TV series phenomenon references are dashingly and mesmerizingly incorporated to force the reader to relate and walk in the shoes of Jdiggs Tha Prodigy.
Once the artist details his struggle of the misfit archetype, he delves into his higher call, that of being a voice for the voiceless, and lays it out like a true poet: “I learned to hustle through the struggle cuz n**** I had to eat/ Didn’t slang no nickels or dimes I was out here slanging CDs.” Dopeness in two bars. Instead of confining himself only to the factual and rigid reality, the rapper beautifully ended the record on the most important note: the mission he’s been born with. That of being a musician and ending the poverty cycle. Many more than would like to admit, will heavily relate to this statement.
The cool scratching taking place at the end of Fresh Prince is just as fierce and energetic as the artist’s rap thus far. This is a song most fitting lyrically and acoustically for an intro as it lays the foundation of a most dramatic album.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy) – Artist, Songwriter; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
2. Everyday Struggle
Despite it starting in a tranquil fashion, those lingering FX sounds are of imposing solidity. Jdiggs doesn’t let the audience get cold and rather soon jumps in with the hook: “It’s an everyday struggle (but I make it look easy)/ Runnin from the trouble (triple digits on the freeway)/ Tellin’ all my loved ones (Imma be there when they need me)/ Get it off the muscle (can’t see the haters like I’m Stevie).” That Wonder metaphor was smooth as hell! It is not in vain that we’ve dubbed Jdiggs as The Rapper Following His Own Rules.
Interestingly, the rapper achieves a living duality from the getgo of Everyday Struggle: the lyrics are harsh and almost apocalyptic while his voice tonality conveys warmth and stability. Always conscious of the music but not dependent on it, Jdiggs Tha Prodigy sets up his flow pattern in a way that he sometimes seems disconnected from the main instruments but then falls right back in with the drop thus showing off his quality of a brilliant Rap rascal.
“My b*tch titties triple D like she Dallas Texas/ My Benz broke down, so f*ck it Imma buy a Lexus/ A soap opera n**** I’m out here living young and restless/ Drivin reckless I shine bright don’t need a diamond necklace,” of course the artist had to mention Texas! For those meeting Jdiggs for the first time in this article, know that he is from Fort Worth, TX. Now, you’d have to agree that this man right here is capable of spurring an intensive study just through his Pop references spanning over decades. From Fresh Prince, Stevie Wonder, Texas sizes, and now Young and Restless, one truly might have to engage in active listening by googling while rapping 😀 Phenomenal artist!
After another catchy yet curiously calm hook, the rapper employs what we call, conversational Rap. “Hating n***** want me dead like I’m John Lennon/ But Huck told me give peace a chance and stay winning/ We say f*ck it, come together and let’s make a toast/ Tell these n***** don’t cross me just like I’m Abbey Road,” earns his reputation the one and only Jdiggs Tha Prodigy. Fyi, Huck is Jdiggs’s manager.
The artist heightens the seriosity of his message towards the end with the bullet sounds adorning his emphasis “Pow pow uh oh I hear some shots fired/ If you ain’t hear it from me then it’s pro’lly a lie,” and engages in an encore hook for the audience. A simple, consistent, yet highly pleasing outro formula.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy) – Artist, Songwriter; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da Beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
3. The Come Up feat. Lil’ Flip
If slow-motion had a sound, this is it. The first 12 seconds of Come Up. The fragmented snippets of violins set a mysterious tone as Lil’ Flip makes his appearance on the track. The expansive sound of this ethereal instrument is placed in the background all the while keeping its indispensable acoustic role. “Top-notch h*es get the most not the lesser/ I’m pimpin’ with a white b*tch on Gessner/ And I don’t smoke no cigarettes I smoke cones/ Filled up with cookies and the sh*t strong,” raps Lil’ Flip. It is noticeable how the artist adds an anecdotal tinge to his raw bars and continues to do so throughout his verse: “My uncle smokin’ Black ‘n Milds with wood tips/ I told him ‘dawg you might as well smoke some reefer’,” “I don’t wanna have brunch I want some paper h*e,” “I feel like 50 Cent I’m hated on by many men/ It’s Friday, I’m smoking on a twenty twin twin.” Lil’ Flip’s flow has that traditionally dominant but laid-back dynamic coming off as effortless and inherently organic. A fit balance for Jdiggs’s more vivacious approach.
Jdiggs Tha Prodigy comes in flowing right as Lil’ Flip reaches the end of his verse but without announcing himself. To the new listener, the transition is apparent only when hearing the clearly different vocal timbre. “I used to spend my time hanging with friends/ Until we had some words/ Now these birds angry again/ And all the haters from way back when/ Are quick to tell people all around me how we used to be friends,” raps Jdiggs with humanity and compelling sincerity about his past friends. His flow is set on a rather conversational and storytelling tone when compared to Lil’ Flip’s announcement-like demeanor. Both illustriously complement each other.
The Come Up turns into a staple record for Jdiggs Tha Prodigy as we’re introduced further down the song to the reason of him being an exponent of old-school Rap with contemporary flavor: “Conversations changed from gossip to closing lucrative deals/ From plotting on A lick to flipping real estate steals/ Generational wealth and how we came up from poverty/ I say it honestly/ Having the real is a commodity.” The Rap artist effortlessly provides a window on the hybrid sound that results from living in a post-mumble-rap era but having been raised on classic Hip Hop. Jdiggs abides by the simplicity of the past while effectively making use of the modern lexicon and underlining a very current global mindset such as generational wealth.
The Come Up while self-explanatory in its title, it presents a most memorable emotional impact for it is created by two very unique, fascinating storytellers named Lil’ Flip and Jdiggs Tha Prodigy. A song of great meaning with no standard structure is something that Hip Hop heads covet.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy) – Artist, Songwriter; Wesley Eric Weston Jr. (Lil Flip) – Artist, Songwriter; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da Beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
4. Tryin’ feat. E.Smith
The delicacy with which Tryin’ starts prevents the listener from falling complacent with Jdiggs’s style. Sounding more like a Funk track rather than a Rap beat, Tryin’ declares itself to be an exception to the rule. “Just tryin’ to get by/ Blowin’ smoke out my window/ Recline and get high/ Rollin’ wherever the wind blows,” sings Jdiggs with an irresistible fascination while a gorgeous, distant trumpet keeps the theatrical connection intact.
If at the beginning of verse one it seemed like the rapper was about to follow his usual pattern, he instead applies an eccentric and irregular scheme worthy of undivided attention: “And now we backroads cruisin’/ H*es stay choosin’/ Laws ain’t trippin’/ ‘Cause they know what we doin’/ Pull up to my old hood/ Like look what the wind just blew in/ It’s another sunny day in paradise/ Trunk stay shakin’ like a pair of dice/ Make them haters stand still/ Like a motherf*cker must be paralyzed.” If you’ve been gifted with a keen sense of observation, you’ll have realized that Jdiggs combines the romantic imagery of sun, paradise, wind, with the heavier mood brought on by the haters. This is, as a matter of fact, a very accurate depiction of reality. It’s great, but not always. You’ll get haters, but not too many. And when they’re too many, you’ll have even greater successes. This Yin and Yang thing is at the core of our existence and Jdiggs embraces it wholeheartedly.
E.Smith is in charge of the second verse and her Rap presence becomes a very wondrous thing for she grants the public an essential openness and vulnerability. The rapper starts off singing and halfway through she reverts to spitting bars. She still keeps a melodic base to it which makes it that much more appealing. And while most rappers are known for their overly ambitious traits, E.Smith, lets her intuition and destiny guide her: “Going wherever the wind gon’ take me/ I ain’t got no destination,” “Cuz I ain’t got nothin to prove/ they know I’m the truth/ I got everything to lose/ Plus I paid all of my dues/ You couldn’t walk a mile in my shoes/ Don’t get it confused.”
Tryin’ brings forward Jdiggs’s singing skills which contribute mightily to his credibility as an overall musician and not just a rhyme writer.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy) – Artist, Songwriter; Ericka Smith (E.Smith) – Artist, Songwriter; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer
5. Lets Get This Money & RESPECK
The lyre strums kicking off the fifth track, Lets Get This Money & RESPECK (shout out to Birdman for the mainstream respeck version :grin:), deepen the mystery of the album and land in a supreme moment announcing exactly the middle of Uncrowned King 2. By now, the album cover artwork really starts solidifying in the visual memory of the listener. The music keeps bringing the red velvet throne to life and the raps keep cementing the gold reflections on the crown. Jdiggs is becoming one of the top promising names of Texas as we’re speaking.
The hook seems to be arranged of 2 earworms with the first one being: “Money on my mind/ Dinero in mis sueños/ Always on the grind/ Buscando los pesos/ Let’s get this money ain’t no time to waste/ We gotta make haste/ Countin bread any time of day/ Gotta make a play.” And the second: “Let’s get this money/ Gotta get them pesos/ I need my bread/ I need my queso/ Let’s get this money/ Gotta get them pesos/ I need my bread/ I need my queso.” The Spanish intercalations are majestic. Jdiggs is going international and rightfully so. The semantic distinctions add flavor to the record and open up the audience for larger numbers and ethnicities. And truth be told, this is the catchiest song out of the six we’ve heard so far.
The Rap artist comes in with a huge, elephant-like, heavy message: “I been out here on a mission/ Brotha gotta get it/ Tryna feed my family and friends/ Without whippin’ in kitchens.” Who knows, knows. It is obvious that Jdiggs’s inspiration was forged in times of need and despair and safe to assume, this is the reason behind his excellent songwriting skills. Impediments create geniuses and Jdiggs is one indeed.
The artist then augments his flow pace, explains how he uses his monetary gains to multiply it, and then clears the air about his motivation before diving into the very pleasant hook: “I need more money/ My bank account ain’t empty/ But I need more money/ Talkin’ hunnid and fifties/ And I ain’t being greedy/ I got kids to feed and my people need me/ So when you see me I got (money on my mind).”
The middle section of the song, which takes the form of a bridge sounds ominous and with very dark undertones: “All I ever wanted was respect in the sh*t/ A post, follow, like and or a flex on a pic/ I supported yo sh*t while all you n***** was hatin’/ I put money in yo pocket and you didn’t even thank me.” The statement is followed by a megaphoned message, “R-E-S-P-E-C-K (put respeck on my name),” and swiftly turns to fast rap right after.
The savage, ruthless gladiator comes undone in the following bars: “That’s AmEx I’m talkin’ real money/ Got people out here that’ll k*ll for me/ If you got what I need ain’t paying no fees/ I got real ones that’ll steal for me.”
The fifth song is undoubtedly built upon the anger stemming from the artist’s past veiled in a most curated and sonically enhanced medieval, king-like instrumental. A song worth its weight in gold.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy) – Artist, Songwriter; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
6. Drop It
In somewhat a similar taste to number 6, Drop It commences in a very medieval tone with a musical motif fitting for horses entering the premises of a castle. And then Jdiggs starts singing and the vibe changes to the strip club instead 😀 “I love the way she drop it (when she drop it down low)/ Got the club rockin’ (when she slidin’ down the pole)/ Every n**** watchin’ (damn this girl so cold)/ I love the way she drop it (drop it down to the flow)” Okay so while it’s not knights in shining armor, it’s definitely women in glitter heels. We’ll take it!
It is almost amusing how much respect Jdiggs employs when singing. You’d expect that from Usher or Jason Derulo but definitely not from a Rap artist talking about a dancer. Respeck has been earned! And that chorus so ridiculously catchy!!!
With meticulous care and still a respectful tone for the lady, Jdiggs proceeds: “Drop it down low baby girl I wanna see what you got in them pants/ Bend it over to the front like I’m callin’ plays and you in a 3 point stance/ They say that little booties matter so I’m here tonight to give that lil’ thang a chance/ To prove to the world that you can do tricks with it now, and leave us all in a trance.” How does the rapper manage to pull off a thong anthem while staying honorable and chivalrous? Beyond us and definitely a novel thing in the underground market.
Jdiggs’s flow is now being pushed to an extreme in a sense that yet again, he proves 6 songs in, he got aces up his sleeves. Right when you thought you knew his schemes and patterns, he reformulates his delivery and takes on a new character. A gif now is appropriate:
The second verse brings about the classic, cocky, larger-than-life attitude of the rapper, in this case AmoBroBro, making it rain in the clubs like Magic City: “Drop it, like a new single no features/ She on the floor and she working/ B*tches gon’ hate from the bleachers/ I’m in the gym on that stair master, practicing runnin them bands up/ Elevate clear make them stare at her, jump when she pullin’ them pants up.” And how could AmoBroBro skip rapping about ass in a club? Answer: he didn’t. “She drop it low like mechanic/ She freaky like Janet/ That booty fantastic/ Imma need jacks for that ass lift/ Big ol’ facts how that ass sit/ Can’t even lie on that ass/ I ship supplies on that ass/ Loose when she drop it like change/ And I spend it right on that ass.” The less stratified narrative is fun, entertaining, and flows with a fever of uncertainty as AmoBroBro is known by now for his unusual, unpredictable patterns.
Magic City DJs, this is IT. This is your jam.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy), Alex Moore (AmoBroBro) – Artists, Songwriters; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
7. Law of Attraction
Remember 2014? Nah? That’s cool, here’s a little reminder. “You flexin’ your money, flexin’ your car/ Just so she can know who you are/ You stunt for the gram in front of that cam/ Just so she can think you a star/ You showin’ that Gucci showin’ that Prada/ Flexin’ your diamonds and Balenciaga/ And you claimin’ that that’s just for fashion/ Like these are the laws of attraction,” sings Beezy Wright with an emphasis like Fetty Wap but with a voice like Chris Brown. The hook gradually becomes hypnotic as it smoothly transitions between lines without altering the acoustic ride. Beezy Wright shows an unwavering inclination to melody and hit songwriting. Let’s hope we’ll get to hear more from this talent in the future.
“I wonder if she notice all this drip I got on/ Hell I wonder if she even notice my new cologne/ I ain’t buy all of these diamonds just to shine on these haters/ I need her to know wassup when she go back home with me later,” raps Jdiggs intently slowing down his approach and leaving a tantalizingly ambiguous air behind. The confidence that the Rap artist oozes is a feat most unique to his personality and brand alone. Why might you ask? Well, it’s easy to be or act confident when you’re talking about drugs and money for example. But when it comes to women – nope, not really, no. Rappers usually have to degrade or objectify women to sound cocky ’cause they’re too small either in their pants or on the inside of their personality. Artists’ energy is tangible and palpable and this is where Jdiggs wins. The man is an expert at keeping a grandiloquent vein when talking about sensible topics.
In the second verse, we get a mighty reference to Biggie Smalls: “Imma tell you like Biggie told me/ Dress to impress, spark a queen’s interest/ So this what we gon’ do, you rollin’ wit me/ Drippin’ in finesse in my Burberry specs.” Jdiggs, like Biggie, is a high-class act with sophisticated taste who only increases his value over time.
Law of Attraction is another bonafide banger that complements the sonic experience of Uncrowned King 2 with solemn precision, artistry, melodic input, and of course, the indubitable cool factor that comes so naturally to Jdiggs.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy) – Artist, Songwriter; Bryan Wright (Beezy Wright) – Artist, Songwriter; Aarius Yaites – Songwriter; Anthony Dargan – Songwriter; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on Da Beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
8. Royalty Love
As we’re getting close to the end, the atmosphere intensifies and we get hidden gems that differ in cadence and resonance. One would never expect to find such a powerful song, as you’re about to find out, towards the very final of Uncrowned King 2. It moves, it shatters, it conquers.
“Royalty love this is unmatched/ King and Queen status, what ya know about that?/ Royalty Love, Fire and desire/ Is the foundation of our empire/ Royalty Love/ Royalty Love,” soulfully sings DeLashay. The effect the young singer has on the public is radical and irreversible. You hear that voice and you know it’s set for greatness. And in true royal fashion, the songstress continues: “Rulin’ the nations with such class and grace/ Call me Nefertiti ’cause I do the same thing/ You know me boy, I’m down to ride/ They call us the new age Bonnie and Clyde.” DeLashay brings even more unspeakably rich detailing of the highly coveted power couple: “We storm all things through any weather/ I’m a movement by myself, a force when we’re together/ With you by my side there ain’t no stopping us/ A true king in his prime, he’s not the rest of them.”
The RnB-ish music merges seamlessly with DeLashay’s voice and concomitantly leaves enough space and mystery for Jdiggs to make his presence known during the second part of the song: “Now every king needs his Queen and I found one/ Her love is overflowing out them cups like a fountain/ Takes me to the highest heights I ain’t talkin’ mountain/ Or pyramids I’m serious I love her 3000.” Sure enough, Jdiggs never ceases with his modern practices of incorporating Pop culture eggs in his bars. Even if you’re not a Rap fan, you get highly entertained by such a multi-layered mind like Jdiggs’s.
The acoustic setting of Royalty Love is in line with its title, offering the public a beautiful, mostly organic composition with a very balanced mix and master. The producer and the artists came together to merge their talents in unity and the result is an outstanding song loaded with both allegorical and direct meaning.
Jdiggs brought on essential innovation in the pre-final song off the album, Royalty Love, by pairing up with the mega-talented DeLashay. The two artists of equal significance but of different flavor, accentuate the subject of partnership and respect between two people loving one another. Something that has always been and will be prevalent.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy), Dejsia Hendrix (DeLashay) – Artists, Songwriters; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
The last record, OFF, sees the arrival and collaboration of Marka: “Let ’em tell it they threw me off/ But I been goin’ hard/ Can never pull my card/ They just waiting to see me fall/ Waiting on me to fall/ Now they tell me get my sh*t together but I been out here holdin’ rank/ Never fall for what they say I came to be everything they ain’t/ Never get the chance to throw me off.” The artist stringently reminds us of experimental Rap subgenres. Plus, you really need good lungs to support all that yelling without collapsing or sounding bad. And somehow, Marka makes the song come alive from its first seconds.
Jdiggs comforts the listener by bringing back his flow from the beginning: “Why would I listen to n***** that wouldn’t care ’til I died/ I got my pride, but this sh*t been k*llin’ me from inside/ You see the posts on the net but you ain’t down to ride/ They say that men and women do, but them numbers don’t lie.” Permeating his thoughts with complex realities, Jdiggs reminds folks that while it’s all been fine and dandy for most of the album, he is here for a cause bigger than himself and he’s taking notes of what’s happening around him. An idea that gets then expanded in the second verse: “They gon prolly say I’m mad but I ain’t mad yet/ I still ain’t bought that Escalade for my dad yet/ I still ain’t made a milli and got the bag yet/ Sh*t I still ain’t trade in my hoopty and cop that jag yet.”
The rapper proves one has to take the smooth with the rough in life by calling out the traitor traits in those he can’t trust: “I can’t trust no new n***** ’cause new n***** be on some other sh*t/ And if my b*tch trippin’ I just tell her to get another b*tch/ No time for the bullsh*t ’cause these n**** is undercovers and/ Undercover brotha will prolly rat they own mothers.” Yikes! This bitter finality adds a nice, sweet ounce of drama to Uncrowned King 2‘s end.
When succeeded by the optimistic hook of Marka, OFF, fortunately, ends up carrying an encouraging brightness nonetheless.
Song Credits: Patrick Jordan Diggs (Jdiggs Tha Prodigy), Devon Ladell Bell (Marka) – Artist, Songwriter; Larry Robinson (Yung Bala on da beat) – Music Producer; Jose Santiago (Chico) – Sound Engineer.
Uncrowned King 2: Loyalty Over Loyalty, is a showpiece denoting Jdiggs’s strength, courage, and cunning, qualities that naturally and rapidly turn the Rap artist into an audience favorite. It is not often that one encounters a sincere voice possessed by musical superiority that does his best not only to craft sublime rhymes, but to also bring other collaborators on board and entertain the public.
Written by Mariana Berdianu
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