Trinidad James raised eyebrows when he made a bold statement that Gunna is the savior of “Male Hip-Hop.”
While it’s true that Hip-Hop hasn’t been hitting this year like it did in the previous years, the genre is still going strong and maintains its status as the most popular music genre in global music. Travis Scott and Lil Uzi Vert are the only rappers this year with No. 1 albums, with Uzi becoming the first rapper with a No. 1 album in 2023 thanks to the success of his Pink Tape. Travis Scott’s new album Utopia is one of the strongest albums this year and is now in its fourth week at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Gunna’s album, A Gift & A Curse, peaked at No. 3 upon its release in June 2023. The project spawned a Top 10 hit, “Fukumean,” despite the Atlanta rapper being hit with “snitching” claims following his release from jail in December last year after copping a plea deal in his YSL Rico case.
While Gunna received a lot of criticism from hip-hop fans and some of his peers who unfollowed him on social media, he also received a lot of praise for the project, with even his critics admitting that he makes good music.
Trinidad James is taking it a step further by crediting Gunna for saving a declining hip-hop in the face of criticisms about the waterdown of the music. In a post on his Instagram page with a photo of A Gift & A Curse album cover, James categorically stated that Gunna made the summer not boring.
“Please Stop Saying The Summer Was Boring,” he wrote. “That’s a Lie you wanna make true. @gunna Saved It for Male Hip Hop. God Don’t Make Mistakes.”
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The general sentiment from fans in the comment is that the album is impressive, but Gunna’s tainted brand might’ve prevented it from having a bigger chart debut and a bigger impact in the hip-hop space. “Never understood ppl caring about another man’s personal life.. all that should matter is the art, cuz had an amazing album,” one person said. Another stated, “Def had the album of the summer.”
Nevertheless, Trinidad James was not free from criticism for posting his support for Gunna and making his bold claims. Some fans questioned his motives and even suggested that Travis Scott and other rappers released amazing albums prior to or during the summer that might’ve had bigger impacts on the summer season than Gunna’s project.
The opinions on Gunna’s impact on rap this year varied, but one thing is certain, his album was a hit.