Growing Up In Brooklyn
Joey Bada$$:“I’m from Flatbush. I’m the [first one] from my immediate family [to be born in the United States]. Coming up in Flatbush, being raised by West Indian parents, you’re the first-hand experience for your family, living here in this new country with them coming from the Caribbean. It’s a different way of living, but we’ve maintained. I have three brothers, and one sister. And I’m the second oldest. I live with my Mom, and all my siblings are on my Dad’s side. I’m my Mom’s only child.
[The Notorious B.I.G.’s 'Hypnotize'] was what drew my attention to hip-hop. I knew that song word for word when it played on the radio or TV. And I was only like two.
“As a kid, I was into Hot Wheels, and cars. I was really into cars. I liked smashing things. I still like smashing things. [Laughs.] And then, I was really into poetry, that’s what got me into the whole rapping thing.
“[The Notorious B.I.G.’s 'Hypnotize'] was what drew my attention to hip-hop. I knew that song word for word when it played on the radio or TV. And I was only like two [years old]. I forget what the countdown show was, but I used to wait, because it used to always be number one. So I would wait for it to come on and sing it. That was my song.
“I grew up listening to a lot of hip-hop, R&B, and soul [in my house]. A lot of Prince. My Mom is a big Prince fan, so I’m a big Prince fan. Pause. [Laughs.] And reggae music of course, being from a West Indian background. Reggae music all the time, non-stop. And Soca.”