Gucci Mane Breaks Down 19 of His Most Essential Projects

Chicken Talk (2006), No Pad No Pencil (2007)

After Hard to Kill what was going on at that time?
Gucci Mane: I left Big Cat records, put out a mixtape called Chicken Talk. After Chicken Talk, I did No Pad No Pencil.

Let’s talk about Chicken Talk. How’d you meet up with Burn One?
I was one of the hardest artists in the streets, so Burn One sought me out and asked me could he do my next mixtape. Once I got those songs together, I called him, told him let’s do it.

Why was it you decided to stop writing down lyrics?
It seemed like I used to be pushed for time. So as a time constraint, I just started freestyling because it was quicker. There was a huge demand for my songs, for my mixtapes, so I was just recording so many songs, so many songs.  I thought, to do more songs in the day I’d just start saying whatever came into my head.

Well, I’m interested because it seems like you always write full songs, not just
verses. What made you think that way?
I was always a smart guy, I always say making a song to me is kind of like making a project—I always took the same way I was taught, just to write things down, and that’s how I applied it to my music when I used to write my music down. I used to format it. After doing it so many years, they got rigid, so I threw the paper away and started doing it out of my head.

After No Pad No Pencil—that was a huge one—
That was one of my biggest mixtapes.

That seemed to mark the beginning of your buzz. When could you first tell the buzz happened?
Instant feedback, great feedback from around the nation. My first song—when Franchise dropped “White Tee” I made “Black Tee.” That was the number one song in Atlanta. I was doing shows going around the Southeast on the first song I ever did, and that was just a remake of a song. So I got success instantly.

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