From the jump, it's evident that Big Sean's new album Detroit 2 owes much to the artist's recent period of focusing on an introspective approach to the idea of bettering the self. In a new Apple Music 1 interview with Nadeska Alexis, Sean goes deep on the revelations he bagged during the process, including what he describes as a newfound appreciation and enthusiasm for his craft.
"I feel like I was broken," Sean said. "I would try and be in a studio, I couldn't think of anything. I would try to feel good and I couldn't feel good." As Sean explained, whenever you get years deep along a path—be it the path of an artist, journalist, lawyer, manager, or anything—it's likely you'll eventually hit a wall in terms of inspiration and excitement about the very pursuit to which you've dedicated such a large part of your life.
"You might be ready, either for something else," he said. "Or in my case, I just had to rediscover it, you know, and I didn't, I, at one point I thought I was done. I thought I was like, maybe I shouldn't even be doing music anymore. Maybe I did it and that's it. But then I was like, no. Once I started taking care of myself, I started thinking of things differently. I started approaching songs differently. And I had that hunger back, you know. I was hungry. I'm hungry on these songs."
Speaking further on where his head was at as he entered this new era of his career, Sean said he came to realize that he had been trying to maintain business as usual despite feeling uninspired and "maxed out." In response to this realization, he took time to himself and "started communicating better [and] started therapy," among other choices aimed at promoting personal betterment.
"I felt like I started all over," he said. "I had to break down myself, lay a new foundation, and take the best parts of myself that I had and build. And build it stronger, build it more efficient, and build it with happiness. And as I was making the album, I was returning to my passion of music, 'cause I feel like I lost it for a little bit. I wasn't inspired. I was making music that wasn't all the way inspired. Not liking the things I came up with. And then all of a sudden, the inspiration came back."
When he started feeling that he was tapping back into a more inspired way of making music, Sean added, it reminded him of his mixtape days.
Elsewhere, Sean addressed the possibility of getting the original Detroit mixtape cleared for streaming services, which he confirmed is something he’s been trying to pull together.
"I just need Def Jam there to do it," he said.
Sean also shared some insight on a pivotal moment between Dave Chappelle and his father, crafting what he calls "tattoo bars," and much more. Catch the full interview here via Apple Music 1.