The two covered a series of topics in the hour-and-40-minutes interview, talking about the humorous side of filming music videos with bees and why Bruno Mars has proven to be the toughest artist to work with for Sean. Hit-Boy also reflected on the pressure he felt after the success of Jay-Z and Kanye’s “N***as in Paris,” while Sean noted he has some thoughts on the NBA’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.
Sean and Hit-Boy are coming off of their collaborative EP What You Expect. Upon release, Sean said he was originally planning to drop just one song before he decided to share four more instead. “Album next!” he teased. “I ain’t feel like waiting til I was done wit da album bruh, I wanna drop new music, n keep! fuckin! dropping!”
Check out a round-up of what the two said on Million Dollaz Worth of Game below.
Time stamp: 31:30
It’s no secret that Ye can be a difficult collaborator. “Kanye can be very hard to work with, we all know that,” said Big Sean just past the half-hour mark. Hit-Boy immediately added, “I thought you was gonna say that first.”
”Kanye will have you redo a verse 10 times,” continued Sean, with Hit-Boy saying he’s gotten similar treatment from Ye. Sometimes it’s simpler, though, and the Detroit rapper used “Clique” as an example of a more effortless collab. “I did that verse on the fly, everybody did a verse to it. So it was like eight other verses on there, and he cut…well I guess, I don’t know, after him and Hov met up, they cut everybody. But they was like ‘leave Sean on there, he went too crazy on the hook, so.’”
Sean Don also mentioned he was originally on a version of the Donda single “Hurricane,” which he recorded a verse for “years ago.” By the time it finally released, Sean wasn’t included on the finished product. “I don’t take things personal at all, but my point is like, I don’t get excited about anything until it’s done, like till it’s out. ’Cause things change for sure.”
Time stamp: 1:04:00
Sean was asked who the top five rappers out right now are, and gave his list before naming a bunch of others he’s really enjoyed recently.
”Drake, gotta give it to Drake,” he said. “Ye, for sure. Nas. Hov. Kendrick.” The hosts chimed in to accuse Sean of “cheating,” since his picks have been around for much longer than younger rappers topping the charts right now. “Peezy. … I haven’t even shouted out 42 [Dugg], I fuck with Lil Baby, too. Lil Durk, crazy.”
Sean did admit he “probably” forgot a few of his favorites.
Time stamp: 1:20:30
Hit-Boy admitted social media criticism got to him early on. “Yeah for sure, when I first started making songs that were charting and shit,” the 34-year-old said when asked about feedback he’d receive. “I felt like when I made ‘N***as in Paris’ people expected me to just keep doing that shit over and over, like that same level. So I started to feel like, you know, if it wasn’t at that level—where them n***as were performing the same song fucking 20 times in a row—then it was a failure.” (Jay-Z and Ye famously played the song multiple times at the end of their Watch the Throne Tour stops, increasing the replays as the tour rolled on.)
Even though Hit-Boy was still producing huge records at the time, he still felt pressure to make something that would reach the level of the Watch the Throne smash. “I’m like, ‘Man, shit ain’t “N***as in Paris,” though,’” he explained. “So I was really looking at Twitter. … N***as was talking shit, and I used to be really fucked up over that shit. Now I don’t give a fuck.”
Time stamp: 15:00
As with most Americans, Big Sean isn’t entirely clear where his taxpaying dollars are going. “You gotta be smart, them taxes are a motherfucker,” he said. “I automatically, when I get a check, separate it. … Like, what they doing with the money, for real? Where is my tax dollars going. They’ll tell me, but I’ll be like, ‘My streets is still fucked up.’”
The rapper specifically highlighted how when he goes home to Detroit, he still sees massive potholes on the roads. “What is [the money] going to? Is it going to somebody’s mortgage? Is it funding somebody’s vacation or vacation home?” he continued. “Say if we were [the] government…we could do whatever we wanted to do with it. … We trust that our system is ethical, but, uhhh...”
From there he shifted gears a bit, speaking on the deplorable Tuskegee syphilis study, an abusive 40-year endeavor by the United States Public Health Service and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which saw public health officials inject Black men with syphilis to study the effects. None of the victims were told the purpose of the study, and over 100 men involved died.
”After everything that’s happened, after every year…history be repeating itself,” Big Sean explained. “The Tuskegee experiment, I mentioned that…I mean, I don’t know how Black people can ever trust the medical field 100 percent ever again, after they gave them syphilis like that.”
Time stamp: 39:00
Big Sean got his start in music thanks to Kanye West, whom he rapped to outside a radio station in Detroit. In 2007, he signed to G.O.O.D. Music, and he still has the first check he received from his career in rap.
”My first advance was $15,000, bro,” he said. “I signed to G.O.O.D. Music, that was my first check signed by Donda West. I got it framed, and it came through a fax machine.”
Asked what he did when he received the check, he smiled and said he took his girlfriend for ice cream at Cold Stone.
Time stamp: 28:00
Sean recently got a lot of attention after he was seen covered in bees for his “What a Life” music video, and he explained what he discovered shooting it. “What I learned is that bees shit a lot,” he said with a laugh. “They shitted on me.”
Asked how many times he was stung during the experience, he made it clear even professional bee handlers are prone to getting stung. “Professionals, they say when they sit down and do this, they get stung four, five times,” he said. “Bro, when I say I had the calmest energy there, I got stung two times. So how they put the bees on you is they put the queen bee on you. They set it on you, and all of the bees start flocking to you. And they protect the queen at all costs. It’s nothing like a spray or anything crazy.”
Obviously it took some time to adjust to “like 65,000 bees” covering him, but he thought it was a “cool” time overall. He estimated he sat there for about 30 to 45 minutes, saying the buzzing was “super loud.”
Time stamp: 30:00
When asked to name the “most challenging” artist he’s ever worked with, he said Bruno Mars is particularly hard to please.
“I’ve written stuff for Bruno Mars, and he is picky,” Sean said, also taking the time to highlight why he’s a fan. “Bruno Mars is one of the greatest artists. … He fit in the same category as far as singing goes as the greats, like Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Dianna Ross, Prince. He came at a different time, but his voice and his conviction in his songs, he’s really on that level.”
Time stamp: 1:26:10
When the topic shifted to basketball, Big Sean asked both hosts what they think about Kyrie Irving, who has expressed anti-vaccine sentiment and isn’t allowed to play until he gets his jab. Gillie Da King said it’s ultimately Irving’s choice, and that the freedom to make decisions for yourself is one of the “great” things about America.
“Well, I guess not though, right?” replied Sean. “Since that’s not really how it’s going, right? I guess that’s how it’s supposed to be, but that’s not really how it’s going. Mandatory.”
Gillie’s co-host Wallo267 revealed what he thinks of the situation via a message on his phone, which he only showed to Big Sean. “Period,” replied the rapper, as both Hit-Boy and Gillie expressed confusion.
“Nobody can see that,” said Gillie. The topic changed not long after, with Sean focusing on the Lakers, although his comment about vaccines was his second remark during the interview suggesting he’s not be a big fan of vax mandates.