Hunting SZN: An Investigation Into OB OBrien's Whereabouts

Some thoughts on where one of the more entertaining OVO members went.

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Complex Original

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Drake's been honest with his OVO label about his intentions...or rather, lack thereof. He's too busy trying to be the best rapper to worry about cultivating the next best rapper. And that's respectable for this point in his career. But he couldn't say no to his boy, his hometown homie who's been effortlessly scene-stealing all of his videos since "HYFR." We're talking about OB OBrien of course, the ginger-bearded IRL Turtle if there ever was one.

Apparently he's got bigger aspirations than just making funny skits and rolling Drake's weed. He spits. And if we're being honest, he's not half bad. On "0-100" when Drake promised that OVO already had 2015 poppin, he seemed ready to go full-court press. But it's 2016 now, and although we've had several strong R&B/pop releases from OVO, the only rap has been Drake. It's disappointing, because as the enlightened of us know, OB is enjoyable. Son skates on "2 On." Drake seemed primed to be a good friend and let him at least drop a tape. 

OB's "Steve Nash" is an Internet classic. Straight up. The joyful OVO foot solider doesn't try to be a serious rapper, but still comes with enjoyable bars that give fans a sense of what it's like to pop bottles in the OVO crew. The Top SZN pioneer seemed to have legit momentum but has since made his way to the back burner, all while Drake, PARTYNEXTDOOR, and Majid Jordan churn out new stuff. Did OB lose his fire? The one-time actor and comedian has basically gone ghost on all social media platforms, and there's no word as to why. 

And that's where OB's strengths lie, both as a viable rapper and a member of OVO. He poses no danger or even ambition of actually outshining his big homie, and his songs are just fucking fun. The seeds of potential in "Steve Nash" and "2 On" synthesized in "Schemin Up." Drake jokes about being the new Cash Money, the new Roc-A-Fella. Well, lo and behold, the label's class clown is apparently the key to actually achieving that. "Schemin Up" is a full-on crew cut—it's one of the only new rap songs that made it into the Entourage movie for Christ's sakes. Them 6ix Boys need more songs like this if they want to be taken seriously.

Based on the success that OB brought to the brand and the crew, the question now shifts to: Where the hell did he go? Drake and OVO are a close knit circle, but you can still get a sense of who's rolling with whom at different times. And while OB is on his own social media hiatus, it doesn't seem like he's currently in the mix. No pics or videos in the studio with Drake, or even out and about like you see with some of the OVO goons. There's no indication that anything happened to break the relationship between OB and OVO, but it's certainly a curious trend. 

Maybe he had a personal emergency? Or on a less serious note—we are talking about OB here...maybe we got fam fucked up. Maybe he's on a mission and hasn't left Toronto. Is OB tucked away, with the phones off taking no calls, in the 6ix cooking with the wrist motion? Is he hunkered down, crafting something that'll wipe the smirk off everyone's faces and really help solidify his team? Is OB about to hit us with #realrap?

Are we over thinking this? Maybe OB is simply holding down the home front while the crew wraps up Views in California. What if Meek Mill and MMG invade the 6ix? Someone has to stay back and hold it down. Maybe that honor has been bestowed upon OB. Whatever the case, the hype for his PreSZN project might actually be real. There seems to be a legitimate interest in listening to that project from a pure entertainment standpoint. 

OB is clearly a team player, and the team is focused on dropping Drake's first "album" in two-and-a-half years. Maybe once the immediacy of Views subsides, he'll come through with some fire to score our Summer Fridays. Took a break from PreSZN now it's baaack to that.

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