While FXX’s Dave received largely positive reviews, particularly for the episodes in the back half of its first season, the show’s star and co-creator Dave Burd—a.k.a. Lil Dicky—has remained the subject of criticism for many due to (among other things) the nature of his rise to fame.

In a new interview with GQ, Dicky addressed aspects of that controversy, including his 2013 track “White Dude,” the video for which now only exists in fan rips. Speaking on his decision to later pull the track’s video from his official YouTube, Dicky said the video was intended as a joke but ultimately became one from which he could no longer derive pride.

“Even though I knew I was never serious with it and it was just a joke, it just didn’t feel like a joke I was proud of,” he said in Gabriella Paiella’s profile. “And I don’t like making jokes I’m not proud of.”

Speaking more generally on his earlier releases, Dicky said there was “probably more of a desperation” to come up with the sort of work that had the sole purpose of garnering the most possible amount of attention.

“Which is probably not the right way to make music. Now I feel like I have more pride in the art of songwriting and making good songs,” he said.

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Image via Kevin Amato/GQ

In 2018, Dicky linked up with Chris Brown for “Freaky Friday,” a song (and video) built on the idea of the two singers swapping their bodies not unlike the stars of the comedy from which the track takes its name. Some listeners were critical of this pairing, not to mention the lyrical ground covered in the song’s narrative, with specific attention paid to Brown’s 2009 assault of Rihanna.

Addressing his collaboration with Brown in the new interview, Dicky didn’t get specific about the singer’s history but did propose using Brown’s “talent for good” as an explanation for the track.

“With Chris Brown, we can do one of two things: We can never hear from him again and say ‘I won’t accept any Chris Brown whatsoever,’ or I feel like we can allow him to use his talent for good,” he said. “When I see people react to the song, I really think that it makes people laugh and it makes people happy. I don’t think it’s the type of thing that really is making the world a worse place, on a micro-specific, talking-about-the-song level.”

Elsewhere, Dicky detailed his general dislike of the live show experience and much more. Read it in full via GQ here.

Dicky also joined GQ for a 12-minute video that sees him spending more than half a million (fake) dollars during an online shopping spree:

Dave returns for a new season this Wednesday on FXX.