Drake isn’t overly emotional, hypersensitive, or uniquely fragile. Aubrey Graham is merely an average man blessed with an extraordinary gift. For the last decade, the Toronto rapper has simplified the intricacies of the human condition in a world constantly shifting with the ebbs and flow of new technologies. The best Drake songs have a unique brand of narcissism, jealousy, and emotive longing. He raps the way we tweet, curating his image as if it’s a second language he’s been fluid in since birth. Every move has a machine-like precision and intent. Listeners don’t come to Drizzy for emotional maturity and promises of blissful marriage; they want Drake to make their shortcomings seem mundane. Within the OVO head honcho, humanity sees its modern reflection.
Drake albums are time capsules of failed relationships that were never our fault. Starting with 2009’s So Far Gone, Drake built a world of a consistent heartbreak cut by momentary bliss. On Take Care, he’d hone the melancholy into a sharper, petty edge. By the time If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late and Views came along, the emoting became colder; Drizzy’s heart was shielded by inches of muscle fiber and creatine. Finally, Scorpion presented a new question and narrative arc. What happens when rap’s resident man-child is thrust into fatherhood—and can the absence of one type of love ever be filled by another?
Over the last ten years, the Degrassi alum has transformed hip-hop and R&B into a Toronto-sized soap opera. Wheelchair spokes gave way to barbells; the walking meme became the best rapper alive through sheer force of will and internet savvy. Through it all, the 6 God let his heart lead the way. Below, find our picks for the most sensitive Drake lyrics.