Outside of his airtight Jordan collection, Vince Staples doesn’t initially strike you as jiggy. But never discount Lakewood or Long Beach. The former supplied the Death Row chain snatching mall encounter that led to the death of 2Pac. And I have an ornery ex-LAPD cop in my emails telling me that Long Beach was responsible for the shooters. Maybe that’s not necessarily jiggy, but there are other ex-cops who will tell you that the jiggiest man ever had killers on the payroll. With true jiggosity, there is always more than meets the silver suit.
Then there’s the late Yams, Jiggy revivalist, who nurtured the career of the young Staples. About to be 22, the Better Call to Saul to OF’s Breaking Bad brings raps so hard that metal is inscribed in his name. He lacks neither the vitamins, minerals, nor iron.
There are a lot of songs called “Senorita,” but in my mind, there is only one. Now there are two. Conscripting Future Osbourne to sprinkle the single with shrapnel won’t spark a dance party, but it gives it the astronaut status that elevates this to an ideal street single. The album is called Summertime 06, but don’t go looking for the Dove Shack. It starts off “Fuck your dead homies, run your bread, homie.” This is closer to the stick up kids out to task, running wild way past the streetlights turning on.
Staples is a combination of artists who probably don’t influence him. His monotone rasp and inherent righteousness remind me of Guru — not superficially but as a spiritual kinsman. He tells sagas about sinning that refuse to glamorize it like Wu-Tang circa Forever or Pusha T on “Nitemares.” The repercussions are clear: go 100 or be hunted. Go hard or go yard. North Long Beach circa 06 is crabs in a bucket.
Just when you’re ready to call the coroner, he mocks True Religion for being “bro shit.” The snarl comes with the smirk. It also comes with Future shouting out his nine millimeter like a Berserk trap Bjork. If this doesn’t sound like a single its because Staples is too savvy to make something that sounds like “My First Single.” He understands that you can be around for the long term so long as you keep making the soundtrack to disappearing acts. Puffy probably wishes he signed him.