Following his election-themed release Don’t Pass Trump The Blunt in May, Harlem rapper Smoke DZA linked up with esteemed producer Pete Rock to highlight New York City’s gritty hip-hop sound with their joint project Don’t Smoke Rock, dropping Dec. 2 via Babygrande Records.
“My producer wish list is very small,” Smoke DZA tells Billboardover email. “Pete is a legend and I’ve always wanted to create a complete body of work with him. It’s been an honor to do so with Don’t Smoke Rock.” For the set, DZA also wanted to focus on the vibes of “old Harlem — before it was a Chase Bank and Starbucks on every corner. Before gentrification.”
Rock added, “I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to work with a lot of great artists in my career and Smoke tops the list. For me, it’s about having integrity in the music you make and Smoke is very passionate about his craft and the culture as a whole.”
For their first offering, the duo recruited Harlem-based MC Dave East for the hard-hitting rhyme fest “Limitless,” premiering on Billboard below. Other features include BJ The Chicago Kid, Styles P and Jadakiss on “Milestones”; Big K.R.I.T., Dom Kennedy and theMIND on “Dusk 2 Dusk”; Wale on “Show Off” as well as Cam’ron and NYMLo on “Moving Weight, Pt. 1.” Rock also hops on the mic for “1 Of 1.”
Pre-order Don’t Smoke Rock on iTunes here and take a listen to “Limitless” below.