As part of Billboard’s Black Music Month celebration, we’ve asked black artists spanning all genres to compile their own unique playlist exclusive to Billboard’s Spotify account. Each song they’ve chosen reflects their admiration for fellow artists — from previous generations to the new millennial era — who have made an impact on the culture. Today, Detroit rapper Tee Grizzley shares his soundtrack.
“I chose these artists because when I hear [their] songs, I immediately feel what they’re saying. I know exactly what they’re talking about, and it brings back memories of my own situations because I relate directly to it,” Tee Grizzley tells Billboard. “I can legitimately say that I’ve been through the worst growing up. I know a lot of other black people did as well who can feel the lyrics in these songs just like I do.”
“To me, there’s two types of songs that can be made: songs that’s here today then gone tomorrow, and songs that are timeless. These are timeless and act as a voice for the culture,” he says of the list, which ranges from Childish Gambino’s “This is America,” to 50 Cent’s “Many Men (Wish Death),” J.Cole’s “Middle Child,” Nas’ “I Can” and 2Pac’s “Dear Mama.”
The rapper’s sophomore album, Scriptures, is out today (June 7) via 300 Entertainment. The project, which is executively produced by Timbaland, includes tracks like “Sweet Thangs” and guest features from A Boogie wit da Hoodie and YNW Melly.
Listen to his playlist — which also includes Jay-Z‘s “Song Cry” (which isn’t available on Spotify) — below.