The two collaborators first teamed up on “Kanye West” off Thug’s Jeffery mixtape. Now, they’re partnering on Jean’s upcoming J’ouvert EP that’s due out next month. And if this is any indication, it won’t be the last time they work together.
In an interview with Pigeons and Planes, Jean recalls first connecting with Thug and their shared interest in Jean’s home country of Haiti — which is also the name of the project where Thug grew up and what he named his daughter.
“He’s from a project, I’m from a similar background. And he has a natural love for Haiti, understanding the history of Haiti. Haiti is the first black republic. He reminded me of a modern Tupac, in a sense—in a revolutionary sense,” said Jean.
Jean continued, clarifying that though Thug might look like “a thug,” he is far more educated than that label would suggest.
He said, “His connection to history seemed similar to what Pac understood, of like, ‘This is who the Black Panthers are. Read this book, read that book.’ This kid understands.”
Thug will appear on Clef’s J’ouvert opening track “I Swear,” which is supposed to be an uptempo reggaeton number.
In the interview, among other things, Jean also discussed his inspired return to music and the destruction caused to Haiti by Hurricane Matthew, which has caused more than an estimated 1,000 deaths in the last week. Read the full piece here.