Every Friday, our new music feature Rap Song of the Week rounds up the hip-hop tracks you need to hear. Check out the full playlist here. This week, Key Glock remembers the late Young Dolph on “Proud.”
After Memphis icon Young Dolph was shot and killed last November, thoughts turned to his cousin and protégé Key Glock, who stayed silent for a week before revealing on Instagram that he was struggling with the death of his mentor and frequent collaborator, who he called the Phil Jackson to his Michael Jordan. A few months later, the 24-year-old rapper appears to have picked up the pieces.
Today (January 21st), Dolph’s label, Paper Route Empire, has released a tribute album titled Long Live Dolph, which features “Proud,” Key Glock’s tribute to Dolph. Over menacing trap production from BandPlay, Key Glock comes to terms with the loss, weaving in and out of the beat with his unrelenting flow. Offering a look into his recent state of mind, Key Glock opens the track by rapping, “I lost my dog, I lost my mind, no lie, I’m really lost inside/ I can get it back in blood, but still, I can’t get back the time.”
Knowing there’s no other option but to move forward, Key Glock promises to hold it down on P.R.E. for Dolph, despite being haunted by fantasies of revenge. Like anyone else in his position, Key Glock’s gotten caught up in self-medication (“I been tryna drink the pain away, sippin’ line after line”), but also considers what his late aunt would think of how he’s dealing with the pain.
Resolved to keeping Dolph’s name alive, Key Glock knows he has to continue the P.R.E. legacy through music, and “Proud” is just the start. With the consistency Key Glock’s shown on projects like the recently released Yellow Tape 2, there’s no doubt he has what it takes.