In December of 2016, Detroit rapper Big Sean announced via Twitter that he was releasing an album titled I Decided in February. This kept Hip-Hop fans anxiously waiting to see what he did this time around. Sean is known for his unique flows and his clever punch lines. And, of course, he delivered on his album.
The album’s production is a mixture of new school bouncy trap records, as well as a soulful smooth sound. The album includes features from Jeremih, fellow Detroit rapper Eminem, Jhene Aiko, The-Dream, Migos and more. The album starts off with a skit, a haunting voice of elderly man talking to God about all his regrets, underscored by atmospheric music.
The skit spills perfectly into the first song, “Light” which features Jeremih. The song has an inspirational feeling to it as Sean touches on subject like racial discrimination. “Light” has a very smooth vibe, with no drums at all. It’s one of those songs where you can just lie in bed and stare at the ceiling, embrace the music and just listen.
“Light” samples Eddie Kendrick’s “Intimate Friends”, which was also sampled in Alicia Keys’ “Unbreakable” and Snoop Dogg’s “Another’s Summer.”
The second song on the album, “Bounce Back,” is the biggest hit. If you are an athlete, you have this song on your playlist for sure. The song is about bouncing back from a loss. The chorus goes, “Last night took an L but tonight I Bounce Back.” With production from star producer Metro Boomin and a sample from Sufjan Stevens “All for Myself,” the song has a chill out vibe with hard-hitting groovy drums and bouncy 808 bass-lines. This is definitely a song you would hear at a party, or a song you would listen to while driving around with your friends. The rest of the album includes a mixture of relaxed laid-back tracks as well as fast- paced hype tracks.
Sean continued the tradition of making a song dedicated to a loved one. On his last album “Dark Sky Paradise”, he dedicated the song “One Man Can Change the World” to his grandmother. On this album, he dedicated track number 12 “Inspire Me” to his mother. In an interviewwith the Power 105.1 FM, a radio station in New York City, Sean says when he played the song for his mother, it brought tears to her eyes. Sean is no stranger to music that touches people, as he grew up in a “Motown household.” Motown is associated with soulful music and the blues.
Speaking of inspiration, most rappers may go back and say they were inspired by other rappers like Tupac, Biggie or Jay Z. But in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Big Sean gave credit to classic Motown singers like Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder, as well as The Temptations. Sean’s goal with this album, to uplift and inspire people.
“People who can be inspired by it. That’s who I am doing it for,” he said in Entertainment Weekly.