Ten years ago today, Drake released his first classic mixtape, Comeback Season. Mr. Graham posted on Instagram to commemorate the milestone, while looking ahead to ten more years.
Comeback Season was released over a year and a half after Drake’s first mixtape, Room for Improvement. While Room for Improvement was very good for a first musical release, Comeback Season took things to another level. To those who listened to it, they must have realized the talented and hard-working 20-year-old rapper was ready to explode on to the scene.
The subject matter in the mixtape might not have been that deep, but it’s what you’d expect from a young 20-year-old that admittedly wanted to make himself appear bigger and more successful than actually he was at the time. Still, the potential Drake had was undeniable. His flow, his metaphors; just his overall skill—the young Canadian sounded like a seasoned rapper.
Drake said himself he rapped “young and naïve” on the mixtape (well on “Closer,” at least), but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t good. A lot of what he rapped on Comeback Season has been relevant throughout the last ten years, and we’ll go through some of the best parts of the mixtape.
First, Drake sounds completely aware of what’s going on and seems to know he’s going to hit it big soon. On the opening track, “The Presentation,” Drake opens with “shake up the world, that is what I’m about to do.” Well, he certainly did that, as he’s one of the biggest superstars of any sort in the entire world.
In the middle of “The Presentation,” the beat switches up like a classic Drake track (perfectly done, as usual, by Noah Shebib, AKA “4o”), and he questions how Jay Z and Dame Dash are going to break up before they meet him. The verse then goes on to have a ton of clever word-play with a crazy good flow that stuns you a little bit. He drew people in right after the intro and doesn’t look back on the mixtape—and hasn’t looked back for ten years. And 40 and others have been right with Drake through it all, showing Drake’s loyalty—perhaps the best trait to have as a person.
On the next track, the title track of Comeback Season, Drake spits straight fire, despite opening the track talking of ice on his windshield. “The startin’s hot but pay attention to my latter flows,” Drake presciently points out.
Drake reveals on “Where To Now” he wants to get a house in his city (Toronto, of course) with pine floors. I’m willing to bet the custom house he built in Toronto has exactly what he envisioned. Pretty awesome. Also on “Where To Now,” Drake said if ’09 (the year he went on to release the classic So Far Gone) is when he sees his, he’ll freeze time. It looks like he really did.
Another flow is revealed on “The Last Hope,” where Drake says he won’t let other people write for him. Fans of Drake can point to this line and be assured Drake can write his own music just fine, despite his collaboration and sharing of the thought process with others.
“Underdog” is another track that foreshadows, and it’s fair to wonder if Comeback Season really stuck with and inspired Drake. After Trey Songz raps a verse of his own, Drake comes in with “I said I got my city buzzin’, you should take a trip and view it.” Seems that Views, Drake’s fourth Toronto-centric album, might have been named with this line in thought.
Ten years later, and Drake is at the top of the game—there’s no question about it. Comeback Season included numerous flows and paces, just like his music today. Quite honestly, even in 2007 it was reminiscent of Jay Z, and no one uses different flows like the two of them do. It’s why they’re the best.
Comeback Season is required listening for all Drake fans—or just fans of music in general. Also on “Underdog,” Drake says his license is expired and he has to renew it. He said the same thing on Nothing Was The Same. NWTS came out six years later, so it’s cool stuff to hear Drake do call-backs like that to his earlier work.
He might not get his license renewed any time soon, but here’s to another ten years for Drake.