Local Music

Published on October 5th, 2016 | by Brittain Thompson


Denzel Curry comes through Proud Larrys’ in Oxford, Mississippi October 5, 2016

The controversial Rap Artist is having a stellar year.

Denzel Curry has had the type of year that solidifies careers. He has multiple releases that were praised by both fans and critics, is embarking on a headlining tour, and is currently maintaining a healthy diet.

Curry also received the achievement of being chosen for the 2016 XXL Freshman List, a high honor in hip-hop and something he felt has been long deserved. While several rappers on the list are only recently gaining notoriety, Curry has been steadily working with klout-carrying names in the underground hip hop scene since he was 16. Curry is quick to tell you how he feels about his achievement. denzel-curry-sango-purrposely-spaceghostpurrp-diss

“I should have gotten it last year,” said Curry. “I tell everybody I shoulda got it last year. I just treat it like a better opportunity last year.”

Headlining a tour is new for Curry, who previously had successful strings of shows opening for already established acts.

“It’s crazy,” said Curry. “It’s a sign of all the work I’ve put in and the progress I’ve made so far.”

Originally a lo-fi rap artist, Curry transitioned into cleaner production styles to broaden his accessibility and fan base, an early sign of his business first mind set.

“I wanted to get my name out there and be heard,” said Curry. “You can get big in the underground, but you’re not gonna get real fame off that.”

Curry treats his career as the full time job it is, and realizes it is made possible by fans. However, he mentions that some interpretations fans have pulled from his work are simply off base.

“It’s deeper than rap,” said Curry. “Some fans think they know more than they really do and they’ll be saying some [views] that aren’t right.”

Curry’s most recent single, “Gook,” has stirred up a bit of internet controversy as some fans find the song title to be offensive. The term gook is commonly considered pejorative, primarily aimed at those  of Philippine, Korean, or Vietnamese descent. Curry has responded to some comments via social media to explain the origin of his use of the term.

“That’s just part of where I’m from,” said Curry. “If they were from my area, they’d know it’s not even like that.”

As his career has risen, the attention he gives to social media has dwindled.

“It’s just business now,” said Curry.

With increasing success comes more attention in not just his professional life but also when he’s not on the road spreading ULT.

“I don’t have time for myself no more unless I’m home,” said Curry.

Curry’s defining statement, is that he has no desire to be considered the best. He just wants, “to do it well.” For now that means pushing his art as far as he can and to as wide an audience as possible.

“ULT,” said Curry.


Denzel Curry will be playing Proud Larrys’ October 5 with Boogie and Yoshi Thompkins. Tickets are $15 in advance, available online now.

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About the Author

Brittain was an associate editor of The Local Voice from 2015-2018, ex-journalism student, and bad noise maker from the highway town of Brandon, Mississippi.

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