There’s something in the Louisville water which is breeding huge amounts of success, EST Gee is the latest name to add to the numbers. An artist with as much grit as his record labels CEO – YO Gotti, Gee knows how to put emotion and passion into any given track that’s released.
This summer saw the CMG rapper provide heat in the shape of his anticipated project Bigger Than Life or Death. Gee speaks on the importance of authenticity, something which is shown throughout the 15-track billing, as he spreads his sound across to the masses and calls upon the likes of Lil Baby, Future and Young Thug for some hard-hitting features.
We spoke to EST Gee to find out more about the project and making your way in music!
Let’s start off with the name EST Gee – Where did the name originate from?
“EST stands for “Everybody Shine Together” and my name is Gee. I’ve had this name for a long time!”
Your album Bigger Than Life Or Death has been received very well – What was the process of putting the project together?
“I was just going in the studio and recording like I normally do. I didn’t have to do nothing out of the ordinary, just going in my studio and record. I’d have to add up the time! I’d say everything came together quickly. I was in a lot of different places, a whole lot of songs, but not that long to put them together.“
There are many standout tracks on the project “Lick Back” / “In Town” – Which track would you say was the most enjoyable for you to record?
“It’s hard to say! There’s always different moods for music. I like different stuff for different moods.”
Were there any artists you wanted on the project which didn’t make the cut?
“Everybody that’s on there was perfect! If they weren’t on there this time, we’ll have to make it come together for next time. I think everybody that was supposed to be on there was on there.”
On “Capitol 1” you speak about growing up on Young Gotti – What’s your relationship like with Yo Gotti after being siged to CMG? Do you see him as a mentor?
“Yeah, I got a good relationship with Gotti! He’s a smart business man. He’s always making sure everybody’s informed and if you don’t know something, Gotti will let you know. I got a good relationship with him.”
You recently released the visuals to the anthem “5500 Degrees” – The visuals show a lot of energy, how was it shooting the video with Lil’ Baby, 42 Dugg & Rylo and how did it all come together?
“We were just all in the studio recording. I put my verse on there and then everybody else wanted to put their verse on. I had a lot to do with the creative process, I do with a lot of my videos! I feel like you got to make the music by yourself so it can be truly you and give 100%, but with videos, it’s a different artistic feel, so collaborating is good. Collaboration is good for music too, but I think it’s just better when you do it by yourself.“
#7 in the album charts – Are you at a point of celebrating this success, or are you already thinking of the next move and achieving more from this milestone?
“I’m not celebrating yet, I still got more to do!”
We’ve seen in the past 2 years the emergence of yourself and Jack Harlow – Both being from Louisville, what did it take to be successful and standout from the rest of the artists trying to make a name for themselves?
“I think you have be original. It’s about telling a story that people can relate to. The audience don’t want to hear nothing fake, the crowd don’t want that, people have to stop doing that! Try and keep it as authentic as you can so the supporters can relate to it.”
Who inspired you to want to rap when you were growing up? And when did you know it was going to be a career choice?
“I never wanted to rap growing up! It was more American Football. When I made a million dollars off of music there was a change in career choice!”
How did you first step into making music?
“I didn’t land in music, the music industry landed on me!”
We recently saw performances on Jimmy Kimmel Live and also Rolling Loud – How was that experience for yourself?
“I think it was big for exposure! A lot of people saw me from those performances. Anything so that more people can hear me is cool.”
You’ve achieved success in US, do you now want to expand and push out to Europe/Africa? – Is touring globally the next step for you?
“I think so, eventually! Whatever opportunities present themselves I’m going to be ready. There’s a lot of places that I still haven’t been to so I’m not sure yet, but wherever they like my music!“
Are there any artists from the UK that you’ve heard of or want to collaborate with?
“You’re gonna hear the UK artists that I’ve worked with soon!”
Finally, what are the next steps for EST Gee?
“Just to be at the top of the billboards! Better than what I’m doing now and there’s always more that you can do.“
If you missed our interview with another Stateside don, Moneybagg Yo, be sure to check that one out right here.