Hailing from Moreno Valley, CA, is Hip/Hop artist Dobbsthagr8t. After serving a four-year prison sentence, Dobbsthagr8t made sure that his focus and determination were sky-high. Promising himself that he would advance and grow his artistic career, Dobbsthagr8t sets out to establish himself with the release of his highly anticipated album, 'Phenomenal.' Influenced and inspired by artists such as Nipsey Hussle, Dobbsthagr8t extracts wisdom from some of the greatest Hip/Hop and Rap artists to craft his personalized sound.
'Phenomenal' features twelve vibe-worthy tracks that are dedicated to Dobbsthagr8t's late cousin, Andre. Dobbsthagr8t opens his album with "Intro," which features great quality instrumentals that create a thoroughly catchy beat. Dobbsthagr8t uses this easily flowing atmosphere in his strategic play and delivers his wordplay with tenacity. He's staying loyal to the game and letting everyone know it in "Intro." The track is Dobbsthagr8t's opportunity to shine a light on his strong mindset, and in the process, allow listeners to understand him in a more elaborate sense. He underlines some of his more lustful thoughts, as well as his perspective regarding his drive and motivations.
There's always some type of strategy behind choosing the first track for an album. With "Intro," Dobbsthagr8t set 'Phenomenal' up in a great way, as he solidified the kind of energy and quality listeners will receive for the following tracks.
Next up is "Gospel," a track that features more of a laidback production compared to its previous track. Dobbsthagr8t underlines "cleansing his soul" in this track, spitting lines that allow a deeper look into his self-perception of himself. He dives further into changes he's had to make to elevate his mind and soul, which offers some introspection and wisdom to attentive listeners. "Gospel" offered a great foundational understanding to the life of Dobbsthagr8t and was one of the deeper tracks associated with his album. Take away what you can from his authentic thoughts, as there's an immense amount of advice for the taking.
"My Way" is the third track presented on the album, and incredibly clever lines get delivered in this track. Featuring artist WesWes, "My Way" offered a quality collaboration between the two artists, in which their combined emulated vibe meshes together in an extremely complementary way. "I told her that it's my way or the highway," Dobbsthagr8t sings, which should give listeners quite a thorough understanding of what "My Way" is all about content-wise. In light of the song's production, "My Way" had a combination of underground Hip/Hop elements to more contemporary rap delivers. An insanely vibe-worthy ambiance gets set with the performance of Dobbsthagr8t and WesWes, and this outpour of high-spirited energy is kept for the entirety of the album, as he never lets his performance dwindle in any regard.
Following "My Way" is Dobbsthagr8t's fourth track, "The Moment." Higher-pitched vocals are brought into this track which changes the soundscape listeners may be used to within the album by now. Dobbsthagr8t takes the time in "The Moment" to reminisce over his life, venturing through the various impactful thoughts, memories, and prayers he has had. His delivery is undoubtedly strong and he's determined with the content he's offering.
A looser sense of determination is set with the following track, "Felt," as Dobbsthagr8t lets his audience know that he's all about living in the moment and not worrying about tomorrow (at all!) The production matches a similar care-free mindset, where lively sonics are blended to create a laidback tone. There are a few lines in this track that hit a bit different than others so far, and we'll leave it at that!
Next up is "Spill The Juice", a track where Dobbsthagr8t shares his thoughts on the meaning of friends. He alludes to the actions that underline an inauthentic friend, specifically one that "spills the juice." He further dives into the characteristics behind a real one and he gave a memorable performance regarding his lax delivery. That more calm delivery is paired with a laidback production, where the chosen synth integration offers a quality, yet mild vibe.
Dobbsthagr8t seventh track on 'Phenomenal' is titled "Jealous," which already gives listeners a good idea of the content covered by him here. Featuring ProblemChildzz, "Jealous" takes us through, well, the emotion of jealously itself, but specifically the emotion that arises from others against him. We get to hear a raw version of what goes through the mind of Dobbsthagr8t, and how he views how others view him. Dobbsthagr8t offers another collaboration in this song, as he and ProblemChildzz combine forces to give an insanely authentic and their rapport was pristine. It's within "Jealous" that Dobbsthagr8t more sleek style gets to shine. It's safe to say that we would appreciate another collaboration from these two artists.
Prepare yourself for a change in production, as the next track on 'Phenomenal,' titled "Intermission," is transformed, giving an overall soothing ambiance. The line delivery in this song puts more focus on the general story of Dobbsthagr8t life, in short. He underlines deeper aspects of his mindset, including his growth, maturity, and determination within his career. "Intermission" is the perfect track and time for us to reflect on Dobbsthagr8t's album thus far, as he crafts this rare, quality vibe in each track that is thoughtfully designed with impactful lyrics. Comedic relief ensues at various times, and we end up being thoroughly impressed with his overall approach.
The next song, "9/12" is one to fully immerse yourself in regarding the lyrics. Sit down and focus on the voice of Dobbsthagr8t, as he has a ton of wisdom to share here. He hones into many aspects of his life, including family values and personal beliefs. Many interpretations can result from his material, nevertheless, many advantageous interpretations can be extracted and applied to one's own life as well. Every production thus far on 'Phenomenal' has been powerfully entertaining, and "9/12" isn't any different. The rhythm is as infectious as the performance by Dobbsthagr8t, and we were reeled in with his intriguing artistic persona that got presented within "9/12."
"Dreams & Reality" is the following short and sweet track offered by Dobbsthagr8t, and he speaks on inauthentic aspects of some relationships, as well as reminiscent thoughts of late family members, in this particular track. Here is where Dobbsthagr8t's audience gets a more elaborate sense of who he is as an artist, as well as an individual. He solidifies the fact that his enemies should watch out for his strong mindset, as Dobbsthagr8t's isn't planning on waiving his anytime soon, which means he will only continue to rise with his exclusive sound.
A ton about Dobbsthagr8t personal thoughts gets exposed in the following track, "Soul Food." Dobbsthagr8t goes back and forth between the chosen narrative but majorly focuses on his grind, mind, and actions within his life. He dives into the aspirations he holds close and, in the process, gives his audience a play-by-play on his successful mentality.
Lastly, Dobbsthagr8t teams up with Cynthia Jackson to deliver "Letter To You," a heartfelt song that begins with a voicemail from a close family member of Dobbsthagr8t's. The voicemail brings a certain element to this track that's disparate from others, and we appreciate the creative interplay. "Letter To You" is the perfect way to end 'Phenomenal,' as Dobbsthagr8t endures the realities of his surrounding emotions. The production here is kept more consistent, with a neutral tone underlying the song for the real focus to be on Dobbsthagr8t. Real intentions of Dobbsthagr8t get unraveled, so give your full attention to "Letter To You" if you're wanting to get a good sense of what he's all about.
Dobbsthagr8t's album was conclusively resilient, dynamic, and full of fervent passion. We're already anticipating Dobbsthagr8t's next move because it's already assumed his next release will be just as impressive as 'Phenomenal' was.
Welcome back to BuzzMusic Dobbsthagr8t, and congratulations on the successful release of ‘Phenomenal.’ What does it mean to release this particular album, especially considering that it is dedicated to your late cousin, Andre?
Thank y’all for having me back. It’s only right I hit BuzzMusic to introduce this special project. Y’all do great work! Man, this one was truly testing. It was a more than eight months process but it ended stronger than I imagined. Starting out, I didn’t really have an idea or direction of where I wanted to take it next. I think I wrote like half a song after I dropped “straight felon” on 8/18/20. After that dropped, life just became hazy & confusing. It was so much going on, so many heartfelt losses in a short time. I became homeless and was sleeping in my car so writing for me became an afterthought that turned into no thought. It took MONTHS to get back to writing and when I did, there wasn’t a set plan on how I wanted to craft my next project. I knew I wanted this one to be different but still be Dobbsthagr8t as far as the beat selection & the way I flowed. May 16, 2021, I dislocated my shoulder & was forced to be at a complete standstill with life. That’s when this project really started. The next month, I wrote about 8 of these songs, not all completed but a good majority was done & I started to see a direction. Fast forward, when I plan on dropping something, I try to pick a specific date like 8/18 but as I kept writing, I started to think about my cousin Andre & how we celebrate his life on his birthday EVERY YEAR. I thought about the name I choose for the project and how the two coexist. I’m not gonna portray like he and I were best buddies and we talked every second, but as I said in 9/12 “every time I saw you living, it was always loved.” He was just a phenomenal spirit. The impact he had on the village “the family,” when he left us, is still indescribable just like the absence of my other angels, but he just happens to be the YOUNGEST one to go so it hit differently. With all those factors, once the mixtape was completed, I couldn’t see any other cover art for this project other than the one I have. Man, it topped off. What felt like a decade of rain, to be able to have completed this project the way I did, I’m extremely proud of myself. The growth, the faith, the creativity, the way I represented in Dobbsthagr8t way, the definition of Phenomenal thru the lyrics, like my cousin did with his presence, it just all clicked so this means a lot.
As an artist who has endured many painful and challenging experiences, how do you feel that your history has helped you shape and construct ‘Phenomenal?’
I feel like now, thinking about this question, every project I put out so far has its own independent history. That’s probably why my writing process is the way it is. Especially when it comes down to making a whole project. I felt like, this last year molded me strictly for 'Phenomenal' as I described in the beginning. From the moment I started sleeping in my car, bouncing from couch to couch, being broke, people abandoning me, losing faith in myself, “close people” not supporting me like they’re not seeing the vision we once spoke about when I couldn’t see it myself. Losing something that was precious to me & my family is created, going thru that new process I mean everything that happen was for this tape & I’m just grateful to see it all through and to be able to deliver some honest 'Phenomenal' music.
Where do you expect yourself to expand on your sound now that ‘Phenomenal’ has dropped?
I just expect myself to continue running this Marathon, to pace the race. My life’s story is I continue to elevate In whatever situations like I said in tha intermission “you getting better with time.. you like some fine wine” RIP KOBE aka VINO. I expect Dobbsthagr8t to continue to be just that on everything I present to this world. I’m going to give it everything till I can’t anymore. IMOB WE ON THE WAY PHENOMENAL 9/12 R.I.P ANDRE THIS ONE 4 U n the village!
Your album featured various collaborations with different artists. How did you find the collaborative songs to turn out and do you see yourself working with any artists with your future music? How about any of the artists featured on the album?
Shoutout to every artist “kemadonna” “Wes Wes “ & “problem childdz” they really came thru and did damage! Matter fact Wes(my-way) & problemchilddz (jealous) both let me have the songs to use for this project so that’s forever appreciated. KEMA was the exact voice I needed on that hook and I appreciate how she got into character & hit that spot on. Any artist I do music with, I know I can work with them in the future. It’s all about the timing but fasho looking forward to getting back with these talents. As far as a future artist, I’m going to just keep creating & whatever comes through is going to come. I got a couple of key people I want to work with but I’m goin to keep that to myself & let the universe work. It never failed me so I know when the time is right we’re going to bless the world.
Let's dive deeper into "Letter To You," which was the final track featured on your album. What was the meaning behind this track and can you discuss how endured the creative process for such an emotionally stirring song?
This track was special. The moment I heard the beat, I instantly thought about my granny. She recently moved to Vegas with my mom. I’m out here in the inland empire it ain’t a mission but that drive will bring some frustrations out lol!!! Nah it’s not a bad drive but when I was in prison, I lost my dad’s mother, my granny T and I wasn’t able to make it to her funeral. On top of that, My pops and I weren’t seeing eye to eye, so it was just a lot to deal with on both ends. I sea-saw with my feelings of time cause it’s a blessing to be able to see time pass when so many young people are dying WAY TO YOUNG & on the other hand people get older. My granny and I got extremely close. Once I got out, I saw how time has treated her with respect & honor. I appreciate the way she was always in my life even when she smacked me one time when I was younger & I stayed mad for like 3 years!! She would tell me to get over it and she would do it again if she needs to, but it was all love. I just feel the need to do any and everything for her with no question. She’s an earth angel, a beautiful soul. Not a lot of people understand that until God has called them home. Having a grandma is an honor. I was able to see 3 of them in my lifetime. She’s all I got left & I’m going to continue to do what time is doing, respect & honor her and take this all the way to the top “my bloodline strong ain’t no way I can abuse that.”