Wilmington, Delaware native, and hip hop rapper P.Dot drops his relentless album "Don't Play With My Name." After creating a variety of records since 2002 (sixteen to be exact), P.Dot takes a more family-friendly approach to his rap as he doesn't want to exclude a big part of his fanbase, thus leading his cursing to a minimum on "Don't Play With My Name." It's genuinely refreshing to hear an artist thrive through conceptual lyrics, without drowning out in profanity.
Opening with the intro track "Fentanyl," the album brings a serene and reflective feel. Giving us an R&B/old school type beat, P.Dot raps about growing up and becoming wiser to recognize who's real and who wants something from you. As we move into "End of the Road (Goodfella Murk)," P.Dot brings another cerebral track through rapping painful lyrics of losing a part of yourself, whether it's someone else or something within. With vibrant Weeknd-like vocals at the hook, at this point, we're captivated by the R&B vibes and P.Dot's flow.
A dark and atmospheric intro with the next track "Onomatopoeia," P.Dot raps about pursuing your dreams, no matter how crazy they might seem. While giving us a steady R&B beat, his fun-loving side comes out on this track and brings some warmth into the darkness. Bringing the energy up with the title track "Don't Play With My Name," here we're able to pick up on P.Dot's confidence and knowledge of the rap game where he's thrived for many years. With a Tee Grizzly type beat, textured piano and upbeat rhythm, we're getting down heavily with this track.
Moving into "Power of the Mind," where the vibes are taken to a mellow and chill place, the beat stands strong with a steady groove through punchy kicks and subtle synths. P.Dot rides this beat effortlessly and speaks of leveling up his career to better himself and establish his place. Giving us that hot summer atmosphere with the head-bopping beat under the next track "Summer Time (feat. Tamara Rochelle)", Tamara starts with her brilliant vocals that channel bright summertime imagery. As P.Dot begins rapping his verse full of heat and energy, he brings in his own detailed description of bar-hopping on a late summer night and getting down with all the music surrounding him.
With a growling synth and a hard-hitting kick, "1017" opens with nothing but strength. P.Dot takes a more hip hop/trap feel with the beat and his delivery within the track. He raps a lot about the power within and trusting his guiding intuition with each endeavor. Opening with what sounds like a Greek bouzouki, "East Oakland" gives us up-beat and layered production right off the bat. Highlighting the danceable aspect of this track, P.Dot raps with incredible rhythm and gives us those confident and self-assured vibes once again through highlighted bars like "Ever went from keys to a push start? Being broke turned rich is the hard part".
Bringing in a serene vibe with a downtempo hip hop beat on "Nothing New (feat. Jermaine Ford)", P.Dot brings forward west coast vibes through blissful electric guitar strumming within the polished production. As Jermaine Ford begins rapping, he brings another refreshing aspect to the album while telling his story and reminding us to keep our head high when facing adversity. As the next track, "Rocnation Brunch," takes another old school feels in the production, P.Dot preaches nothing but the truth with this track. As he keeps moving towards success by staying humble and down to earth without letting fame get to his head. He notes during this track that he's gotten this far through keeping it real and not being influenced by the fakes around him.
Reaching the final track of the album with the outro "Greatest of all Time," P.Dot decided to close off his album with those mellow old school atmospheres that let us sit back and think about the deep bars he's rapping. A common theme throughout "Don't Play With My Name" that stands firm in this track is a manifestation and the power of the mind. Preaching his optimistic point of view towards his future through the entire "Don't Play With My Name" album, P.Dot raps with a pure vulnerability. It takes his introspective rhymes to new and exciting planes.
You can find "Don't Play With My Name" here.
Hey P.Dot, welcome to BuzzMusic! We’re completely mesmerized by the tone and lyrical content within your entire album “Don’t Play With My Name”. Could you touch on some major themes that you wanted to incorporate within the album?
The Theme for Don’t Play With My Name was to create a body of work that provided of sense of vulnerability but also feel good music during these unprecedented times. You’ll notice introspective records like the power of the mind and then more vibrant tunes like Summer Time being that there is a possibility we may not have a summer. Ultimately I wanted to display a level of creativity and versatility hence the unique production I chose for this project.
Speaking on your album “Don’t Play With My Name”, P.Dot brings in a variety of production elements from old school to trendy and modern. How did you initially want the production to shape the album, and how you wanted it to feel?
For this album I wanted to challenge myself. I typically have a soulful boom-bap sound which is still present on the album on records like Roc Nation Brunch which was produced by the legendary hip hop producer Statik Selektah. I also wanted to have records that would entice a different audience whether it was 1017 a down south Trap record or East Oakland which was inspired by E-40/Too Short Bay Area sound.
We’ve heard through P.Dot’s bars that you give a lot of thanks to the power above, and preach the law of attraction and manifestation quite a bit. Could you speak on what role manifestation played in your career, and how it helped you grow as an artist?
I’m a firm believer in “Manifesting one's destiny”. One of my graduate professors once told me that our priorities reveal our actions. I’m grateful that I’ve been blessed by God to share my gifts with the world. If someone never got to meet P.Dot in person, my albums would be that interpersonal communication for them to gain perspective into who I am. I’m from Wilmington, DE a place not known to most of the country and I’ve become exactly who the most high has designed me to be and I’m proud of that.
From P.Dot’s early releases back in 2002 to your heavy and intricate projects nowadays, have you personally noticed much growth or change within your music? What helped you evolve into the artist you are now?
Yes, I’ve shown tremendous growth as an artist over the last 18 years. For starters, my lyrical content has improved dramatically and I don’t go into the studio trying to make hit records. I approach each project differently. Once I have a theme I treat the songs like writing an essay. The intro is like the thesis with the attention-getter the middle of the project is the body paragraphs and the last few songs are the conclusion. I also believe my life experiences have helped me significantly. All of my songs stem from conversations I’ve had from growing up in a low-income community nonconducive to success, to completing my undergraduate and graduate-level degrees, to traveling the world and gaining a global perspective, to being a Single Father, a proud member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated, to my current role as a School Administrator as well as my future career endeavors. These are layers that make me into the man and artist I am today.