CHRIS HART-WILLIAMS | Editor-in-Chief
Students and fans packed Reynolds Coliseum on Thursday for the sold out homecoming concert featuring rap artist Big Sean. Organizers of the annual concert, N.C. State’s Union Activities Board, also invited T-Pain and Jeremih to open the concert.
After the show Big Sean opened up backstage for an exclusive interview.
Big Sean said the life he lives now is far different from his childhood in Detroit, Mich.
“I came from the bottom,” Big Sean said. “I didn’t grow up in a good neighborhood.”
Sean Anderson, now known as Big Sean, was raised in a small two family flat with his mother and brother. His grandmother and aunt lived above them on the second floor.
“It made me who I am and I appreciate it,” said Big Sean. “Now, my life is a little bit different, I was able to achieve some level of success.”
Big Sean said his success is like nothing he’s imagined.
“I’m still at the beginning of my career…the sky is the limit for me and my team,” Big Sean said.
Before he was collaborating and performing with the likes of Kanye West and other top names in the music industry, Big Sean sold CDs of his own music while in high school.
“I was just trying to branch out and build a fan base,” said the former starving artist.
Around that time Big Sean became heavily involved in rap battle competitions at his hometown radio station in Detroit and soon developed close relationships with the stations DJs.
As the victor of several rap battles Big Sean was often given the opportunity to rap on the air.
Pure persistence and notoriety at the radio station would lead to Big Sean performing for Kanye West during a visit of his to the station to promote a new album.
“Since I had a relationship with the station they let me in. I lied and said I left my cell phone in the back so I could get in the back offices,” Big Sean said. “I got a chance to rap for him as he was walking out and that’s how I got his attention.”
After that performance Big Sean’s journey to fame began. In just a few moments his life was changed completely because Kanye West liked what he heard.
Kanye West would later sign the starving artist and launch his career.
“When it was time to rap for him I was nervous as hell, he’s my favorite rapper and favorite artist,” Big Sean said. “When you follow your heart and do things the right way it leads you to that moment that you’ve been working your whole life for.”
College was on the rappers radar while in high school, but the 3.7 GPA student would be led to change his mind.
“I had scholarships and everything, I was on my way to Michigan State, I had my roommate and my classes,” Big Sean said. “At the last minute I didn’t go, I decided that I’m doing what I want to do – whether I get paid for it or not.”
Big Sean said, “I encourage school though, I have to pay a business manager, a lawyer, a whole bunch of people and an accountant, If I would have learned to do all that my self, I could just do all that myself. I really do encourage education.”
According to Big Sean his new album will drop soon and will include “high level ” and “intense” raps. He wants to continue to impact culture and do what he does better than anyone else.
“I want to be at the top of the rap game, I feel like I’m the best,” Big Sean said. He said ultimately he just has to prove it.
See the full story in our print issue Nov. 12