“I remember when Instagram meant a sack of bud in an instant.” — Now a social media outlook for anyone to display what they’re into or up to. For @MisterCap, a proper slew of papers, Converse high-tops, and snapbacks would now be laid out for any fan to double tap and support the Taylor Gang Or Die movement set out of Pittsburgh. His first days where he took over the underground with clear diction and a chill, attractive persona were his snapback days. From first mixtapes to 2006′s Show and Prove to what most would call his best work (it hurts to say) to date – Kush and OJ, it was obvious that Wiz Khalifa offered promising talent with clear and polished diction, a city to rep well, and plenty of style and quality beats to back both.
Khalifa even handled the rise to fame well at first. Out of his studio came plenty of collaborations with Curren$y and Mac Miller, more papers, more caps, and was one of the first to make mixtapes just as important for an MC as an EP or LP. True to his roots and vices, his lyrical themes have always been centered around the green goddess herself and how administered/ often remedied, and his second and third favorite colors to mark his love for his home – the infamous black and yellow P for Pittsburg. Go back and watch the video for Cabin Fever’s “Taylor Gang”. We get an electric, black and white portrayal of a day in the life of a Taylor, hold your fingers up already. Wiz was on top, offering relentlessness to his very craft. TGOD ruled the underground rap scene, led by Khalifa, “a young nigga who handle his”. But every hero’s rise reaches its peak eventually.
It wasn’t until Khalifa started trying on new hats that his peak seemed to be reached, and at an almost screeching halt. Some would say it was his mainstream breakthrough that followed the excellent Cabin Fever tape with Rolling Papers. It was his first project to offer Wiz’s newest cap – his take on pop. “Roll Up” may have been catchy as hell, but to go from the shady, sedated Cabin Fever to this label-lead, bloated outcome of an album didn’t fly with his set-in-sand following. Instead, the old following was traded for a new one filled with plenty of middle schoolers who have never chiefed, and vodka crazed high school girls who would go to blast “No Sleep” on the way to the goddamn mall.