Atlanta’s own Big Boi is one of few hip hop celebrities reluctant to throw their support behind the Obama administration. Describing himself as a man of the people, the Outkast and Dungeon Family member let his feelings about the president and government in general be known during an interview with Pitchfork.
I’m not pro-government at all, I’m pro-people. Our freedoms are getting taken away every day with things that people aren’t aware of,” Big Boi told Pitchfork’s Jayson Greene. “I don’t care who the president is– it ain’t just all about who’s black or who’s white or who’s Republican or Democrat, it’s about who is for the betterment of people, period.”
“What did he do? They say he’s trying to clean up a mess, right? Well, he needs a big-ass broom, and he gotta keep on sweeping,” he added. “I ain’t on nobody’s team, you feel me? I’m about the American people.”
Compared to the unwavering, unilateral support that Obama receives from black celebrities regardless of policy, Big Boi’s honest opinion is valid. The rapper directly referenced the National Defense Authorization Act, which could allow for the indefinite detention of American citizens suspected of terrorism.
Tuesday marked the release of the 37-year-old artist’s second solo album, Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors, the follow up to 2010’s critically acclaimed Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty. Though he’s not fallen back from the forefront of hip hop, Big Boi has been expanding his audience playing large summer music festivals around growing electronic artists like Skrillex. America’s budding electronic music scene has a place on Vicious Lies as well.
“I’ve been doing 50- and 100,000-seat festivals all over the world. The crowds were not your typical hip-hop crowds. You bump into people backstage and you click naturally,” the rapper told Reuters. “It’s just more electro-funk. I used a lot of brass on the last album – a lot of traditional instruments. I still use the brass, but not as much. But the beats are still hitting hard.”