The past 12 months have been an emotional rollercoaster for Swagg Dinero. The Chicago MC, born John Coleman, experienced heartache after the tragic loss of his younger brother Joseph Coleman
Joseph Coleman, known to the world as Lil JoJo, was murdered in a drive-by shooting Sept. 4, 2012 in his Englewood, Chicago neighborhood as he was riding on the back pegs of his friend’s bike.
Swagg comes to terms with this loss and forges ahead on his life journey. Before he makes this trek, he must speak to the Man upstairs.
Swagg recites the Serenity prayer in the Smylez-produced intro to “Stop Playin” mixtape, hosted by DJ Shon and DJ Wats.
“God grant me the strength to accept the things I can’t change, the strength to change the things I can And the wisdom to know the difference,” he says.
Swagg embraces his journey and allows God to guide his steps.
“For all the days that I walk and all the times that I speak/I thank the man up above/That I’ma hustle my feet/And if today is my day, I’ma respect that man’s call cause I been causing a raucous,” he raps.
Swagg has to differentiate between the real and the “Fake” in the rap game and in the streets.
Swagg talks keeping his circle tight in this Smylez-produced track, rapping, “No new friends, surrounded by 100, keep them phonies out my face/Met some fraudulent n-----, them the people I erase/ addicted to the real, allergic to the fake.
Swagg even remembers his younger brother, rapping, “It’s been a long time since they took lil folks away/We lost a couple soldiers but we even out that plate.
“Holocaust,” an ode to Lil JoJo, is perhaps the most poignant track where the Bricksquad rapper details receiving devastating news of his younger brother’s death.
“R.I.P. my broski, I know yall feel my feel/Yo name can’t go cold long as my blood hot/I’ma take you and me straight to the top/We had a f*cking plan, we had a f*cking plot/Was all through the land, we rode through every block/I can’t trust a soul, to me that’s f*cked up/I only trusted one, trust with that last gut/But that ni**a, he ain’t here, he dropped his last blunt/But I’ma hold it down until my last gust/JoJo had fans, just ask the pastor/On the e way got that call/Grandma gassed up/Glad to hear my voice, I’m her last grandson.
“I domed a couple blunts thinking my bro good/I called them real ni**as, I called the whole hood/Swole as hell up in the E, we act just like we should/Doctor said mother and brother, can I have a word/Took us to the back, he said he had a loss for words/One shot to the back, traveled to his heart/N----- say they feel my pain, but I don’t got no heart/This is more than rap, you gotta play your part, some ni**as meet the end before they get to start/It’s like aches game, you gotta play your part/I ust grab the f*cking pen and push it to the cart,” Swagg raps.
Holocaust has been used by scholars to refer to the mass genocide of Jews at the hands of Adolph Hitler’s N--- party.
The Holocaust denotes an entirely different meaning for Swagg who calls his brother’s death part of the ongoing genocide afflicting the streets of urban America.
“I’ma only keep it real, they tryna send you off over anything, the opps will try to know you off/Every hood they losing bodies, it’s a Holocaust,” he raps.
“Youngins killing just for fun,” he adds.
But Swagg knows that his brother’s name will forever live on.
“Then that s--- happened/Fans rush to my car/We more famous than these n----- that’s on WorldStar/But I don’t pay attention because I’ma born star/R.I.P to Joseph Coleman, you a World Star.”
“Legit” was the first single dropped for fans. Swagg again talks keeping his circle sucka free in this J1-produced track, rapping, “I keep my n----- close until they burn up their bridge/Cuz I can’t do fugazi, keep my circle legit/ I know the feds be watching cuz we be stacking them chips.”
Swagg’s most recent single “Family” again incorporates the theme of having a tight circle.
He dropped a Killa Canon Boiz visual for this track, which included some acting skills his mother, Robin Russell, and himself.
“My momma upset with me, she say it’s the death of me/I can’t leave these streets cause this life is my destiny,” he raps in this song.
Swagg linked with fellow Bricksquad member Lil Mister in the moneymaking anthem “Check A Bag.”
With money comes envy. But all these two are trying to do is pop a tag.
Swagg hits the track, rapping, “I been getting money what the f*ck did you expect/Let me call my jeweler, I need something for my sack/Money in my bank, probably money in my buffet/I’ma stack this money til they my a-- to resting.”
Lil Mister talks living a life of luxury, rapping, “I been getting money, I been thumbing through them hundreds/Why I’m so stuntin, blowing bands like it’s nothing/Money in the bundle, bad b*tches and a condo.”
Swagg records a Fly Boy Gang and Bricksquad all-star collaboration in this tape, which features Billionaire Black, Duck and Lil Mister.
It’s “All White” everything for this crew who are kingpins of a drug cartel in this song.
“Who Gone Stop Me’ is a must-listen and features Bricksquad 6775 rappers Smylez, Killa Kellz and J-Real.
The Bricksquad crew is at the top of their game in the underground rap circuit.
Killa Kellz sings the hook in this Chase The Money production, rapping, “Started from the bottom, now I made it to the top/I worked my a-- off to get everything I got/And ni**as get nervous cause we coming for the spot/But I’ma make noise and that noise will never stop.”
Swagg again professes his clique deserving the throne in “Top” featuring P. Rico and J-Real.
Rico raps, “24/7 we be on the block/My ni**as bout that life, we do this sh*t a lot/Tryna check a bag, tryna make a knot/And b*tch we making noise, that’s why the hood hop/We be doing numbers, we deserve the spot.”
Swagg follows, rapping, “In the lab, boy we on the block/Either way we gon make a knot/Get a thot, then I diddy bop/We is JoJo World and we deserve the top.
“See we in the hood, when they really not/Stay in California cause we got it locked,” he adds.
Swagg Dinero is continuing to develop as an artist. This mixtape shows the Chicago MC’s growth as an MC and his ambitions to be at the top of the rap game. The highlight of this mixtape was Swagg delving into his personal thoughts and feelings and spitting truth on the changes he experienced in life and in the rap game since his brother’s demise.
Swagg is leading his team on the path to greatness and he is not relinquishing the top spot to anyone.
Stream/Download Swagg Dinero’s “Stop Playin”
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