Joey Purp is Going To Get Famous


By: Connor Lenahan

2016 has been a year of absurd musical riches with nearly everyone’s favorite artist coming out with a new project, yet there’s been one sneaky rising favorite that’s brought me three of my happiest moments in music so far this year. That man is Joey Purp, and you might recognize him from collaborating with his friends from Chicago like Chance the Rapper, Vic Mensa, and Towkio.

Earlier this Summer I went to go see Vic Mensa at the Brighton Music Hall and came away shocked. Not by Mensa, who was good, not great, but by Purp, who opened the show. Joey had a ridiculous command of the crowd and a similar stage presence that Mensa didn’t quite match. Frankly, I got my money’s worth from the opener and spent most of Vic’s set thinking about if the younger member of the Savemoney collective was due to blow up. This was shocking moment number one.

The second came from his song “Girls@” with Chance the Rapper.

It’s an earworm of delightful force, repeatedly causing me to drum the beat on my legs in waiting rooms or sing the chorus to myself like an idiot. Chance the Rapper is on an absolute tear in 2016, and dropping both Ta-Nehesi Coates and Outkast’s “SpottieOttieDopaliscious” in the same line was enough to have me nearly throw my phone through a window in excitement. Joey has the unenviable task of following Chancellor Bennett and caught me off guard. He rips off a few lines with the bass muted that show that he has both a strong confidence in his voice and a flow that’s downright unfair. That cadence and wordplay were shock number two.

The third was on Towkio’s “Playin’ Fair”.

Towkio’s track is one of my favorite tracks to walk around to because of the unbridled energy it carries. But I’ll be honest, I never pay attention to Towkio’s part of the song aside from the hook. That’s because Joey has an amazing beginning to his verse that damn near causes me to stop dead in my tracks every time it comes on.

I got a cup with a cup in it

And some Sprite with some stuff in it

Neither of these lines is groundbreaking for rap music. For my parents, they’re talking about codeine mixed with Sprite, also known as Purple Drank and the beverage that cost Jamarcus Russell his NFL career. But it’s not the lyrics, but rather the glee-inducing delivery from the rap-doppelganger of Sideshow Bob that makes it so fun.

Maybe he just has a great voice. Maybe he can really write lyrics. Maybe he seems so goofy that he’s accessible. Maybe he’s just really good?

I don’t quite know why, but I do know that Joey Purp is going to get famous.