Legit & The Road from Maudlin
Artists can change in the blink of an eye, often at a creative juncture: a point in which the opportunity for a new course of action or a paradigm shift presents itself. Perhaps understanding when to embrace these intersections is the mark of a well-rounded artist—one not left wondering where to take their craft at every fork in the road, but one able to commit to a choice and run with it. Over the past few years, a musician known as Legit met an artistic crossroad of his own. From the depths of Legit’s new path came his most recent collection of music, Maudlin. It just so happens that Maudlin is but a precursor to Legit’s main focus.
Stemming from a hip hop background, Legit was predominantly known as a rapper. It was while working on his full length “rap album” that Legit realized he was doing more singing than rapping. He was confident in his ability as a singer, but ultimately, to release his album without first establishing himself as a vocalist, was a risk he wasn’t ready to take. To better introduce himself as a singer, Legit started working on Maudlin, a project to precede the main event, an album two years in the making.
Before the turning point of what would eventually birth Maudlin, Legit thought his music needed something deeper, another side of himself. The creation of Maudlin allowed him to reach further into himself to find what he was looking for. “It’s really meant to be like an extension of the album,” a darker atmosphere to what he had originally been working on. “When I was really working on the album, I wanted one part to have like this specific vibe. I wanted the other part of the album to be sort of darker, somber, and that’s Maudlin.” After working on the project for two years, Maudlin found its legs. Now completely detached and in a lane of its own, Maudlin presented Legit with a new direction for his life and career.
“When I was really working on the album...I wanted the other part of the album to be sort of darker, somber, and that’s Maudlin.”
“Watch how I glow with no lava lamp. A lot of my niggas we grew up too soon. Summertime Chi we was not at Camp. Oh no I don’t have the need for a wedding band. The first dance is the money dance.”
Within the confines of Maudlin are the elements of any great album. At the top of the catalog is the self-produced “Come2DeathRowRecords”. From the jump, Legit’s delivery is grabbing at the audience, but his lyricsm keeps them along for the ride, “Watch how I glow with no lava lamp/ A lot of my niggas we grew up too soon/ Summertime Chi we was not at Camp/ Oh no I don’t have the need for a wedding band/ The first dance is the money dance.” By track three, Maudlin changes from Legit’s bassline-bouncing flows to the revolving ballad of “My Name Is…”. Every track rolls into one another with such cohesiveness, it’s easy to forget where one ends and the next begins. With the occasional skit scattered throughout the project, Legit’s Maudlin introduces new audible textures as it progresses. Rather than a compiled list of music, Maudlin feels like an experience. Not to mention the project gives the listener a well-rounded taste of Legit’s vocal ability. Although Maudlin is the acting precursor to Legit’s full length debut, over time it became something more significant. “I want it to be able to exist on it’s own. Even though it’s not an album—it’s like an EP, it’s really short—but, it’s a thing, it’s really distinct, and specific, and niche enough to where it can exist by itself.”
Legit’s Maudlin is more than a unique musical encounter, it’s a testament to his strength as an artist. Through Maudlin, Legit showed us he could hit the ground running regardless of the lack of clarity on the next steps in his career. He’d already been grinding toward a full length album— an album set to potentially change his entire career— but Legit wasn’t prepared to make that transition with the music he had. He found a new trackway through Maudlin and from it, a better passage was made; one leading to an even greater destination, his debut album.
As we move through 2018, Legit has his sights on releasing his first true album, “Oh yeah, I have a title for it. It’s still Surprise, it’s still the same,” he says. “I’ve been promoting and working on the album for about four, maybe five years now. It’s gotten to the point where I don’t even like calling it Surprise anymore,” he laughed. “Now I’m just like, ‘Yeah...working on my album...it’s coming’.” Legit hopes to drop Surprise some time this summer. As we await our chance to sink our teeth into the album, be sure to give Maudlin a couple spins. To skip it would be like hopping over a whole era of Legit’s creative process, and you’d be doing yourself an incredible disservice if you did.