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If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late….Because, Yet Again, Nothing Was The Same

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Smith chapter.
For all of you die-hard Drake fans out there, the release of his surprise mix tape last week titled, “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late,” was obviously a big deal. Personally, I almost went into cardiac arrest; for everyone else, excitement levels rose from 0 to 100 real quick. 
With the release of the mix tape, dozens of articles have been written critiquing the music, but I want to look at the big picture. This mix tape plays a key role in that big picture, because it lays the path that leads toward his upcoming album. To me, the most exciting part of this release is, in fact, the prospect of his album. Let’s remember folks, this was put out as a mix tape and not an album for a reason. For those of you who are confused about the difference, it typically comes down to a slight alteration in who the artist is trying to reach and the level of work they believe they are putting out. A mix tape is a way to attract fans; sort of like a way to browse the artist.  It’s more of a sample of some of what the artist has to offer. An album, on the other hand, is more goal oriented. You want a single out of your album, you want sales out of your album, you want awards as a result of your album. Exploring the fact that Drake released this mix tape as opposed to including these songs on the album is definitely most interesting to me.
In his last album, Nothing Was The Same, we saw Drake’s realization of how his life has changed and we were also presented with music that took his old sound and lyrics a few steps further. In all aspects of the phrase, Drake made sure that nothing was the same. This album has acted as a platform for the singles he has put out over the past year and led us right into this mix tape. Drake does not tell a new story with each album, but rather he continues his story with every new song. Part of this changing story comes as a result of his ongoing growth as an artist and we see that through the development of his sound. 
In addition to the mix tape, Drake also released a fifteen minute video on his website that documents, what I would call, a stream of consciousness. He goes through the motions of what it’s like to revisit “the 6,” his hometown of Toronto, now that fame has distanced him from his roots. This video mimics much of what he is trying to get across in the mix tape. Drake still faces the same struggles as before, but now he has a new outlook. He’s more comfortable in his own shoes, and he’s reflecting on his journey that has taken him to where he is currently stationed. The piece of the story he tells here, though, is still in the making. He has a setting, aka “the 6,” but his story line is still floating around in his head, and I think that’s what he was telling us with his video. I think we can expect to see more of what he put out on his mix tape on the album, but also, it seems likely that he will tell more of a story that has a beginning, middle, and maybe an end, as opposed to putting everything down on paper as his mind sifts through memories.