It’s barely two months into 2020, nevertheless it’s already been an enormous yr for rapper Roddy Ricch.
The 21-year-old Compton artist has claimed the #1 spot on the Billboard Prime 100 for the previous 5 weeks along with his viral earworm of a rap music, “The Field,” from his debut album Please Excuse Me for Being Delinquent, which is the longest-running #1 debut rap album to be on the Billboard 200 in almost 20 years since 50 Cent’s Get Wealthy or Die Tryin’ in 2003. Ricch additionally received his first Grammy two weeks in the past for his collaboration, “Rack within the Center,” along with his late mentor and buddy, Nipsey Hussle, nevertheless it’s “The Field” that has turned him into the toast of not solely the music business (Meek Mill is a loyal supporter), however the Web (the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs memorably celebrated their Tremendous Bowl LIV win by dancing to “The Field,”) one thing that’s stored Ricch busy, to say the least.
“It’s cool,” Ricch tells TIME, of holding the highest spot within the nation for over a month. “However I’ve simply been on the highway a lot that I don’t actually hear it. Often when my music drops, I can go to my hood, I can hear folks enjoying it. Now it comes from performing it, folks realizing it and stuff. It’s loopy!”
It’s pretty troublesome to be in any nook of the Web proper now with out listening to “The Field” or extra particularly, its distinctive squeaking sound impact that has drawn comparability to a squeegee being wiped on a window or a door creaking open and closed. It’s this sound impact, which Ricch added on the final minute after the music was accomplished, that catapulted “The Field” to being one of many high memes on TikTok with a whopping 1.5 million movies that cue up the music’s epic prolonged intro, which prominently options the squeaking noise, with quick clips of them miming cleansing home windows, dancing, or hitting the correct angles to take a selfie.
“The Field” has additionally proven its ubiquity on YouTube, the place Ricch is the #2 most-played artist on the platform, along with his lyrics video for “The Field” (there’s no music video but) clocking in at over 98 million views because it was dropped in early December 2019; Billboard stories that day by day views on YouTube have reached as much as 11.5 million, whereas “The Field” has clocked 197 million whole on the platform via lyric, audio and fan-made movies.
The viral capital of the music has definitely contributed to the success of the “The Field,” with many pointing to its meme-ability as a catalyst for why Ricch has held onto the highest spot over the likes of Selena Gomez, Drake and Future, and maybe most memorably, Justin Bieber, who drew criticism after he shared and deleted a fan’s submit on social media that gave directions on the best way to stream his music “Yummy” on repeat in an effort to say the #1 spot (Ricch, for his half, appeared very unbothered by the entire thing and inspired his followers to go stream “Yummy.”)
However going viral was by no means the aim for Ricch, who isn’t energetic on TikTok or a lot different social media, studying concerning the movies from his sister and household.
“I’ve by no means been the kind to be on social media on a regular basis,” he mentioned. “They present me humorous little movies just like the dude wiping the glass. It’s enjoyable to see folks singing alongside, however the stuff they ship me and present me, I’m not likely watching it.”
@jaywill4realThis how Roddy Ricch made The Field 😂😂 #music #foryou #foryoupage #featureme♬ The Field – Roddy Ricch
It might be straightforward to get caught up within the buzz of Ricch’s web ubiquity, however to take action would undermine his immense expertise as an artist and a songwriter (he’s at the moment celebrating his fourth week at #1 on the Billboard Scorching 100 Songwriters). His outstanding musical fashion as a rapper combines his West Coast roots with the sound of Atlanta lure music and Chicago drill rap, which will get an additional gravitas along with his lyrics that vary from the pondering the robust realities of life to bouts of uninhibited bravado.
Requested about Ricch’s viral success, Dallas Martin, the SVP of A&R at Atlantic Data, mentioned that whereas TikTok helps to drive the dialog round music, Ricch’s scores with “The Field” goes far past a buzzy social media second.
“It’s an unimaginable feeling to have the ability to see a brand new artist dominate the charts and beat out some illustrious expertise to say the primary spot,” he tells TIME.
There was speak of how the sound impact was engineered to unfold far and extensive, however Ricch dismissed the concept that he added the impact to win the Web.
“It’s simply the sound I heard once I made the music,” he mentioned. “I be placing sounds – you ever simply make random-a– noises? That’s all it was. It was my creativeness, wherever your creativeness needs to take you. I really feel like lots of people gravitated in the direction of the sound, nevertheless it’s simply what I heard. Whenever you make music, it’s all artwork – so it’s simply the best way I stroke my paint, the element added.”
Musicologist and Northeastern professor of music Andrew Mall feels that “The Field’s” most recognizable soundbite isn’t even probably the most attention-grabbing a part of the music, pointing as an alternative to Ricch’s prowess as a songwriter.
“I see how and why that [sound] is a viral part of the music on TikTok, however actually that’s not probably the most attention-grabbing part of the beat,” Mall tells TIME. “I’m actually taken by the atmospheric synths that underpin the monitor and supply the central harmonic part, significantly since there isn’t a bass to talk of other than a pitched bass drum pattern. Additionally, the truth that he retains writing credit score right here and on a number of different tracks which might be charting, together with these the place he’s a featured artist, speaks to a robust enterprise savvy on his half.”
Mall additionally urged that Ricch’s success could be much more dynamic than will be demonstrated by charting metrics, pointing to the truth that whereas “The Field” topped Billboard’s Streaming Songs chart on Jan 11, on Spotify, “The Field” took #1 on Dec. 26. In a time the place viral success on music-driven platforms like TikTok will be as vital a think about an artist’s profession as extra conventional types of promotion, it may be difficult to precisely painting a viral music’s success each on-line and and on the charts in actual time.
For Ricch, nevertheless, the success of “The Field” is simply one other blessing of the work he put into making his album, one thing he hopes to pay ahead sooner or later by serving to up-and-coming artists, very like Nipsey Hussle did with him.
There’s a brand new wave for folks to be on social media, nevertheless it didn’t change the best way I made my album,” Ricch mentioned. “Everyone seems to be simply going to determine a technique to make a very good music.”