Gucci Mane has had a long prolific career which doesn’t seem to be coming to an end any time soon. I have compiled a list of 10 mixtapes which you should listen to in order to understand his music better, him as an artist and how he was able to remain in the industry of so long. Also, don’t get caught up on the rankings of the mixtapes in this list.
It’s only right to start at the beginning and “Chicken Talk” is where it all began. “Chicken Talk” was the first official mixtape Gucci Mane released. It featured many tracks that I still enjoy to this day such as “745”. “745” has a catchy and notorious chorus as well as some infamous lyrics. Within this song Wop takes shots at Jeezy and Jay Z and before I forget to mention, “745” was co produced by Juicy J.
Gucci Mane set precedence with this mixtape. “First Day Out” was a first of its kind. Releasing a single as soon as you came home from jail wasn’t a thing before Gucci did it. Furthermore, “Writings on the Wall” had the anthem “Wasted” which made it all the way to the billboards.
I think this mixtape demonstrated to the world that Wop was fully embracing this new culture of Trap music which immerged whilst he was in jail. Instead of steering clear or looking down on this new class of rappers, Gucci Mane collaborated with them and went that extra mile to do a collaborative mixtape with Lil Uzi Vert.
The mixtape was able to bring two different groups of fans into a common platform and crossover to experience the other side. Personally, I was one of those fans who did crossover and listen to Lil Uzi Vert. Before hand I had heard Lil Uzi Vert and some of his songs, at the time I didn’t really get him. But now I’m screaming “ALL MY FRIENDS ARE DEAD!”
“The Movie” with Dj Drama began a hot streak in Gucci Mane’s career; all the subsequent mixtapes that followed received a positive reception. What the “The Movie” had that prior mixtapes didn’t have was balance. “The Movie” has the perfect balance between street anthems and emotive songs. This allowed the mixtape to reach multiple audiences and everyone to find their personal favorites.
"Gucci Sosa" really showcased Zaytoven’s talents. Now that producers are as popular as the rappers it doesn’t seem like that much of a big deal especially for Zaytoven since we know how revered he is in the Trap music community. But this came out in 2008! I think this mixtape opened the doors for Zaytoven and other producers to become more than just the guys in the back.
The mixtapes Gucci dropped in 2010 were amazing and “Mr. Zone 6” was the pinnacle. What makes “Mr. Zone 6” stand out from the rest is how lyrical Gucci Mane is on the tape. Typically, Wop pairs his flows with the instrumental to make his songs, with little regard to how lyrical he is. In “Mr. Zone 6” Gucci combines flow, lyricism and complimenting beats to construct this body of work. Don’t believe me? Check out “Long Money”.
The “Free Bricks” mixtape helped Future to establish himself in the music scene after the success of “Racks”. What’s so essential about this mixtape is that it was the first collaborative project Gucci Mane had done with another artist. The success of “Free Bricks” and Future showed Gucci and the rest of the world how helpful it was to do a project with him. After this, Gucci started doing joint mixtapes with all the following artists that had signed to him; Peewee Longway, Young Thug, Young Dolph and Young Scooter.
Gas, Lean, Molly. These three mixtapes I could listen to for the rest of my life. The WW3 series gives you an in depth audio lecture on how Gucci switches his style to the accord of who’s the producer. This keeps Guwop’s music fresh, interesting and creative. Listening to WW3 you begin to understand why Gucci Mane is able to stay so relevant and continue to see growth in his fan base because he’s able to adapt his music in a way that style retains his signature style that existing fans know him for but also appealing to new audiences.
I almost forgot to include this mixtape in the list until I realized that ‘Trap Back’ came out before ‘Trap God’ which is important. ‘Trap Back’ was a beginning of a new sound, a new era in Guwop’s music. It was still the same Gucci we know and love but from “Trap Back” onwards, the sound was more relevant to current times.
Although, “Trap God” came out in the same year as “Trap Back”, “Trap God” is still a mixtape everyone needs to listen to. “Trap God” introduced new players into Gucci Mane’s music, especially on the side of producers with the inclusion of Metro Boomin, Honorable C Note and 808 Mafia on to Gucci songs. Moreover, “Trap God” was pivotal amongst fans. Being the undisputed, self proclaimed “Trap God” elevated Wop’s status and this was the beginning of his die hard cult following.