Get to know Epic signee and YouTube favorite DDG.
Pontiac, Michigan’s own DDG cemented himself as a prominent YouTuber before embarking on his music career in recent years, but the music was always a part of DDG’s plans. Gifted with a natural sense of humor and musical ability, DDG quickly garnered a YouTube following while noticing that his musical content was some of his most popular. After signing with Epic Records and focusing on his craft, DDG is ready to let the world hear what he’s been working on. We caught up with DDG to discuss his latest EP Sorry 4 the Hold Up, new music videos and upcoming projects in 2019.
The Knockturnal: In your recent interview with DJ Smallz Eyes you mentioned that you believe in yourself more than anybody, Where does this confidence come from? Was your family always supportive of your ambitions?
DDG: My family has always been supportive, but you know how you just know when something’s going to happen for you? I just be knowing because I visualized this already.
The Knockturnal: Has anything happened in the last five years that’s surprised you or was it always a part of your game plan, launching a successful YouTube channel and embarking on a music career?
DDG: It’s kind of surreal sometimes, tomorrow I go to London to perform. I know what’s gonna happen. I don’t get too excited, or too surprised, I just keep working towards it.
The Knockturnal: Where have you traveled to so far?
DDG: I just came from Dubai, been to Bora Bora, Mexico, Toronto, Dominican Republic, I’ve been to a lot of places.
The Knockturnal: Are you traveling more so because of music or YouTube or both?
DDG: Both, a mix of both. Music got me traveling a lot, around the U.S. or even internationally doing promo runs or radio, I’ve been traveling with music a lot.
The Knockturnal: What’s your favorite place you’ve visited so far?
DDG: Bora Bora, I did a bunch of daredevil stuff like swimming with sharks.
The Knockturnal: Did you wear any protective gear?
DDG: The sharks weren’t hella big, but they can still bite you. There was a lot of people, it was a lot of water, but you could stand up. It was the shallow end of the ocean and sharks and stingrays were just swimming past.
The Knockturnal: When you started out with skits and comedy on YouTube, did standup or a career in comedy ever cross your mind? Why was music the natural next lane for you to transition to?
DDG: I’ve always been into music because my dad used to engineer. I used to make songs with my brothers in the studio as a kid, and I never wanted to be a comedian or nothing like that. I just started doing YouTube and people liked me, but there was always music in the back of my head and I knew I’m gonna do this one day.
The Knockturnal: How has making music changed your outlook on life and affected your creative process versus when you’re making YouTube videos?
DDG: Since I’m on YouTube I’m used to doing things fast, I’m used to uploading a video single everyday. With music I’m more anxious and I’m like, ‘I’m ready to go, I’m ready to go.’ It helps gives me that drive so I know that it’s gonna be good and helps me stay focused.
The Knockturnal: Do you feel like since launching your music career and signing that fans see more of your life now, in vlogs?
DDG: I feel like it’s opening up different things for them to watch, I haven’t gotten to that point yet where the stuff I do is absolutely crazy.
The Knockturnal: In several interviews, you talk about how cool it would be if Drake, J Cole or Cardi B vlogged, besides the artists mentioned, who is an artist you’d like to see vlog?
DDG: I feel like any big artist honestly because I be interested like what do you do when you get to this point. I know their lives are crazy, if I could just name someone off the top of my head- probably Meek Mill, if he records everyone’s gonna watch that- at the crib, going out to eat, just stuff like that, that people wanna see.
The Knockturnal: Can you talk about your new EP Sorry 4 The Hold Up? I want to start with the EP title, you mentioned you feel anxious when it comes to dropping your music, is that where the inspiration for the title comes from?
DDG: Yeah, like the track “Hold Up” feet Queen (Naija) has been long-awaited, people knew we made the song and have been waiting for it.
The Knockturnal: Why these 4 records for the EP?
DDG: I just wanted this to be more of a smooth vibe, not too singy, but singy because I’m all about trying to be versatile.
The Knockturnal: Can you tell us more about “Hold Up” and working on both the record and video with Queen Naija?
DDG: It was fun, me and Queen [are] cool. She come from YouTube, I come from YouTube, she come from Michigan, I come from Michigan. I met her before she started doing music, it was cool, it was an organic vibe.
The Knockturnal: When it comes to your music videos, how hands-on are you with the creative process?
DDG: I never really did big big music videos until I signed with Epic Records, so I feel like I don’t want to be taking full control, and I want to see what they can do and see how it comes out, but when I was shooting my own videos independently with the people I used, I directed it.
The Knockturnal: What else do you have coming down the pipeline and what details can you share?
DDG: I’ve got a project dropping in the fall. The name is not confirmed, it’s gonna be 10-15 songs. There’s a few producers and features on the project.
The Knockturnal: Where was a majority of the project recorded?
DDG: I do a lot of music in Atlanta. I like flying to Atlanta to do music. The vibe when I’m there is just music and work. LA is cool too but I live there so there’s a lot of distractions. It’s way easier vibes out there, way more producers and artists and there you can create something from scratch.
The Knockturnal: What are you rolling out next?
DDG: I’m dropping a single called “Push It,” and we’re shooting the video when we get back. They’re both supposed to drop in September.