Dial ‘G’ for ‘G Files’
Sac rapper Mi$tuh G takes the reins of new album, ‘G Files’
It’s a new album and an opportunity to showcase some new talent for Mi$tuh G, Kendall Gums. G Files, released Jan. 10 on Spotify and CD Baby, is the latest project from the Sacramento-born-and-raised rapper—and it mixes things up, Mi$tuh G says.
“With the new album, something different was I took more control of the production,” Gums said. “Like, I produced the whole album.”
That meant taking more control of the sound, the beats and the choices, a challenge that Gums was excited to take on, and one that he hopes showcases his versatility. It also means some more creative risks—weaving in some of Mi$tuh G’s voicemail as the album’s interstitial tissue.
“I’m checking the messages on my phone, and I feel like it’s something people could listen through straight through,” Gums said, “just because of the journey it takes you on.”
The skits were Gums’ way of channeling albums such as Kendrick Lamar’s Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City and Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle, and they give the listener an insight into some of Mi$tuh G’s relationships. Some of the messages are unprompted, while some were loosely directed by Gums, but they all explore questions of persona and underline the album’s themes of searching for respect and especially camaraderie.
“My whole crew had left, y’know? My crew was gone,” Gums said. “So I was pushing Kome Wit It [Entertainment], and I’m still cool with some of my friends, but they had life things going on. They had kids, maybe a court case—but I was still embellished in the music.”
Gums says his style has remained the same, but ever since he started working with artist and producer E-Moe, he’s become part of the Paystyle Music family. Gums says the core group of artists is E-Moe, Don Blanco, Mak7teen and Illa Jay, who frequently collaborate and push new work as if it were their own.
The same is true for G Files. E-Moe took some verses and also left a voice message, as did other collaborators. But the project is still a Mi$tuh G creation.
“I write about whatever the beat tells me,” Gums said. “Sometimes I write about how I’m feeling, I kinda like to go off of life. Sometimes I can write about some haters, I can write songs about relationships, good or bad.”
G Files’ album cover and intro both feature Gums’ uncle, and the pair act as a prologue to the constant flow of Mi$tuh G’s lyrics. They’re deft, fresh and interesting, and paired with the often emotional voicemail interludes, they take on a new depth, woven into a dialogue about family, love and being so good at rapping you should be called “The Human Pen.”
They’re subjects that Gums says might surprise some listeners.
“I know that’s kind of where the Sacramento scene is at now, people dissing each other’s neighborhoods and cliques, but that’s not what we’re pushing,” he said. “Everybody’s just pushing for the music.”
Gums isn’t interested in changing his style, and says he’s working to stay independent of expectations. Paystyle Music helps keep the rap center stage.
“I will have people that’ll tell me to change my style a little bit, because I have a quick, fast-paced chopper style, and that’s just how I do what I do,” Gums said. “I don’t feel like I need to dumb down what I’m doing. I know that there’s a lane for what I’m doing. I just gotta get into that lane.”