“Ridin’ Around” featuring Nipsey Hussle and RJ was produced by DJ Mustard.
Even without seeing the Slauson Avenue street sign, I knew that the video was in Los Angeles. Where else is the sky so beautiful? So right off the bat part of me likes this video for purely nostalgic reasons, i.e. I miss home. All three artists on the song are based out of Los Angeles, so there’s another reason for me to be on board. Running with the theme of nostalgia, this video is unabashed in its subject matter which appears to be from the Golden Era of California gangsta rap. The video shows palm trees, sunshine, and Los Angeles south of Pico Blvd. That’s the same Los Angeles you used to see in the videos of Snoop, Dre and many other L.A.-based rappers.
While we’re running with this nostalgia theme, we can discuss the song itself which falls back on the often disparaged quartet of money, women, cars and clothes (“My clothes expensive/My hoes appealing” and later RJ says “Whip the ghost like I’m bringing back slavery”). So the content matter isn’t anything new, but the rappers themselves are solid. Well Nipsy Hussle delivers a solid verse and RJ is serviceable, but neither is amazing.
The real reason I like this video is because it is so over-the-top in its 90s-era hip-hop-ness. The song is a pastiche of older, better West Coast hip-hop; it falls short of matching today’s predominant unconscious hip-hop, Trap. That being said, the song’s production, crafted by the fantastically named DJ Mustard, combines G-Funk and modern Trap to make a beat that could very easily become a hit. As of right now it has less than 200k views on YouTube, but who knows? It might take off.
The song appears on DJ Mustard’s “Cold Summer.” The album was released on September 30, 2016. The album featured numerous guest appearances. It’s available to stream on Spotify.