Gucci Mane has been releasing music for over 15 years now but he's still having his moment. He's gone from collaborating with faded rappers like Soulja Boy to kicking it with the new class including DaBaby and Megan Thee Stallion. It's unusual for a rapper to remain so in demand for so long but it's a testament to his longevity and his relentless work habits.
He's just released his latest collaboration, Like 34 & 8, with Pooh Shiesty, and it's the second single off his upcoming album Ice Daddy, out on June 18th. On the track, Gucci compares his chemistry with Pooh to Los Angeles Lakers legends Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal, and it's an apt comparison. To celebrate the release, we've taken a look at Gucci's best collabs, and what makes them so special.
Rae Sremmurd - Black Beatles
Black Beatles is Gucci Mane's only number one record in the US and while that's criminal, it's a great one to go to the top with. Black Beatles went viral after the Mannequin Challenge but the song is more than a meme. Gucci adds some buoyancy to Swae Lee's woozy delivery, adding some show stopping lines like, "Like Chapo servin' llello to the gringos."
Selena Gomez - Fetish
Unlike most rappers, Gucci is a stranger to pop verses. Selena's Fetish was one of the first and it was a perfect debut. Over an elongated trap beat, Gucci dedicates his verse to his wife rapping, "Water diamonds, Aquafina/Just need you in a blue bikini." It's doesn't sound like a phoned-in verse which is a rarity in the pop world.
Migos - Slippery
Migos and Gucci feuded this year after Migos accused him of taking credit for their success. Whatever the situation was it doesn't matter because they gave us some stunning moments together. One of Culture's shining moments was this perky, oddball cut Slippery. Gucci sounds like the fourth Migos as he slides in a memorable third verse that moves slower than the others in delivery. "I'm a murderer, n****, but I don't promote violence," is a classic line.
Young Thug - Again
We would pay big money for a joint Gucci Mane and Young Thug project because everything they've collided on has been perfect. Four years ago though they gave us their joint highlight Again. Despite it being a Thug cut, he gives the introductory honours to Gucci who uses it as a chance to flex with some trademark Gucci lines like, "If Gucci Mane got so much money then why he robbin'? We thirty deep, we cover the streets, nigga, we mobbin'"
Solange - My Skin My Logo
Solange dedicates this entire song to Gucci by mentioning his name 24 times during her verse. He then comes through with a Solange-dedicated verse that's painfully short but a reminder of just how much of a time-freeze a slow-moving Gucci verse can be. His adlibs here are also memorable, hypnotising over Solange's experimental instrumental.
GoldLink - Crew
Maybe Gucci has lasted so long because he consistently updates his collaborators. He's one of the only mid-'00s-emerging rappers who can kick it with the new gang and his inclusion in GoldLink's Crew remix is proof. The beat is actually reminiscent of some of Gucci's more soulful recent cuts which is probably why he slides in so effortlessly. His introductory verse is full of cheeky wordplay reaching its peak at, "Got Shy Glizzy with me, but ain't nothing shy about me."
Metro Boomin - 10AM / Save The World
Gucci Mane is no stranger to a Metro Boomin beat having collaborated with him on their project Drop Top Wop so it's no surprise that his feature on Metro's debut album was a highlight. 10AM is one of the most cinematic, decadent beats that Gucci has ever rapped over and he sounds unusually relaxed given he's flexing. "East Atlanta, Zone 6, Gucci really rich," he raps. We assumed.
Young Money - Steady Mobbin
Gucci's openness to collaboration and versatility allows him to move with many different crews. Here he is with Wayne and co on Steady Mobbin, a triumphant, undeniably Wayne celebration that Gucci steals for his own moment. This is pre-sobriety Gucci and these kind of verses are rare to hear from him these days. "Gucci’s armed and dangerous, cocaine, codeine and angel dust," he raps in one of his most unhinged verses ever.
Chance The Rapper - Big Fish
Chance's The Big Day was a bit of a borefest to be honest but Big Fish was a highlight thanks to Gucci's verse. It's an inspirational moment for him telling everyone from the start, "Anything is possible if Gucci can do it." He has a rare gift for flexing and remaining humble which comes through best on lines like, "I'm the trap god but I give the glory to God."
A$AP Rocky - Pretty Flacko (Remix)
The post-2010 rap class have a lot to thank Gucci for and while Rocky moves in and out of the genre, 2012's Pretty Flacko sees him right in the zone. Pretty Flacko was a breakthrough for Rocky and he repackaged it with Gucci for his debut album. It was a smart move because Gucci adds a unique personality to the verse even if we're just considering the adlibs. Gucci! Skrt! Loco! Know, though! Damn!
Young Thug - Floyd Mayweather
We were never going to leave you with just one Gucci Mane x Young Thug cut. The Jeffery project was revolutionary for Thug and Floyd Mayweather was a huge highlight. Gucci is on his bullshit for this verse giving us wordplay, references and flexes in 9 lines. "I'm sellin' purple rain, R.I.P. to Prince (Prince)/When I was behind the fence, they treated me like a prince (Woo)," is quite the opening line even if we're just considering the "woo" adlib.
DaBaby - Gospel
DaBaby and Gucci is a fruitful partnership that has shone this year. They both contributed to each other's records and this one comes from DaBaby's Kirk. It's an emotional but joyous moment for this year's best rapper that Gucci matches with heartening bars. He raps about loneliness and the rappers that have gone before him as DaBaby calls out Nipsey Hustle in his hook.