Shelly Massenburg-Smith, a.k.a. D.R.A.M., got his big break as the quick sweetheart feature of Chance the Rapper projects after 2012. Appearing on Surf‘s “Caretaker” and Coloring Book‘s “Special,” D.R.A.M. established himself as a guy full of sexy lullabies and endearing messages. Gathering his sound on his first EP Gahdamn! last year, D.R.A.M. returned to join the post-Coloring Book Chicago breakout artist hype that has been 2016 by penning “Broccoli” with none other than the eccentric and seemingly here to stay fad that is Lil Yachty. The song has its moments (though I personally think it’s a bit overrated), but it did the job and put D.R.A.M. on the map–sitting at #1, or at least in the top 10, songs on Billboard‘s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop chart since August 13th.
Big Baby D.R.A.M. sees the lovable artist finally coming into his own. Pictured with his dog on the cover, which you can now ingeniously meme yourself into, D.R.A.M. fully understands who he is and what his music is going to be like, describing it as “trappy-go-lucky” on Hot 97. Throughout the versatile project consisting of a “if Journey went trap” song called “Misunderstood” with Young Thug, the comical “WiFi” with Erykah Badu, and the fun-loving “Cash Machine,” D.R.A.M. successfully paints himself as a genuine and sincere voice in a genre filled with over-extravagant braggadocio and fantasy-rich lifestyles. He’s like R. Kelly mixed with the kid that plays “Dustin” on Stranger Things. Only D.R.A.M. could say something like “I choose you like a Pokemon” on “Cute” and have it be so overly corny yet on character that it actually comes off perfectly endearing. As wacky and honest as Big Baby D.R.A.M. can be at the same time, D.R.A.M. is a refreshing bit of optimism and sincerity in today’s R&B/trap world.