Detroit MC Big Sean got introspective when he recently stopped by the Yahoo! Music offices for a three-part interview. His hit songs "My Last" with Chris Brown, "I Do It," and "Marvin Gaye And Chardonnay" with Kanye West have made him one of hip-hop's fastest rising stars, earning best new artist nominations at this year's VMA and BET Hip-Hop Awards.
But there's more to artist with flashy lyrics about money, cars, and girls. In part one, Big Sean discusses graduating from high school with a 3.7 GPA and having received a full scholarship to Michigan State University before bumrushing Kanye West at a local radio station and busting a 10-minute freestyle rap.
After Kanye signed Big Sean and vowed to make him his protégé, it still took years to launch his career. Despite everyone, including his grandmother, telling him to get his real job, he found the most support in his mother, who is a creative type herself.
Before Big Sean's mother became an English teacher, she was an aspiring actress. "She had dreams," he said. "She wanted to be an actress. After she got her Masters and went to college, she moved to New York and did acting classes with people like Denzel. They were her friends. They used to always tell her how good she was."
But the responsibilities of motherhood prompted her to put her personal aspirations on the backburner.
In Part 2 of my Big Sean interview he talks about comparisons to Kanye, what song on "College Dropout" made him "tear-up," and why Drake gives him credit for a popular contemporary rap style.
Camera and video editing: Robert Gardner