Last year, it was announced that Top Dawg Entertainment had expanded their roster with the acquisition of rising star Ray Vaughn, who — according to the official press release — had been signed to the label since 2020. In addition, the Long Beach talent also unveiled a new EP titled No Pressure, an “appetizer” of sorts that contained three songs and, as Vaughn stated himself, spawned from what he’s dealt with in his past:
“I’d love to tell you how I created the project, but to tell you the truth, to revisit the place of brutal honesty these songs came from is a chaotic process … Don’t take me too seriously, honestly, just learn to have fun.”
Since the release of No Pressure, fans have only received the loose drop “59th & Bethany,” another powerful record that immediately leaves you wanting more. This past weekend, he began to fulfill that need with “Picking Cherries,” a Dylan Graham and Tariq Beats-produced effort that sees Ray Vaughn pouring his heart out about past struggles in a way that’s almost reminiscent of classic Meek Mill drops:
“Before I had the cake, they deserted me, but now the Porsche is 911, it’s an emergency, I do not accept apologies, you did it purposely, if I say, “Fuck you,” it’s “Fuck you” for all eternity, I used to shop at Angel Views, livin’ with a broken wing, sleepin’ at a minimum ’cause all I had was broken dreams, used to sell work, it hit different when you know the fiends, growin’ up, we never did ballet but we was holdin’ beams…”
“Picking Cherries” also comes with a visual courtesy of Sammy McEntire, which begins with a shot of a young Ray Vaughn with family, showing support to a grandfather on his deathbed. Things then continue to match the emotionally charged subject matter throughout — simply put, expect to replay the black-and-white clip more than a few times over.
Check it out below.