Introducing Fayetteville, North Carolina’s hottest new artist, DON PRIVATE.
DON PRIVATE is a prolific storyteller who paints vivid pictures with his pithy bars and distinctive voice. In 2020, he blessed us with his debut EP “1229“, introducing us to his signature style, a perfect blend of sharp, solid lyrics spilled over sturdy, hypnotic beats. ‘See I was locked up in that climate. Lions and tigers and bears and these thoughts in my head they be violent. I didn’t do no crime, stood on all ten like I’m climbing. Iron sharpen iron, Imma push mine you implying. Made it out that dirt now I shine like a diamond. I was in that dirt, didn’t nobody try to find me…’ -PRETTY TONY.
Oddly enough, DON didn’t set out to be a Rapper. “Rapping was a hobby I developed throughout the 13 long years I spent in prison. I knew I had a story to tell for myself and for my brothers who were still in the struggle. The best way for me to get it out was through music. In 2010 I was in S.E.G., which is 24 hour lockdown in prison, and I was vibing to Nipsey Hussle’s song “Loaded Bases“. He said, ‘Nigga ain’t gon’ make a hundred mil’ off in these streets and more than likely, I’m gon’ end up in somebody precinct even worse…’ In that moment I knew I had to make a plan for myself to prosper. The streets and prison was all I knew up to that point and it was time to change that narrative.”
Once a young bull tied to the streets and the struggle, he’s now a grown man using his life experiences to fuel his bars. “Overall, the struggle is what inspires me. Being able to use my voice to speak for those like me, that may never be heard, pushes me to keep going.”
He doesn’t take his ability to empower people with his music lightly. “Being a rapper is powerful! We get to share our experiences with the world, become influencers to the current generation and those to come and have the opportunity to make millions. I feel blessed to be in this game.”
DON honestly doesn’t know what he’d be doing if it weren’t for music. “Running the streets and being in prison was my life for a long time, so when I decided to lock in and make music I was all in and ready to give 110%! No other career paths have even crossed my mind. I’m so passionate about my music and sharing my message and my vision with the world. Imma play Picasso in this industry.”
He draws inspiration from his favorite artists, which he lists in no particular order (Nipsey Hussle, Lil Durk, Rick Ross and Lil’ Baby) yet prides himself on being original and transparent. Hence the name DON PRIVATE private– not known or meant to be known by the general populace. “My music isn’t like most in the mainstream today. I spit from the heart. This shit here is authentic, not a gimmick created to sell streams. That’s why Nipsey Hussle is such a huge inspiration to me. I relate to his lyrics and see the pictures he paints with his music and that’s what my music will do for the people.”
DON’s story is a shining example of how a difficult situation can lead to a beautiful destination. “Hip-Hop is beautiful. It made a way for street niggas like me to escape their environment and live life. I’m grateful for the second chance. Me and MR RED CARPET got next. 1229 is ready to take it to the top!”
Stay tuned, DON PRIVATE will be releasing his sophomore effort, “1229Empire“, this summer. “I’m definitely thrilled about this new project, y’all gon’ really feel this one! This is just the first step. Once I’m established I plan to build a platform where those who come after me can thrive too. That’s what it’s all about, opening doors for each other and being able to leave a legacy for my loved ones.”
DON PRIVATE’s EP “1229” is currently streaming on all digital music platforms with visuals on available on his YouTube Channel, Don Private – Topic. TAP IN!