Chattanooga-born emcee Isaiah Rashad has seemingly had one of the most tumultuous years in hip-hop history — seeing everything from extreme support for his comeback project The House Is Burning to a heartbreaking breach of privacy.
Following a brief response to his leaked sex tape at Coachella this past year, Zay sat down with industry veteran Joe Budden in his first interview since he was outed online. Detailing the ups and downs of his celebrity life, Rashad stays on brand in the interview — honest, poised and light-hearted through and through.
Budden leads in asking Rashad about his upbringing, revealing a hectic childhood with complicated family dynamics and an early sense of responsibility. His experience with having a job as a kid and the values he had growing up shine a light on the occasionally cryptic content of his music, painting a clearer portrait of his generally private life.
Over the course of their discussion, Zay and Joe get to the elephant in the room — his leaked tape. Isaiah shows his maturity by having an open discussion about his unintentional outing and his sexual identity, explaining, “If somebody asked me about it, yeah I would talk to you about it. I talked to plenty people about it.”
The reaction from his friends and management was immediate as Top and Matt, two executives from Top Dawg Entertainment, group-called him to address the leak. Isaiah jokes, “[Top and Matt] double FaceTime, I’m like, ‘What the fuck happened?’… Off of him just starting to say something I’m like ‘Aw, one of them lil sex tapes leaked.’”
He immediately makes more light of the situation, explaining that despite an initially difficult journey past those events, he has reached a place of acceptance with his sexual fluidity and the newfound interest in his personal life. Speaking on the passing of his grandfather, his grandmother’s cancer and his own struggles with depression, Isaiah pulls back the curtain on the good and bad of his current circumstances.
After an all-encompassing conversation ends with a bit of sports talk and comedy, Zay gives a wholehearted thank you to his supporters, throwing a little shade at the haters for good measure.
The interview is currently only available on Joe Budden’s Patreon page, however anyone interested can find clips on his Instagram @joebudden.
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