DETROIT - Big Sean is back home.
The rapper is set to take the stage at DTE Energy Music Theater this weekend following the release of his sophomore album "Hall of Fame," which was released Tuesday.
Myself and Alex Atwell of Uniquely Detroit met up with Sean at an event for his new foundation -- the Sean Anderson Foundation -- as they teamed up with Detroit Public Schools to giveaway some school supplies at Eastern Market. Standing inside Shed 2, Sean talked to us about his foundation, Detroit, his family and his new album.
KEN: Talk about your foundation, how did it come about?
BIG SEAN: I started the Sean Anderson foundation really to just give back, focus on the school age youth, give back all we can. The future is all we got, especially with the revival of the city, to get the city back to where it needs to be, we need to focus on the youth. We need to inspire them, show them that it's real, that things are possible. It's perfect timing for me, with my new album "Hall of Fame", I'm definitely, you know, spitting a lot of inspiration, just letting people know that I grew up in my moms house in that 2-family flat off 6 Mile. It's just all positive energy, all good things going on here.
KEN: With everything that's going on in Detroit, with bankruptcy, how do you think your role has changed as an artist in Detroit since Finally Famous?
BIG SEAN: I think I used to look at myself, especially during my first album, I just wanted to be famous. Now I definitely have taken more of a responsibility, after people come up to me and kids will say I look up to you or what you say, I want to make sure that when I look back on my life, I did something I was proud of, that I left a legacy. A lot of my favorite artists, Marvin Gaye, James Brown, Eminem, Kanye West, they've done a lot for the city, and left a legacy, and made music that meant something. I make a lot of fun music, but I definitely want to make music to inspire.
KEN: You've gone through a lot since your last album, relationships, everything that's happening back home in Detroit, but you still find ways to keep the Detroit, Finally Famous crew involved (Key Wane) - is it important to you to keep them involved as your grow?
BIG SEAN: As I grow it's important to keep the people that were with me from the beginning around me, from my Finally Famous crew, everybody in Detroit, from Key Wane, who produced a lot of my album. It feels great to get the response I get in the city. I hope people can be inspired with the new album.
KEN: What's your favorite place to visit when you're back in Detroit?
BIG SEAN: Well, my mom's house, which is my house. I love going to Sweetwater Tavern, definitely coney island.
KEN: Which coney?
BIG SEAN: My neighborhood coney used to be Sherwood Coney Island, I know they've been remodeling that. Detroit One Coney, Lou's Deli. I just went to a coney around the corner here and got a coney dog.
ALEX: What does this city mean to you?
BIG SEAN: This city literally means everything to me. I'm probably one of the artist that reps the hardest. I'm always wearing Red Wings, Tigers stuff. Always speaking highly of the city, showing there's a positive side, an intelligent side, and it's not all bad like the media makes it out to be. Even though we're a city that needs a lot, we can also give a lot, we have a lot of soul. I always keep that message in my music. A lot of it gets overlooked by the singles on the radio, but my music is some of the most positive music out there. It's for the dreamers, the people who need inspiration. I hope people take the time out to grab "Hall of Fame", and hear what I have to say.
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