Ty Dolla Sign is the accurate embodiment of hand crafted musical creativity and freedom. As a member of the infamous producer collective D.R.U.G.S., TY$ makes his tracks from scratch including his own beats, vocals, and instrumentation. Hailing straight from the west coast, he began teaming up with DJ Mustard, creating a connection that would do nothing but evolve over the next 5-6 years. In 2012, TY$ and DJ Mustard released Beach House the mixtape, drawing subtle attention to his name across the country and most notably from Philly born rapper Wiz Khalifa. Just a year later, TY$ would sign with Wiz’s label Taylor Gang, parented by Atlantic Records. After dropping “Paranoid”, one the best party songs our generation has ever seen, the label pushed him to drop an album due to the popularity he was receiving off of the single. According to an interview with Hot 93.7 back in 2014, Ty didn’t want to drop an album because he wanted his debut studio project to go crazy. So instead he vowed to make a 13 track EP. 4 years ago today, on July 1st, 2013, Ty Dolla Sign dropped Beach House 2 featuring the likes of Wiz Khalifa, Young Jeezy, & Chris Brown. Little did we know, but certainly could have expected, that this mixtape would be a straight classic.
Intro ft. Nate Howard/These Hoes ft. Kevin Gates
You would think that Ty was about to drop a love album after the monologue delivered in the first minute but later in the tape, you will quickly learn how foreign that entire idea is. When I heard Nate Howard say, “I kiss her forehead before head”, I expected a cleanly mix between love and lust for the entire duration of the mixtape. The second half of the song, “These Hoes”, shows that women play just as many games as men do. Featuring Louisiana native Kevin Gates, Ty talks about getting caught up but seeing how she doesn’t have the official title, she doesn’t have a place to question anything you do; I’m sure we could all relate to this.
Paranoid ft. B.o.B.
This track takes me back to my freshman year of college at Syracuse University. When this track came on in every party, and it did, even the people who were sitting down would get up and dance; the same effect was evident across the entire country. “Paranoid” peaked at number 9 on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop charts while going platinum in the same instance. Lyrically, TY$ sings about the mental thought processes of being a player. Sometimes you play the game and don’t even notice that you’re winning. You live in two, three, maybe even four different worlds but when they collide, that shit can really freak you out. The shock in being caught up is way larger than the actuality of playing people.
I Bet. Wiz Khalifa
This song would end up being one of the very first we heard from the duo of TY$ and Wiz Khalifa. When these two make music together, you could only imagine the actual studio session and the cypher taking place during recording. Later in the tape, listeners will witness the two at their full potential but this was a perfect introduction to them as a collective. Over the years, they would go on to record a 3x platinum hit and release a collaborative mixtape called Talk About It In The Morning. However, it all started with this song right here.
1st Night/ 4 A Young (Remix) ft. Trey Songz & Kirko Bangz
This track represented maturity. When you’re younger, you oftentimes think that if a girl gives it up easy to you, she gives it up easy to everyone. If you get it on the first night, it automatically qualifies as a one night stand. But in the scheme of things, we’re grown and with that being said, there is absolutely nothing wrong with fucking on the first night. This song is actually 8 minutes long but feels like nearly half of that. The beat switch brings us to an alternative reality of having sex with someone else’s girlfriend. Two legendary verses are laid down but Ty’s label mate Trey Songz and Texas native Kirko Bangz. Trey Songz said, “she bust it open like a bag of chips”. This is for the free sexuality of a women and selfishness in pleasing herself no matter what the circumstance is.
Bitches Ain’t Shit ft. Chevy Woods & Jay 305/ Get It How I Live ft. XXYYXX & Peter Lee Johnson
“Yo nigga laid up in that fucking hospital and you still think of me/ Man, I swear to God I’d kill yo fucking ass if you did that shit to me.” This song is like gospel on a Sunday morning. You’re going to do whatever you want to a girl but if she even thinks about doing that shit to you, it’s over for her. She may be cheating on her man with you, but if she thought about cheating on you, you would literally have to kill her. You would only feel this song if you could personally relate. The second part of the song samples XXYYXX’s “About You”, which was made famous by SZA & Chance the Rapper’s “Child Play”. “Get It How I Live” to TY$ is “The Morning” to The Weeknd; it’s about mental prosperity and releasing shackles that are placed on a woman. As explicit as it is, this song is like chapter of the bible. At some point in your life, it will make sense.
Ratchet In Benz ft. Juicy J
Buddah Shampoo murdered this production. The beat drop is like coming up for water during a swim. I don’t even own a Benz and this man TY$ had me ready to shoot my shot in the backseat. Juicy J lays down a seamless verse, backed by Ty’s elegant harmonizing in the back. “Ratchet In My Benz” is one of those fluid tracks that confirms your decision of playing the mixtape in the first place. It’s bigger than the Benz though, it’s more so about being spontaneous with one another in situationship. And I feel this, because spontaneity is everything to a man like me.
Irie ft. Wiz Khalifa
I mentioned earlier in this post that sooner than later listeners would get a perfect example as to the flames Wiz and Ty cook up in the booth. This is the hardest song on the mixtape. “Irie” is also that track that confirms that TY$ is way more than a singer, noting that he can rap just as well as he sings. “Irie” is elevation and celebration, popping and puffing, bobbing and weaving, etc. It’s not as calm as the other songs on the project but it sure does hit. Next time you go on a joyride, run this one right here.
Still Sippin’ ft. Kirko Bangz
“Still Sippin” is undoubtedly one of the most slept on songs of Beach House 2. “Still Sippin” is an anthem to being in the state of life where getting lit 24/7, is alright to do. When you stay getting throwed, there is always going to be someone who misses the sober you, even more than you may. Also, this is the best display of Kirko Bangz since his hit single “Drank In My Cup”. If he belongs anywhere, it’s on a track with Ty.
My Cabana ft. Young Jeezy
This song is a cloud of ecstasy right here. The cabana is not literal, it’s more so like your iCloud storage. Consistency is the enemy and options, are the perfect threat to a good time. There isn’t much discrimination other than the hate that comes within fake nails and butt pads. “My Cabana” is a salute to all the tasty flavors at the candy shop. Verse to verse, featuring Atlanta legend Young Jeezy, this song slaps. And it was fully produced by Ty Dolla Sign himself.
Float ft. IAMSU & Terrace Martin
Sampling Tweet’s “My Place”, ‘Float is the most emotional song on the tape. The track perfectly depicts being in love, physically and mentally. I guess in a lot of ways, it’s the true embodiment of the mixtape theme. Ty says, “real nigga can’t swim, so please let me float”; this has a double meaning in reference to making love and also life in the sense that there will always be obstacles and mistrials. No one is going to shoot 100% but as long as you progress through your ups and downs, you’re still winning. The saxophone solo at the end is classically beautiful. Between “Float” & “Worth It” by Tinashe, I haven’t heard a woodwind instrument hit this hard in a hip-hop song.
Creez ft. B.o.B & Kid Ink
Creez is equivalent to having sauce. Anyone can acquire juice, but juice is very different from sauce. Sauce is forever, juice is temporary. Creez is another word for sauce, like “bud” is for weed. “Creez” talks about having the attractive persona to keep a girl thirsting and willing in every way. Creez represents the aura of being that nigga, and here we have it musically.
Got My Heart ft. Chris Brown & The Game/ Outro ft. Big TC
The actual heart is as precious as the experiences you go through that damage and solidify it. The most significant part about “Got My Heart” is the outro done by Ty’s brother Big TC. As we will go on to figure out in a couple of years, Big TC is extraordinarily musically talented as well and is able to make such good music due to the way he was forced to live. Music is reflective of the experience and with a harder experience, the better the music. The first half of the song appealed to the pop audiences that may have clicked for a listen, but the ending is what was really for us.
Never Be The Same ft. Jay Rock
What I’ve noticed about TY$ over the past few years is that his last song is always more than music. The last song is often like the humming and organ playing at the end of a church service. After you heard the word, you momentarily take a full circle of reflection about your progression and overcoming of the most conflicting issues. Jay Rock ended it perfectly with his spoken word at the end. This is the moment where the album graciously comes to an end.
By K. High