Young Thug Sheds Former Identity with 'No, My Name Is JEFFERY'

Young Thug Sheds Former Identity with 'No, My Name Is JEFFERY'

The artist formerly known as Young Thug breaks boundaries with new mixtape

The artist formerly known as Young Thug breaks boundaries with new mixtape

Text: William Defebaugh

At midnight last night, rapper Young Thug shed the identity that he spent years crafting with the release of his highly-anticipated new mixtape, No, My Name Is JEFFERY. He has been teasing the project for quite some time (he originally wanted to drop it on his birthday, August 16), most recently with a video trailer that finds the artist being interrogated by various officials, and loved ones, insisting that his name is Young Thug. If you're at all confused, don't worry: Jeffery explained everything at his album launch party last night, which was all caught on camera thanks to YouTube. It made history as the first album launch to be streamed around the world.

At the event, the artist formerly known as Young Thug offered many insights into his thought process behind the new record. Why the name change? Because Jeffery is his real name, and he doesn't want his kids to call him "thug." Who is his greatest fashion inspiration? Himself. Speaking of fashion, Jeffery also unveiled the cover art for his new project at the party, and it is hands down one of the strongest, most provocative album covers to be released so far in 2016, with the rapper wearing a dress designed by Alessandro Trincone, one of the finalists for VFILES' forthcoming season 7 runway show for which Jeffery will serve as a mentor. A picture is worth a thousand words, and this image speaks volumes to the rapper's consistent ingenuity in his field. Many will be shocked to see a rapper wearing a dress (and a headpiece, no less), but it makes a strong statement about the aesthetic gender boundaries that are quickly disappearing thanks to pioneers like Jeffery.

The mixtape itself is full of hit after hit, many of which will likely be talked about for months to come. Unsurprisingly, the theme of names is prevalent in more than just the album title. The tracklist contains one for each of Jeffery's declared idols: “RiRi,” "Wyclef Jean," “Guwop” (Gucci Mane), and most interestingly, "Harambe," (the gorilla who was killed at the Cincinnati Zoo earlier this year, and has since become the subject of many debates and memes). Jeffery's previously posted tracklist also had a song called “Kanye West,” noticeably missing from the album. At the release, Jeffery also addressed a question about his rumored 40-song collaboration with the fellow rapper by saying that they were essentially locked away in a vault.

From its groundbreaking release to its boundary-pushing visuals to Jeffery's signature trap triumphs, No, My Name Is Jeffery is as successful as it is provocative. Listen to the album in full via Apple Music below.

UP NEXT

Bedtime Stories with Jon Kortajarena