With the sun shining on his face one early morning following his departure from 1st and 15th Productions, Gemstones lay in bed deep in thought after awaking from a dream in which God told him to send Lupe Fiasco a message.
“God told me to tell you to give the world the truth because there’s so much of [what can’t save your soul] out there,” Gemstones told Wade-O Radio, revealing what he text Fiasco. “They got enough of that. You’re on a platform to speak to the world so take that opportunity and give those people the truth.”
According to Gemstones, Fiasco thanked him for sharing the message, told him that he’s glad Gemstones “saw the light,” and there would be “forces against [Gemstones] now.” Fiasco signed Gemstones, who went by the name of Gemini then, to 1st and 15th in 2001. Gemstones left the record label in 2009 after the death of his close friend.
“[Fiasco] told me be careful because you’re about to go to war,” said Gemstones, paraphrasing Fiasco’s response. “What you’re doing now … you’re walking into something else now brother that deals with demons and spirits and people in higher places—you’re stepping on those toes now so be careful and stand firm to what you’re doing. Know what you’re doing if you’re going to walk this walk.”
This occurred pre-Lasers, Fiasco’s third studio album, which Gemstones heavily criticized on his Facebook account (Fiasco actually criticized it too). Gemstones said that he and Fiasco had talked since then. He downplayed the criticism, claiming that he and Fiasco had always pushed each other musically back when they were “like peanut butter and jelly” on 1st and 15th.
Gemstones passed on interest from Infiltrate Music and more to sign this September with Xist Music—a record label which recently which recently partnered with the gospel-heavy Malaco Music Group—cementing his transition to the Christian hip-hop scene. Even during his days of affiliation with 1st and 15th, though, religion and the end times weren’t uncommon topics of discussion between him and Fiasco.
Gemstones credited the authenticity of his music to the implications of the end times which he senses are approaching.
“That’s why my music is real as it is,” he said. “That’s why it’s so heartfelt because I know that life is not a game, that life is real. That’s why I write the way I write because we don’t have a second to waste, because just like that (snaps fingers) it can be all over. I know I’m not guaranteed tomorrow. I know I’m not guaranteed the next 45 seconds. That’s why my music sounds the way it sounds.”
Gemstones’ desire is for his music to influence the youth in a positive manner, something he called out mainstream hip hop for failing to do.
“The terrible seeds that’s being planted now, it’s destruction bro,” he said. “It’s like the blind leading the blind. I don’t want my daughter following that. I got nieces and nephews. I don’t want my nieces and nephews following Gucci Mane, his message.”
Gemstones is working on what could be his next seed of hope, Blind Elephant—an album that he guaranteed will be as excellent as any project out. Whether or not another Fiasco collaboration will grace the album is unknown. Gemstones believes he’s seen change in Fiasco’s music since the text that he sent him years ago, but Fiasco wasn’t emancipated from Gemstones’ desire for hip-hop artists’ to enhance the eternal value of their content.
“Lu got more work to do,” he said.
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