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SAFE, 'Day Ones'

Canadian rapper and singer SAFE came up in the industry with the hip-hop collective Halal Gang, and his song "Day Ones" is a tribute to the people who've been his homies since day one. The track captures the spirit of other crew-love anthems like Drake's "Know Yourself'' and Brent Faiyaz's "Gang Over Luv," as SAFE recounts the excitement of returning home and reveling in his success with friends who've been grinding with him from the start: "I could never switch, that's how it is / We the ones started this s***."

SAFE rap-singing "mobbing with my crewwww'' over simple drums and a melodic bassline is enough to make anyone want to get their crew together for a late-night ride through the city with windows down and speakers on full blast. As the song ends with a recording of his boys chanting "Halal Gang," we're reminded that "Day Ones" is a tale of friendship and loyalty over all else.

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Taylor Jennings-Brown
Taylor Jennings-Brown is a 2021-2022 Kroc Fellow. She is a thoughtful writer from Durham, North Carolina and is a spring 2021 graduate from the University of South Carolina, where she received her bachelor's degree in mass communications and anthropology.