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FUTURE'S MUSICAL EVOLUTION

For the last two years, the artist also known as Future Hendrix has been steadily challenging the status quo, collaborating on and releasing a phenomenal flow of new singles, mixtapes and albums at a furious creative pace not seen since the late great Tupac Shakur. Future’s nonstop work ethic is well known in the business, along with his ability to stay two steps ahead of the pack.

The artist has notoriously butted heads with his major-label mentors over the A1/Freebandz philosophy of flooding the marketplace with vast amounts of new music but has consistently proved his point in the form of undiminished album sales despite the pace of releases.

To Epic’s credit, flexibility on some unconventional arrangements has paid off big time, most notably on the surprise Drake collabo mixtape What a Time to Be Alive, which has sold 525k to date. The same will ultimately be true for the unique arrangement around the spectacular new album EVOL, which was part of a wider Apple Music deal and debuted to much fanfare on the brand new Beats 1 show from DJ Khaled, We the Best.

As Future has repeatedly pointed out in interviews, his strategy is based on studying and knowing how the streets, clubs, blogs, playlisters, Internet broadcasters—that whole new hive of active music consumers—are using his music and then meeting the demand of that marketplace with precision. It’s damn near a multidimensional world on social-media platforms alone, with their content demands; but notice how Future tackled four simultaneously with the DJ Khaled alliance: Apple Music, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter. Boom! Word is out.

The result? EVOL has been sitting at #1 on the iTunes album charts ever since, while the track "Low Life" featuring The Weeknd sits at #5 in single sales with the other breakout song "Fly S**t Only" at #14 single sales.   

“We’re still going to radio for certain records,” Future explained to DJ Khaled, “'Where You At?' man, won’t leave the charts! And What a Time to Be Alive and 'Jumpman' the #1 record in the country. But I still wanna build and continue to do what I want to do as far as my way, my blueprint, how I see my legacy.  

"When you look back at Future, my career, I want you to be like he set the tone. And he did it his way.”

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