For better or for worse, the audio is here. During the 2011 NBA lockout, the Golden State Warriors Kevin Durant (then with the Oklahoma City Thunder) and the Los Angeles Lakers LeBron James (then with the Miami Heat) recorded a rap song.
This was mostly kept under wraps, but last year a clip of the song surfaced, following an ESPN report that the song had been recorded. And now, the whole song (a clean version) was released on the SoundCloud of the song’s producer, Franky Wahoo.
If you’re inclined, you can listen to it here:
The song, titled “It Ain’t Easy”, primarily focuses on the obstacles that the two superstars had to overcome en route to their success.
Durant - who was originally set to record the song by himself, before James joined in - showed off some lyrical skills. To the best of my ability, here’s a transcription of his verse.
I cut me, I bleed out dedication
Hard work, sacrifice, meditation
I meditate up on the goal that I’m tryin’ reach
Grinding all day to the top and I ain’t tryin’ sleep
Come and get me, come and get me, I’m an animal
Cutting through your brain like a [edited]
And now I’m grown up, I’ve got a couple dollars on me
Spent a semester at school, I ain’t no scholar, homie
But who get me, who with me
Them dudes with me shoot with me
Pacing on your [edited] like Jamaal Tinsley
I’mma lap [edited] twice before he get around
Relaxing in the seats of this Benz is how I get around
I got the money, but that’s the root of all evil
I stay the same, but it’s changing all the wrong people
Yeah, and every hater all the same
I’m feeling like the world is Skip Bayless and I’m LeBron James
Look, now I got a body full of tattoos
Everybody say that I’m changing, that is not true
Same dude that you met a couple years ago
Talk to the heart and you can see past the visual
Look, sticking to the game and I ain’t out of bounds
Maryland on my back, and I can carry it when I’m out of town
I said Maryland on my back, and I can carry it when I’m out of town
I have to say, I am incredibly impressed. Those are pretty slick bars from KD. The line about Tinsley (who spent seven years with the Indiana Pacers) was excellent, as was the Skip Bayless/LeBron James line. And the flow was pretty impressive, especially early on.
According to the SoundCloud description, the song was set to appear in NBA 2K19, but it didn’t, so Wahoo released it.
Don’t quit your day job, Durant. But only because you’re one of the greatest all-time at your day job; looks like you could have a music career too!