DG — He was going to be a star, I knew that from the age of one. He had that glow about him, I just knew. I told him, “You’re going to be a star. And when you get older, you’re not going to use Aubrey, you’re going to use Drake.” I told him that years ago, he’ll tell you. Like he said, “My dad’s living vicariously through me.” I wanted to be that big star. I worked my ass off for it, but I just didn’t have the opportunities that he had. He had grandparents who invested in his music. They owned Bo- Peep Nursery, which was a mattress factory that did baby car seats and strollers, they serviced all of Canada. So they were able to put up big money for him to do certain things. For instance, on his first CD [So Far Gone] he did a thing with Trey Songz called Successful—they were able to give Trey Songz that forty grand that he wanted to do a feature with Drake. So once they did that it was over, he took over. The fuse was lit. Sandi’s parents, they were the sole reason. That’s why he just opened a private club in Toronto in their honor. It’s called the Sher Club, their last name was Sher.
O — And your relationship with Drake now, it’s good?
DG — My relationship with him has always been good. He put out a few songs that made people think that we were not close, but I got on him about that. I said “Drake, why in the—why would you tell people that?!” He goes, “Dad. This sells records.” I thought, OK, I understand that. Put some drama into it.
O — Well the public narrative is that whatever issues there may have been with your relationship, whether real or exaggerated, are now behind you both.
DG — I mean don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my ups and downs through my life, when I was living in Toronto. Things weren’t as ideal as they should be. But I never, ever lost track of my son, or deserted him or anything like that. I mean that’s my baby. My only son that I knew and raised.
O — Did you ever take him to visit Memphis?
DG — Every year. I brought him down to Memphis in a car seat, from a car seat to the age of seventeen, when he helped me drive. Once we got down there he would hang out at my mother’s house, his grandmother’s. I’ve got five brothers and two sisters, and all their kids would be there. People say that Drake doesn’t know anything about the hood and all that— he grew up in the hood. In Toronto we lived on Weston Road, which was a pretty rough area.
O — The child of a successful and famous parent can feel like they’re growing up in that parent’s shadow, but as a parent with a successful kid, are you able to enjoy that?
DG — I love it. I love it. I’ve got to be the proudest dad in the world. He did exactly what I thought I was going to do.
O — Have there been any moments in his career that have been especially moving for you?
DG — When I was at the Grammys with him, that was the epitome of...everything.
O — And what about you, what does your future hold?
DG — I got a single coming out, that’ll be out in maybe a couple weeks. Shot my video in Sweden, went over there five times to finish it.
O — Why Sweden?
DG — There was a young lady at a party that Drake gave, at his house in...wherever. She was twenty one at the time, and a videographer. I met her, and she said “As soon as you get ready to do something I want to shoot your video for you.” So I had the single coming out, and before you knew it I was in Sweden. She’s from Stockholm.
O — What sort of song is it?
DG—It’sR&B,andthere’sayoungladywhorapsonit named Ze Monroe.
O — But you’re not rapping...
DG — [laughs] Nah, I’ll let Drake do that. – END