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AUTHOR: Nadeska Alexis, with reporting by Rob Markman, MTV.com

Photo: Kevin Mazur/ Getty Images

Drake is a certified hit machine — that’s a fact — but his new single “Started From the Bottom,” didn’t immediately resonate with some fans, who were caught off guard by the YMCMB rapper experimenting with a new sound and a new flow.

As Birdman tells it, though, that’s what makes him special: Pushing the envelope is necessary, even if it takes everyone else a while to catch up.

“Drake… he’s just not normal when it comes to music. He’s a fresh talent. He’s not a replica. He don’t duplicate. He’s setting his own tone and his own everything with music,” Birdman told MTV News of hearing “Started From the Bottom” for the first time. “I think this record’s really something for him to be different…he’s not a normal guy. He’s one of the most talented, really on earth, to me when it comes to music.

“So to me I loved it, when [Lil Wayne and I] first heard it we were amazed.”

Drake didn’t waste any time following up the song’s release with a video that perfectly captures the essence of his lyrics. Director X helped him do it big, even including a shot of the Toronto rapper piloting a G5 jet, bringing back memories of old Cash Money videos, which came complete with helicopters and everything over-the-top.

“Drake definitely is a fan of the culture and he’s definitely a fan of our culture, and where we come from — Cash Money, me and Wayne and how we built our whole foundation — so he’ll jab at some of the old Cash Money/Young Money flavours and he’s slick with it,” Birdman explained. “And that song is real rap, they ain’t doing that no more. That’s what makes him so different to me, and that’s what makes it so fly how he do it.”

“And X knows the culture of what we do and how we tryna [move] forward as a team,” he added. “I know Drake’s tryna paint his picture and he definitely represents the brand, so you might always see little flavors of the past in his current music and videos.”

Over the past two years there have been rumours every few months that Drake was planning his departure from the Cash Money/Young Money family, but according to Birdman, that’s just talk and gossip. “That’s just the business, people talk and blogs talk and sh– don’t really be having no truth to it,” he said. “Our relationship with Drake … that’s my lil brother. That’s the homie. That’s family. So there’s never been no friction. We’re just working hard, tryna give people great music.”

They clearly are hard at work, as Drake has already recorded several songs for his third album Nothing Was The Same.

Do you like Drake’s “Started From the Bottom”? Sound off in the comments below!

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