In a year-end coup, his free album, XXX, was selected as Spin’s #1 rap release of 2011; Pitchfork ranked it two spots ahead of Jay-Z and Kanye West’s Watch the Throne. He simultaneously adorned the covers of Detroit’s Metro Times and Real Detroit, winning “artist of the year” in both. But when an unassuming fashion industry intern recognizes him on the street, Brown seems uncomfortable—the first and only time he’ll display this emotion—and admits that being known to strangers makes him paranoid in some sort of ex-drug-dealing way. He circles the block in search of plain cheese pizza. “I have the appetite of a 12-year-old,” he says.
The Fader issue 78’s feature story on “hip-hop’s most unique rapper and most promising underdog,” Danny Brown. (click the above cover image)