I discovered Breadwinna Gdawg after the Worldstar premiere of his music video, First Day Out. Gdawg has had many “first day out”s in his life; he’s been in and out of prison for the past ten years. Now, at 21 years old, Gdawg feeds the streets with tracks that showcase an aggressive brand of hip hop savagery, native to rural Florida, where Breadwinna Gdawg calls home.
Breadwinna Gdawg, of Hastings, Florida, has been rapping seriously for about a year, and has only released six songs, each garnering over 100k listens and views. The catchiness of his energetic hip hop releases and his impressive social media presence have garnered the attention of rap fans, music industry execs, and unfortunately, local law enforcement. In May, Gdawg traveled to NYC to sign a deal with Alamo Records, home of rappers like Smokepurpp, Lil Durk, 03 Greedo and more; all while on the run and facing multiple charges in Florida. He is currently on house arrest, awaiting more court appearances for those charges.
I met with Breadwinna Gdawg in St. Augustine, Florida, at a local block party, where I chopped it up with his friends and family and, against my will, engaged in multiple water balloon fights with the neighborhood children, who clearly sensed an outsider on their turf. “You in the trenches now, boy!” said Big L, Gdawg’s cousin and right hand, as I stepped out of the passenger side and was greeted by two water balloons and a couple water gun rounds.
Upon spending a day in the life of Breadwinna Gdawg, I’ve come to the conclusion that his story is either that of a man’s brutal and violent pursuit of status and stardom, or that of an artist’s quest for triumph, possibly facilitated by divine intervention, through life-long and often generational cycles of adversity. Or both. As a reader, feel free to reach your own conclusions. Gdawg and I talked about his impressive fight record, his time on the run from Florida law enforcement, and his relationship with God.
Ryan Leutz: Where are you from?
Breadwinna Gdawg: Hastings, Florida about 45 minutes outside of JAX [Jacksonville, Florida].
RL: How’d you start rapping?
Gdawg: I started rappin’ in jail. I went to jail in 2015, did two years. I used to just rap to pass the time, and to get good as fuck at it. I was fortunate, I just found myself havin’ fun rappin’. People took that shit serious though, people were like “Oh nigga you aint gon’ blow nigga,” and all this other shit… niggas was hatin’.
RL: Who are your rap inspirations?
Gdawg: Me. But growin’ up I listened to Boosie and Plies.
RL: If you could collaborate with anyone dead or alive who would it be?
Gdawg: Tupac or DaBaby. The label got me comin’ out with a [YNW] Melly feature. London on da Track is supposed to do some stuff with me but I’m on house arrest right now though.
RL: Oh word? How long are you on house arrest?
Gdawg: I don’t know. I went in [to jail] on weapons charges this year in January and served 100 days. When I got out [in March] I released First Day Out, and then I caught another charge three days later. Three days, right after I got out. It was for a warrant for some weed, but I had been in jail so I couldn’t serve it. I got pulled over leavin’ the studio, they told me I had a warrant and I ran. I ran for a good two months, 60 days. I did everything I needed to do; I signed my deal and went back to court.
RL: You cool talkin about that? What’s the whole story?
Gdawg: I got pulled over. I ran. I was fresh outta jail, I didn’t feel like goin’ back to jail and I didn’t know why I was goin’ back to jail and they weren’t giving me no answer. They just knew I was goin’ to jail. So I ran.
RL: Did you physically run from the police or just skip town?
Gdawg: They told me “step out, step out,” and then they grabbed me behind my arms and I had to break away, I just ran. I started jumping fences, and then I ended up in a junkyard. I was like, “Okay, I can chill here.” Then they started surrounding me. I heard them opening the gate, so I hopped the barbed wire fence… and you know barbed wire, that left a big ass scar on my chest, long as fuck. So I ran across across the street, climbed up on a roof and tucked away. I called my peoples and told them where I was at and then my phone died. I saw the police lookin’ through cars and shit, then I heard the helicopter. So I lay down, ya feel me, I found a little windowsill I could tuck under and fell asleep. It was like 1 [AM], I had been runnin’ since midnight.
RL: I don’t know about you, but my heart would be beating too hard to fall asleep, how did you knock out after all that?
Gdawg: I started prayin’ and next thing I know, I woke up. I just had my eyes closed prayin’, like, I can’t go back to jail I got too much to do with this music stuff. I woke up and it was like 6 AM; the sun was coming up. I smelled somebody smokin’ weed and I ran over there because I knew they were on some illegal shit and they wouldn’t tell nobody. I knew they’d let me use they phone so I called my boy to come get me. Next thing I know my baby momma pulls up on me. I thought my dog was comin’ to get me, I told my dog where I was. I guess she just volunteered to pull up on me though.
RL: What happened from there?
Gdawg: I ran to Orlando, caught a charge there. I caught another charge in Flaggart county, I had a misdemeanor in Flaggart. I caught another charge in Oak County. I had a violation of probation for leavin’ the state to get my deal in NY. They were just rackin’ up charges on me and I wasn’t reporting because I was runnin’. Went to jail for 30 days in May after all of that.
RL: How did you sign a deal while you were on the run?
Gdawg: Worldstar put me on their thing and then Joey [Walker] wrote me on Instagram. First I thought the shit was fake. Then Joey flew out to JAX to see me. He was like, “I really want you to meet people in New York,” and I hit the studio for four days. I made some songs and they loved me. I went back to Florida to get a lawyer and signed that contract.
RL: You got a poppin’ instagram, what’s your thought process when it comes to posting?
Gdawg: Shit, really I gotta be watching what I post. Folks be watching my shit. I’m ready to show my ass on there, but I’m on probation right now. Ever since I came home I’ve been reminiscing on fights though, I’m like, “Post that bitch to Instagram!”
RL: Did you play sports growing up? How did you start fighting?
Gdawg: Nah I didn’t really like sports. I figure if I wanna be a rapper, I can’t let niggas play with me. I just had to beat niggas up. I’m not a bully though, you gotta really offend me or challenge me. I been in a hundred fights and I feel like I’ve never lost one because God knows I’m not a bully. He knows, “ain’t nobody fucking with this nigga [Gdawg]. Its these niggas fuckin with him.” You gotta really offend me. If you don’t wanna fight me though, it’s all good. I won’t call you a bitch or a pussy, I just let it be. It is what it is, we ain’t gotta fight because if you scared… scared niggas get killed out here anyway *shrugs*.
RL: Got any good fight stories?
Gdawg: I got in this brawl in Brunell and it was just me and my momma, none of the homies. My cousin wanted me to fight for him. They kinda creeped up on me, but by myself Imma be just as gangsta. It was just me, runing around punchin everybody, my mom was stabbin’ niggas.
RL: You really like fighting, huh?
Gdawg: I like fighting. I’ve been seein’ people snitchin, like killas, straight snitchin’ out here when it comes to slangin’ iron [shooting]. I really like to fight because I’m not gonna get 100 years for whoopin’ somebody. I could whoop you, record it, put it on Instagram, destroy your image and self esteem, make you feel bitchmade… and just go about my life.
RL: What’s your relationship with God like? You mentioned that you credit him with keeping you safe.
Gdawg: I fucks with god he fucks with me. People gotta fuck with me. I dont talk to no niggas because its too many personalities to deal with. I dont fuck with people I mind my business. I dont give a fuck about alot of shit. I pray every night, I be thinking, just prayin’ whenever.
RL: Your life seems chaotic, compared to the average person. Why do you think that is?
Gdawg: I don’t look at it like that. It’s just where im from and where I’m at. I don’t worry about other niggas hoods, I don’t really care. I just know im gangsta and you gotta respect me… Yo L! Do you think our lives chaotic?
Big L: What you mean?
RL: Like dangerous and unpredictable.
Big L & Gdawg in unison: Yeah. *Laughs*
Gdawg: I know we thuggin and I know what comes with it. We feed off niggas, there’s bitch ass niggas in this world and we feed off them. I know what comes with it.
Follow Breadwinna Gdawg on all social media platforms, like Instagram, and find his music on all major streaming platforms.
Also, check out Gdawg’s First Day Out and Yo Daddy out now on Youtube, and watch for Off the Noggin Pt. 2 dropping on Worldstar this Thursday, August 8th.
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