Every reference to Toronto (that we could find) on Drake’s Scorpion
Timing his brand-spankin’-new studio release with the Canada Day long weekend, Toronto’s 6 God is guaranteed to heat up the summer. Half rap, half R&B, Scorpion features samples from musical icons Michael Jackson, Jay-Z and a whopping 25 tracks to unpack.
On the album, Drake addresses months of gossip by confirming rumours that he has a son (“I wasn’t hiding my kid from the world / I was hiding the world from my kid”), but Scorpion also includes more than a few shoutouts to its creator’s beloved hometown. Here, we break down all of Drizzy’s latest references to Toronto-centric people, places and things:
“House on both coasts, but I live on the charts”
In addition to his sprawling $10-million mansion in California’s Hidden Hills, luxury architect Ferris Rafauli is designing Drake a three-storey mansion on the Bridle Path.
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“RIP my niggas that they caught without it”
In late 2017, Anthony “Fif” Soares, a Scarborough native and friend of Drake, was killed in an east-end shooting. A few days later, he took to Instagram to mourn his loss. “RIP to one of our family members…our brother… I still can’t even believe this morning was real. It was a honor to have shared years together and I will always keep your memory alive,” he wrote in a caption.
“How I go from 6 to 23 like I’m LeBron?”
LeBron James flipped back and forth between jersey numbers 6 and 23 throughout his career. Drake uses this as an analogy to follow the timeline of his lesser-known days as a Degrassi star in Toronto (a.k.a “the six”) to seeing success around the globe.
“Palace look like Buckingham”
Drizzy’s Toronto home sits on a two-acre lot and reportedly features a trophy room, regulation-sized basketball court, 10-car garage and a screening lounge.
“Baka passed a drug test, we gotta celebrate”
Toronto emcee and OVO Fest rapper Baka Not Nice is Drake’s former bodyguard. He’s spent some time in and out of jail for allegations of assault and human trafficking and, as a result, must presumably pass drug tests under probation.
“Vegas like Marineland, that big-whale treatment”
Everyone loves Marineland (or so the 2000s commercial says). The once-popular ocean-themed park at Niagara Falls is only a quick jaunt west of Toronto on the QEW.
“Sick of this shit, move to the Ritz”
While his T.O. mansion has been under construction, the superstar has spent some time at a swanky $20,000 per month condo in the centrally-located Ritz-Carlton, complete with floor-to-ceiling windows and a perfect view of the CN Tower.
“I finessed down Weston Road… I make sure that North Side eat”
Drake gives another shoutout to the North Side of Toronto—specifically Weston Road, where he grew up—which he previously immortalized in “Weston Road Flows” on his 2016 album, Views.
“I’ve been me since Scarlett Road”
Scarlett Road is a main north-south artery through northwest Toronto that runs parallel to Weston.
“Fifty Dub, I even got it tatted on me”
Fifty Dub (short for Fifty World) is another reference to Drake’s fallen friend, Anthony Soares, whose life he also commemorated with a portrait tattoo on his arm inscribed with the words “Forever Fif.”
8 Out of 10
“It’s only good in my city because I said so/ Just the 50 Estate man, I had to cop a feel.”
The Holiday Inn Express Toronto East is a hotel located at Scarborough’s 50 Estate Drive, where one can assume Drake, you know, “copped a feel.”
“My mother had a flower shop, but I was Sandra’s Rose”
Sandra Graham, Drake’s mother, once scraped by in Toronto a florist. On his 2010 track “The Resistance,” he revealed that this was how his parents met (“It’s ironic, ’cause my mother was a florist, and that’s how she met my pops and now my garden is enormous”).
“Lot of 6’s in here tonight”
A reference not only to Toronto, but also the track’s producer, American rapper DJ Paul, who is best known for his ground-breaking work as a member of Memphis’s Three 6 Mafia.
“You know where I’m at / I put the 6 on the map”
Yep, we know where Drake’s at. And Toronto’s status as a spring of hip-hop and R&B talent has doubtlessly skyrocketed because of shoutouts like this from the chart-topping, city-loving ambassador.
“Tell Gelo bring some, uh, rosé and Baccarat out for our cheers to the next generation”
In Scorpion’s final and most personal song, “March 14,” Drake acknowledges the day he discovered he was going to become a father. He references OVO associate Angelo “Gelo” Ferraro, who was Drake’s favourite waiter at Sotto Sotto in Yorkville. Gelo has since become Drake’s business partner: the two helped opened Frings on King West, formerly run by celebrity chef Susur Lee.