Home Music Music News

So, How Was Your 2020, Aminé?

Portland rapper discusses his quarantine shows, learning to cook and celebrating his first Grammy nomination

Christian Lanza*

So, How Was Your 2020 is a series in which our favorite entertainers answer our questionnaire about the music, culture and memorable moments that shaped their year. We’ll be rolling these pieces out throughout December.

After two years since his last project, Portland rapper Aminé returned in 2020 with a new album, Limbo, that showed once again why he’s one of the most creative and compelling MCs out there. While the rapper was unable to hit the road in support of the record due to the coronavirus, he says being stuck in lockdown helped him realize how much he took the touring life for granted, even at its most grueling. Or, as he more succinctly described the epiphany: “Sometimes I’d even say that I hated touring. Now I realize I was being a bitch.”

Still, there was plenty at home to keep him busy, including an array of TV shows and a newfound love of cooking (he says learning to make the Ethiopian dish Shiro, which his mom often made, was a personal highlight). And as the year comes to an end, Aminé has plenty to celebrate and look forward to in 2021: On Friday, he released a deluxe edition of Limbo with seven new tracks, and just last month notched his first Grammy nomination for Best Dance Recording for “My High” with Disclosure and Slowthai.

The album I listened to the most in 2020 was:
Limbo by this really cool guy named Aminé.

My favorite TV show to stream during quarantine was:
Succession, The Boys, I May Destroy You, The Undoing, Ramy, Insecure, Lovecraft Country, Ozark, Queen’s Gambit, Years & Years, Tiger King, Grand Army, Big Little Lies, and We Are Who We Are have kept me alive this whole quarantine.

The song that will define “2020” for me is:
“WAP” by Cardi B feat. Megan Thee Stallion.

I’d define my current state of mind as:

The viral video I kept coming back to in quarantine was:

The old-favorite album I returned to for comfort this year was:
HNDRXX by Future.

The old-favorite movie I returned to for comfort this year was:
Midnight in Paris.

A new hobby I picked up in quarantine was:
I recently started cooking for the first time and actually trying recipes because I was stuck inside. I found a new love for Korean beef and jasmine rice with a little dash of teriyaki garlic sauce.

The celebrity I’d most want to quarantine with is:
Jay-Z, because I would secretly trick him into executive producing my next album.

The most interesting thing I learned to cook during quarantine was:
Shiro, which is an Ethiopian dish my mom always made growing up. I always thought it was so hard to make but I realized it was easy.

The best book I read in quarantine was:
We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates

The mistake I learned the most from this year was:
Taking things for granted. Touring is a big part of my career and I would usually complain about how tired I would be. Sometimes I’d even say that I hated touring. Now I realize I was being a bitch.

The biggest hero of 2020 was:
No one. We all tried but we all took Ls this year.

A word or phrase I never want to hear again is:
“In this climate?”

The thing I’m least looking forward to in 2021 is:
Covid-19 still being around.

The thing I’m most looking forward to doing when the pandemic is over is:

My biggest hope for 2021 is:
Possibly winning my first Grammy 🙂

From Rolling Stone US