Source: Julius Frazer / GQ / Julius Frazer / GQ

Rapper Offset was featured in GQ’s Men of the Year issue which was released today (November 29th). He sat down with GQ’s senior editor Frazier Tharpe and opened up about his new album Set It Off, the surprising person who inspired him to go solo and the tragic death of former Migos member, Takeoff. Click inside to check it out!

Offset spoke on how Michael Jackson’s (his favorite artist) infamous letter that he wrote to himself in the late ’70s has helped shape his current mindset.

“I didn’t do nothing similar…but mentally I’m trying to take it all the way there and just show people that I’m an all-around star instead of just a rap star. That’s why I’m shooting my own videos. I’m doing my own merch designs, dancing in videos, dancing onstage with choreo and with dancers because I just want to do something that separates me from everybody.”

The 31 year-old also revealed how an unlikely rapper, Tyler, the Creator, inspired him to go solo.

“It was a year ago, at the Roc Nation Brunch, and I was telling [Tyler] my vision of being a standout artist and a solo artist and reinventing myself. I was glorifying him, telling him, ‘I respect how you stay in character [for each album],’” Offset tells GQ. “He was like, ‘You should do it, too. N-–as ain’t going to f—k with it at first, but n—as never f—k with the good s—t first. They always sleep on it, and then you show them throughout the process.’” He adds: “I really took that shit to head.”

Offset touched on the untimely passing of Takeoff and it tying into his new album.

“I ain’t ready to talk about that shit yet, first and foremost,” he says, admitting he doesn’t have the answers yet. “I don’t know how to do it, but I didn’t want to just be making an album about bad s—t, and dissing and putting that type of energy on the project, because it was going to make my mind be in a different place mentally.” 

He adds that he tried to make a song that dealt with the tragedy directly, a tribute. “The world is not ready for it, because [everyone] is so judgmental,” he explains. “They want you to make a song pouring your heart out that’s [also] a hit. There is a song on there that’s kind of expressing that shit, though, which is ‘Upside Down.’ It’s feeling confident I’m going to go up with the music, but I’m down every day. It’s the challenge of trying to be the best at your worst times.”

Set and Frazier Tharpe discussed numerous other topics during their interview. You can check it out in it’s entirety here.