Joey Bada$$ Discusses “Power Book III” Role & Its Effect On His Music Catalog


Power Book III: Raising Kanan is back with season three, and the exploits of Unique are front and center in the ongoing narrative. AllHipHop sat down with rapper Joey Bada$$—who portrays Unique in the series—to discuss the evolution of his character. We give props to Joey for garnering new listeners among the often-resistant O.G. set of Hip-Hop aficionados—a daunting task for many new artists.

Unique is a drug kingpin in South Jamaica, Queens circa the late ’80s/early ’90s. He’s young, smooth, ruthless and determined to be the top dog as his older brother serves a lengthy sentence. Raq, played by Patina Miller, will do anything in her power to destroy the competition, or so it would seem. However, the Season 2 finale left quite a bit of speculation. These two opposing forces are set for an earth-shattering crescendo in the upcoming season—and viewers are already raving over it.

AllHipHop: The energy that you give in this role isn’t something that comes naturally to those who weren’t there. Could you impart upon us how you constantly added to this knowledge base as you’ve moved along?

Joey Bada$$: I was always fascinated with the ’90s era. I identify it with the golden era of Hip-Hop. Being from New York, eing from Brooklyn specifically. I wasn’t an adult at the time or even a teenager. But I feel like I experienced a lot of the people that were connected to that time. A lot of that influence has leaked on to me, and I picked that up. My artistic expression is aligned with the time. When it came to that, there was an aspect of it that I was able to naturally bring forth.

AllHipHop: To be perfectly honest, I have only been checking for your music for the past three or four months. I was listening to MF DOOM on Spotify, and it plays MF DOOM and similar artists. I’m listening and, ‘Yo, YO….YOOOO!” Do you think older cats are checking for you more because of Power Book III?

Joey Bada$$: I have been doing the music thing for 10 plus years now, but I will say I have succeeded in not only creating a fanbase, but a lane for myself.  But I will say that Kanan has exposed me to audiences in a new way. It definitely has made people want to explore the person behind the character more, and ultimately, I am grateful for that. I am very pleased to hear that was your discovery and your journey. Even though I have been in the industry for awhile now, I do feel like in many ways I’m just getting started.

Check out the video below and stay tuned for more of our Power Book III coverage with interviews from stars Mekai Curtis and Patina Miller.