Given that the release of Take Care, his much-anticipated sophomore album, was recently pushed back to November 15, you’d expect Drake to be feeling a bit down this week. He’s a vulnerable guy, and the music is his outlet. But “Make Me Proud,” his new collaboration with Young Money pal and sometimes-fiancée Nicki Minaj, is actually the happiest we’ve heard Drake in months. Drizzy, rising above! It helps, probably, that Mr. Sensitive isn’t so wrapped up in his own emotions on this one; he spends his half of the track extolling all the trustworthy ladies he’s apparently met in the last few months. (Drake, on said ladies: “It’s hard to be a woman out here these days … so I’m just proud of you whether it’s Nicki or any girl that I’ve ever known in my life that’s doing well for herself.” Thanks, Drake!) Nicki, for her part, is more than happy to accept his compliments, and it’s nice to hear these two lovebirds reunited, especially given this other recent quote from the Canadian Sweater Lord: “I’d marry Nicki. I think Nicki would be one of the only people that would understand me at the end of all of this and be able to love me.” Draaaaaake. We were doing so well there for a second!
Photo: Jason LaVeris/2009 Jason LaVeris