Murder on my Mind

Album: I Am You (2018)
Charted: 14

Songfacts®:

  • Jamell Demons is a rapper from Gifford, a small Florida town 150 miles north of Miami. Demons records under the name YNW Melly (The "YNW" stands for "Young N---a World").

    Melly's music career started at 15 when he began uploading songs on SoundCloud, but was interrupted by a year-long spell in jail on gun charges. After being released he dropped his debut album I Am You.
  • Melly wrote this piano-laced narrative of his darkest thoughts in his prison cell. It was originally uploaded to his YouTube channel in March 2017 before featuring on I Am You. He recalled to Genius:

    "I was locked up, for the first time. I was like 16, 15. I literally woke up in the jail cell and I was like, 'Wake up in the morning, I got murder on my mind. AK-47, MAC-11, Glocks, and nine's.'"
  • After coming up with the rap, Melly didn't follow it up until he was released from prison. The instrumentation is courtesy of local Florida producer Smoke Exclusive, who sent Melly the beat through Facebook audio. They agreed on a price of $100.
  • Melly was back on trial in 2018 for violating his probation - he believes the second verse of "Murder On My Mind" landed him additional jail time. The verse describes Melly accidentally shooting dead a friend - the rapper blames the state attorney reading the lyrics aloud in court for him being incarcerated again.
  • On February 13, 2019, YNW Melly turned himself in to Miramar police in Florida after being charged with two counts of first-degree murder for the October 2018 deaths of two of his friends: rappers YNW Sakchaser and YNW Juvy. In the wake of his arrest, many on social media mistakenly referenced this song's lyrics as being a confession based on its title and lyrics. However, "Murder On My Mind" was written well before the shootings.
  • The beat was supplied by frequent Melly Collaborator SMKEXCLSV, who first connected with the rapper through Facebook. He originally gave the beat to Melly for free as the rapper was incarcerated at the time.
  • SMKEXCLSV told Genius he started off the beat with the piano. "It's literally just a stock plugin that comes with FL," he said. "As soon as this melody was laid out already, it kind of gave me that dark vibe so that's what I wanted to go with."

    From there, SMKEXCLSV added the percussion and a vocal sample before topping the beat off with a flute. "I felt like it needed something else, so I just added this flute that I found in Symphonic Orchestra," he explained. "This flute actually reminded me of 'Lux Aeterna.' It's like an orchestra song that you can look up on YouTube."

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