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Childish Gambino performs 'Shadows' on Arsenio Hall, talks leaving 'Community,' his open letter, and not being a rapper

by Caitlin Carter   Nov 13, 2013 12:35 PM EST

Donald Glover (a.k.a. Childish Gambino) stopped by Arsenio Hall last night to chat and perform "Shadows" off his upcoming album Because The Internet.

Hall has been covering the hip-hop community pretty closely with recent guests appearances from Nas, Kendrick Lamar and A$AP Rocky and Tyler, the Creator. Continuing that streak, he sat down with Glover, who sat Indian-style on the couch wearing a sheer white T-shirt and slippers, looking very chilled out.

On why he left Community, Glover said, "I just wanted to do something else. That was it. I don't think there's much more to it. I wish I could say something other than that. I just wanted to do other stuff." He refuted claims that have spread across the Internet saying that the reason he left was to pursue his rap career.

"That's the Internet. You can literally put anything about me and you will find 'proof' of it if you want. I mean everybody thinks I'm Danny Glover's son. I am not. It wasn't rapping because I don't consider myself a rapper. I can rap, but I don't think I'm a rapper. I want to do a bunch of stuff. Rappers don't want to be rappers. They are usually artists who want to do a bunch of stuff. I don't think any rapper wants to be just a rapper."

Hall then brought up the open letter he posted to Instagram last month. "I didn't think that was going to be a big deal at all. I was just feeling some type of way, and I wrote it down."

He asked Glover what he meant when he wrote "I hate caring what people think." Glover explained, "I mean I care about what people think. People are always talking about how you shouldn't care what people think. But you should. Like if I sneeze in your face, I should be like "ah, it's not me." It's always important to care what people think because that's what connects us. I want to do the best thing I can. But sometimes I'm insecure, I feel weird about a bunch of stuff. Like I'm awkward about stuff. But I wish I didn't feel that way so much that it stops be from doing what I really love doing. Everyone is so afraid no of offending and being misunderstood, and that's going to happen."

Glover also wrote in his open letter that he was scared he will become Tyrese. He explained the meaning behinid that as well, "I'm surprised he hasn't like said anything to me yet. I really feel like one day I'll wake up and a transformer will come through my window and beat me up. But what I meant was, I just don't want to be okay with where I'm at. I never want to settle. I always want to be going for better."

The two went on to talk about why Glover never wants to have a boss ("I don't think we need that. We live in a time now where it's like easier now than ever to do anything"), why its so important for kids to learn coding ("I feel like coding is going to be what keyboarding was when I was a kid"), 3D printing and nostalgia on the Internet.

He remained seated next to Arsenio to play "Shadows" with Thundercat. The song has a barebones beat with a slick, funky bassline. The lyrics are playful but still introspective and self-deprecating ("Pop pills at the Coachella / Head in the weeds, man I can't tell her / The fear that I feel it might killer her").The track will be featured on his upcoming album Because The Internet, due out December 10 via Glassnote Records.

Check out the interview and performance here, and let us know what you think in the comments section below!

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