On Friday night, I had the chance to chop it up with some of the Denver Nuggets in the locker room before they completely whupped ass on the Brooklyn Nets. With the exception of my two favorite players (who evidently don't do interviews before a game, as they both tersely informed me), everybody was super-accommodating, indulging my admittedly trivial questions about their listening habits, even coach George Karl. (Random observation: The two most common things found in the Nuggets' locker room are Beats by Dre headphones and a proclivity for Drake.) Continue on to see what Coach Karl and some of his players -- Wilson Chandler, Ty Lawson, Danilo Gallinari, Kosta Koufos and Evan Fournier -- are listening to these days.
Westword: I couldn't help but notice your N.W.A tattoos. I wanted to find out how a kid from Michigan is all about N.W.A.
Wilson Chandler: Growing up, I was close to the East Coast, but me and my sister, we were more into West Coast and down south -- N.W.A, 2Pac, Ice Cube, Scarface, UGK. It was more like that. Not too many people [that I was around] used to listen to East Coast music back then, when I was around eight, ten -- not until I got older. I was raised by my grandmother. She had thirteen kids. Her youngest son and youngest daughter lived in the house when I was growing up. He listened to a lot of N.W.A, a lot of 2Pac, stuff like that.
So what's your favorite music? What kind of stuff are you listening to right now on your iPod?
I still listen to a lot of old stuff, both east and west, a lot of older stuff. Newer guys...there's a lot of A$AP Rocky, Nipsey Hustle, Pusha T -- a lot of different stuff. A lot of older stuff. Dipset. Just everything. Nas.
Do you listen to music before games to get hyped up?
What's the stuff that kind of gets you in the mood?
Old school 50, when he was first coming up -- the mixtapes, 50 Cent Is the Future.
Westword: What kind of music do you listen to before the games to get hyped?
Ty Lawson: Right now, probably a bunch of Chief Keef, Lil' Wayne.
What's on your iPod right now?
Those, plus...let me look -- I already have it open. Let's see...Drake "Started From the Bottom," all his songs. What else do I got...J Cole "Power Trip," I've been listening to that, and a bunch of Wale. He's from home. He's from D.C., so definitely.
Westword: What do you listen to? What's your favorite stuff?
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Danilo Gallinari: I listen to everything from hip-hop to Italian classical music to everything.
Do you have anything in particular that you listen to before games to get hyped?
I don't listen to music before games. I like to listen to music when I'm home, chilling at home.
What are the top five artists you like?
There are a lot of them. I can tell you some Italian names, or...
Sure. Just your favorite stuff. If we looked at your iPod right now, what would we find?
Everything. Right now, I was listening to -- before heading into the game today, I was listening to Drake, and then I was listening to Jovanotti. He's an Italian guy. He's a friend of mine, actually. He's a very famous singer. These are the two artists I was listening to before coming here today, for example.
So after a game, when you've won and you've had a really good game, what do you listen to?
I like to listen to some techno music before going to the club.
Westword: What do you listen to right now?
Kosta Koufos: Some Drake, some Greek music. Mostly Drake, Lil' Wayne, Greek music -- just a mixture.
If we looked on your iPod right now, what would we find?
Old-school Drake, a little older Drake. I mean, the newest one I can think of right now from him, "Started From the Bottom," "Headlines," all that stuff. So just stuff like that. Something with a nice flow. Something that's not yelling at you. It calms you down, but at the same time, it gets you hyped up.
What kind of stuff do you listen to after the game?
I really don't listen to music after the game. You know, I just try to de-stress. I'm taking class online, so I usually listen to my class after the game, trying to settle my mind down a little bit to take it easy.
Westword: What kind of music do you listen to?
Coach George Karl: Oh, man, I wish I had time to listen to music. I'm probably soft rock and probably '80s, late '70s, '80s. I'm a soft-rock fan even today. I don't like the hard rock. I grew up with the Beatles and the Beach Boys and kind of the soft rock-and-roll stuff. You know, I like Queen and Rush and Simon and Garfunkel and Crosby, Stills and Nash, Chicago -- stuff like that.
Are you a digital guy, or do you listen on vinyl or CD?
I do mostly CDs now, I'd probably say. I haven't done the digital stuff yet. I don't have an iPad or an iPod that has all that stuff.
Do you have a turntable?
No. I used to, though. I used to be big into sound, but music has gotten so clear now. Basically it comes down to your speakers as much as anything. If you get good speakers, your music can sound great.
Westword: What's on your iPod? What are you listening to?
Evan Fournier: I guess, like everybody, Drake, Rick Ross, hip-hop music.
What are your five favorite songs right now -- or artists?
I'm going to say Drake, number one. Two, Rick Ross. Three, Juicy J, and then some French singers. We have some good rappers.
Like MC Solaar?
Oh, no, no, no, he's done right now.
I know, but I thought he was fresh.
MC Solaar was great, but he's done now.
Who are some hot French rappers now?
Booba, La Fouine, and the third one might be Youssoupha.
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