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***What did I tell you!?!? The day after I posted this, Just Blaze posted this.*** Machine? My guess is Interscope.
I can’t say I’ve been knowing the deal since the Paint A Picture and Hate Is The New Love mixtapes, but after hearing 100 Miles and Running, I’ve been touting Wale as the next best thing to anyone who would listen. There are a few cats who I think are bringing dope material to the table, but of all them, I feel like Wale has the potential to make some serious noise on the mainstream level. First off, he’s a dope rapper, but he’s got the style, wit and energy to match. I caught with him a while back for Vapors, and to go with all the above mentioned rap related traits, he was just a cool motherfucker to talk to. Follow the jump for some experts from the interview.
Do you feel a weight on your back to carry DC, being that you are the most viable rapper from there at the moment?
Absolutely not. I don’t think about that, I just make music. At the end of the day, I mean like 98% of the people here like me, but there are people that don’t, so they don’t care what I do. There are people that will say whatever they want to say just cause God gave them a mouth to say so. If I was thinking about doing it, like with everybody on my back, it’s a waste of time because not everyone is riding. Absolutely no pressure. I don’t feel it. I’m just a rapper, this is what I do.
Your style is a balance between street and straight up hip-hop, can you talk about that line that you walk?
I come from a well rounded background and I relate to a lot of people. Joe Budden said, “I ain’t a street n****, but I relate to them.” I feel like that is me in a nutshell. I never claimed to be a street dude, but I understand the plight because I’ve been there, I’ve been in their shoes. I wouldn’t try to reflect their plight as my own just for revenue. I’m more or less explaining their plight from a person looking from the outside that understands, rather than saying I’m in it. Rather than saying I’m going to fucking rob so and so, I say it’s possible that you’ll get robbed around these parts. It’s more narrative than first person. I think narrative hip-hop is something that needs to come back, because everyone is so first person. I’m like dog, you’re signed to dadada, you make 10 grand a show…You don’t sell cocaine. If you’re gonna sell cocaine on your records, at least do it in the third person it, it’s just as good. All we are is storytellers of today anyway, that’s what hip-hop is for, to tell your story or somebody eleses. We’re authors……As a fan of hip-hop, it’s like having a collection of some kind of sneaker. You got your regular colors, black on black, white on white, but you want your other colors too. I want a guy from Atlanta to tell me about Atlanta, if you’re from New York, tell me about New York. I don’t want to hear Joell Ortiz record with “ladies and gentlemen” at the begining of the record. I fuck with Joell, I dont’ know him personally, but I’m just using him as an example. I know 100% he wouldn’t get Jazze on a record. Certain things don’t match, and some people chase what’s hot so much that they lose sight of what’s true. It’s like ok, lets put blah blah and blah blah blah together cause they’re popular. At least make it artistic and cool. Like when Kanye put T-pain on a record, it looks bad on paper, but he made it work sonically. But when people mash certain shit together, it’s like c’mon dog, for real.
What’s been your experience with major labels?
I haven’t had any terrible run ins with labels, first, second and third time around I wasn’t what they were looking for anyway, but now I’m the guy that everybody wants to sign so it’s a different conversation anyway. I’m not really a spiteful person, but it will be time to pay when my album comes out. I’m gonna have a record where the people who passed on me, they’re names won’t be said, but they’ll know exactly who they are.
and then I reached a point in my transcription where I stopped writing my questions, so here are some good quotes.
“There are two parts, one, you have to enjoy it. Two, you have to have a competitive nature. My good friend Kevin Durant, he genuinely has fun, it’s like when I talk to him about basketball now it’s almost like he forgets that he’s a rich person now because he loves it so much. Honestly, I would take the respect of 500,000, than the money from a million. The genuine respect, like 100% these 500,000 people love me and really appreciate what I do, rather than a million people be like, “I like that one song.”
And my favorite quote about how much being good has to do with success…
“It’s so weird right now. Common is great, and Common did numbers. There are so many different lanes, it’s hard to say who’s good. Souljah Boy is good at what he does, he made the song that everyone loves, and he produced the damn record, so he’s good. What’s good anymore? I don’t even beleive in good lyricists anymore at this point. Like what is a lyricists, someone who puts lyricists together. You don’t have to be phenomenal, “super soak that hoe,” I get it, you get her wet. You don’t gotta be like osmosisize her vagina or nothing (laughs).”
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