A$AP Rocky might be a newcomer to the rap game, but he's already experienced a lot. From collaborating with Lloyd Banks to touring with Drake and signing multi million dollar deal with RCA/Polo Grounds. The 23-year old Harlem rapper has seen a lot of positive things as a result of his rap career. He's also had some shade thrown his way by Hodgy Beats of Odd Future. Joe La Puma of Complex caught up with Pretty Flacko to get his thoughts on these subjects. Check out an excerpt from their interview with him below.
Drake brought you out during Fashion’s Night Out. Did you ever entertain a deal from him?
He never even tried. He never brought it up. That’s why I give that guy so much credit. It’s like he just really wants the world to know, “Yo this guy is really great. He inspired me.” I appreciate that dude.
We talk about it all the time. Like, yo he doesn’t have to do none of that. The fact that he goes out of his way to show how serious and sincere he is about how he feels about me is amazing.
Guys in that kind of position, they’re usually cocky. They don’t want to admit that they still like certain other s***. It’s like, “Oh, I’m the sh*t. That’s all that matters.” He could just be like, “Shout out to A$AP Rocky,” that’s it. When someone asks him about me, he says why he likes me, what he likes about me, and I just appreciate that dude man. He’s another great guy. Shout out to OVO.
Do you think label execs may have thrown more money at you, because of the Drake co-sign?
Hell no. I was with my partner, Bryan Leach, and we’re the new sh*t. I was with him before this Drake sh*t. It’s just that RCA/Polo Grounds saw something in me that they were confident. I feel like all labels were confident in me but these guys were really about their business and they wanted to make it happen.
Me and Bryan come from the same place. Everybody around me comes from the same place because they can relate to me. I can’t really deal with people who can’t relate. There’s certain sh*t...Harlem is the only place in the world that is a world within itself. Honestly, I mean that.
When someone says, “Harlem World,” it means something. Harlem World is really a world. We live on our own time. We have our own morals, our own culture. What’s going on right now is I’m kind of changing Harlem culture in a good way, in my opinion. And he seen it, and we’ve been partners ever since. So this is before the Drake thing.
That’s just a blessing. Everything that happens is just a blessing. Our mission, we were going to do what we had to do regardless of who came in the picture, but Drake did what he did, and I just appreciate that sh*t.
How is the tour with him?
It’s a big learning experience. I’m having so much fun. I haven’t had this much fun since my fourth birthday party. [Laugh.] It’s amazing. Honestly, I have people around me that care, really love me. I feel the love.
That’s great. Who had more groupies on the tour, you or Drake?
Yeah. I’m not going to lie. [Laugh.] Let’s keep it real.
Is it as crazy as people say?
Yeah, for me too. But it’s more crazy for him. [Laugh.]
Has there been any mentorship taking place from Drake on this tour?
It was more like friendship. He doesn’t know that when he’s on, I’m on the side of the stage just watching his performance, like studying. [Laugh.] And he’s just having fun. He does the same with me.
Like, what he does is like, “Yo, so I’ve got to be in my dressing room, but I’m going to be in the crowd, like all the way in the back, and I’m going to watch you.” I’m like, “Alright, cool.” We just chill.
Before meeting Drake, I was just like a regular average person. So I know what average people say about him. He doesn’t hear it of course because I don’t hear what average people say about me.
People come back to me and say, “Yo, they’re hating,” or “Yo, they’re loving you,” but he doesn’t really know what goes on. So people have bad sh*t to say about him but I can guarantee if anybody meets that guy they’re going to love that guy. He’s just really a great guy.
What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned from him?
Humbleness and sincerity. He has more money than me. He has more b****** than me. He has more fame than me. And he’s more humble than I am.
We talked about the Hodgy Beats thing and you got interviewed a shitload about it.
Have you spoken to them yet?
And has there been any reaching out from his side?
Is the question getting annoying for you?
It’s really irrelevant. Fu*k annoying, it’s irrelevant. Put that in there. Quote: “F*ck annoying, it’s irrelevant.”
What do you see as the biggest difference between your two crews?
East Coast, West Coast. Lifestyle. Culture. Not culture, but just day-to-day, everyday sh*t. It’s really f*cked up because I know that they don’t like us. A lot of my crew members don’t like them n*ggas, but I like them n*ggas. I’m being honest. I like them.
Why don’t you think they like you?
Nah. I know they don’t like us.
How do you know that?
Because Hodgy went out his way to show that he doesn’t like us. He doesn’t have to like us. That’s fine with me.
Do you think they feel threatened by you guys?
I don’t know what it is. They shouldn’t because we’re not coming for their necks or nothing like that. Personally, like I said, I want to work with Tyler, The Creator.
How big do you think that could be?
I mean, I don’t really want to speak on it because it’s going to be corny. Like, if we work together, we work together. If we don’t, we don’t.
You’re featured on the Lloyd Banks song...
Yeah, how did...
Lloyd Banks is a great friend. Killed it. Body bag, zip it up. Take them to the morgue.
What other New York rappers are you feeling?
Lloyd Banks. Shout out to Jim, shout out to Jay-Z, shout out to Maino, Max B... Can you please put these shout outs in there if you’re going to ask the question? If you’re going to show the question? Shout out to Max B. Shout out to everybody doing it in New York.
To read the full interview head over to Complex.