ASAP Rocky, Prince once said, “When I want to hear good music, I write it myself.” Do you ever feel like that?
That’s a great way to put it. Honestly man, I look around sometimes and I feel like hip hop is just mediocre at times. I don’t really hear too many hip hop songs that I would necessarily create.
A lot of it is just about expensive things.
Yeah, but I feel like even outside of hip hop there are luxurious desires that people have all the time. I don’t necessarily blame hip hop at the end of the day. I feel like hip hop rappers glorify it too much, but for the most part it’s not bad wanting something nice for yourself. It’s not bad wanting the best for yourself, you know?
Of course, but it seems much more present in rap music than elsewhere.
Many rappers come from poverty and people always want what they can’t have.
Is that why you have a dollar sign in your name?
Well, my name is Flacko. That’s what everybody calls me – my mom, my friends, my family.
What does it mean?
It means skinny. You can call me Flacko.
All right. So, Flacko, when did you realize that you wanted to be an artist?
I knew that by the time I was 8 or 9 years old.
Really, that young?
Hell yeah. My brother showed me how to rap and after he did that I just kept rapping.
When did you realize that you were actually pretty good?
By the time I was like 9 years old.
So I take it you’re not really surprised by the success you’re currently having?
I always expected it, but not like this. I didn’t know how it would really be, if you know what I’m saying. You can’t imagine what it would be like. I didn’t know I would come into the game and have such a big effect on it within a year. Change the way people rap, change the way people dress. Then on top of that have an album that leaked a month and a half early but still manage to become number one in the country. I didn’t expect any of that.
Is your success a sign that there is a new generation in hip hop that is shaking up the old guard?
Of course, people before us taught us to discriminate, but this is just more of a free spirit, united generation. And there’s no promotion needed because people are into it and people really believe and want to live that way.
You dress differently than most rappers, too.
I guess I spend the most money on clothes. I’m not really into jewelry. I like European fashion, I like Japanese fashion…
Are you really interested in fashion or, like a lot of rappers, do you use it as shorthand for the lifestyle you are aspiring to?
What do you mean?
For example, do you know who someone like Hedi Slimane is?
Of course I know who he is, are you kidding? Hedi’s at Saint Laurent, of course. I don’t personally know him, but I know his history and I know what he did at YSL now that he’s back, changing the name to Saint Laurent, yeah. I know about him being an artist and photographer and all that other stuff.
What’s the last piece of clothing you bought?
The last piece that I bought was… a Phillip Lim sweater.
The content of your lyrics isn’t so different from a lot of other rappers, though. You still focus a lot on the topics of sex and drugs.
I haven’t heard somebody refer to weed as a drug since my grandmother, but if that’s what people call it then I guess I do drugs.
You don’t do any other drugs?
Just weed and cough syrup man, that’s it. I don’t fuck with ketamine, I don’t fuck with cocaine, any of that shit. Just weed and syrup. A lot of my friends do fuck with it and that’s their business, but for me personally – I love marijuana and I love syrup.
Doesn’t one of your lyrics go, “It feel good waking up, some money in the bank/Three model bitches, cocaine on the sink?”
Well, most chicks I fuck with do cocaine.
What role does sex play in your life now that it is always accessible?
I’ll tell you like this, man. I’m a handsome motherfucker. (Laughs) I can’t be mad at them for wanting me, you know what I’m saying? But it can become a distraction, if you let it. You’ve got to stay focused on the music and craft. That’s what it’s all about.
Would you ever pay for sex?
Nah, I don’t have to do that. But I’m going to come clean. One time we went to this strip club and we were throwing money at chicks we didn’t even fuck man. That’s no fun, to go to the strip club and throw money at girls that you’re not even fucking. I don’t need to pay for pussy at this point.Return to Top
Name: Rakim Mayers
DOB: 3 October 1988
Place of Birth: New York, New York, USA
Recent Project: Long. Live. ASAP