You’re about to drop Sixtape 3. First, let’s back up and talk about the Sixtape series, in general, with Bino Rideaux. How did that start?
Shoutout my boy Bino Rideaux. How it initially started, I was just sending beats to Bino. He didn’t even know I was an artist. One day, I sent him a song with a hook on it. It’s a song we’ve got called “Savage,” which is on the first Sixtape. He was like, “Bro, I ain’t even know you was going crazy like this.” So we were just sending verses back and forth and we were just like, “Let’s drop it.” There was no plan, no strategy. We weren’t signed to no deals or nothing. We were just having fun with it and the city ate it up. It caught like wildfire, so it was only right that we doubled back with part two. We did 12 songs on Part 2. Sixtape 3 is on the way right now. Like Shaq and Kobe, we got a three-peat.
What’s your relationship like with Bino? It seems like you two have great chemistry.
I think we play a pivotal role, especially in the city. When you think about L.A., a lot of the GOATs come from Compton and Long Beach, when you really think about who made L.A. popular. And it’s an unpopular opinion, correct me if I’m wrong… But you think about Snoop Dogg and you think about Dr. Dre or Eazy-E and things like that… So I feel like with Nipsey being gone, we play a pivotal role of artists that’s from South Central. So me and Bino are aware of that and we try to uphold that integrity. It’s like friendly competition. We just stay intentional with the music and stay pure in our real life as well. We carry that blueprint that Nipsey laid.
You told me about the first two Sixtape projects, but what was your guys’ mindset heading into Sixtape 3?
For Sixtape 3, we’re keeping the traditional sonics alive. You can expect what you anticipate from the Sixtape series, but I would say the production is a little elevated. And it’s natural growth. Me and Bino have come a long way since we dropped Part 1. I’ve been on a world tour, and he’s been going on tour as well, so I think it’s dope when both artists grow and we connect back. It’s like a full-circle moment that you don’t want to miss out on. And we’re gonna have a tour for this one so it’s gonna be fire.
What’s your favorite thing about the project?
Just embodying the sound. We really created a new wave in L.A. that’s not so aggressive. It’s more player, more laid back, bringing a melodic essence to it. It’s just a fresh breath of air. That’s all I can say, but I’m excited for the fans to check it out.
You’ve had your label, EVGLE, for a while now. You’ve leveled up a lot over the years, including partnering with Red Bull Records. Being on the industry side of things, what has that experience taught you as an artist?
Definitely finding a balance with the industry politics, so to speak. But at the end of the day, I’m grateful that I’m doing what I love. I can complain about the small stuff, like having to do things that I don’t necessarily fully enjoy, like interviews. Like, I’m still opening up. But it comes with the lifestyle. If this is all I’ve gotta do to live my dreams, I’ll do this every day. We can do an interview tomorrow, too. But I think that’s the only challenge—just opening up to the world and letting them in on my personal life. I’m sure there are people that can relate to whatever I’m going through. So it’s an act of service for me.
When it comes to the label and business side of things, where do you want to take it in the future?
I mean, I always tell myself I want to retire at 35. And not necessarily in the aspect of stopping doing music. I love doing music. I’m going to do music forever. But just the obligations. But in the process, I want to continue to create opportunities for other artists as well. I want to create generational wealth, and things like that. I think that comes with opening up the doors for everybody. Like legacy, when you think of Dr. Dre and his success, you gotta attribute Eminem, Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent… So these are the type of things I look forward to doing.
What is something you hope changes about the music industry in the future?
I think just the capping. [Laughs]. Capping in the music. Just lying and stuff. I think the message got too left to where we’re just doing it for the money. And when we look back, we’ve got to understand that the kids are the future at the end of the day. So whatever message we leave, while we have the influence or whatever you would like to call it… You’ve got to be intentional about the message you’re leaving to the next generation. And I think it’s [important] to set the example.
Do you think people have any misconceptions about you? What do they get wrong?
The only thing I would say is people think I’m shy. But my personal analysis of myself is I’m not necessarily shy, but I’m definitely reserved. And I know that can mean the same thing. But I have a strong opinion on a lot of stuff. I just be trying to be respectful for the most part. But I can feel my comfortability setting in, and I’m excited for my own growth. I’m excited to really change people’s lives, because I know my intentions are pure. I’m going to understand the power of my voice and utilize it to make the world a better place, in the most corniest way. [Laughs.]