Benzino Talks New Mixtape ‘Crushed Ice,’ Working with Krayzie Bone and Stevie J
Last time Benzino was in the limelight, he was on Love and Hip-Hop Atlanta struggling in love with Karlie Redd and coaching Stevie J through his messy ordeals. Today, the industry vet is rolling solo and all about business. “I’m single,” Zino tells VIBE on Valentine’s Day. “I’m doing a lot of press and radio…but it ain’t no sad day.” The AMS Entertainment signee is happy, promoting his new mixtape Crushed Ice (released Feb. 22) and credits his LHHA fame for the recognition. “It’s a nice time to put the mixtape out with the Love and Hip Hop show putting some light on me,” he said. The 16-track compilation features Bone Thugs-N-Harmony’s own Krayzie Bone, Ric Flair and his homeboy Stevie J. “Stevie is probably one of the most amazing people I worked with in the studio,” he says. “He plays all instruments and he is super sharp when it comes to music.” The two even shared a fuzzy moment while recording together. “We was recording at my house and Chloe came in the room she just hopped on Stevie’s lap. She had never done that before,” he laughs. “That’s my baby. My bunny Chloe is the queen of the house.” The Krayzie Bone feature was a bit more serendipitous. The two rappers met way back in the day when the late Eazy-E had signed Benzino’s group The Almighty RSO in 1994. It was a chance meeting in Miami that resulted in the collabo. “We were talking about how he was just in Amsterdam and how much I love Amsterdam and we just did the track,” said the “Rock the Party” rapper. Despite his TV endeavors, the 47-year old MC says his music-making never ceased. “I never really stopped recording,” he said. “I’ve always been in the studio. Hip-hop, producing and writing is my love. I don’t think I’ll ever stop.” Stream his new mixtape below and stay tuned for his Bobby Valentino-assisted “Kiss Me Like You Miss Me” set to hit the ‘net soon.