With Love & Hip-Hop Atlanta returning to Vh1 tonight, Benzino spills details on his expanded role, love interest and new music
VIBE: What are your thoughts on the New York season of Love & Hip-Hop?
Benzino: It’s a little more serious than the Atlanta season. I love it. Atlanta had a little bit more comedic value in it.
With season two coming up, are you excited to be back on TV?
Definitely. I have a much bigger role on Love & Hip-Hop, whereas last year I kinda was under Stevie and coming in as Karlie’s [love interest]. This season I have my own lane; this is a much better situation for me. Last season I was Stevie’s confident, the voice of reason, and I think you’ll see a lot more of that, but you’ll see a lot more of me and what I’m doing as far as my life goes.
So you'll have more of a voice.
My name is definitely opened up now, and I’m going to be in a lot more episodes. I’ve been working on myself. I’ve been in the gym and working on music, and the music is hot. I’ve signed to a new situation called AMS Entertainment, and I have a new single, “Kiss Me Like You Miss Me” featuring Bobby Valentino... You'll see me working on my music and in the gym. A lot more of my life.
Will there be any connection between you and Karlie this season?
Yup, definitely. You’ll see some scenes of me and Karlie [laughs].
Will there be any surprises about you that will make fans love you even more?
There definitely will be some surprises. The name Benzino has always been sort of surrounded by some kind of controversy. As far as loving me even more, I think Love & Hip-Hop, a lot of people hear the name and they judge based on some things they might have heard or a perception. But I think my character came out in a pretty good light last season, so I don’t see anything changing in this one.
How did you perceive yourself last season?
I’m a Cancer, so when I fall, I fall hard. I got to see that and how that looks on TV. That was definitely interesting. I liked to see me and Karlie interact as far as how I am towards another woman.
Since you were a confidant to Stevie during his love triangle, who did you want him to choose?
I know both Mimi and Joseline, and it would be unfair to put my nose in as far as who he should chose. Because at the end of the day, people can tell somebody who to chose, but it’s up to them.
Has it gotten easier as far as having cameras on you?
I’ve been in front of cameras half my life. As far as your private life, that’s something I had to get used to. I’m sure everyone had to because it’s not easy.