The Boss is back on the job. Just a little more than a year after dropping his well-received third album Deeper Than Rap, Rick Ross is putting the finishing touches on his brand-new LP, Teflon Don (July 6). But aside from working on his latest project, it's been a busy year for the leader of the Carol City Cartel.
During a recent stop at the Def Jam offices in New York City, VIBE.com caught up with the Miami rapper to talk about the video for his lead single, "Super High," his relationship with new Def Jam exec Sha Money XL, and his thoughts on Diddy comparing him to the late Notorious B.I.G. Get to work! —Chris Yuscavage
VIBE.com: The "Super High" video seems to be one of the hot topics on the Internet right now. You brought F. Gary Gray in to direct the video and Stacey Dash to star in it. With the current state of music videos, why did you decide to make it such an event?
Rick Ross: I wanted to celebrate the fact that I had the opportunity to work with someone like F. Gary Gray, who I feel is the biggest black film director in the history of film. Him being a part of this project is big for hip-hop as well. I'm a big fan of his—from Law Abiding Citizen to The Negotiator to Set It Off to Friday. So just bringing that experience into hip-hop and into my world was great.
Going into your last album, Deeper Than Rap, you had a very public feud with 50 Cent that helped generate interest in the project. You don't really have that this time around. Are you glad you're getting the chance to generate your own buzz through your music?
Most definitely. You know, I'm just happy to be making music. All my previous albums went No. 1 At the end of the day, that's what you want to bring home. You want to deliver No. 1 albums. Regardless of the timing and the situation and whatever else is going on around you, the music is always the focus for me. As long as you have extremely hot music, it's gonna be a great time.
You're up at the Def Jam offices today. I'm sure you're aware that Sha Money XL, who has close ties to 50 Cent, is now the Senior VP of A&R at Def Jam. Have you had the chance to work with him at all yet?
Not at all.
Not at all?
Would you sit down and try to work with him in the future—or does his relationship with 50 make that impossible?
You know, this is a huge building. And I'm such a boss, so I could pretty much work with who I decide to work with. But I feel every man has a right to feed his family, so there's no animosity here.