When you think of Cash Money Records, British pop sensations and rock acts, aren’t usually what first comes to mind. However, the future of CMR has rested heavily of the backs of both Jay Sean and Kevin Rudolf. Last year, Rudolf’s multi-platinum single “Let It Rock” became an anthem at radio stations and was also embraced by some of America’s most beloved professional sports teams. With his To The Sky scheduled to drop early this summer, VIBE.com caught up with Kevin to find out what he has in-store for his sophomore album, what it’s like recording in Miami, and Weezy’s reaction to his records being featured on ESPN. —Mikey Fresh
VIBE: What inspired you to title this record To The Sky?
Kevin: Whenever I write something and I’m really excited about it, I just feel like the possibilities are limitless, spiritual extremes are involved, and anything you want could happen. One day last summer I was backstage at a show in Canada and just thought about the next album and it hit me up. “To The Sky.” Let’s Go!
A lot of your new fans probably don’t even know that you’ve been behind the scenes for years…
Yeah, it took me years and years of hard work, and then one summer “Let Rock It” came out and all of a sudden I’m in a completely different place. It’s amazing because now all the doors are wide open for me, a lot of the artists I’ve always wanted to work with are now reachable now.
The artists you worked with for this album are really diverse from Three 6 Mafia, Weezer, Flo Rida. Is there even a way you can describe the sound of To The Sky?
Well, this next album is like a mix of everything I’ve created this year and really just all the thoughts I’ve had on my mind over the last few months. I made the album really fast; it only took my like five or six weeks. Honestly, there really isn’t one concept behind the album.
You recorded a lot of this album in Miami, did you the find the MIA lifestyle to affect your recording process at all? I’m sure you heard what happened to Scott Storch…
I think the music is in you and you bring it to wherever you are. I don’t think being in a certain place influences my records. But Miami has a crazy effect on you [laughs] because you won’t work! There’s just too much fun to be had… the effect that Miami will have on your career is nothing because you won’t get anything done. [laughs]
Your last two singles “Let It Rock” and “I Made It” were featured heavily on ESPN and WWE, how did that happen?
WWE has just always been really supportive of my records, first with “Let It Rock” and now with “I Made It”. But I never expected it, my music just connected with WWE fans [laughs]. Even though my records are considered pop/rock, they always come from a deep place and evoke emotions.
Are you an avid sports fan yourself?
Not really actually, I’m just in the studio making my records, man. But I did make a few appearances at sports and WWE events.
Weezy has to be happy about Cash Money records being featured on ESPN, we all know he’s a die hard sports fan, have you spoken to him since his incarceration?
Yeah, Wayne was thrilled about it—the thing with Cash Money is that they’ve never had a record that has been this visible. Weezy was telling me one day, “I want one of those NBA records Kevin… I want my shit on ESPN!”. [laughs] But I haven’t spoken to him directly yet, but everyone around him says he’s focused and doing well. I know he’ll be fine.
Have you gotten a chance to work with any other Young Money artists like Drake or Nicki Minaj?
I might work with Drake for his album, but I’ve just been so busy wrapping up my project that I haven’t gotten a chance to get in the studio with anyone yet. But I definitely plan to get up with everyone… Lil Twist, Chuckee. They’re all talented kids.