V Exclusive: Pill Speaks on Asylum Deal, Plotting Summer Release


John Kennedy / January 5, 2010

Atlanta rapper Pill has signed to Asylum Records, his rep confirmed to VIBE.

While the news broke today, the signing was made official two weeks ago. In fact, Pill says his New Year’s Resolution was to get major label backing. He ultimately inked with Asylum/Warner Bros after piquing the interest of several labels.

“I had Universal Motown, Jive, J Records, Def Jam and I think somebody from Interscope contacted [my manager Derek], too,” Pill tells VIBE. “Asylum was the first one to put an offer on the table ASAP. Asylum offered me a deal from, I’d say, 45 minutes after ‘Trap Goin’ Ham’ hit the Internet. [Laughs]. They been sticking with me and going strong so it was only right.”

Formerly affiliated with Killer Mike’s camp, Pill was all over the blogosphere last year thanks to the aforementioned “Trap Goin’ Ham”––with it’s stark, black-and-white video––and a pair of mixtapes: 4180: The Prescription and 4075: The Refill. The rapper credits his rapidly growing interest to a DIY approach.

“I wanted to cover some ground and gain some fans and establish a concrete foundation with the people and let them know that I’m here, let them know that I’m able to put out quality music,” says Pill. “I didn’t wanna jump right in the bed with somebody right away without being able to do what I wanna do, basically hit the market that I wanted to hit.”

He thought Asylum would be the perfect fit to help transform his independent success into a mainstream presence. “They get it when it comes to urban music. I mean, hood shit,” says Pill. “It ain’t no real lyrical lyrical shit on [the label] so I wanted to kinda be the poster child for lyricism with them… They got the biggest artist out, with Gucci [Mane], so they obviously know what they’re doing. It ain’t been too many major labels breaking new urban artists in a minute.”

Similar to Drake’s So Far Gone approach, Pill plans to release The Refill as an EP. He’s also hoping to drop his debut album, The Medicine, tentatively this summer.

“I got a lot of songs [recorded]. I just want to build up enough demand to where people want to hear an album,” he says. “I wanna be one of those artists that people can’t wait for new shit to come out and have a great line of work. So I wanna let them ride to Refill for a second and once they demand some more music that’s when I’ll put out album.” ––Clover Hope